E3 2013 Preview: Gran Turismo 6
One thing I love is cars. The faster the better. I love to drive my 350Z (ok, not the fastest car on the planet), and anything else that has a stick shift and the ability to drift around a corner on your way to pick up a Red Bull at your local 7-11. But is waiting in line to play Gran Turismo 6 at E3 2013 worth the 30 minute wait?
Sony had a really sweet set up at their booth. They had around 12 sit down cockpits with large television screens and steering wheels. You could either pick a car and fart around on the track, or do what I did -- try and win a hat by getting under 1:07 in a single lap using a tuned up Nissan 370Z. How hard could it be?
Freaking hard, that's how hard it could be. I saw one kid in front of me who turned off the traction control in the 370Z, ABS and switched his car to manual. (Manuals in racing games aren't worth the bother.) He was already in a car that can get really squirrely if you let the rear end get away from you. He must have seen Tokyo Drift too many times because he tried to get Fast & Furious and ended up spinning out every 10 seconds.
I don't care how realistic driving games claim to be, they're never like the real thing. So I made sure my traction control was on, bumped up my ABS a bit and hit the track. My first lap was a disaster. Even with the VDC turned on (sorry, they called it regular traction control in the car's options even though the 370Z uses vehicle dynamic control, which is traction control with added electronic stability), you can lose your car's ass if you hit the corners too quick. My first lap was a disaster. In fact, the game didn't even count the lap because I spun out and had gone off the track.
My second lap was much better, but I was so cautious going around corners that my lap time was 1:10. Rats. I missed winning a sweet Gran Turismo 6 hat by three seconds. The different views you have with the car are the normal views in any racer -- dash view, inside the car view, outside the car, etc. You'll have to slightly adjust your driving style depending on the view. The graphics were fantastic and the car models that I saw in the options menu before the race began were spot on. And the engines roared when you punched it. It sounded awesome.
Driving lines helped track newbies know where the best lines are on the track and when to apply the brakes. I'm pretty sure if I had another go round with the car I would have been able to beat the required time but time was up and I had to leave.
My impression of Gran Turismo 6? Not bad. Maybe it was the fact that I was sitting in a cockpit playing with a steering wheel that had force feedback but I it did feel pretty authentic. If you've ever tracked or done autocross with a rear-wheel drive car you'll know how easy it can be to lose it if you go too fast.
So was it worth the 30 minutes to spend a few brief moments behind the wheel of a 370Z? Heck ya it was! I can't wait to hit the track once again with some faster vehicles when Gran Turismo 6 releases this fall.