Gran Turismo (video game)

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This article is about the original video game. For the series as a whole, see Gran Turismo (series).
Gran Turismo
Gran Turismo - Cover - North America.jpg
North American cover art
Developer(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Cyberhead[1]
Publisher(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Designer(s) Kazunori Yamauchi
Composer(s) Masahiro Andoh
Isamu Ohira
Series Gran Turismo
Engine Custom
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release date(s) JP December 23, 1997[2][3]

EU May 8, 1998[2]
NA May 12, 1998[2]

Genre(s) Racing game
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer

Gran Turismo (グランツーリスモ Guran Tsūrisumo?, abbreviated GT, commonly abbreviated GT1) is a racing game designed by Kazunori Yamauchi. Gran Turismo was developed and published by Sony Computer Entertainment in 1997 for the PlayStation video game console. The game's development group was established as Polyphony Digital in 1998.

After five years of development time, it was well-received publicly and critically, shipping a total of 10.85 million copies worldwide as of March 2013[4] (making it the bestselling PlayStation game), and scoring an average of 95% in GameRankings' aggregate. The game has started a series, and to date has spawned over 10 spin-offs and sequels.

Gameplay[edit]

Gameplay screenshot featuring a Mitsubishi FTO GPX on Trial Mountain Circuit

Gran Turismo is fundamentally based on the racing game genre. The player must maneuver a car to compete against artificially intelligent drivers on various race tracks. The game uses two different modes: Arcade Mode and Simulation Mode (Gran Turismo Mode in PAL and Japanese versions). In the arcade mode, the player can freely choose the courses and vehicles they wish to use. Winning races unlocks additional cars and courses.

However, simulation mode requires the player to earn different levels of driver's licenses in order to qualify for events, and earn credits (money), trophies and prize cars by winning race championships. Winning one particular championship also unlocks a video and a few additional demonstration tracks. Credits can be used to purchase additional vehicles, and for parts and tuning.

Gran Turismo features 140 cars and 11 race tracks (as well as their reversed versions). Two Honda del Sol cars from 1995 were included in the Japanese version, but were removed from the North American and European versions. They can be found in the North American version's code (and are unlockable via a GameShark cheat device). In addition to the hidden del Sols, there is also a 1967 Chevrolet Corvette and a 1998 Mazda Roadster exclusive to the Arcade mode. The Corvette and Roadster can also be accessed via GameShark.

Development[edit]

The game took five years to be made.[5] In an interview with Kazunori Yamauchi, development of Gran Turismo started in the second half of 1992. Yamauchi added that at different times there were only seven to 15 people that helped to develop the game.[6] When asked how difficult it was to create Gran Turismo, Yamauchi remarked: "It took five years. In those five years, we could not see the end. I would wake up at work, go to sleep at work. It was getting cold, so I knew it must be winter. I estimate I was home only four days a year."[5] Sound design was one aspect that Yamauchi believed was compromised due to a lack of time. Although Kazunori considered the game's artificial intelligence to be superior to its competitors, he remained unsatisfied with its development.[7]

When Gran Turismo was released in Japan, Polyphony Digital was still a development group within Sony Computer Entertainment. The studio was established in April 1998, before the Western release of the game.[8] Yamauchi estimated that Gran Turismo utilised around 75% of the PlayStation's maximum performance.[9]

Music[edit]

The opening song for the North American and PAL versions is a Chemical Brothers remix of the Manic Street Preachers song "Everything Must Go". The opening song for the Japanese version is "Moon Over the Castle", composed by Masahiro Andoh. The game itself had a selection of licensed songs, including "Lose Control" by Ash; "Chicken on a Bone" (reworked instrumental), "Shade" (instrumental), "Tangerine" (instrumental), and "Sweet 16" by Feeder (PAL version); "As Heaven is Wide" by Garbage; and "Oxyacetalene", "Skeletal", "Autonomy", and "Industry" by Cubanate (North American and PAL versions). The Japanese version, however, used a completely original score. Aside from "Moon Over the Castle", other songs were remixed for Gran Turismo 2 and Gran Turismo 4.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 94.95%[10]
Metacritic 96/100[11]
Review scores
Publication Score
AllGame 5/5 stars[12]
Computer and Video Games 9/10[13]
Edge 10/10[14]
Electronic Gaming Monthly 9.33/10[15]
GamePro 5/5 stars[16]
Game Revolution A[17]
GameSpot 8.6/10[18]
IGN 9.5/10[19]
Official PlayStation Magazine (US) 5/5 stars[20]
Entertainment Weekly A−[21]
Awards
Publication Award
Spotlight Awards 1999 Best simulation
Official UK PlayStation Magazine Perfect 10

The game was praised by critics, including in the reviews by IGN (9.5/10)[19] and GameSpot (8.6/10).[18] Gran Turismo won the best simulation of 1999 at the Spotlight Awards,[22] won "Best Driving Game" and "Best Graphics" of 1999 according to the staff of PlayStation Official Magazine,[23] and was voted the sixth best game of all time by the magazine's readers in the same issue.[23] In 2000, readers of Computer and Video Games voted it the eighth best video game of all time.[24] Game Informer ranked it the 21st best video game ever made in 2001. The staff felt that the racing genre had not offered as "complete [a] package" as Gran Turismo.[25]

Gran Turismo was a bestseller in the UK.[26] As of April 2008, the game has shipped 2.55 million copies in Japan, 10,000 in Southeast Asia, 4.3 million in Europe, and 3.99 million in North America for a total of 10.85 million copies, in which to this day, remains the best selling video game for the PlayStation and the third highest-selling game in the Gran Turismo franchise, behind Gran Turismo 4 and Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec respectively.[2][3] It was also a high seller in Australia, selling over 100,000 units in the first two months and with sales exceeding 130,000 as of October 1998.[27] The game was also referenced in the Eiffel 65 song "My Console".

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Corporate profile". Cyberhead. Archived from the original on 24 October 2001. Retrieved 30 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d ""Gran Turismo" Series Software Title List". Polyphony Digital. June 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-03. 
  3. ^ a b "Gran Turismo Series Shipment Exceeds 50 Million Units Worldwide" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. 2008-05-09. Retrieved 2008-05-29. 
  4. ^ "Gran Turismo Series Software Title List". polyphony.co.jp. 2013. Retrieved 2013-01-30. 
  5. ^ a b Vaughn, Mark (June 3, 2009). "Six questions for the creator of Gran Turismo". AutoWeek Magazine. Retrieved 2009-07-02. 
  6. ^ Takahashi, Dean (2010-01-14). "Gran Turismo’s creator takes a fifth stab at a perfect racing game". GamesBeat. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  7. ^ "Prescreen: Gran Turismo 2". Edge (Future Publishing) (68): 48–49. February 1999. 
  8. ^ "Corporate Profile". polyphony.co.jp. Retrieved 15 January 2012. 
  9. ^ "Prescreen: Gran Turismo 2". Edge (Future Publishing) (68): 46. February 1999. 
  10. ^ "Gran Turismo for PlayStation". GameRankings. 1998-04-30. Retrieved 2013-11-06. 
  11. ^ "Gran Turismo for PlayStation Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2013-11-06. 
  12. ^ Broesder, Chris. "Gran Turismo - Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on 2014-11-14. Retrieved 2014-11-22. 
  13. ^ Alex C (1998). "PlayStation Review: Gran Turismo". Computer and Video Games. Archived from the original on 2007-06-10. Retrieved 2014-03-11. 
  14. ^ Edge Staff (February 1998). "Gran Turismo review". Edge (55). Retrieved 2014-03-11. 
  15. ^ "Gran Turismo". Electronic Gaming Monthly (175): 188. January 2004. 
  16. ^ Air Hendrix (1998). "Gran Turismo Review for PlayStation on GamePro.com". GamePro. Archived from the original on 2005-02-12. Retrieved 2014-03-11. 
  17. ^ Baldric (May 1998). "Gran Turismo Review (PS)". Game Revolution. Archived from the original on 1998-05-14. Retrieved 2014-03-11. 
  18. ^ a b Broady, Vincent (1998-01-15). "Gran Turismo Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2013-11-06. 
  19. ^ a b Boor, Jay (1998-08-23). "Gran Turismo". IGN. Retrieved 2013-11-06. 
  20. ^ "Gran Turismo". Official U.S. PlayStation Magazine. 1998. 
  21. ^ Walk, Gary Eng (1998-06-19). "Gran Turismo". Entertainment Weekly (437). Retrieved 2014-03-11. 
  22. ^ "Game Developers Choice Awards". Gamechoiceawards.com. Retrieved 2013-11-06. 
  23. ^ a b Official UK PlayStation Magazine issue 50, page 38, Future Publishing, October 1999.
  24. ^ Computer and Video Games issue 218.
  25. ^ Cork, Jeff (2009-11-16). "Game Informer's Top 100 Games of All Time (Circa Issue 100)". Game Informer. Retrieved 2013-12-10. 
  26. ^ Gallup UK Playstation sales chart, July 1998, published in Official UK PlayStation Magazine issue 34
  27. ^ "10 million PAL PlayStations". Official PlayStation Magazine (Australia) (15): 14. October 1998. 

External links[edit]