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Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

The world of motors is back on the PlayStation console thanks to Gran Turismo 7, the new racing from Polyphony that we tell you about in our review

The one between Kazunori Yamauchi and the world of engines is a very strong, almost morbid relationship. An infatuation that leads the Japanese designer to experience the four wheels in an absolute and essential way, and which cannot remain confined to one’s self, but which must be made manifest and shared with as many people as possible.

This has always been, since 1998 (a year earlier for Japanese gamers), the principle on which the Most famous Real Driving Simulator in the globe, a production capable of transcending the simple being a racing game, to become almost a sort of digital journey through the automotive universe. An experience that today touches its creative and proactive heights, higher thanks to its latest incarnation, that is Grand Touring 7 that we will try to tell you in the our review.

The pleasure of the story

A verb, that story written above, certainly not randomly placed, but which is vehemently wedged within the modus playandi of the title signed by Polyphony. A production, that linked to Sony consoles, which does not revolve around simply getting on the track, despite its undeniably being a racing game, but which chooses a decidedly more transversal approach.

Get close to Grand Touring 7in fact, he will not only see us intent on collecting as many cars as possible (and there are over 400 waiting for us, between old and new), but it will also ask us to make a further effort, aimed at knowing and deepening what we are about to pilot. Yamauchi has in fact given birth to largest interactive museum dedicated to the world of the automobilea 360 ° experience that aims to embrace every facet of this great passion of hers.

Telling and telling oneself go hand in hand with the unbridled processing of vehicles, with getting lost within a thousand thousand settings, useful to allow us to file that hundredth of a second that we are missing. The automotive enthusiast does not live, in fact, solely on the basis of the deafening roar of the engine, but he also wants to explore every historical aspect, to know its evolution and importance. All this, in essence, is Grand Touring 7a very successful journey to the center of this roaring world, in which the friction of the tires on the asphalt is nothing but the sum of a much more complex and interesting route.

Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

Drive me home – Gran Turismo review 7

After the parenthesis called Sport, capable of unsettling all the historical fans of the series, Grand Touring 7 marks a pleasant, how welcome, return to the origins of the brand, which can be found right from the familiar (albeit modern) hub that will welcome us at the first start. Partly greeted the world of online competitions, the new one PlayStation exclusive it will open before our eyes by means of a map, capable of making the hearts of historical fans beat faster, of which the various interactive segments will be disclosed to us little by little.

Everything starts from Café managed by Lucathe starting point of the renewal campagna single player, where we will find a series of menus waiting for us, each one characterized by always different challenges. It is from here, after we have bought our first used car, that we will begin to ring a series of races, in what is a sort of gigantic walkthrough: little by little, continuing along 39 chapters, we will unlock the tuning, the legendary car dealer, the multiplayer, the photo mode and much more, up to the iconic Driving license menu.

A return to the past, this, in which each small portion takes its due time to introduce itself and make itself known, a clear sign of how Grand Touring 7 you want to please the aficionados of the series, but at the same time you also want to be the entry point for a whole new group of fans. Certainly very staid, at times almost Zen, the career of Polyphony production it is certainly not suitable for those who simply want to give gas, but it is good to underline from now on that it is not this type of user that the title is aimed at.

The progress, in addition to allowing us to unlock tracks and cars (and accumulate credits to spend), will be punctuated by a series of historical and narrative elements, which will allow us to deepen the history of models and brands linked to the world of engines. Whether it is through the words of truly existing historical designers, perhaps attracted by the racing car parked outside the Café, or through the full-bodied showroom, we will be able to embark on a journey capable of embracing the entire life cycle of the invention born from the genius of Karl Benz. And it is the game itself that suggests us to choose this more all-encompassing approach, structuring the progression so that it is the knowledge of means and components that allow us to give our best once we get on the track.

Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

Author’s Guide – Gran Turismo Review 7

The link with the past of the series is very strong even once we hold the steering wheel in our hands, however virtually: Grand Touring 7 repeats, in fact, the driving model already appreciated and seen in the spin-off Sport which, in perfect balance between simulation ambitions and accessibility, presents us with one highly scalable systemcapable of adapting to any type of pilot.

While never trespassing into purely arcade territories, nor simulation tout court, the mechanism for managing the various aids, as well as the general difficulty, allows you to sew the racing experience around each player who, provided you have the patience to lose a moment in the various configuration options, will be able to find the square useful to tame horses and hairpin bends.

Even in this case, however, it is worth underlining how the authorial imprint of Yamauchiwith its peculiar way of understanding racing, is very present and overflowing: Grand Touring 7 inherits, albeit net of a guide system that is certainly more refined than in the past, the historical “defects” of the series. Say goodbye to people once again cosmetic damage pronounced (but not mechanical, fortunately), which will be limited to a few slight scratches or dents, as well as the various trains of cars often the subject of irony on the web.

Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

The first element, although it may displease many, is however a sign of extreme coherence with the way that Yamauchi has to mean both driving and the car: it is the game itself, especially in online competitions, that pushes us to a correct and clean gait, which avoids the doors and wild bounces on walls and so on. The means, then, are seen as sacred temples by the designer, to the point of almost considering sacrilegious the mere thought of seeing them irreparably damaged. Regarding caravans, strange as it may seem, it is still a phenomenon that anyone who has ever raced on the track can only find plausible, given that the close search for overtaking never characterizes every single moment of racing.

However, it should be emphasized how the opposing AI is still far from offering a credible and convincing challenge, yes, anchored as it is to behaviors that are not always exciting. Which given how the competition has been moving for some time (yes, let’s say to you Drivatar), can only make us long for the announced implementation of Sophy, the artificial intelligence unveiled a few days ago. Here, therefore, that the opponents we will find on the track end up representing more of a sort of benchmark for our performance, than a real obstacle to victory.

This being a title that, although complete and full-bodied already at present, aims to expand with the passage of time, by means of future updates, is evident in some shortcomings that could make the most upright fans turn up their mouths: let’s talk about the absence of endurance competitions, with the various customizable races that will not allow us to set more than 10 laps per race. A gap that is also very out of place in relation to the presence of variable weather and the day / night cycle, and which would certainly have maximized the impact of such features. We hope that the next updates will fill this gap.

Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

Can we give more? – Gran Turismo 7 review

As already happened with Forza Horizon 5, but also with Forbidden West (just to stay in the Sony), one naturally wonders what it could have been visually Gran Turismo 7 without the ballast of cross-gen development. As far as the scenic impact on PS5 proved to be convincing, however some elements that were decidedly more out of tune than the rest emerged, albeit relegated to marginal portions of the experience. We refer in particular to the rendering of the accessory objects present on the track, certainly more sketchy than the rest: see on the new hardware Sony NPCs made in a sketchy waylike some architectural and landscape portions, it caused us a little heart sank.

It is true that we talk about irrelevant elements once we find ourselves competing for the lead, but that emerge too much if we decide to have fun with the always excellent replay mode. And also the visual rendering of the rain, mindful of the incredible results appreciated in drive club, can only make your mouth twist. Fortunately, at least the impact of wet asphalt on game physics has a very different scope.

But with those wobbly teeth taken out, all the rest touches the heights of photorealismwith a manic vehicle modeling, capable of setting new standards in the genre, whether we are talking about interiors or (especially) exteriors. Getting lost admiring our jewels, albeit in the absence of a feature like Forzavista, it is part of that path of knowledge traced by Yamauchi, and which has its ultimate sublimation in Scapes modeor the Official photo mode of Gran Turismo 7.

Gran Turismo review 7: the return of the king

This is an option that will allow us to immortalize our racing cars within spectacular real-life scenarios, relying on a photographic component of the highest level. And once you’ve created the perfect shot, why not share it with users? After all, the motor lover is still an incurable narcissist. The overall performance is solid, whether you choose to prefer the network frame or the visual rendering, although ray tracing, in the latter case, is relegated only to modes that go beyond the track.

Another highlight of the title Polyphony, in perfect coherence with the pedigree of the series, it is the I share audio which, especially if enjoyed with a good pair of headphones, will allow us to fully appreciate the quality of the work done in the sampling phase of the various engines. With the music tracklist that inevitably ends up taking a back seat.

Very good, in a current gen sauce support for DualSense features, capable of taking the stage thanks to the progressive stroke of the triggers, as well as the presence of a haptic feedback capable of making us perceive every slightest nuance of the car / track ratio. And there would still be …