Driving the Heroes of Gran Turismo
As Gran Turismo approaches its 20th Anniversary, Top Gear has been able to round up six of the “heroes of Gran Turismo” – Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI TME, Honda NSX, Nissan Skyline R34 GT-R, Toyota Supra and Mazda RX-7 – and drive them around a track that has a few similarities to High Speed Ring. (no tunnel though :()
For those who can remember watching and reading all the media in the run up to the original GT launching for the PlayStation, it is not at all hyperbole to say that it was a defining moment for many a racing gamer and would-be car enthusiast.
This game introduced many cars to the rest of the world that were either unknown or were little known to the majority. Names from Japan such as FTO, Skyline and RX-7 were beamed into living rooms and became legends from then on. Even to the point where some of those early players made it their goal to attain one of those that they were introduced to through the game itself. (I really wanted an FTO myself!)
When you work for a widely-respected automotive outlet then that dream can be taken even further, and this is exactly what Stephen Dobie has done.
GT put these cars in the living rooms of anyone with a PlayStation. It was unprecedented access to fast cars for those who couldn’t afford them. And, crucially, those who weren’t yet old enough to drive. Playing GT was a formative experience for me; it launched when I was 10. And today, at Rockingham race circuit, I’m driving its cars for real. The agonising scrolling through the game’s selection screen has been made real. I’m a bit giddy and don’t know quite what to do.
Finding that there is quite a bit of difference from the game pad to the real thing, we are treated to a fun and passionate explanation of the characteristics of each car and their good and bad points.
Being that it is also a piece about GT, there are mentions of the game here and there but not enough, or in such a way, as to make anyone who didn’t play, feel lost. And those shots of the cars throughout by photographer Mark Riccioni, are no doubt going to be making their ways onto many a device’s wallpaper.
It sure did bring back some memories and made me laugh at points.
[via Top Gear]