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Gran Turismo 6 - Review in Progress

I wanna go fast!

Gran Turismo 6 is nearly upon us, and I've been racing around classic tracks like High Speed Ring and new additions like Brands Hatch for a few days now. So far, I've been having a blast. But while I'd love to give you a full verdict on the game, GT6 has fallen pray to the dreaded day-one patch, meaning the multiplayer, online community features, and microtransaction features of the game aren't yet available, as well as other as-yet-unnamed tweaks. That said, I still want to give keen racers out there some idea of my experience so far with Polyphony Digital's latest simulation.

GT6 makes a highly polarizing first impression, offering excitement with one hand and taking it away again with the other. For the first time in a GT game, you're dropped into the action immediately with a single test lap at Brands Hatch in a swift Renault Clio RS to give you a feel for the handling. Unfortunately, this one lap is the most fun I had in the first 90 minutes.

After a positive start, GT6 immediately falls back into the series' bad habits by forcing you to drive the incredibly slow, incredibly dull Honda Fit for over an hour. You aren't given any choice over your first Career mode car, and credits are handed out dreadfully slowly at the beginning of the game. That means you can't afford to replace the Fit for some time, so you have to wait until the game gifts you a new car at the end of the first set of Career events--and when you are given the car, it's only a go-kart. This whole sequence leaves you crying out for better machinery and is only going to make newcomers to GT wonder what all the fuss is about when other racing games put you behind the wheel of a sports car within minutes.

Here's where I would talk about the touchy subject of microtransactions, but they aren't going to be enabled until launch. What I can say, though, is that while buying your way to the top certainly will be possible in GT6, at this stage it doesn't look like the ability to do so has had a detrimental effect on the way the the game works, nor are the microtransactions pushed upon you during play.

Once you're through the slog of the first 90 minutes, the credits and cars arrive much more quickly. Career mode also puts the new circuits up front, keeping returning GT fans entertained while repeating the usual pattern of having you drive slower cars to work your way up to pure racing machines. Silverstone, Goodwood Hill Climb, Bathurst, and Willow Springs are among the new real-world circuits, and there are a couple of returning fictional tracks from past Gran Turismo games that were absent from GT5. The sheer number of cars and tracks is one of the most impressive aspects of GT6. Polyphony Digital claims there are more than 1,200 cars and 100 track layouts, so there's plenty for drivers to dig into.

You can feel the body of your car roll as you change direction, making it natural and instinctive to correct tiny slides and massive oversteer moments.

Out on the track is where Gran Turismo excels. The handling model in GT6 is far and away the best, most detailed, and most engaging car simulation available on consoles. The suspension modeling is the most noticeable improvement. You can feel the body of your car roll as you change direction, making it natural and instinctive to correct tiny slides and massive oversteer moments, especially with a steering wheel. Stock road cars also feel much more lively now. In the past, they've been almost as stiff as the racing cars, but in GT6, you can sense much more movement through these less-high-end machines, especially when the nose dives forward under braking. You can also feel the limit of grip much more easily on standard street tires, meaning you can extract more performance than usual from some slower cars.

However, while the driving is executed beautifully, there are other areas of the GT6 experience that are pretty ugly. Gran Turismo has been around for a long time, but in all of those 15 years, it doesn't seem like the AI has ever improved. Computer-controlled cars still follow a rigid racing line that they are barely capable of deviating from. The AI shows little awareness of either you or the other AI cars, making most races play out like mobile obstacle courses with very little challenge.

There are some graphical problems as well. Wet weather looks really poor, particularly the effects of water hitting your windshield in the cockpit view. Environments look dated too, especially up close. Grandstands are full of cardboard fans, and some of the texture work leaves a lot to be desired, especially on trees and rock surfaces. Then there are the cars. For the most part, the car models are stunning, inside and out, but the distinction between premium and standard models is still an issue, and which cars fall into which category isn't clear.

GT6 no longer separates these cars in dealerships, and it doesn't distinctly label them. Though the developer has argued that there is no longer a visual difference between standard and premium cars, you can spend credits on a cool-looking ride only to get it on the track and discover that it looks jagged and blurry beside the other pristine machines. Many of the cars still sound like lawnmowers as well, but the day-one patch is supposedly going to sort this out.

Polyphony Digital seems to have carried on where it left off in Gran Turismo 5 and produced a sequel that's a natural progression of all things Gran Turismo, rather than a great reinvention of the franchise. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but there are parts of the game that are sorely in need of a makeover, things that a day-one patch is unlikely to solve. Look out for my full review of GT6 once I've spent some more time on the track and burnt some rubber online.

Written By

GameSpot Freelance Writer, specialising in racing games.I wanna go fast!

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Discussion

371 comments
super_davem
super_davem

This game looks and sound very dated/last neg. 7.0

Tiger_Ali
Tiger_Ali

lol people saying that the cars and engines sound like lawnmowers.  I have a lawnmower, that's one hell of an exaggeration.  Some bots are too high on crack and  some bots should find a wire to trip over already.  Waiting for gamestop to be like machinima and give this game a higher rating than Forza 5.

keepclearx
keepclearx

What's the point in releasing a potentially great game on the old console now the PS4's out? It would look fantastic on the PS4 and would of increased console sales. PS4 would of had better weather dynamics and more detailed textures for a better driving experience, makes no sense. 

---Cipher---
---Cipher---

Microtransactions are a deal breaker for me unfortunatly. I don't want to see this become a new thing because it'll just be abused to death like dlc's and patching has become.


To those who do want this though, have fun for me!

Fizzman
Fizzman

This game has 7.5 written all over it.  

19James89
19James89

Yet another game with a day one patch. *rolls eyes*

imrangr1
imrangr1

Has anyone noticed how GT6 looks a bit dated I mean it even looks worse than GT5. That's sad really. why couldn't they just put this game in PS4 and updated graphics. I guess they didn't wanna taint PS4 rep with micro transactions.

7rooper
7rooper

This game series have lost its path a long time ago...
Everything about GT now isn't innovating, takes too long to be released, too much hyped and boring....

I don't get why this release dodn't make it to the PS4...

obsequies
obsequies

sad to see a genre inventing game slack it

EPaul
EPaul

Sounds like a 7 to me

cjlebron
cjlebron

"After a positive start, GT6 immediately falls back into the series' bad habits by forcing you to drive the incredibly slow, incredibly dull Honda Fit for over an hour. You aren't given any choice over your first Career mode car, and credits are handed out dreadfully slowly at the beginning of the game."


And how convenient that I'll be able to buy in-game currency with the day one patch. I'm sure Sony and Polyphony have only my best interests at heart...

mattcake
mattcake

I have great love for Japanese games, but they are SO slow to move with the times and often very dated. (e.g. moving and shooting in Res Evil) GT just gets prettier each time with some handling tweaks - they should market it as a driving simulator instead of a RACING simulator, because racing requires actual dynamic, responsive AI - not just navigating cars that move around the track on a fixed line. Very poor Polyphony, you need to gut this IP and start over for the PS4.

Kjranu
Kjranu

Looks like a game that could have been better if it was released as a PS4 launch title instead. 

Dashing_Pixel
Dashing_Pixel

Sorry man i loved GT until GT3 back in the day, but now it just feels old to me. With PS4 out right now it also looks old,.. very old. I´d love to get Forza, but this on disc content transaction thing is just not acceptable.

DeanoFantasy
DeanoFantasy

Almost all of Microsoft games where at some point a copy or rip off of what games where already out on a Sony console at one point, so how can people say Forza > GT lol all Forza has tried to do is replicate what GT brought to the table lol

solid_snake1461
solid_snake1461

I don't like articles like these. It feels like GS is testing the water to see how the readers would react before releasing the "official" review. Really, they should either play the game and write the review about that game or they don't.

nikon133
nikon133

I might be the only one here, but I actually loved racing slow cars in GT4 and GT5. Since some of them take ages to reach speed, driving them made it more important to select optimal route through curves, one that will keep speed and revs as high as possible. Same with bumping into other cars - speed drop penalty (and time required to recover your speed) was forcing driver to simply avoid any contact, if possible. Driving slow cars in GT was all about smooth handling.


Maybe because every other racing game focuses on fast, powerful cars, I always found racing likes of Fiat 500 very refreshing.


I'm not expecting GT6 to be better overall game than Forza 5, c'mon... one is running on 7 years old hardware, the other on current hardware... but I do expect it to improve on GT5, which is enough for me to purchase it. It is also likely to be the last game for PS3 I will purchase, before I switch to PS4.

andmcq
andmcq

Having played GT since the very first day that the first one was released, and subsequently playing all of the Forza titles, it's clear that Polyphony Digital have dropped the ball big time. 


There isn't a single aspect where Gran Turismo out does Forza. In physics they are comparable but everywhere else Forza trumps Gran Turismo by a substaintial margin in A.I, sound, frame rate and general usability. 


I love this GT, but I practically love all car games. This is a 6/10 at best.

The_Game21x
The_Game21x

You think this game is going to get a 10? Good luck!

RTHKI
RTHKI

@Tiger_Ali You're right, a lawnmower sounds better than this game. It sounds like vacuums btw.

Chronosus
Chronosus

Well first off, there are 70 million owners of ps3. Then there's the fact that if it was to be rushed for ps4 (and we all know fast development isn't polyphony's thing) it would have been featureless, striped down physics and graphic showcase like forza 5 is. What's the point in that? Polyphony really took ps3 to the max with this one, and it's great that game like this came out on now last gen hardware, which is something Xbox users are not really accustomed to and PS are (I'm not trying to flame, it's just fact).

Tiger_Ali
Tiger_Ali

Does just fine on the PS3 beside ps4 has driveclub.  Save GT7 for an epic release.

zeth_demone
zeth_demone

can i ask you just 1 thing, i want to know if the overall sound (cars, engines, brakes, etc) were improved from gt5...

andmcq
andmcq

@mattcake They do market it as a driving simulator, that's why it's motto is 'the real driving simulator'

mattcake
mattcake

@Kjranu Nah, for PS4 I want proper damage, proper collision physics, proper weather... and some fluffy dice. Yes, the fluffy dice.

The_Game21x
The_Game21x

Yep. That's why every single Forza Motorsport game released this generation has scored higher than Gran Turismo 5, right? Forza Motorsport lapped Gran Turismo a long time ago and Gran Turismo is in no position to catch up. According to Metacritic, Gran Turismo 6 is sitting on an 81. Congrats. You've managed to tie the worst rated entry in the franchise (Forza Motorsport 5). Good luck trying to catch your last gen competition (Forza 4).

dani_i89
dani_i89

@DeanoFantasy It's called innovation. With your theory, we would still be driving the original Ford created back before 1900. Face it, the Xbox game has wildly outdone the PS game

wa128
wa128

@DeanoFantasy@DeanoFantasy I do'nt agree that it is a replica... but if it is a replica it is doing a better job than the original. Kudo's for that

Horndawgie
Horndawgie

@DeanoFantasy I will give you a clue, little kid. Forza 4 has taken all that and taken it to another level. Hence the 9.1 after 83 reviews and every single one of them positive. EVERY ONE!. Forza has better graphics, better frame rate, much better sound effects, much more realisitc collision and damage, and the physics are realistic enough. I have been in races at over 180 MPH in Carrera GT, Ferrari Enzo, F50, 360 CS, GT3 RS. What cars have you driven?

I know what you will say- Those reviews are bogus, they don't have a clue about real driving, blah blah blah. So 83 pro reviewers are completely wrong,while Sony fanboys who have never even played Forza, or pretend they have, know what they are talking about. The idiocy is beyond appalling.

Here is a typical review from a Sony Fanboy on Metacritic about Forza 4-

"I won't give this a good rating until they add weather and night, and some real race cars. GT5 is about racing, Forza is about staring at stupid supercars with your stupid twelve year old friends."


Beyond stupidity. One reason I won't have anything to do with any Sony products in the future- they attract the biggest idiots on the planet. I am surrounded by frickin' idiots on PSN.

mattcake
mattcake

@nikon133 I prefer the slow cars too, like you say they need a little more attention to get the best out of. That and because collisions and damage are always crap, it is stupid to collide at 200mph and skim off scott free like a bobsled :)

keepclearx
keepclearx

@PJthePlayer2 retarded to say that when gran turismo first started on the PS1 and was one of the best selling driving simulators 

Jcray21
Jcray21

Now that is just stupid.

Tiger_Ali
Tiger_Ali

a 9.5 or something should do just way too much content and good graphics for a ps3 game.  How many tracks does forza 5 have again?

mattcake
mattcake

@andmcq You're exactly right. They've covered all the bases, the sly old dogs :)

zeth_demone
zeth_demone

I can only say, everytime i compare any gran turismo with a Forza game, Forza has many car options expanded (even the outstanding painting options), but Forza games are so easy, i mean, everything could be done by a 4 year old boy, thats not what actually gran turismo offers...


Dont throw any metacritic bullshit at me please, every gran turismo game feels like a real product, a real polished one... im not a sony fan boy so pleeease dont come up with that

games2525
games2525

for a grown up you surely act as a hurt little boy for no reason.you say gt is overrated and forza underrated...ok!no need to get all worked up...sheeeez!!!

The_Game21x
The_Game21x

GameSpot doesn't give out .5s anymore so the only score that could beat Forza 5 is a 10 and well, I highly doubt it will score that high. I'm guessing a 7 or 8, personally but hey, it might tie Forza 5 with a 9!

sammoth
sammoth

@zeth_demone They fact that you say GT feels like a finished product is even funnier. How are those interiors working out of you ? How about the premium car experience ? Finished my ss.

sammoth
sammoth

@zeth_demone Um try turning the assists off and on Forza 5 raise the levels of the Drivatars while your at it. Then come back here and say it's easy again.