Sunday, 22 August 2010

Why It's All About Gran Turismo 5


It's been a ridiculously long wait for one of the PS3's most eagerly anticipated games, almost to the point where the length of the wait (3 years and counting) has overshadowed what's coming.  Almost, but not quite.

Over the next few months we'll see sequels for some of my favourite titles littering every game emporium (and HMV) up and down the land but I'm struggling to see beyond Gran Turismo 5 because if there's one experience I've not really had on the PS3 it's a decent driving game.

Pro Evo has a new vastly improved sequel....  but just like FIFA it's still another football title and all the frippery that they've tacked on, whilst interesting, doesn't convince me that any really big ideas have come into play.  EA are keeping pretty quiet about FIFA, this is either because it's not a massive leap on from the World Cup game they released in the summer or... no wait, that will be the reason.

There's a new Call of Duty on the way as well.  Now I love Modern Warfare 2, just like I loved Call of Duty 4 before it but this is a Treyarch game, not Infinity Ward.  World at War, their last effort, was a solid enough game, but it lacked something online.  Modern Warfare 2 and COD4 have maybe two bad maps between them, World at War had around four that you just groaned at as soon as they came up.  Sure there were a few that were really good but they never ingrained themselves on the psyche like COD4's did, I couldn't tell you the names of any of the WAW maps now.

Does it really feel like it's time to give up on MW2?  Really?  Not for me.  It'll be the one game that stays in my collection for two years, just like its predecessor did, because no one does it quite like Infinity Ward do.

Gran Turismo then.  'The Daddy' of the driving games.  The game that creator, Kazanouri Yamuchi, has admitted he could keep tinkering with until he dies.  It's a labour of love and I just love that kind of dedication to something.  Everything done by the studio in house, no farming out of bits and pieces to others, they've rendered the dashboard for the Kia themselves.  The big geeks.

If you've owned any of the previous Gran Turismo titles you know what's coming.  But my point here is that despite that I want it.  And that's about the wait.  Gran Turismo is like your favourite band releasing one great album every five years or so, maybe knocking out the occasional EP or free single to download to pacify the masses, before knocking you dead with the real deal.  That's not to say they'll of got it completely right, but cheese and rice, it sounds about as promising as it get.

Wouldn't it be refreshing if Activision (publishers of Call of Duty), EA and Konami took a different stance with their franchises and released one killer game that they freshened up with downloadable content rather than annually releasing another full price title where, and lets be honest about this, the gameplay won't really change significantly.

Just a thought.

For me, at least, November can't come quickly enough.