gt6dropTriple hooray !

A long awaited game has hit the shelves and I happen to own the 15th Anniversary Edition since last week.

As you guessed (by the title probably) I’m talking about Gran Turismo 6 for Playstation 3.
Although I’ve been looking forward to it for a long time, and am kind of biased, I’ll try to give my opinion in an objective way here.



After gently asking Sinterklaas to bring me a gift in the form of a brand new video game being released just two days before the old man jumps down my non-existant chimney, I got sadly disappointed the bishop of Myra himself had died 1671 years ago, and wasn’t gonna go “zombie-Jesus” on me, to actually bring me a gift.
My house’s chimney ends up in the exhaust of my water boiler anyway.
So… rushing by the local video game store it is…

The limited edition version was the last one available that day, so the excitement was all over the place as I arrived home, shiny metal blue box at hand and grasping the PS3 controller with the other.
Luckily as with all Playstation 3 success stories, this one had a 1.2GB update already standing by, cutting the fun at least half an hour shorter :(

Thursday evening was already drawing near, and gaming had to be done.


Actually grabbing a controller

One tv dinner later, the patch was installed and I was ready to see the intro movie, which I always do. It got me an easy PS3 trophy last time in Disgaea D2.
A waste of 4 minutes of my life later, Ayrton Senna had better not show his face around my town anymore as this was one of the worst intros in video game history. Ever.
No trophy. Damn.
Curse you Ayrton and your Professor Xavier-like Centre for the mentally-challenged-to-become-pro-drivers !
Lucky I’m only going to have to watch this never again, so on to the menu.

The game easily swoops you into place while having to go through a mini-walkthrough. You buy your first obligatory shitty family car and it’s off to the race track.
The first gameplay experience felt a bit like the older Gran Turismo 5 and was quite OK.
But what’s this? Stars? I can collect golden stars?
As a Mario fan, I find this to be a good thing! And it’s also a factor to calculate your bragging rights upon! *thumbs up*
Another 30 minutes later I realised I had bought the 15th Anniversay Edition once again, and that a DLC code was included with  the booklet.
The code gave access to a million credits in-game and a load of cars (this originally said ‘shitload’ but that word wasn’t appropriate), a fancy GT6 driver outfit and more fun things I can’t even remember.




Unlocking time !

Being a sucker for role-playing games and levelling up, this game was once again doing its magic to me by revealing itself slowly, unlock after unlock.
Still remembering the incredible way in which you could be overpowered in the previous GT game, it struck me they had added a new point system called PP (pronounced pee-pee), by which your vehicle is graded based on all its aspects that are moddable and that give you speed/manoeuvrability advantages.
This PP is then used a min/max value for allowing cars to participate in certain races. No more F1 cars in beginner stages. Yeay!

I was a little saddened by the fact that my GT5 driver’s licenses weren’t automatically reactivated and that I had to do them all over again, just when I saw the online time comparison with other PS3 friends.
Aha! A good reason to keep on playing! Competitiveness!
Of course all ups have their downs. Regular races didn’t share this time attack trait. WHYYYYYYYYY??? Why can’t I see my friend’s times online on every stage?
Why can a simple Xbox360 race game do this, and why can’t the self-proclaimed mother of Driving Simulators have this ordinary feature?

The foam on my lips quickly went away as I unlocked one of the first somewhat cool things in game : the lunar landing.
You get to pilot the original moon lander and drive actual moon routes in a time attack fashion. The weird NASA vehicle moves at an amazing speed of 35 km/h and bounces off every rock on the surface.
Still, good fun and it got me laughing out loud, or “lol’ing” as you youngsters say nowadays.


Belgium and better

A day or so later, and still playing GT6 (which means a lot coming from me, since I’m not really a hardcore driving game fan – see what I did there, I’m not calling it a race game), the Spa Francorchamps racing circuit unlocked.
Yeay, again. It felt quite like I had played it in other games and in the second round I could almost complete the circuit blindfolded.
Good times rolled, as more circuits revealed themself to me; old ones and new ones. The snow stages in the Alps are tons of fun without rally tyres, by the way.
My three favorite cars also popped up in the unlock list, which was a good thing to watch. (no a DeLorean is not in the game, so I’m not 100% accurate on the word “favorite”). The Toyota Celica GT-Four is one of them. Most of you can guess the other two, by now then ;) *mumble mumble Championship – click-click VROOM*

An other reason I can say I really like this game, is the fact that whenever I start a race, I usually lay back – relaxed – in my comfy chair, only to find myself sitting on the frontmost part of the chair just seconds later in a state of super-concentration. This sort of concentration hasn’t happened since I played Super Meat Boy.
Who says there’s no such thing as “good stress”?


Graphics whore

People that know me, also know that I can not be called the above words. Most of my game collection consists of retro games with a slight preference towards 16bit console games.
The graphics of GT6 were actually visibly better than those in GT5. This isn’t a must for most games, but Gran Turismo games are all about glamour, bling and showing off your cars, so that’s a nice little extra.
Which brings us to the big question as to why GT6 was never released as a Playstation 4 release game. Every Sony game console of the last generations has appeared in a special release version packed with a Gran Turismo game. Why couldn’t this be a PS4 release game?
Was it not finished yet?
Will the PS4 have a PS3 GT6.1 remake with enhanced graphics and non-transferrable savegame *cough* ?
Is GT6 a classy way of waving goodbye to the PS3?

Either way, I believe the PS3 got pushed to the limit in this game, and I’m afraid something like  a Street Fighter IV explosion might occur on my trusty black box.
My first Xbox360 went up in smoke only days after I started playing Street Fighter IV. A similar event occured at a friend’s house when he started playing Gran Theft Auto 5. (PS3 fanboys, post your comments below :p)


Gran Turismo 5 (above) compared to Gran Turismo 6 (below)


All in all…

… Gran Turismo 6 is what Gran Turismo 5 should have been : less easy with upscaled graphics and more cars and more tracks.
If you’re looking for a fun arcade racer, don’t buy this game. Buy Forza, Need for Speed or Grid 2  instead. Or even return to the earlier times of great fun and try to find a copy of Sega Rally or Daytona USA, if you will.

GT6, however, is indeed an excellent game if you’re a car freak, like some of my friends are, or if you like levelling things up, like I do.
The driving goes at a very realistic pace and it’s all about realism in this game when it comes to “the real driving experience”. Take in mind though that the game didn’t calculate that you would ever crash into something : there’s NO damage models in the game. Again. Like in every GT game.
That does sound somewhat logical as otherwise it would have been “the real crashing simulator” but hey…  I’m not complaining.

I do advise buying a steering wheel for your Playstation 3 if you really want the full shebang. An ordinary controller just doesn’t cut it when it comes to accuracy. I still find myself tapping (some of you read ‘fapping’, right) the analog controller as if it were a good old 4-way directional pad (cause that’s what D-pad stands for).
The Logitech Driving Force GT not only looks great, but drives great as well. I strongly advise that one!

Oh, and buy yourself a good speaker system. The engine rev sounds don’t really come to life on plain built-in television speakers.

I deliberately didn’t speak about the soundtrack of the game in this post, as I can’t do this in an objective way. I sincerely hate the GT6 soundtrack.
Luckily the friendly people at Polyphony Digital provided us with a way to use our own Playstation 3 media system to play the gentle tunes in the background. Phew.

Like I said before, maybe I’m biased, but I find Gran Turismo to be great fun, even though I’m not a race game kinda guy. The above article explained why.
Can’t wait till they actually let you compare time attack scores :)

One Response to “GAME REVIEW – Gran Turismo 6”

  1. GRmbl, after reading this I need to get it, eventhough I wasn’t planning on it….

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