There’s been a ton of really good fictional tracks throughout the racing genre. Often memories of our favorite circuits are intertwined with our favorite games too. There’s no way this is simply a coincidence.
I say this all too often but what a week this has been. After months of speculation and rumors thanks to no small part of Microsoft keeping their lips sealed on the matter, the hardware that will be powering the next Xbox, otherwise currently known as Project Scorpio, has finally been discussed at-length and I have to say that it is truly an impressive feat.
Here we stand on the inaugural weekend of the 2017 Formula One season, and with so much having changed over the previous year, things are looking interesting to say the least. Nico Rosberg has exited the sport as the undefeated Driver’s Champion, and in his seat sits former Williams driver Valtteri Bottas.
Before you start yelling at me, I already know what you’re going to say: “T, what happened to the Rewind last week?”, and it was simply an issue of time. I’m going to treat this week the same in terms of order, though I will say I’m pleased with the order of things as a result.
If there’s one thing the sim racing community can usually agree on, it’s that running a dozen hot laps all in the name of further improving your skill is the very definition of fun. While sounding tedious to some, the thought of learning the track inside and out, pushing the car to its limits and gaining familiarity with what can and cannot be done is an adrenaline boost.
2017 is upon us, and we’ve already bet on it being a bumper crop for racing games. This should be special for anyone with an interest in Sony’s flagship racer, as we should finally have the first entry of Polyphony Digital’s Gran Turismo series on the PlayStation 4.
What a week this has been. The racing game genre has grown to the point where a bombshell can be dropped at a moment’s notice and change everything. At a time like this where we’re analyzing every detail, trying to understand what makes the genre tick and how it can continue to grow, it’s these moments of genuine surprise where we can all sit back and say “wow”.
Gran Turismo 2 was the host to an impressive number (and variety) of racing machines, and whether the vehicles be race-modified to emulate their real-world counterparts, or the tried and true machines themselves, there’s quite a bit more to these cars than one would expect.
We’re just going to cut to the chase here: the Weekly Rewind has returned! A lot has changed since we last spoke in 2014, and we’re going to tackle all of it over the coming weeks in some form or fashion. 2017 is shaping up to be one of the best yet for the racing game genre for one particular reason that we’ll gladly highlight again later on, and the news is all the more exciting when the revival of a particular PC (now multi-platform) racing franchise is announced.
With so much attention poured over graphics and sound design, it’s easy to overlook the role music plays in a game’s presentation. In Gran Turismo’s case, music has always been a key part of the experience, and Polyphony Digital clearly sought to establish a unique sonic aesthetic for the series from the very beginning.
Now that we’re all suitably re-hydrated from New Years celebrations, it’s time to look forward: this year is going to be great. 2016 wasn’t bad by any means — you can read all about it in our Year In Review — but we truly believe 2017 will be looked at as a high-water mark for the sim racing genre.
The more things change, the more they stay the same. As if to drive that point home, Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr first coined the term (“plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”, in his native French), over 160 years ago. When we look back at 2015’s Year In Review, we can’t help but feel — with the required date changes — the opening paragraph is just as appropriate when wrapping up this year.
DLC has changed the way we play games. Gone are the days where you buy a ‘finished’ product on release as additional content and Season Passes become more prominent in each new release. The racing genre naturally lends itself to embracing this new delivery model, since there will always be ‘that’ car or track fans plead for inclusion. Arcade, semi-sim or full-blown simulation — regardless of the sub-genre we have examples of developers and publishers outlining extensive DLC plans and asking for your premium to make it happen.
The 2016 Formula One season kicks off this weekend and I couldn’t be more excited. This year is markedly different in comparison: a new team; new qualifying; Red Bull has a new sponsor; Pastor Maldonado will no longer entertain us with his real-life “Crash FM” (I’m patting myself on the back for that reference, thank you); and Renault is back in the fray.
In a world where we analyze every minute detail, striving to understand every facet, and every nook and cranny of the hobbies we take part in, it’s weeks like this one that makes everything worth it. If you haven’t been keeping up with the events of this week then allow me to outline a few things for you.
A sentimental longing for the past; for a period or place with happy personal associations. That’s the definition of nostalgia, and the reason this is both the prelude and underlying theme this week has to do specifically with nostalgia playing such a significant role among those of us here at GTPlanet.
I’ll be honest, originally, the title was going to be “Everybody Wants to Rule the World of Racing Games” but I changed it, obviously. Why? One, it’s a little long-winded. Two, it would almost certainly conjure up thoughts of Tears for Fears, at least among those old enough or even savvy enough to know who they are.