The release of Gran Turismo 7 is drawing ever closer, will it take the title of Ultimate Racing Game? Billy Strange has the build up.
Gran Turismo 7, will it be the Ultimate Racing Game? Billy Strange talks about the new upcoming title and how it has been a stalwart series thought the years in the gaming industry.
Here we sit, just a handful of days out from the release of Gran Turismo 7 and I have to admit; I’m trying to contain a lot of cautious optimism and excitement for what the new entry into this storied racing game IP will bring. It could be that it has felt like we haven’t had a proper Gran Turismo since maybe GT5, possibly even GT4. It could also be the optimism of what new things GT7 will push forward in the more hard-core racing landscape. We can debate about the merits of calling Gran Turismo a sim (or not), but one thing is certainly true; for a large swath of sim-racers, one of the Gran Turismo titles was their jumping off point into becoming a more serious virtual racer.
I’ve played every main line entry in the series and right now I’m streaming myself on YouTube finishing up the single player stuff in GT Sport. I’m having a great time with it as I have every title before this. Some definitely more than others and I’ll admit that nostalgia kicks in hard when I say that the first three in the Gran Turismo series are my favorites.
It was incredibly exciting to get a hold of the first Gran Turismo because up until that point, nothing like it existed to that degree on a console. I watched GT’s exploding popularity ignite a firestorm of other “serious” racing titles which made the original Playstation and Playstation 2 gold mines for the more serious racer.
They were not all good obviously, but Gran Turismo did give a legitimate path for racing titles of all qualities to be produced for an extended period of time into the PS2 era. We definitely got some stinkers like Driving Emotion Type S from none other than RPG legend SquareSoft, which is now known as Square Enix. Konami stomped it’s foot into the serious racer space with its fairly impressive Enthusia Professional Racing that scored well, but failed to produce enough sales in a saturated market to prompt Konami to stay in the race. Forza Motorsport became the ultimate challenger to Gran Turismo not only in its staying power in a long running IP, but also in Forza’s commitment in pushing the console racing genre forward and exposing many more to the world of serious virtual racing.
I love my serious PC sim racing, but my roots are firmly planted in the Gran Turismo series. While GT Sport was not what I wanted from Polyphony Digital, I can also recognize that they pushed the genre forward in terms of not only console racing, but e-sports sim racing as a whole. Maybe this is why I’m really excited; I can’t wait to see how Polyphony Digital mixes the past, present and future of the serious racer in Gran Turismo 7.
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To read more about Billy visit: Billy Strange: Sim Racing Is More Than Just A Game