Gran Turismo 5: Review

On November 24th, 2010, Gran Turismo 5 was finally released after 5 long years (Yes, it really was 5 years) of development. So like most other lemmings I picked this game up on the day it came out.
(I can’t wait for the day companies send us games to review. If only.)

My very first impressions of the game were actually really negative. I waited 5 years for this game, then it tells me I need to not only update my system – but that it also wants me to install the game onto my system. So after 5 years and 1 hour of waiting to play this game, it finally loaded up – and it was worth it. The game looks beautiful and gorgeous all at the same time.

With over 1,000 cars and 71 tracks, it’s the largest GT game they’ve released. If 71 tracks doesn’t excite you much, don’t worry – because they’ve included a course editor. While the course editor isn’t as in-depth as it could be, it isn’t all too terrible.  Course editing isn’t confusing at all – you basically tell the game what type of ground (dirt, tarmac, snow) you want, how many checkpoints you want, how wide you want the roads in those checkpoints and how difficult you want that stretch of road to be – and it will do that for you. I was a little bummed out I couldn’t physically make the course myself, but it’s a racing game, not a course designing game.

This time around they also included vehicle damage. The vehicles themselves are split into 2 categories: Standard and Premium. Only about 20% of the cars are Premium, meaning the vast majority have a less-detailed damage model – but still have visible damage on the car. Considering no company really  wants to show their vehicles getting destroyed even in a video game – it’s a start, right?

The online capabilities for this game are also very promising. If you have friends who own this game, not only can you race them (and 14 other people) and rub it in their face (or be a humble winner, we don’t judge) – but you can see the progress of their offline games. Including how far they’ve driven, how many races they’ve won, and the percentage of completion for A-Spec and B-Spec mode.

If you have a ‘normal’, non-HD TV, don’t worry, They even thought about your feelings. Are those words a little too small for you to read? Zoom in with R1 so you can see them on your blotchy television! On the other hand you’re even able to play this game in 3D – if you’re equipped to do so.

Now, while I honestly don’t think the game was worth the 5-year wait (in my mind no game is worth waiting 5 years for), this is a very fantastic game, and in no way do I regret buying it – It looks amazing, and it feels amazing. The handling of the vehicles feels so realistic despite the fact I’m driving with my thumbs, that it amazes me every time I try a new vehicle. (The game is also compatible with seemingly every steering wheel on the market, if you’re into that type of thing). Not to mention they included Go-karts. And who doesn’t enjoy a 32-person online Go-Kart race where there are absolutely no shells, larger Karts, or giant bullets  flying towards you at any given point.

"If only I had a red shell."

If you’re a fan of racing games, I can guarantee you’ll love this game. Sadly there doesn’t seem to be much to hold a non-racing fan – then again I suppose a racing game isn’t marketed for people who dislike racing games.

While it loses marks for taking 5 years to develop, it is visually orgasmic and has so much in it to do that this game is practically perfect – and is a must-have for any racing fan.

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