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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue - the 'Drivers of the world... start your engines!!' review

" This is living... in the fast lane! You can almost make out the grin on my face!"

Gran Turismo 5: Prologue PS3

Polyphony / Sony

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

Warning – this game is seriously addictive…

Have you ever fancied owning and driving a Ferrari or two – maybe one being their F1 racing car? How about an Aston Martin or high spec rally 4wd like a Mitsubishi Lancer or a cool BMW Z4? Hey, why not have them all? You can with Gran Turismo 5 Prologue, the latest in the prestigious line of PlayStation exclusive auto-erotica that takes the super shiny graphical wonderment of everything fast with four wheels and unleashes the might of the PS3 on it in stunning high definition.

The results are astonishing, I can honestly say that I’ve never seen such gorgeous motoring graphical representations and the good news is that GT5p isn’t just a pretty face. The tried and tested (by the millions of people who have bought the first four Gran Turismo games) game play has been kept, tweaked a little to continually add to the realistic handling of the various cars. Each vehicle looks very shiny on the outside but equally impressive in the ‘in car’ view – such as functioning speedometers and odometers, reflecting rear-view mirrors, wing mirrors and real time in-car lighting effects…

Others have tried to emulate the GT formula, good examples are Forza Motorsport 2 or Project Gotham Racing 4 but nice as these are – five minutes into GT5p and you’ll never want to go back. Polyphony have done this whole ‘Prologue’ version of a game before and it gives a delicious taster of what’s to come in the ‘real’ game due next year.
So is GT5p worth the buying now even if it’s not the whole game? In a word ‘yes’!! There are a great selection of cars lovingly created here, each them endowed with some awesome driving dynamics and a fantastic sense of realism. Whether using the trusty SixAxis or a one of the range of steering wheel controllers you get a fantastic sense of control. There are six tracks here include memorable driving courses such as the Suzuka Circuit, the Daytona International Speedway and mean streets of London.

GT5p takes the series online in a meaningful way too, with up to 16 players battling at full speed in high definition. Offline there is the trusty split screen option which maintains a flawless frame rate for player vs player fun. My only quibble with this game is the lack of crash damage (although that has been promised to be included for the first time in the full game) – but to be honest, when you’re burning around the track trying to set a worldwide leader board best time, crash damage will be the last thing on your mind!!

Arbitrary final rating: ööööööööö (9)
- Quality car based excitment doesn't come much better!

Do not under estimate the power of PlayStation 3...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Looks pretty, handles okay, crash detection and damage...well...I've heard it's once again nothing.

I don't know, for something that bills itself as a racing simulation, I think it has far too much arcade-ness in it.

Of course I haven't played the new one yet, just relying on someone else's comments and the GT5 Prologue demo that was available online.

Sure it looks nice, but when you're racing what time have you got to look at it?