Review by RBrooke
"A HUGE game, the best of 1998 and with the best replay's you have seen in your life."
Gran Turismo is as good as anything you have seen yet on your grey box. Even now no other game has managed to overtake it. Down to basics, it is a racing game in which you can drive over 100 high(and low)performance cars, over 22 circuits, in over 20 forms of Championship, in two different modes of play. The most enjoyable of which is the Gran Turismo mode, where you race to earn credits, which you use to buy extra cars, with which you use to enter the harder championships, in order to make more credits, and so it goes on. BUT, you won't be able to access any of the championships unless you have at least one of the three licences up for grabs. Yes, Licences! In order to earn the first and easiest one, called the 'B' license, you have to complete 8 tasks of car monouverability and control. As you move to the 'A' and 'A international' licences, things start to toughen up, nearly to the point of frustration, but never beyond. The idea is clever as it is subtely preparing you for the harder races to come.
8 top class car manufactures are participating in the game, supplying a wide variety of their cars for the game. Since you have only 10,000 credits to begin the game with, the best car you can muster is a second hand Mazda Demio, which, as you begin to win races, you should scrap as soon as possible, or, preferably sell back to the car manufacturer for extra cash. There is an excellent tuning screen, where if you can't afford to buy a whole new car, you can fit your old existing one with new parts, ranging from Air mufflers to brake suspension.
All the cars handle differently, which is a great bonus. You can really feel the difference when you are in control of a Toyota Supra GT, or a Dodge Viper.( one of the best cars ) Best of all, you can look at your driving skills in the superb replay facility. It is almost lifelike as the light reflects off your bodywork as you bomb it down the 'High Speed Ring' track and crash spectaculary into a barrier, because you haven't refined your braking technique, or you altered the suspension too much before the race. There are just so many options its unbelievable.
The two player mode is good, although it is only the two of you on the track, which makes it quite boring sometimes if the players are unevenly matched. You might not see each other apart from at the start during the entire race. To combat this there is a handicap option you can turn on to allow a boost to be given to the losingplayer. Nice.
Bad things? Well, the one thing that suprised me most was that there were no weather effects. No rain, No cloudy skies, no fog. It always seems to be day or night. Also, crashing into a barrier at 200mph head on leaves not a scratch on your shiny body work, as it would put you out of the race in real life. The computer oppenents never seem to crash either, but this a minor gripe.
The good things far outway the bad though, and coupled with real life engine noises, you have the most realistic driving game on the playstation.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 11/01/99, Updated 07/05/02
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