Gran Turismo Sport Has Spent Two Years Adding Great Stuff For Free

When Gran Turismo Sport launched in October 2017, it was easy to regard it with suspicion. Despite being the first — and at this rate, perhaps only — Gran Turismo game on the PlayStation 4, it lacked the numeral that would’ve clearly signalled it as the next step in one of the longest-running platform-exclusive series in video games. Why Sport and not 7?

Add to that Sport’s nearly exclusive focus on online play, and the fact that it has significantly fewer cars and tracks than competing driving simulators such as Forza Motorsport 7 or even previous Gran Turismo games, and Sport felt like a step back at launch, even as it maintained developer Polyphony Digital’s signature level of realism and quality.

Despite that negative first impression, in the two years since it came out, Gran Turismo Sport has received a staggeringly consistent number of free updates, each adding a handful of cars or a brand-new track — such as this week’s update 1.39, which adds England’s Goodwood Motor Circuit.

Since December 2017, this has more or less been the norm for Gran Turismo Sport. Each month, a free update will either add cars, a track, or both, in addition to new challenges and regular patches adding support for new steering wheels and tweaking performance.

There’s also GT Sport’s focus on structured competitions, with regular GT Live events and tours certified by the very serious Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile, or FIA — basically the motorsport version of FIFA.

These aren’t updates that have significantly changed the game. Lapsed Gran Turismo fans hoping for a more robust solo offering won’t find anything to win them back here, and you still have to be online to play most of the game outside of its arcade offerings or solo road tests.

What’s more, every change hasn’t always been well-received. Consider last winter’s July update, which added microtransactions to the game a year after series producer Kazunori Yamauchi said, quite definitively, that it would not.

Mostly, Gran Turismo Sport’s post-launch support has just made it more of what it is: A prestige racing game with a strong online competitive focus, and served to make up for an initially slim roster of cars and tracks.

After launching with 162 cars, Gran Turismo Sport’s garage now holds 288 cars and counting as of the April update. Similarly, the game’s launch set of 17 locations and 40 courses has ballooned to 28 locations and 55 courses.

To an outside observer, cars and tracks might not seem like much — but when you play GT Sport, it feels much more substantial. Its austerity does a lot to focus your attention on how each new car and track feels, and getting to know how each vehicle performs on each course is rewarding in and of itself.

As you master each car and course, you become a better driver — which is ultimately what GT Sport wants you to become.

When it comes to volume and variety, GT Sport still lags behind other driving simulators. GT Sport still hasn’t come close to what Forza Motorsport 7 offered at launch — 700 cars and 32 locations with multiple layouts — and Forza offers a more robust single-player experience, with a full-fledged campaign and a friendlier approach.

But Gran Turismo, at least in this iteration, is about focus and austerity, single-mindedly pursuing its vision of a video game counterpart to the world’s most premiere automotive competitions. For those on board with that vision, Gran Turismo Sport has been surprisingly generous.


Comments

    I just wanted Gran Turismo 6 levels of Content with PS4 level graphics. No matter how much they add to this game it still wont deliver what most Gran Turismo fans wanted which was a robust single player experience.

      You'd be waiting a decade for them to add that amount of cars with that level of quality.

        I just wish they could be as quick as the Forza people :(

    I brought a cheap copy for my brother to play and he would have.
    if it wasn't for the fact that he has a very nice steering wheel set with a driving seat
    that doesn't work with PS4's.

      Look into Drivehub then it allows you to use any wheel on any device. Converts force feedback too. I'm using a driving force pro on my ps4 no issues.

      Re: GT Sport - Still salty about the limited psvr functionality.

    I remember when this launched and thought “why is there so little fanfare?”
    I saw no reviews or hype, and it was in the PSN sales for a big saving about a month after launch.
    Thought perhaps it was botched.

    So it's still behind Forza in content 2 YEARS after coming out, and there'll be ANOTHER Forza game coming out soon.. Not to mention that Turn 10 churn out Forza games with more content than GT games on a regular basis.

    Don't get me wrong, running side by side, GT Sport looks better than Forza, every nut and bolt is amazingly detailed and in 4K running both games on Pro/X you can still see GT shines brighter, but Forza is still very very pretty and PLAYS a lot better. Gameplay should and will always be king over 'slightly nicer' graphics. To say nothing of the completely lacklustre single player content in GT Sport..

    Always online also means you are a slave to the online servers being turned off in 2 years? 5 years? 1 month? Who knows with Sony!?

      You'd be literally the first person ever to say Forza 7 plays a lot better than GTS. I mean come on dude.....I have both and enjoy Forza 7 a lot, but it is nowhere in the same league handling wise as GTS.

        Pretty sure I wouldn't be the first, but what I meant was.. Forza has more meat on its bones to keep a single player engaged.. There's more variety in the gameplay through more car variety, tracks, types of racing you can do, etc.

        I played GT Sport for around 10-15 hours and it just got stale after a while..

        Again, this is purely an opinion. I say to everyone, play what makes you happy and enjoy..

    All the Gran Turismos except this one have been the best simulation car games available on any console period. And had they just made another GT game without this sports non-sense. They would be better than Forza too. But to be honest, GT4 is still better then any Forze been made.

    I was very skeptical about the Sport vision of GTS. I didn't really want to go online, I wanted to do up cars etc like previous GT games.

    That said, I gave it a shot when the demo dropped. Within a week I had bought a G29 wheel/pedals and stand. The driving was simply amazing. The online races? They were quite clean, but the adrenaline I felt when leading a race was like nothing I've ever experienced before. I was hooked. Rather than playing against AI and carving them up literally all the time, GTS trained racers to shave tenths off their time, focus on their race craft.

    So I totally turned my opinion around on GTS. The free content has been brilliant in bringing me back. Would love this game to be a launch PS5 game. Maybe they could expand the VR, add weather effects etc. Would be sweet candy.

    Really great game and love the commitment to providing regular free content updates. One of my favourites this gen.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now