Now that Gran Turismo 6 is officially arriving this year on PlayStation 3, details have been pouring in over the last week or so, with the PS Blog revealing some more when they interviewed Kazunori Yamauchi, Creator of Gran Turismo and Polyphony Digital CEO, and Jim Ryan, CEO of SCEE.
Giving a very detailed explanation as to why Gran Turismo 6 is being developed for the PlayStation 3, as opposed to the PlayStation 4, Jim had this to say:
You had GT1 and GT2 on PS one, GT3 and GT4 on PS2, then there’s GT5 on PS3 and a space next to it. The difference between Gran Turismo and GT2 is unbelievable, but they’re both on the same platform. The difference between GT3 and GT4 is huge. We’re absolutely confident when GT6 comes, you’ll see a big step change up from GT5 too. There’s still a lot of potential on PS3 that a developer like Polyphony can really exploit.
And the other factor is that on PS3 we have an install base of 70 million units. On PS4 on launch day we’ll have an install base of zero units. There’ll be plenty of games to help drive PS4 – not least DriveClub in the racing genre from Evolution Studios, a studio with a fantastic pedigree.
For a little bit more (computer) screen-time with Jim, he wasted no time praising the PS2 and its 170 million units made, making it the “greatest success story in history for a TV-based console.” Despite that success, things weren’t always peachy for the PS2 in Europe, thanks to a high price tag, with Jim’s defining moment in the Gran Turismo franchise being when Gran Turismo 3 came out and “sales of PS2 went through the sky and it never stopped.”
With the Gran Turismo series sitting at 70 million sold worldwide, and half that in Europe, Jim attributes the European success to “the nature of the markets.” Ryan believes that “the American market is much more of a core gamer market where there’s a greater preference amongst gamers for shooters and action adventure games like GTA, whereas the European market tends over time to go somewhat younger, and somewhat more casual in its nature. That sort of demographic really lends itself to a racing game like GT, which appeals to both sexes and across all ages.”
Giving some attention to the creator of Gran Turismo, he was asked how hard it is to surprise gamers with a title like Gran Turismo 6 in terms of graphical fidelity. His response was that “we’ve got to the point where the hardware has matured and it’s really difficult to tell graphically what’s new.” When it comes to Gran Turismo, they always love new technology and they’re “always going to pursue it and implement it, whether it be improving the PS3 version or working on a PS4 version. The key thing with GT6 is the blending of ‘real’ and ‘virtual’ – where something new and interesting will come to life from the merging of two totally different industries. The more you work on that, the more interesting it gets.”
Why do you think Gran Turismo does so well in Europe? Let us know in the comments below.