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.
- 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.
- 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
- 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.
- Mercedes-Benz announces a live race in September between GT5 players and former Formula One driver David Coulthard.
- 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.
- GT5 Spec II is announced as a standalone title for Japan in February 2012, with no plans for a European release.
- Lucas Ordoñez wins SPEED.com’s “Rookie of the Year” award.
- The second round of GT5 DLC is announced and sees release near Christmas.
- The four GT Academy champions are announced as a single team of drivers for January’s Dubai 24 Hour race.
- Polyphony Digital announce that GT5 sold another 1 million copies between January and September, to bring the total to 7.3 million. GT4 (190,000), GT5 Prologue (130,000) and GTPSP (370,000) all sold more copies during the year with the series now totalling 64.7 million copies.
- GTPlanet hosts our annual philanthropic fundraiser for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, proudly raising $1,000 to help fight this terrible disease. Thank you, everyone, for your help in reaching this milestone!
- Gran Turismo 5 XL edition, including Spec 2.0 update and some paid DLC, is announced for North America in January 2012.
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!