Review by DarthHomer
"The Beginning of Something Special..."
The year 1998 was a special year for many gamers. It was the year that two of the greatest games of all time were released, some of those being Half-Life and Metal Gear Solid, and pretty much, an all around great year for all gamers. Sony made it even more special by releasing their own unique racing game, in order to combat their rivals which had their own racing games, this game, was Gran Turismo.
So what does GT do that makes it that good. Well, it's a simulator, and one that was built to truly simulate the feel of driving cars. If you were, in fact, to drive any of the cars that are in the game, then they would feel the same in the game. And the car selection is excellent, featuring all brands and great numbers of cars from Mitsubishi, Toyota, Nissan to Jaguar, Dodge and Aston Martin, and all the cars are real. While the game doesn't feature as much exotic cars like that found in the Need for Speed games, the fact that there are so many that are recognised is a great touch.
The games massive point is the Gran Turismo mode. What you do in this mode is that you earn money that is used to buy cars, so you can enter and win races. But before you can do that, you need to earn a license, and there are several that you can obtain, each that requires skill in order to pass the tests. Then, you can enter races, provided you have the license and the correct car type to do so. But thats not all the fun, because you can upgrade you cars by buying parts, and before races, have the ability to customise what parts you want in the car. This adds a whole lot of realism to the whole experience, and you can take your cars that you own and race them in the games arcade mode, if you can't be bothered going for licenses or racing in continuously hard races.
Sadly though, the games only weak point is itself actually. You see, not many people actually enjoy playing a simulation, which is perfectly understandable, and would want to play a game thats fast and less restrictive. Needless to say, this isn't the game for those who have a short fuse and just want to get their races done as soon as they can.
The game looks impressive. Each car looks almost as good as it does in real life, but considering the powers of the Playstation console, they don't look exactly like the real cars. The games CG opening is of some interest, because it looks very well done for the Playstation console.
The games audio is also decent. Featuring licensed music to go along with the races, and with some of it actually being good, adds some decency to the whole experience. However, it's the original music, that plays in the menus of the Arcade and GT modes that is of great interest, and are all a good variety of some funky jazz-like tunes.
So what do I make of it? Well, first and foremost, it's a simulator, meaning that it's not a game you can play to really kill some time. But if you're into those kind of games, then this place is a temple of car simulation. Featuring some great cars and modes makes the fun factor of this game. And combining some good graphics with some decent music make the experience good, but not perfect. Everyone should give this game a shot, because put simply, this game spawned the many car simulators that we have now...
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 03/14/05
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