We have all settled down now with our shiny new PS4’s but we are not playing Gran Turismo! This is the unfortunate sad state of affairs if you are a Gran Turismo fan. I still go back and play Mario Kart from time to time on the SNES as it is an absolute blast. That game is older than many kids playing Gran Turimo now! Mario Kart lives in a bygone era, where your mates came to your house to play, and you all took turns racing against each other or trying to smash each other’s lap times.
In the connected and throw away age we live in now, unfortunately many people have devolved (or grown up that way) and subsequently now have the attention span of the common Goldfish. I admit I am the same, one of those that have devolved! If I stumble across a link to something interesting and the page takes more than a Nano second to load, I move on! It took too long and it is too much hard work as I have way too many sources on the net for interesting things that fight for my lack of time and attention. Funny thing is I am bi/tri generational, at least from a tech perspective.
We 30 somethings are in a unique position. We are old enough to remember having to actually walk to a shop to buy a magazine or rent a game from Blockbuster but young enough to have kept up with the rapid changes in technology and how we receive and digest our media. Many a little older than us missed it from the start, and they still rock Nokia 3310s!! The teens and low 20 somethings have never heard of Blockbuster video and they would gasp in disbelief that not too long ago you had to physically collect your media then give it back without getting a late charge fine!
In this day and age, I should not have to live in a not too distant prior generation if I want to play my favourite game but I do. Actually to be honest it is not so much an issue for me personally, as after all GT6 on the PS3 is largely an enjoyable experience as is Mario Kart or a similar classic. Gran Turismo is still a very active and hugely important franchise for PD and Sony (Do they realise?) yet the developers continue to disadvantage themselves with the endless times between new releases as well as not actually doing anything that new. Sure PD have added new things only to take them away with a new release.
The throwaway generation have already forgotten about GT6 and nostalgia alone from the 30 somethings that grew up with Gran Turismo will not be enough as a foundation for GT7 to achieve a similar success the early instalments that the franchise enjoyed, nor will it be easy to continue in the future. As a Gran Turismo Fanboy I have always been non accepting of the alternatives!! As much as I know Forza is a great franchise I have never accepted it as an alternate or even a placeholder for a new GT that we always seem to be waiting for! Shame on me!
Things have changed now and Project Cars was accepted into my life as placeholder until we eventually get a Gran Turismo for the PS4 but rather than seeing Project cars as only a mere stop gap, I am totally sold on the product that they have put out and accepted it for what it is rather than comparing it endlessly to GT…Many Gran Turismo fans have also done the same.
PC is largely how a sim racer should be and it is a refreshing take on the console Sim Racer. I applaud the developers with the product that they have put out as well as their approach. It’s still not an absolute replacement for GT in my mind (yet) but it stands high in my mind. To be honest I would like Gran Turismo to be more like Project Cars while still keeping the things that make Gran Turismo’ “Gran Turismo”, and at the same time I would like PC to be a little more like Gran Turismo!
Yes we gamers are hard to please but is it not a sign to developers to focus on the best bits of all Racing games and put them together and smash out a game that will be totally awesome? P Cars are on the right path as that pathways’ direction is very much driven by the community. It has focus and knows precisely where it wants to be and what it wants to achieve. PC as a first effort ticks an array of boxes!! The Gran Turismo franchise on the other hand is kind of on a pathway that leads in all directions and doubles up on itself that ends up nowhere and somewhere in between nothing! Spaghetti Junction springs to mind!
Gran Turismo has certainly got an identity crisis! If it was a person it would be one of those “out there” artistic types with a multiple split personality disorder. Your head would spin because this persons’ day job might be a Tax Accountant but by night they hit the clubs and then oil paint pictures of landscape and sea views in the morning while smoking a pipe. KY and PD as a company are way too abstract, they live in an obscure contemporary world trying to “feel” and “theorise” way too much, adding unnecessary complexity to the thought processes of where they see Gran Turismo’s place in the world should be. Gran Turismo is a directionless art project for KY that ends up how it is based on the prolific artistic whims of its creator. Like most Modern Art Gran Turismo has never made sense, nor will it ever! Maybe I am being too harsh, so we will say that Gran Turismo is an “ongoing” concept that will find its feet “eventually”!
When Gran Turismo 7 finally lands on the PS4, your head is going to melt like it did with 5 and 6. I will not speculate too much but no doubt we will have standard cars. I am still not confident that we will lose the PS1 car engine sounds and I put money on the course maker that took several years to arrive on GT6 will be absent in GT7. Progress for the Gran Turismo Franchise since 4 has been 1 step forward and 3 back. With all of the features we have seen added or taken away with recent Gran Turismo’s, all PD have to do is pick the features that fans want and expand upon these features rather than them being a wasted opportunity, full of potential but never developed into something of any real substance and functionality. Gran Turismo’s strongest asset and yet at the same time its weakest has always been a game that has enough parched content for the user to make their own fun, in a motoring world he/she creates for themselves.
With generation Goldfish, who will no doubt be the largest potential market for the next Gran Turismo, these guys are in danger of not even knowing what Gran Turismo 7 is, nor will they have the time or patients to “make it” fun for themselves.
Gran Turismo will be a game that their dad used to play, while generation 30 something (dad) will be working hard, paying mortgages and bringing up their families. If We still have time to play games we might have moved on to Project Cars 3 or Asssetto Corsa and Gran Turismo 7 will be that game we use to play, the one that created a whole new genre but fell by the wayside as something that had huge potential but never quite achieved it despite 7 goes at it.
Maybe one day and hopefully before it is too late, a large coconut will fall on kazunori Yamauchi ‘s head, and he will drop out of the sky and back down to earth with his feet firmly on the ground like the rest of us, because at this rate my this website my end up being called PC Arena. Communities are created and driven off of games like Gran Turismo as was this community and GTPlanet. It is worrying when the largest Gran Turismo community website diversifies and now includes in its front page news, Forza, PC, Assetto Corsa, DriveClub, and F1 2015 and so on. The GT Massive are more frequently playing other sim racers and joining those respective communities at an alarming rate.
So PD will it be 7 times lucky? As I honestly think if you are not close to nailing Gran Turismo 7 then That Rocky Road Ahead that I mentioned will open up into a sink hole and Gran Turismo will be that game your dad use to play, like he played Mario Kart on SNES. It will be a game that your pop has a twinkle in his eye as he talks to his son reminiscently about it while he is playing PC3. Just like kids don’t want to listen to the Music their pop’s listen too they won’t play the games we play too, and there goes your future market PD.
I hope I am wrong but we can only wait and wait what the future brings. Back to Project Cars for me then……