Racing Games are Better Than Ever… So Why Aren’t They Selling?

23392305693_796cbe30ed_c– Citroen Survolt, December 29th, 2015, courtesy of torque99.

Sales. A controversial topic that’s known for sparking heated debate; a topic that is so heavily analyzed by the passionate user base that it is often misused as an absolute. It’s a topic one can’t help but be drawn toward—like a moth to a flame—as it gives a brief overview, or, at least, the perception thereof, of how well the product has been welcomed into the consumer’s home.

Sales are an important milestone as they dictate what happens next. That being said, they shouldn’t be treated as the be-all and end-all, simply for the fact that all of the information isn’t and likely won’t be made available to us. To the best of my understanding and admitted estimation, this is where the problems begin.

The latest entry in the Gran Turismo franchise has currently sold just under 5 million units and has been subjected to some scrutiny as a result. GT6 is the second lowest-selling mainstay entry in the franchise, and only narrowly places ahead of 2009’s Gran Turismo for the PSP. Despite this, it has still scored reasonably well with critics. It’s also worth highlighting that the only racing game to sell more than GT6 since 2011 is Mario Kart 8.

Forza Motorsport 6 just recently crested one million units, and while that figure appears low when compared to earlier installments in the franchise, it is by most accounts a critical success. Combined with its well-received DLC program, Forza Motorsport 6 appears to be in better long-term positioning than its predecessor despite the comparatively low numbers.

16054194828_e5c938da52_c– “Warp”, May 12th, 2015, courtesy of leeislee.

The much anticipated Project CARS had sold more than one million units shortly after a month’s release, with updated figures not yet available. Driveclub, a game that weathered an unfavorable launch period to grow into an exceptional title, has sold more than two million units as of early 2015. While Assetto Corsa will be releasing to consoles sometime this year, Kunos Simulazioni has yet to publish any sales figures for the game. As it stands Assetto Corsa has been one of the most well-received and critically-acclaimed racing titles of the past two years.

The issue is we simply aren’t aware of the projections that would warrant further investment in our favorite franchises. While GT6’s gross figure is larger than the other games combined, we don’t know where the bar was set internally to deem it a success. Did Sony expect an 8-digit total, like all previous full-size GT titles? Did they plan on a lower number in the face of launching so late in the PS3’s lifecycle?

Similar questions arise for the other franchises, too: while we’re sure Slightly Mad Studios would be ecstatic to hit even GT6’s sales numbers, by their own internal metrics, the game could already be a huge success, and anything on top is dessert. Forza’s franchise record for sales is 2009’s third iteration, well into the lifecycle of a system that enjoyed strong sales that generation, compared to the troubled XBox One.

23833219379_dd6824e3c9_c– Toyota TS040 Hybrid, January 5th, 2016, courtesy of ClydeYellow.

This begins to illustrate an interesting problem that’s arisen within the genre for some time now, a slow and steady decline in overall sales numbers. The exact reasoning for this is unknown as there are numerous factors and complexities at play; the differences between critical and commercial successes are still in effect.

The question this all leads us to is right up there in the title. We’re struggling to remember a time when so many great racing games were released within such a short time frame. With sales sagging genre-wide, have the folks behind these titles had to re-evaluate their goals? What could be causing the dip?

There could be numerous reasons. A shift in player tastes towards first-person shooters could be one. The explosion of mobile gaming could be another. Spiraling costs associated with the technology to meet player demands, yet one more.

It bears mentioning that, with the genre as populated as it’s ever been, a lack of diversity may be yet another reason for the dropoff in sales as of late. With many of them having the same tracks, vehicles and intent of blurring the lines between virtual and reality, there’s nothing to really differentiate them without venturing into the semantical.

Sim racing games on consoles also have to straddle the line between accessibility and realism. In the early days of Gran Turismo, there was nothing else quite like it, but the landscape is far different in 2016. Hardcore PC sims like iRacing are a niche product that could scare off more casual players. Striking this balance for a large audience is a constant moving target.

23266527964_2908a5e74e_b– Ford Sierra Cosworth, December 21st, 2015, courtesy of taz.

2016 is a fresh start for the racing game genre; an opportunity to liven things up again; an opportunity to shift the paradigm back in its favor, and there are a number of ways to kick things off.

For example, the differences between Forza Motorsport and Horizon can be bridged in a way similar to Atari’s Test Drive Unlimited or Ubisoft’s The Crew. An open world driving experience with an option to discover location-appropriate tracks such as Road America and Road Atlanta; both of which have been with the series since its inception.

Another intriguing option that can benefit the genre is VR. Gran Turismo Sport has already been confirmed to support the PlayStation VR headset that’s set to launch later this year, and Evolution Studios has shown off an impressive tech demo with Driveclub. While ambitious and not specifically billed as a gaming peripheral, Microsoft has HoloLens which, if retooled, could provide a means for the Forza franchise to up its game.

DP3-650-GT3_2

It will be interesting to see how 2016’s racing games fair. GT Sport will be of particular attention: while it sounds like a smaller, more eSports-focused addition to the franchise, it will be releasing on a system that’s enjoying a level of popularity not seen since the dominant PS2. Assetto Corsa’s console release provides a stark contrast, with a much smaller team behind it, and nowhere near the level of brand recognition.

We hope for the success of both, regardless of outright sales numbers, as there’s no such thing as too many racing games. What are your thoughts on the subject? Let us know in the comments.

Credit to Jordan and Kyle for the help!

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Comments (56)

  1. RampageRacing

    Some of the points that the writer made as to the lagging sales of racing/driving games are valid. However, he may have missed one very important possibility that transcends computer games completely. That is that young people are no longer interested in cars like they were in previous generations. Real world automobile manufacturers are aware with this and have been struggling with declining sales among young people. They add electronic gadgets and gizmos to nearly every model they make and then try to entice the “Connected” generation into buying their vehicles through marketing. Truth is, the “Connected” generation does not really care. They are more interested in iPads and smart phones than they are cars. Cars, to them, are an irritating, sometimes, necessity that they have to have access to once in a while. They are not something to be lusted after, dreamed about or driven virtually.

    I could expounded on this ad nauseam and produce statistic, studies and articles to back it up but all that is available through a simple online search if you are interested ehough to read about it. Suffice it to say that interest in car games is waning because interests in cars is waning among the younger generations who traditional purchased both products.

  2. Wolfe

    I think I would disagree with the opening premise: “Racing games are better than ever.”

    I’ve been waiting patiently for a true “next gen” console racing game, an experience that is unequivocally a step above and beyond what I already own. PCARS had the right kind of ambition, but in light of its mixed reception and spotty quality, it’s not nudging me toward any kind of hardware purchase just to play it.

    I’m all ears for a new must-have title, the best racing game ever made to date, once it exists. Until then, it’s back to Enthusia for me.

    1. Michael L.

      “Unequivocally.”

      That isn’t something easily achieved within a genre—a niche no less—where there isn’t enough wiggle room without adopting an entirely different play and/or presentation style, i.e. Forza Motorsport > Forza Horizon.

      However, I can say you would very much enjoy Assetto Corsa because it can be made into what you want it to be.

    2. Wolfe

      The concept for PCARS is what I consider an unequivocal step forward, and precisely what I envision for a modern console racing sim. It didn’t quite deliver, but there’s nothing else trying to do what it tried to do.

      Dynamic weather and a 24h cycle, not static options like we’re stuck in the mid ’00s (FM6). More race weekend features and options, not just more polygons. A healthy variety of tracks, not just prettier ones.

      There’s no excuse for the creative bankruptcy in the genre. Racing games were more vibrant in the sixth and seventh console generations, and today’s hardware is more than powerful enough to explore all kinds of possibilities.

  3. Devil240Z

    They don’t sell because the people who make them forgot how to make them fun to play. there is so much focus on graphics and realism that they are barely games anymore. There is no heart put into the racing games of today.

  4. Rustyhole

    While I’m sure this has already been said by others, my reasons are:
    – less disposable income. I’ll keep half an eye out for GT Sport though I wouldn’t get a PS4 for it.
    – less disposable time. GT7 may entice me to a PS4 and GTA6 probably but that’s at least a year away for the former and closer to two for the latter.
    – being burned by too many rushed/poorly developed games
    – new games now cost 2x what a typical PS2 game did and it’s a rare exception to say I’m getting 2x more game let alone making 2x more money. also, most games online base is only there during the initial 6 months, so if you want to play with others you pretty much have to buy within that timeframe not getting any discounts
    – my initial response to consoles move to an online ‘update/fix’ model like PC’s was “i guess that’s how it is now”, but with few exceptions, games released in a unfinished or unpolished state tended to stay that way despite any developers best intentions leading to a frustrated gamer.
    – i will never play an ‘always online’ game. ever.
    – micro-transactions

  5. Danisfast

    What about;
    -Growing inequality and the overall reduced spending power of the middle and working classes.
    -Falling ratings of flagship motorsports such as F1 impacting on sales.
    -Racing games haven’t changed much since the early PS3/360 era, weakening the case for repeat purchases for the non-hardcore racing fan.
    -In the case of GT, a relatively lacklustre 5th installment hurting the franchise.
    -Also regarding GT; the end-of-generation timing of the 6th game, which fell between a gap of the last generation, but with many gamers moving to a non-compatible platform before it launched.
    -Finally, the second GT (on each generation of PlayStation) has always historically performed less well than the first.
    -Also regarding GT, the PS3 generation was far more fiercely fought than previous generations. Despite an overall larger market, perhaps the growth of the Forza brand and some hardcore gamers moving to PC also played a role.

    1. Danisfast

      Some of these the franchise is probably unable to overcome. Despite Polyphony’s clout, they can’t do much about F1 losing its way (short of starting their own championship). Nor can they prevent the consumer from potentially being overwhelmed or confused by the sheer number of at least decent racers on offer nowadays…

      However, a strong game that builds on the strengths of the franchise (and addresses the weaknesses) would probably at least beat GT6 – even in the face of an apparent racing game-industrial atrophy. A hint to Polyphony: as Star Wars’s new entry and Nintendo consistently prove, nostalgia is a great selling point (as long as it has just enough newness to stand out). GT does have that string in their bow, and it would be a shame not to see it put to good use…

    2. Johnnypenso

      Not sure what F1 and it’s failings would have to do GT since the game doesn’t even have an F1 car in it. GT’s strength has always been an eclectic mix of cars from many eras, countries, and genres. There is no single class of car that contributes more to it’s success but rather the proliferation of choices is the key to it’s past and future success. There’s something for everyone.

  6. blackjack

    I will admit that I am biased towards the GT franchise and am PATIENTLY waiting for the “GPS data to track” feature. The other competitors in this market sure are looking very tempting but don’t offer such a feature either (as of yet).

  7. panjandrum

    In my case it is simply extreme caution brought-about by being burned too many times. It isn’t just racing sims, it’s all games (and to a lesser extent other software as well): too rushed to market, too many bugs, console-itis of games “made for PC”, too poorly optimized, and too many once-great series being dumbed-down or otherwise ruined in the pursuit of the short-term bottom-line rather than long-term customers. In the case of racing sims, I fell for the PCars “physics hype”, only to discover that it’s pretty darn terrible. Of all the games I purchased in recent memory, I can name a few that stand out head and shoulders above the others: GT4, Assetto Corsa, Dragon Age Origins (NOT the sequels), Life is Strange, Fallout 3. That’s about it. Everything else I’ve touched (GT5/6, DA2/DAI, etc. etc.) has been shockingly disappointing in any number of ways. Ten times burned, twice shy…

  8. MasterGT

    “Spiraling costs associated with the technology to meet player demands”

    In what way are spiralling production costs affecting purchasers? The initial cost of the games are the same, at least on consoles, and they quickly drop to bargain bin levels.

    This is not a good reason for lower GT sales. The only cost that I can see affecting sales will be for new wheels or rigs, but wheel users are far outnumbered by controller users. These are elective costs, not mandatory ones. The PS4 will have the on-line play cost that PS3 players don’t have, but that shouldn’t be affecting GT much.

    The most relevant causes of lower sales are probably competition or just plain lack of interest in the genre now. There are more sims vying for our time and time is a big problem for players of a game based on skills. Who has time to be up to par in two, three or more titles? PDI disaffected a lot of earlier players and they have migrated to some of the other titles on more advance platforms, too. Hopefully, the PS4 versions will get some of them to return to GT.

  9. CraigHyphenO

    This is a fantastic piece. Hats off to the writer(s) on this.

    There’s a lot of pressure on developers for more and more realism within the game but realistic driving and racing is incredibly difficult, which will put off a lot of casual fans. If games try to go half-and-half between simulation and arcade (Codemasters’ F1 series) then it really does go all wrong. I know amongst my social circle that the issues that both F1 2015 and Project CARS faced put people (including myself) off both. I still do not own either.
    Another thing I would like to bring up is those doing the reviews in the first place. For a major name such as IGN, when they come to review a simulation racing game, do they know what exactly to look for when it comes to the simulation side of things? Because something such as a car handling the complete opposite to how it does in real life would get overlooked by somebody who does not know about actual simulation racing. That (in addition to the whole Pokemon ORAS review) is why I do not trust reviews from the likes of IGN now. At the end of the day, I’d rather listen to someone who specialises in a specific genre.
    Ultimately I think a racing game needs to decide whether it is for the casual or for the hardcore. I don’t think in-between works nowadays. If there was a game which was very, very friendly towards sim-racing leagues, would that be very successful? I know I would buy it, but the majority of others who have no interest in hardcore sim racing would not.

  10. CSLACR

    Too difficult, combined with online racing. You used to just have to beat the game, and as long as you were casual, you probably weren’t checking for times people posted online.(which had a significant amount of liars and frauds)
    Now, everyone games online, so when casuals race they end up racing much better players, and they see how poorly they’re really doing. Casual players don’t want to be raped every time they play, so they drop whatever game it is, and move on. Nobody wants to run a 5 lap race online and lose by 40 seconds in the same car, especially if they drove well for their ability.
    Wheels. Wheels aren’t the end-all-fix a lot of people think, but they are great, and as physics get more real, the “need” increases. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that a casual player has no desire to spend as much as they paid for their console on a wheel, just to be competitive.
    VR. Even worse than the wheel, because it’s in addition. Even more money to be spent on something that will undoubtedly be considered an advantage by casual racers, more money they have no desire to spend.

    Casuals are being alienated from these games more and more each time they advance the genre.

  11. Johnnypenso

    The other thing that deserves mentioned is a general decline in interest in the car culture. Part of the reason for PD’s collaboration with the FIA is to help create more interest in car culture among the younger generations. I’m sure a great many sales of GT1-4 were among the 12-18 crowd and if they simply have less interest in car culture then they are less likely to buy a car game. To someone used to the intensity of BF or CoD, or the freedom and fun of GTA, car games are pretty boring and restrictive. You follow a very narrow path, your objective is to be efficient and precise and to avoid crashing and smashing up your car. We’ll have to see what happens with the next full GT game but I’m guessing the days of easily selling 10 million copies are gone for now.

  12. BlacqueJacques

    Games get ‘out of date’ pretty fast; platforms are changing but not necessarily using same hardware (e.g. Logitech G27 for PS3 not PS4); shutting down of game’s online srver so no more online racing; and yes it seems better sims on pc.

  13. Schmiggz

    I have a few theories.
    1. Racing simulators (not arcade racing video games)have more history and success on the PCs. For what i’ve been observing, iRacing has a gigantic number of players.
    2. As this titles became more and more realistic, a lot of people learned how arcade they were, how complicated and time consuming it is to set up race cars properly and lost interest.
    3. It became impossible to just grab the controller and burn some rubber down with your buddies. Now it’s all about racing leagues and racing wheels, top notch pedals, triple screen, racing seats and a whole bunch of peripherals that are freaking expensive!
    So basically, we’re almost turning into “highly professional” racing gamers and this requires tons of time and money and real life has this tendency to complicate it.

    1. Johnnypenso

      1. History yes, success no. Assetto Corsa is a raging success in pc and it’s sold 300k copies. GT5 sold 5 million in it’s launch month. iRacing has about 50k members total.
      2. Yes and no. Arcade, sim, simcade or anthing else can be enjoyable in their own right and not everyone is necesarily looking for or wanting to exclusively play the best sim ever.
      3. Most people play console racers without fancy equipment, just a controller. The hardcore stuff is mainly limited to the hardcore minority of players. In GT5 for example, you have TT stats available that tell us that only around 20% of entrants to TT’s used a wheel and I think we can reasonably assume that the % of wheel users in the rest of the GT fanbase was far less. Even in pc gaming you can scan through the setups of gamers on RSR Live Timing and you’ll find that the majority of wheel players are using either an old G25 or a G27, a pretty low end wheel for pc gaming.

  14. HKS racer

    Another important thing we need to consider is online leagues and online services like iRacing, if someone is already paying an online service and feel comfortable with it, new racing games despite being cool and new can be not necessary when your free time is 2 hours each days.
    Let’s not forget about the people playing old sims modded to looks (almost) as good as new ones. rFactor and GTR2 are still alive around the web. Race2play for instance you can find a good number of rFactor organized events.

    If you want to race you have so many options therefore the community is fragmented, splitted in different platforms.

    1. Johnnypenso

      Steam has stats available for online participation for any game they sell. I recently compared PCars, Assetto Corsa and RFactor2. PCars and AC peaked around 2000 players per day, RFactor2 was around 100. R2P does have quite a few rF and rF2 races organized but we’re probably only talking about several hundred or a couple of thousand active players. The vast majority of game buyers even on pc, don’t seem to race online.

  15. Strop

    As others have pointed out, GT-6 came out when everyone was hoping for the PS-4 version since the PS-4 was released a few weeks earlier. Add to that that there are really no significant improvements between GT-6 and GT-5 and I think it’s pretty amazing they sold as many copies as they did.

    If they’d released GT-6 as a PS-4 platform game and improved the sound and graphics they’d have sold double the number of copies, and probably sold a lot more PS-4s. Why they put all their energy into polishing an existing game for an obsolete platform is a mystery to me, as is why it takes more than half the life-span of a platform to get the first version of the game to market.

    Of course what’s annoying about this is GT-6 is still the best driving game out there. I have Project Cars and it’s a nightmare. Yes, very good sounds graphics (the hard things) but the easy things they’re clueless about. Like running a few laps and recording my best time, or racing against a ghost car, or running against times on a leaderboard. Seems easy but at least on the PS4, more than a year after the games release they still can’t get any of this working.

  16. HKS racer

    Problem is all these racing games are simulating the same thing. Yes there are differences in content and quality but when you have Forza 6 you don’t necessarily need Gran Turismo 6 and vice versa. When you have Assetto Corsa you don’t necessarily need Project Cars and vice versa.

    They are all competitors. Of course, lot of us have multiple racing games in multiple platforms, but the casual user could just need one.

    At the same time, There are people with two cars, three cars, but if you just need to move from home to work and back you don’t necessarily need a Lamborghini Aventador.

  17. SavageEvil

    In response to the headline, simple fact is you’re basing sales of a late release game (GT6) on an out going platform when two new platforms landed two weeks prior to the games’ launch(not to mention the rest of the issues GT6 had). Like the million selling platforms at launch wouldn’t put a dent in potential launch sales of a game on an inferior machine, yes/no perhaps? Now on to Forza 5 and Forza 6, simply put Forza comes out too often, it’s already up to number 6 in 10 years. What’s crazy is no one is complaining that it’s 2 year roll is simply absurd, not only that but they stuck Horizon in there so now it’s a Forza game every year…that won’t get tiring quickly. Night racing would be better if the lighting wasn’t so horrifically flat, it’s really dark depending on the course and doesn’t have ambient lighting especially noticeable at la Sarthe, on to the perpetual rain, this might have sounded great in theory but in execution is horrible and absurd. Sure it feels realistic to hit a puddle and you feel the wheel getting tugged in a direction you didn’t want to go in, but since when do puddles not change in volume and 10 cars careening through same puddle in succession all lose grip? I’ve seen puddles on inclines, no seriously at the Nurb there is water sitting on the road at Ex Mühle. Physics defying water, perhaps that is supposed to be running water, no idea but 3D puddles are a bad idea if they don’t change in volume(simulation wise). Also large pools covering almost line to line of the course is a no no, nowhere in the world would a race continue with that much water on the surface. I would have went dynamic and have wet line/dry line, this puddle crap is nonsense.

    I haven’t played Assetto Corsa but have heard good things about it, will try when I have a chance. I have Project Cars and while it misses the mark with road cars, it does have a wealth of deep simulation leanings tire temps, course temps and a myriad of things all matter at any given point. To me so far PJC is the closest to racing, it’s just the presentation is rather ugly especially online, even GT 6 Online looks leagues more attractive and easier to wrap your head around and communicate with. It’s their first attempt, so I can’t really fault them for missteps. PJC dev would do good to include vehicular tuning for road cars in future releases, the reason for GT’s popularity is the fact anyone can take a regular car and make something more out of it, make it theirs. Customization is a huge part of the draw of these games.

    PJC is not an easy game to get into but it’s commitment to rules and regulations is impressive. There are no public lobbies with a set of rules that makes things civil. Forza has public rooms, which can be hit or miss depending on who is populating the grid, lack of substantial rules for afk and cutting are missing leading to giant cheat fests(tire barriers create sight line problems which are exacerbated at night). GT6 is out of this, flagging system and the only highlight is its customizable online rooms which still need more options.

    I own all the newest driving games bar Assetto Corsa, all have high points and low points. Since getting everything in one package is impossible I play them all.

    We see PJC is new as is Assetto Corsa, Forza is probably going through doldrums of being available too often within a time frame(2 on Xbox One in 2 years, 3 if you include Horizon 2) and GT6 well it’s got more problems than it knows how to handle.

  18. BaseBuild

    I wish to have free roam stage from coffee break (stadium) available for other cars and in online mode or off-line at least.

  19. Gtracer_100

    Good article.
    With regards to other console titles, I think fragmented market is a factor.
    With regards to GT6 isn’t there an elephant in the room though? It’s not a particularly good game… and it barely moved on at all from GT5… I mean, what’s actually different?

    Yes it’s a very realistic driving simulation but is it actually FUN? After youve worked your way through a few championships certainly not in offline mode (still has same old ‘start from the back and work forwards’ format; still has rubbish driver AI; still has terrible engine noise).

    The Goodwood and Senna events are notable exceptions – they’re challenging and original: more of that please! The moon levels and crappy made up circuits for example are just a joke.

    And the online modes are 10 years behind other games, there are far too few ‘quick match’ options, you wait an age to connect, and often the races are half empty.

    The open lobbies are hit and miss, unless there’s a good private group you race with then good luck finding a race that suits you.

    So I think lower sales = lack of genuine progress. A few seasonal events and a good physics engine doesn’t equal a FUN game worth paying for.

  20. Donnced

    Well..i really think the opposite.. I just think that the racing games are popular and selling very good but it’s more fragmented in differents games and platforms..

    Back in the 90′ an early 2000 on consoles there was only one popular “realistic” driving game, gran turismo in the bestselling consoles psone and ps2. What was making a amount of huge amount of sells.

    Then with Xbox 360 the Forza franchise slowly gained popularity, fans and users.
    And there is a big comeback the last two years from the PC and Steam, because lot of people refuse paying psplus or Xbox Live for multiplayer gaming.
    On PC thanks to more power and more open policy there is a huge amount of good simulator racing games like Pcars, Assetto Corsa, Iracing, Rfactor, raceroom..
    Then there is also people ho moved from ps3,Xbox 360 to the new consoles like ps4 or Xbox One with games like Pcars, Forza,Driveclub…

    So,that’s exactly why i think that it seems that the sales of racing games are lower… But they really aren’t, yust more fragmented between lots of good games and platforms

  21. Christian Z

    It is easy to see why Gran Turismo is not selling as much as they did years ago. The main reason is that the car list is just the same that the one they used years ago in previous games. They didn’t update it.

    The best thing of GT was that if you went out and walk down the street, almost all the cars you could see, were in the game. And that doesn’t happen anymore. There are no new cars, no normal ones, and no super cars either. There are no a bunch of new circuits in the game. They didn’t keep promises. You can’t drive real places with GPS technology, there’s no Lamborghini Vision Gran Turismo at all…

  22. fluegelmann

    From my perspective you`ve hit some good points.
    More products and a denslier competition in the games market and on each platform.
    At the same time gaming consumption shifts more to the in-between way of playing (e.g. mobile gaming like Candycrush). Racing games are not really suitable for this, as even arcadish title want more of your time plus need precise control.

    What Turn 10 did with Forza Horizon is quite a smart move. It looks like they built a plattform from which they can develop two different titles for different driver types. This might be a plan for the future as is consolidation in the market.

    Its no question that if the market is declining and more and more new players entering the market, there has to be consoliadtion, just because there might be huge synergies (in the meaning of engines, knowledge, databases).

  23. Formidable

    Another part of it is that if you absolutely want to feel the simulation and feedback, you would have to get a wheel, and possibly a rig. It’s just that it’s too expensive to buy accessories at that price for one genre of gaming. I hate to say this, but I think if there were more arcadey-type racing games where it had physics and graphics that are pleasing, it will boost the genre because you don’t need all of said accessories.

    That’s just my view on it, at least…

    1. Johnnypenso

      I paid $100 for my DFGT, about 1/4 the price of the console and only slightly more than the cost of the game. I would think anyone that can afford $500 for the console and game could afford the wheel too.

  24. biftizmo

    Ha your one of those who trashed GT because of sales statistics…now you want to back peddle that…..so silly story arrives….there are at least 3 “acliamed” games mentioned here….based on sales stats… But….GT is a poor critical success…huh…..noncence…….
    Theirs only one question on everyone’s mind now…is GT6 a cross platform game?

  25. RESHIRAM5

    I think it is the fact that there are so many Car racers on PS and Xbox and not everybody can afford them all, so they have to choose at least 2 or even 1. There is just too much competition on 1 console and not enough love to spread around since Car Racers fan-base isn’t as big as other genres.

    and then you got Nintendo, who is completely open for a Car Racer and it seems Nintendo themselves have no interest in capsulizing on that opportunity :(.

  26. S30GodZ

    The reason GT6 didn’t sell well, comparatively, is because they released it on PS3 while the PS4 was coming out. I am a huge GT fan, played every one except 6 because I had to trade in my PS3 to afford a PS4. If they re-released for PS4 it would probably be one of the best selling in the franchise, maybe. And before you guys ask; yes, I regret selling my PS3 because now I don’t have any GT to play.

  27. eran0004

    I think that racing games have become so good that you’re basically missing out on too much by not having a wheel. Games like Grand Theft Auto that has a much simpler handling model gives you the full experience with the standard game pad.

    For those who have a big interest in cars and in racing, that interest might be enough for them to stick with racing simulators even if they haven’t got a wheel, but for casual players there are much better options.

  28. queleuleu

    Forza franchise deserves much better sales. Everything in Forza 6 seems great : cars, tracks, features…
    But, in my opinion, it lacks something. The conclusion of Eurogamer’s review : “Forza Motorsport 6 is too square to be cool, too rational to capture the romance of motorsport, too formulaic to capture its gritty, high-stakes drama. But it’s also too good to ignore.”

  29. Fredzy

    I don’t think this is too much of a mystery. There are more quality racing options for the average gaming consumer now than ever before. The market share is growing more slowly than the playing field. GT was practically a one-of-a-kind game all they way up to GT4. By GT5, Forza was really established and racing games were getting better. The casual gamers’ tastes have changed a lot as well. To me, GT sales figures reflect these two things more than anything.

    I think the advancement of technology which has allowed GT to get so close to reality has played a big part in shrinking its market share. It went from hitting a sweet spot in the compromise between arcade and simulation, to requiring the user fiddle with settings to make that compromise for themselves. The game grew tedious, and even in hindsight it isn’t clear how that could have been avoided. GT was destined to lose some of it’s fan base as technology finally enabled the realism that had always been PD’s goal. Once they got there, they struggled with making that palatable for the folks that swelled those sales figures in the past. I have some ideas for how to get that back, and from what I hear of GT Sport I hope they have similar ideas in mind.

    1. Fredzy

      To clarify, I meant to say “The market is growing more slowly than the playing field” implying that there are more racing games to choose from and probably not a lot more new customers buying. Especially when you factor the sheer number of PS1 and especially PS2 consoles that were sold vs. PS3. You aren’t selling a game to someone without the console.

    2. ZEROTHEKNIGHT

      I think you’ve just stated what 80% ( if that percentage was close ) of the current & previous GT fans had thought of lately – after GT6s availability for a certain time <:)
      Like they says : Truth is harsh.

  30. Benny44

    The problem with sales and critical reception is that if someone has a bad experience, they tell somewhere around 10x the amount of people than those having a good experience (my numbers are probably way off as I’m simply going by memory). The point is, those that are disappointed in something like a game speak much louder than those who are not.
    You can see it on any fan based discussion site such as gtplanet. If you praise Gran Turismo, a person who doesn’t like it will tell you why you are wrong. The problem is, if you look into it, there is a small but very vocal group of about 10-20 people who regularly dismiss and deride the game. I believe fan perception is made by the critical few when they point out flaws they deem very serious, even though most people may not initially feel that way.
    I’m not talking about people who like the game but see small flaws, I’m talking about the ones who think the game is basically poor all the way around. Those ones, I believe, are the vocal few who shape public perception

  31. TRLWNC7396

    Good thoughts. I wonder what rabid good/bad will come out of the NEXT version. :) or :(

    We shall see.

    But, yes, communication would make a DRASTIC improvement.

    That and better updates…… ;)

    1. Johnnypenso

      At first I thought the “People of Polyphony” thing was a step in this direction but since they aren’t bothering to translate it into English I’d have to go with no.

  32. celtiscorpion73

    Then I suggest PD pay more attention to their fan base and attempt to make better decisions by:
    Listen to their user’s wants
    Improve communication with the GT communities
    Stop leaving the fans “in the dark”, wondering if something is going to be fixed, added, etc.

    1. MeanElf

      Evolution Studios listens and acts upon what the fans perceive as what they want, and that game has not reached as high as GT6.

      Okay, it’s new, but it has been consistently made available through offers and sales, yet it still hasn’t outsold GT6.

      Whilst I shouldn’t be comparing a sim with a semi-sim – in other words, two games with different aims, I do think that the article’s thrust is correct; driving game sales have lessened: ergo – not necessarily PD’s fault.

    2. Johnnypenso

      It’s a brand new game on a brand new console in a completely different genre. In spite of a virtually barebones car and track list relative to GT, it’s managed to sell more than 2 million copies and an unknown amount of DLC. IMO I think they should be pretty happy with where they are right now.

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