Gran Turismo in 2011: The Year in Review

December 30th, 2011 by Famine

2011 has been yet another rollercoaster year for Gran Turismo and its fans, and our first full year of GT5. The year has been dominated by game updates, GT Academy successes and significant events affecting the infrastructure of both the PlayStation Network and the people of Japan. Just as with the last two years, GTPlanet is taking a look back over the last 12 months before we head on into 2012…

Photomode image by Rev91.

January

  • Sony Germany kicked off the New Year with the release of an official “reality check” video comparing GT5’s Nürburgring to the real thing. 
  • GTPlanet’s Weekly Race Series GT5 qualifier gets underway for the first time, to bring this long-running series to yet another iteration of the series. gtplanet-birthday-10-candles
  • Kazunori Yamauchi is named by Esquire magazine as one of its ten “Men at the Top 2010”, alongside Tour de France and BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2011 Mark Cavendish and The Dark Knight and Inception director Christopher Nolan.
  • The first US iteration of GT Academy gets underway, with 50,000 players registering and 512 progressing through the first round.
  • GTPlanet celebrates a huge milestone on January 25th – a decade online! A “Feedback” section is added to the site to provide a more constructive resource for our readers at Sony

February

March e245242e50-gt academy 2008-64480

April

  • Kazunori Yamauchi states that he would have liked another 2 years to develop GT5 before release.
  • 25 track logos are discovered in the Remote Racing section of Polyphony Digital’s GT5 website, pertaining to tracks from GT4 and GTPSP but not yet seen in GT5…
  • Sony’s PlayStation Network is crippled by an external intrusion resulting in a prolonged period of downtime for all online services, including GT5’s online modes.

May

June jann-mardenborough-castlecomb-circuit-thumb

July

August

  • Mercedes-Benz announces a live race in September between GT5 players and former Formula One driver David Coulthard.

September MercedesLiveRace_0014

October

  • GT Academy winner Lucas Ordoñez becomes a world champion too as his team clinch the LMP2 class championship in the 2011 International Le Mans Cup.
  • GT5’s latest and largest update – Spec 2.0 – is announced along with details of forthcoming downloadable content. The DLC itself arrived later in the month and included the legendary Formula One track Spa-Francorchamps  – the fans’ most asked-for track.
  • Jordan Tresson becomes the second GT Academy winner this month to become a world champion as his RJN Motorsports team Nissan 370Z becomes the GT4 champion in the Blancpain Endurance Series.

November kazunori-yamauchi-gtplanet

December scirocco-gt5-thumb

It’s been another bumper year of Gran Turismo news and we can be sure that 2012 will bring updates, tweaks and possibly some more downloadable content. While Gran Turismo 6 may well be in the works, it’s clear that Polyphony are looking to improve GT5 yet further.

Thank you for your support throughout this past year – GTPlanet looks forward to supplying you with the best Gran Turismo news in 2012! Happy New Year!

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64 Comments

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  1. Jan. 2, 1:25pm
    NASCARFAN160

    Great. A successful first full year for the game. :) Here’s to an even better year!

    So, about those logos….

    Hs anyone even seen any of them that seem to be different then the older ones? If not then I’d say it’s most likely not gonna happen. :(

  2. Jan. 2, 12:29pm
    Obli

    Amazing commitment to the game over a year on. OK, many of the updates have been fixes for features lacking on release (echoed by Kaz wanting another two years), but there have also been a large number of improvements and content made that PD need not add.

    I would be interested to see a list of the updates made to the game in chronological order. The number of small and large updates have impressed me a lot. Was there an update (small or large) in every month of 2011?

    I think if PD could expand their staff whilst retaining their high quality, half of PD could be churning out content for GT5 whilst the other half could be working on GT6. I think a lot of ground-work will have been made during GT5’s development.

  3. Jan. 1, 2:38pm
    Daniel

    I haven’t been into the game as much as I’d like (even traded it in to get BF3). I just want a track pack with Costa di Amalfi, El Captain, NY, Seattle and Citta d’Aria. I would definitely play this more… maybe even take BF3 out of the Playstation :p

  4. Jan. 1, 10:01am
    themartlab

    Happy New Year to all GTPlanet staff! Keep up the good work, bringing us the very best information about GT5 and so much good topics!

  5. Dec. 31, 8:08pm
    Biggles1961

    Love the game.and love this website.Great work guys!

  6. Dec. 31, 7:09pm
    marktyper

    WE LOVE YOU KAZ and PD!!! Keep up the good work!

    Always, Mark

  7. Dec. 31, 5:21pm
    davissi

    Another year wasted by PD, there’s no challenges at all, everything is watered down for pad users and car mad fans as opposed to driving sim fans which is ironic since its call the real driving simulator. Everytime I turn the game on I’m at a loss as to what to actually do on it that is actually challenging.
    What a terrible anti-climax this game has been and its still the best driving sim out there, there’s just nothing worth playing on the market its all meant for mainstream kids. Forza 4 is the worst game I’ve ever played, it might as well be called bowling or tennis because it certainly aint driving.
    Bad year indeed, come on driving sim guys get your acts together, make it real, make everyone chase the game not the game chase the clueless massive.

    • Jan. 1, 2:40am
      BWX

      Try to be a little more positive. It isn’t THAT bad. We need more expert seasonals, that ”Driver’s Club” Kaz said was coming soon a year ago, and a massive A-SPEC expansion, but you never know- it could happen. With a sim-rig and G25, on a big TV and 7.1 home theater setup, GT5 is a pretty good and fun driving sim. If PD put their efforts in the right places, 2012 could be a great year for GT5. Just keep thinking those positive thought, take a deep breath, etc.

    • Jan. 2, 7:16am
      Witless76

      What are you looking for, davissi? This is a sim, and it’s as good as sims get. It isn’t ‘watered down’, it’s A GAME.
      Go spend $5K on an old race car and take it to the track if GT5 isn’t enough for you, dude. See how far you can go with the real thing.
      Lighten up, OK? Enjoy GT5 for what it is, and don’t bring it down for what it isn’t!

    • Jan. 3, 10:44am
      Loonycrazyone

      Gt 5 was good, Forza blows it into the tumble weeds.

  8. Dec. 31, 3:13pm
    Lambob

    My New Year resolution is same as last year, play GT5 all year 2012
    Many Happy returns PD , Kaz, and fellow online racers (505 pp street Nurburgring)
    Looking forward to retail expansion to this fine game.

  9. Dec. 31, 1:52pm
    matt-mtb

    Bring on 2012!

  10. Dec. 31, 1:21pm
    Mac K

    Woo hoo!

    • Dec. 31, 1:36pm
      starbutt033

      QUITTERS NEED NOT APPLY
      NEW YEARS EVE 3 HOUR ENDURANCE RACE . DAYTONA ROADCOURSE 575pp, GT1, 2, 3, RACECARS…(NO PROTOTYPES OR GT500 CARS) @ 10:00 PM. EST. TIME TO 1:00 AM OPEN TIRE CHIOCE…no penalties, & light damage
      20 MIN PITSTOP(PARK N PAUSE) BREAK AT 12:00AM..FORMATION LAP RESTART
      If you crash a competitor, you must give back the position or pit for tires only with-in 2 laps, THE RACE WILL BE REVIEWED AFTER BEFORE PRIZES ARE GIVEN OR PLACES ARE ANNOUNCED IF YOU DO NOT PIT.. 25 SEC. EACH WILL BE ADDED TO YOUR FINAL LAP
      ANY DRIVER INCIDENTS YOU SHOULD MAKE A NOTE OF WHAT LAP # THAT THE INCIDENT OCCURRED..
      ..
      PRIZES
      …EACH DRIVER CAN PICK 2 HELMET & SUIT.. NAME & NUMBERS FOR PARTICIPATING AND FROM ME…
      1ST ….PLACE ANY LEVEL TICKET OR CAR IN-STOCK 10 RACING GEAR ITEMS, & 2 MATTE PAINTS OF CHIOCE
      2ND……CAR TICKET FOR 370Z GT ACAD. CAR & 8 ITEMS OF RACING GEAR OF CHIOCE
      3RD…..LEVEL 1000 TICKET & 6 ITEMS OF GEAR OF CHIOCE
      4TH……4 ITEMS OF GEAR & 2 MATTE COLOR OF CHIOCE
      LAST PLACE RECIEVES 2 ITEMS OF GEAR & 2 MATTE COLORS OF CHIOCE FOR FINISHING THE RACE..
      FRIEND REQUEST ME FOR ENTRY & ROOM NUMBER@
      1ST 15 PEOPLE GET A SPOT IN THIS RACE
      PSN…starbutt33
      GTPLANET inbox starbutt033
      or fotwglass@ yahoo.com

    • Jan. 2, 7:08am
      Witless76

      OK, so who won?

  11. Dec. 31, 12:31pm
    Tenacious D

    It really is amazing what we’ve all been through this year, especially the Japanese. What a resilient country, meeting the challenges of the March disaster head on and overcoming it so bravely. I didn’t expect Kazunori and the team to get back to work on GT5 so soon or do so much. We’re really blessed to have these people seeing to our requests so tirelessly. GT5 isn’t just a monumental game, but a testament to this fantastic family of game makers.
    I’m looking forward to an even bigger and better 2012 for GT5, thanks to Kaz and the intrepid team at Polyphony Digital. Happy New Year Kazunori-sensei, Polyphony, and everyone here at GT Planet. Even the knot-heads. ;-)

    • Dec. 31, 12:57pm
      occasionalracer

      Very nicely put Tenacious, indeed a very eventful year despite the horrific disaster the Japanese has to face. I’m grateful for the hard work and dedication from the PD team and I think the 7.3 mil. copies sold speaks for itself for their success. Surly PD can expect another 1.5 mil. sales by the end of next year if they keep their reputation up through bug fixes and fun updates.

      Also super work by Jordan and all involved in keeping this the most visited site for Gran Turismo fans across the globe and staying on top of the game for 10 years! Happy New Year!!

    • Dec. 31, 1:01pm
      TokoTurismo

      Haha, I agree. :) Does that make them the legends of GT and us fans? I sure hope so. :) I can’t wait to see everyone and the new comers join the GT5 fun with the new XL Edition of Gran Turismo 5, it’ll be the blast of the life time. *w* Happy new year to youTenacious D, to Famine and this wonderful article you’ve written, to everyone here at GT Planet, to Kazunori Yamauchi and his great team Polyphony Digital. :D

  12. Dec. 31, 11:58am
    OwensRacing

    Great write up Femine, enjoyed reading the article!!!

    Was a great ride and very glad to have a seat next to so many wonderful, passionate, fast, and helpful members of GTP.

    Thank you Jordan and Staff for providing an excellent venue for us fans and racers to unite.

    I get my organized racing from GTP. Greatly appreciate that you guys work so hard to provide so much to the members of GTP and fans of GT5.

    Jeff

  13. Dec. 31, 11:34am
    invinciblewheel

    THX PD , i hope they keep supporting the game

    thank you guys

  14. Dec. 31, 11:27am
    Demonyze

    megusta.jpg

  15. Dec. 31, 10:08am
    Young King

    Great year indeed.

    Happy New Year!

  16. Dec. 31, 9:13am
    Synwraith

    A fantastic year, really staggering just reading through all the GT related news in the summary above. The GT5-themed official manufacturer events were simply amazing, a lot of folks did very well out of GT5 this year :)

  17. Dec. 31, 8:58am
    shmibal

    Please check out my Urban Rally Series thread if you are interested

  18. Dec. 31, 7:04am
    mazdaman83

    Yesss !!!
    It was a great year for Gran Turismo Fans !!!

    I wish everybody a wonderfull 2012 !!!!!

  19. Dec. 31, 6:30am
    zuperkiwi

    Great first year for GT5!!
    And now I know where I got my 6th Red Bull from, thanx Vettel :)

  20. Dec. 31, 6:13am
    Daniel

    You forgot to put down “Mini-Fam2 born” that’s pretty much a universal milestone there!
    :P

    • Dec. 31, 3:08pm
      Milford_Cubicle

      Despite Famine trying to sneak to the registry office alone to have her officially named “Gran Turismo” and failing, she still has nothing to do with the game and therefore no place in this article. But thanks for thinking of us :D

  21. Dec. 31, 5:14am
    YoanP

    I would like to see CHALLENGES, you know, like GT4 or GT5P:

    – fixed player’s car (could be two levels, with or without tuning)
    – fixed track
    – fixed rivals
    – fixed time or having to reach 1st place

    It would be far more better than de Seasonal Events.

    The game has got +1.000 cars and many tracks but need to really use them. With all that elements it’s only a matter of creativity to create really awesome challenges.

  22. Dec. 31, 5:05am
    VR6syncro

    Amen to that

  23. Dec. 31, 5:04am
    VR6syncro

    Amen

  24. Dec. 31, 3:48am
    Freezer445

    Happy new year GTplanet :3

  25. Dec. 31, 3:35am
    furiosomarron

    4 more years!

  26. Dec. 31, 3:18am
    dmz_bean

    2011 has been a great year. I’m very thankful for PD supporting their fans as well as they do.

  27. Dec. 31, 2:47am
    SaintSaiya

    awesome!! all (I) want now is EL CAPITAN and COMPLEX STRING, the vegas strip and grand canyon wouldnt hurt either

    • Dec. 31, 12:24pm
      Tenacious D

      Those would be nice, but I want to see ALL the classic tracks from all the previous Gran Turismos at some point.

  28. Dec. 31, 1:41am
    BWX

    PD and Kaz should be proud of GT5, it’s really a great driving/racing sim- but there are some omissions in the game that really cut the replay-ability down a great deal.

    We need more A-Spec and a higher XP level limit, some other way of progressing in the game other than seasonal races and online racing, and a much higher cr. limit.

    I would pay PD for a GT5 A-Spec career extension DLC pack even if it included no extra cars or tracks. This temporary Seasonal Race thing is cool, but it doesn’t replace a large and challenging offline career mode. Kaz said that A-Spec was lacking himself, why not fix it through DLC?

    • Dec. 31, 12:22pm
      Tenacious D

      There are a few things that would help expand GT5, and more A-Spec events is one of them. Another is giving us an Event Maker that would work online as well as offline, with enough elements to define and create entire racing seasons, not just single races or so. Hopefully we’ll see something on this from Kaz next year.

    • Jan. 1, 3:03pm
      MyFavoriteGame

      I think Seasonal event more than make up for the lack of A-spec events….but i do agree that the xp cap should be a bit higher

  29. Dec. 31, 1:15am
    GT Pro

    With Test Track still nowhere to be found, GT5 is still dramatically ‘down’.

    • Dec. 31, 3:27am
      recca

      how does not have one test track dramatically lower GT’s overall quality??

      test track is coming, its’ gonna be one of the DLCs most likely but it is coming

    • Jan. 1, 5:26pm
      GT Pro

      Because I spent a solid 50% of my time on previous GTs on the Test Track. I modified a broad range of different cars and then saw how they stacked up testing them in said modes.

  30. Dec. 31, 12:24am
    TokoTurismo

    This was the best year for GT5 ever, well done Kaz and PD. :D Thank you for this wonderful review Famine, love seeing the pictures we’ve seen before again. :) Feels really good. Can’t wait till 2012. Maybe there might a few surprises stored up for us through the months, especially the GT classic tracks. Oh BOY! (*v*)

    • Dec. 31, 12:19pm
      Tenacious D

      I can only echo what my friend said a moment ago. But hopefully I’ll come up with something of my own, presently. ;-)

    • Dec. 31, 1:03pm
      TokoTurismo

      I believe you did my friend. :) It was very wonderful to read aswell. ;)

  31. Dec. 30, 11:42pm
    mykem

    My review is much simpler- bought it and still playing it everyday plus today I got my T500RS which means at least another year of GT5.

    • Dec. 31, 3:28am
      recca

      god the RS takes GT5 to a whole new level of realism…you’re in for a treat, so precise

    • Jan. 1, 12:06pm
      shmibal

      I love my T500RS. A little pricey but worth every penny

  32. Dec. 30, 10:48pm
    Elitekilla29

    epic year for gt5 with the updates and all the improments they made on this game threw the year. I hope in 2012 we will see even better dlc and patches. great year pd

  33. Dec. 30, 10:23pm
    armydude

    this is one of those years where people can actually say that playing a video game or being part of one help humanity in a positive way….

  34. Dec. 30, 10:21pm
    MOTORTRENDmitch

    It’s been a great year of racing, Hope to see you all on the track in 2012

  35. Dec. 30, 9:25pm
    MoLiEG

    It’s been a long year for us all, can’t wait for the next one! It should get even better! :) Thanks for the review Jordan :D

    • Dec. 30, 9:25pm
      MoLiEG

      I mean, famine xD

  36. Dec. 30, 9:14pm
    JimmyJames10

    2011 has been epic! :)

  37. Dec. 30, 9:11pm
    HKSBro92

    Good year! I hope next year we get showered with even more updates, new cars and tracks. It would be so cool if PD added all the music from the older GT menus. *shrugs* whatever they do next year I’m sure It’ll be awesome!

    • Dec. 30, 10:47pm
      GT HP Nut

      ‘Moon over the Castle’!

  38. Dec. 30, 9:05pm
    spikeyhairdude

    Such a good year

  39. Dec. 30, 9:02pm
    Amphibious82

    What a great year!!!

  40. Dec. 30, 8:18pm
    NaganoRN

    Tire Wear… *Yao Ming meme*

  41. Dec. 30, 8:07pm
    tomo 427 S/C

    I’m glad to see all this work being done to fight pancreatic cancer. My uncle died from it a couple of years ago, and I’m very happy to see people fighting against it.

  42. Dec. 30, 8:01pm
    GTP_Versatile

    woo!

  43. Dec. 30, 8:00pm
    SSXRid3R

    hell yeah!

    • Dec. 31, 12:57pm
      Aceman108

      Hell yeah is right this game is awesome. i just finally got to 40/40 on both Specs took me an entire year lol. i can’t wait for the next set of dlc to be released.

      hoping we get some more cool updates and features.

    • Dec. 31, 2:16pm
      Tvensky

      GranTurismo is lifestyle!

      Happy NEW 2012 YEAR to everyone! ;)


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