Gran Turismo Spawns (More) Winning Race Car Drivers

Gran Turismo Spawns (More) Winning Race Car Drivers

Gran Turismo 6 pre-release screenshot

The team which took third place at this weekend's 24 Hours of Spa race consisted of gamers weaned on Gran Turismo and trained by Sony's GT Academy promotion.

Gran Turismo has long been a key franchise for Sony's PlayStation consoles. As a result, the company earmarks huge amounts of cash to promote the series, and one of its biggest efforts to date has been GT Academy, a racing school of sorts that offers professional instruction to those Gran Turismo players who prove absolutely dominating on the virtual track. Ostensibly, Sony is using GT Academy to prove that Gran Turismo is such an excellent simulation that it can actually generate real-life race car drivers, and if this weekend's results are any evidence, GT Academy seems to be working quite well.

The 24 Hours of Spa race was held this weekend in Belgium and by the end, both the third place and seventh place positions were occupied by GT Academy alumni. That would be impressive enough by itself, but as Jalopnik points out, this isn't the first time GT Academy has proven a solid training tool. In February, the British GT racing series banned GT Academy graduates from competition, saying that their combination of speed and inexperience could be hazardous.

Of course, this weekend's race at Spa might argue the latter point, but the fact remains: GT Academy is turning gamers into pro racers. Propers to Sony for such an absurd, successful experiment.

Source: Jalopnik

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I tried to do the GT6 demo/NGTA thing, but man, those guys who have actual chances at the thing are so far ahead of my level of skill. Then again, half of that is because the PS3 controller isn't good for racing at all. You really do need a wheel to even think about competing at the top level.

How many professional race drivers has Forza spawned? How many races have been run in real time online vs. a real driver on the same track that was actually competitive? Thought so ;)

There's a reason I've always believed Gran Turismo is a sim racer for car lovers made by car lovers, whereas Forza is a sim racer for people who don't like sim racers. This just adds even more proof to that claim, truly.

And it's not even like I hate Forza and am a Gran Turismo fanboy. I love both franchises, Gran Turismo is just the superior one by a longshot.

OCAdam:
I tried to do the GT6 demo/NGTA thing, but man, those guys who have actual chances at the thing are so far ahead of my level of skill. Then again, half of that is because the PS3 controller isn't good for racing at all. You really do need a wheel to even think about competing at the top level.

I've got a Logitech G27 wheel, and I can tell you it's not that much easier. I find that it takes more effort to use it, than the controller.
I do recommend it though, or at least trying it, because it's load of fun.
I let my friend use it while she was taking her license, she vastly improved and understood the basics in no time.
Havin a consequence free environment really helps people get a grasp without being worried about making mistakes.

SilkySkyKitten:

And it's not even like I hate Forza and am a Gran Turismo fanboy. I love both franchises, Gran Turismo is just the superior one by a longshot.

Even after the disaster that was GT5? I considered Forza 3 to be far superior to that, and I'm a massive Petrolhead.

An Ceannaire:

SilkySkyKitten:

And it's not even like I hate Forza and am a Gran Turismo fanboy. I love both franchises, Gran Turismo is just the superior one by a longshot.

Even after the disaster that was GT5? I considered Forza 3 to be far superior to that, and I'm a massive Petrolhead

GT5 was a disaster? That's news to me, since I found it to be pretty fantastic.

And Forza 3 was fun, yeah, but considering all the stuff they shoved into the game to make it more casual-friendly, the fact that none of the fictional tracks seemed believable at all[1], how even some of the real-world courses seemed off, and... a bunch of other flaws I could point out but would rather not do so to keep it short; it just didn't seem as good of a simulation at all. Plus, I honestly never get the feeling that Turn 10 actually puts a lot of love and passion into the Forza games, whereas I get that sort of vibe from Polyphony Digital every time I play a Gran Turismo game.

Like I said, I enjoy both franchises and have wasted countless hours playing both Gran Turismo 4 and Forza 3 in almost equal measure. I just find Gran Turismo much better in the end because it seems like the developers have an actual passion and love for cars, whereas Turn 10 just does it because it's what they do and they earn money for it.

[1] GT's fictional courses, at least from 4 onward, always seem like they could exist in reality too me. Forza's... not so much. They seem way too extravagant and over the top, like a race course designer's budgetless wet dream rather than something you'd actually get a chance to run a few laps on.

 

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