Reviews Jakub Wojtkowiak
Review: Gran Turismo Sport (PS4)
Gran Turismo Sport in the game database
Review: Gran Turismo Sport (PS4)

I haven’t been so impatient when waiting for a game to come out, especially not since the PlayStation 4 release. The next part of Gran Turismo was always like Christmas to me. Unfortunately, since GT6’s debut a lot has changed – mostly that now there’s dangerous competition around. And how very much so. On consoles we got things like Project Cars that was quite decent, excellent Project Cars 2, pretty good Assetto Corsa and brilliant DiRT Rally and DiRT. Has Polyphony delivered?

Well, Gran Turismo Sport did deliver, however not without a few drawbacks along the way, catching a flat tire and losing a couple of (fairly important) parts when changing the tire on the roadside. During the first contact with the game I was damn straight disappointed. The content was at least a half smaller than in Project Cars 2, the singleplayer campaign practically didn’t exist, the “ranking” races remained in beta form – I thought it was some kind of a sad joke. That’s it for an optimistic intro.

Gran Turismo Sport #1

But first things first. Always, and I mean always, I put the mechanics of a racing game and driving model before the content and design of a production – seems fairly logical. In Gran Turismo Sport you can have incredible fun! Let’s be honest – it’s not a simulator from the very end of the scale, where you can encounter the famous iRacing, Raceroom, rFactor 2 or Project Cars 2. Obviously, it’s not the level of Forza or Driveclub, either. The game is perfectly balanced, demanding, yet you can feel it’s a bit easier than the mentioned titles. And it’s not an accusation at all! You can really feel the aerodynamics in the racing cars. When losing contact with asphalt, even running over kerb, momentarily you can feel loss of traction, and if you don’t react quickly enough – we all know what will happen. The biggest change since Gran Turismo 6 that I noticed in driving model is relocating the mass in the cars. You can almost feel on your own body the g-force, especially during braking and fast bends – it’s truly impressive! It’s best visible on the Brands Hatch track after the first turn – when driving down towards the evenness, the down force makes the chassis hit the ground and creates fantastic sound effects and sensation on the steering wheel. I haven’t paid attention to such a detail in any other game so far. Unfortunately, everything falls apart when you enter a race on a gravel surface. I have no idea why this element is even in the game. I don’t recall it being especially popular in the previous entries. Driving is more like moving on ice rather than actual gravel road, no fun at all, and the routes are completely dull. I might be more forgiving if it wasn’t for the fact that the last DiRTs have brought a new quality of rally to the market, and Project Cars 2 had as awesome Rallycross mode. Unnecessary effort that was undoubtedly put into creating… a totally useless part of the game.

Gran Turismo Sport #2

The aforementioned balance translates into easier pad control. It’s definitely the most accessible simulator, for which we can use DualShock without spending hours in the controller’s settings first. Seriously – playing with DS4 was simply fun. Of course, Thrustmaster T300 RS GT, with which I play all the racing games, is a different level of fun and works beautifully, but like I said before – it’s doable, it’s okay and I recommend it with clear conscience! When it comes to the wheel, I feel a bit less power of the FFB than when playing Project Cars 2, but honestly – I didn’t have to look around the settings too long.

The game looks really nice. The attention to details of the cars’ models is just amazing, every model looks remarkable and the cars’ interiors is a whole new league. And what’s most important – everything is super stable. It happened maybe twice during the whole game that fps dropped a bit, but it was only when there was a huge starting mess. Shadows and the lighting are another element that’s always been phenomenal in Gran Turismo and this time is no different. The photo mode is an entirely different story. If you’re into photography, even that in a virtual version, you can spend hours in here. And the effects are astonishing. It’s a real brilliant wallpaper maker!

Gran Turismo Sport #3

Another thing I didn’t expect myself to approve is… sounds of the vehicles! That’s where the series has always lacked something. We were laughing that the cars sound like different kinds of washing machines, drills, dryers and other household articles. But now it’s really good. Obviously, the best sound belongs to Nissan GTR and its characteristic exhaust system when it “hums” when in high speed. Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, on the other hand, will cry with the beautiful sound of its compressor, and my favorite car of the game, Prosche 911 GT3 RS, drills inside the brain with the stunning sound of a 6-cylinder boxer spinning up to almost 9 thousand. The 4-liter V8 known from Mercedes cars will be no less gorgeous when it hums out of the exhaust system while stepping of gas. What an engine orgasm, chapeau bas – I’ve never expected such a difference in comparison to the previous parts or even beta version! Unfortunately, further sounding system isn’t coming along. Terrible sound of squeaking tires somewhat spoil the reception of the game, and collisions with the elements of surrounding or other vehicles is a bad joke – they sound like plastic boxes tapping and not machines that weigh over a ton.

Gran Turismo Sport #4

Now I would like to start listing things that are not present in the game and I don’t even know where to start. Perhaps you’d like to play alone? Fine, except you can’t. First – always online. I’ve never understood this! No connection? You can organize races in the arcade mode but no progress will be saved. You won’t even take a picture! But let’s assume that PSN is working, our Internet connection is okay and we have all the game’s content at our service. The singleplayer campaign is made out of three elements, really – driving school, challenges and learning every circuit available in the game. There isn’t many, but enough for a couple of hours and it’s based on the human nature of rivalry – my buddy won’t have better time than me, dammit! And besides, how does it look – to leave the brown medal when there’s silver and gold on the way? They caught me on that, I am continuously improving my scores and winning gold medals in subsequent missions/tracks and lessons. Despite it being a poor substitute for the typical career mode known from GT, it pleases me – I just like to master next stages, improving my score by milliseconds.

Gran Turismo Sport #5

The developers obviously favored online game. And I have to admit – it’s also great. It reminded me of the good old days of playing the heck out of rFactor in F1 Ligue. A mannerly races with dozen or so laps, wheel to wheel, without any lag nor connection problems (hey, Driveclub!) – possible? Yes, sir! Assuming that up till now you’ve played in online modes with „randoms”, it looked more or less like this: first turn, KAMIKAZE, rage quit. Here, the creators focus on two aspects – our fast drive skills and playing fair on the road. For clean laps with no contact with other players we’ll be rewarded with a level of clean games. For fast laps and winning the races we’ll be assigned to a higher league (the ranking is from E to S). It’s not perfect – often we get negative points, even though the accident was not caused by us, and the corner cutting wasn’t clean in the eyes of the rules… anyhow, it’s a step in a very good direction! Before the start we have to watch an obligatory intro about the racing etiquette – for many people who made it to this part of the review, these are obvious matters. But if there are at least a few people whose red lamp just fired up, it was worth it. While playing, I encountered only fascinating fun wheel to wheel on dozen or so laps – no rudeness, no lags, no problems. Kudos. The only weird thing is the “ranking” races and championships. Daily races are taking place at specific time in specific car categories on a specific tracks – the solution that remained from the beta is just… weird.

Gran Turismo Sport #6

But let’s get back to the things that are not present. And this is where it’s getting ugly. Damn paranoia! 160 cars? Sure. It’s just that the vast majority of this number is a variation of the same machine! Alfa Romeo 4C itself has like four different variations. The classics? A whole one – Audi S1 Quattro Pikes Peak from the 80s. Another “old” vehicle is Aston Martin One-77 from 2009. Even the cars that are currently produced are presented in their older versions in the game – and so Mercedes A45 AMG is available in the 2013 version, AMG GT from 2015, Ferrari gives us the 458 model… and where is the 488 (although when I thought about the sound, it’s actually a good choice)? I could go on forever. And I will. Where’s Porsche 918? McLaren 675LT? 720S? P1? The only one of the grand three supercars present here is LaFerrari. Where are other models of Lambo? Where’s Huracan Performante? Aventador, never mind which one? Touristic models of Porsche apart from 911 GT3 RS? The standard Audi R8? Aston DB11? Bugatti Chiron? VW Golf R? Naah, why should they be there. I mean, it’s not like the players are more interested in another ordinary concept model, is it? I presume it’s a matter of license and time in which the game was created. The beginnings go as far as 2013, so a lot of the cars I’m talking about now did not exist yet, but the problem remains all the same. In comparison with, let’s say, Project Cars 2 everything mentioned above is simply PATHETIC!

Unfortunately, the tracks are equally problematic. How can you advertise a game by using the sentiment of the players for a brand and not at least throw in the tracks that everyone liked in the Gran Turismo series? Generally I’m a fan of real circuits, but the fictional ones from the previous entries were iconic and I have great memories with them – Eiger, Grand Valley, Special Stage 5, High Speed Ring. In this entry though? Forget it. Real tracks? There are literally a few. Let’s be glad that Nurburgring is still there… In relation to Gran Turismo 6, we have a mere fraction of the content. We also have to remember that the tracks are not all available from the start, we unlock them as we level up. Level 20 and Nurburgring is the final one.

Gran Turismo Sport #7

And that’s not all. Perhaps you remember how I praised the weather conditions and the dynamic time flow in Project Cars 2? I would also like to do the same for Gran Turismo Sport!... no, I’m kidding you, there’s nothing to praise. Do I need to say more? Seriously, Polyphony? Seriously? Year 2017. Competition. Big and important competition. And you let your production out with such lacks? I don’t want to put it this way, but shame on you. Even things like the vehicle’s tuning – it’s all choosing tires and a few levels up with the car’s power and lowering its weight. And on top of that, the annoying interface in which we have to click the hell out of everything, which sometimes makes people go berserk. And using the right analog in the menu like it’s a PC mouse? Seriously, Polyphony? The year 2007’s calling and asking what’s up.

And do you know what’s the most hilarious part in all of this? I freaking love playing this game. The production is far more addictive to me than Project Cars 2, I keep sitting and mastering the time challenges, I want to get into multi, I’m playing with editing the cars’ design, taking photos…playability. It’s the only element that lets the series keep the spirit of the previous entries. But, sadly, I feel morally obliged to list all of the above flaws, which are simply unworthy of such production, such studio and such publisher, especially that Project Cars 2, which I mentioned a couple of times, is a production that has all I talked about and more. BUT. If you’re looking for something less hardcore to play with your friends, to beat their record, to play online… it’s possible that GT Sport, after all, is the right game for you. I’d only wish to speak to the person who, at some point during the production, said “Hey, let’s put a million concept cars, remove the tracks that we already have in GT6, add three oval tracks, 3,000 different Nissans GTR and it’ll be fine!”. Congrats!

Gran Turismo Sport
Out rating: 7.0/10
I’m torn apart. Great playability and awesome mulitplayer versus absolute lack of content and unclear solutions. If you’re gonna play multi and you love to improve your score by those milliseconds in time trials – go ahead, try it. If you love variety – look at Project Cars 2.
  • Pros
  • Very pleasant driving model
  • Good approach to the multiplayer
  • Playability and fluidity
  • Improved sound of the cars
  • Cons
  • Terrible driving on gravel
  • No weather conditions and dynamic time mode
  • Interface
Gran Turismo Sport playstation 4 polyphony digital review

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