The PS3 Era Was a “Nightmare” For Polyphony Digital, Says Kazunori


When looking at the GT franchise as a whole, critics frequently rate the most recent games – GT5 and GT6 – as the least successful in the series’ history, for a wide variety of reasons. Those critics might be surprised to find that Kazunori Yamauchi actually agrees with them.

gt5 and gt6 box art“In terms of development, it was really really difficult and the games, after all the development efforts were put into it, were very very low. I think it was just that the balance [of the PS3] as a piece of hardware wasn’t very good,” Kazunori said in a recent interview with GameSpot.

“The age of the PS3 for us was sort of a nightmare. We really had to deal with this situation for a while where, ‘This is what we want to achieve, but all we can do is this.’ So there was a lot of frustration that was built up. The PS3 hardware is something that, at first glance, looks like it’s able to do this certain level of things, but in actuality, it can’t.”

Of course, since the revelation of GT Sport on PlayStation 4, the PS3 era is long behind for the Gran Turismo series, and Kazunori is clearly very excited about what the modern hardware can do for the game: “The PS4 is so good. This time we’re really able to do and achieve what we want to do, so it’s really fun.”

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Comments (49)

  1. blackjack

    I wish the progression of GT on the PS4 proved how much easier it is to work with than the PS3 but I ain’t seeing anything to suggest that it is.

  2. panjandrum

    You know. I was a huge fan of GT4. I got into that at essentially the exact same moment as I got into amateur motorsports IRL, and even now I respect GT4 immensely in terms on the physics. What I learned in-game translated directly to RL, and what I leaned RL translated directly to GT4 (I’ve always used FFB wheels). I also loved the world-map and the fantastic variety of really interesting tracks (I especially love all the great city tracks such as Citta di Arria). It was a great product. To this day I still drive GT4 on occasion and love it. You know what I don’t drive? GT5 & GT6, because they physics are so godawful bad that they were actually screwing-up my RL motorsport reactions. So PD can say what they will about hardware limitations etc. etc. etc., but in my book those aren’t “reasons” but “excuses”. When you take world-class physics and bork them utterly, even on better hardware. Well, sorry, that’s not the hardware’s fault…

  3. KasperFOX

    To all you who blames Kaz, for poor design, bad physics, ect…
    Yes maybe PD did some major mistakes doing the time of the PS3, but, notice that a lot of games that were also published to next gen, (BF4, GTA5, et..) Doesn’t rechieve any more updates for last gen? It is limited how much time and Space you can use on a PS3, and when you look at the Graphics in GT6 compared to other racing/regulary ps3 games, nothing matches GT6 in Graphics, number of cars (some bad too) number of race tracks and so on…

  4. CrazyJohn

    Hahahaha. That is not an excuse. Your attempts to fix problems were not as fans expected. The servers were and are horrible, it is like having no taste of network efficiency. Remove the unnecessary bunch of unknown Japanese cars, try getting more licenses of great cars that are not featured on GT5? PDI would say “no”, and that is what we see. Awful career mode and the licenses are screwed. Adding “Skid Recovery Force” is the worst, in my opinion. Apparently, it should be used for beginners, but at least the 80% of racers do use it.

    Yes, there are new things added, and if I spend 60€ for failing servers, incomplete game modes and vital things being absent, e.x. the damage mode we had on GT5, then I would say “Screw you”, and, if I could, I would request my money to be given back (which cannot happen).

  5. JackC8

    Didn’t seem to bother other developers like Naughty Dog very much. They’ve even got a game out on the PS4 already too…how ’bout that.

  6. SZRT Ice

    Features over graphics Kaz. Glad we’re finally getting customization (FINALLY!!!), but how about more variety and fleshing out what we have?

    More GT Original Tracks:
    Like Hong Kong, New York, Deep Forest, Citta Di Aria, Grand Valley, etc.
    I get the desire for realism, but don’t forget the desire for ENTERTAINMENT! Give us more beautiful and scenic places to drive. The more, the better!

    Expanded game modes!
    Expand on drifting and make it multiplayer and points based.
    Add drag racing with courses/lanes up to 8 players.
    Add some free drive environments for practice, hooning, drag racing, drifting, car meets, etc:
    Parking garages, run ways, ocean side drives, desert flats, hill climbs & decents, docks, factory areas, harbors, etc.

    Separated like any other class, but optional and selectable by choice (that includes mixed for challenges and track days!)!

    Fleshed out Rally!
    Treacherous courses, wooded areas, mountain passes, swamps, rivines, valleys, gorges, cliff sides, deserts, sand dunes, sketchy/rickety bridges and roads, arch ways, caves/tunnels, and rural village routes, various tire types, asphalt, tarmac, gravel, mud, ice, snow, puddles, water bodies, hydroplaning, etc. And please, make the courses more narrow!

    Dynamic environments!
    Driving through GT feels lifeless and sterile at times. Like driving through a beautiful still painting. Walls should dent, fences should break, barriers should be destructible, trees sway, birds fly, helicopters, airplanes, clouds, leaves, grass, wind, trains, subways, distant roadways and highways… Make it FEEL exciting and ALIVE!

    No invisible barriers!
    If a wreck is bad enough, where they would ordinarily leave te track, THEY SHOULD! Sliding off course, hill sides, wooded areas, trenches, gutters, pits, etc. Allow up to 20 feet of break-out space per track for accidents and incidents before a reset. Bonus points for caution flags and tow vehicles.

    Things I’d like to see in GT or a GT Spin-off by PD using GT’s physics and tuning engine.

  7. infamousphil

    I don’t care what you think about the PS3, Kaz. It’s history and what you should be commenting on now are the limitations hindering GT’s development on the 4. What? You think there are no limits to what’s possible with Sony’s latest and greatest? Doubt it.

    Look, l know how anal people can get with their projects. I can get anal too. Please, please, please just tell us in simple japanese translatable english what the hell we can expect in the near future. I know hype when l here it and understand that translators can whack emotion into mind boggling bs.

    I understand GTS is pretty much a done deal. Congradulations ;)

    You no longer need to enhance the graphics for advertising. Hooray!

    So let’s not talk turkey. GT6 online rooms are so full of crap (sorry yall. I dig good old fashion racing without RS tyres, boost, unnessesary driving aids and so on). These guys deserately need their drag rooms, their drift rooms, their rally rooms. I see what you’re trying to do in 6’s QuickMatches. No translation needed. Fix it, expand it, make them available 24/7. And don’t blame the tool. If you can’t afford the manpower, just say so.

  8. Aggserp4

    It is pretty obvious that it was, but seriously, considering that they only worked with one system, and that it took them ridiculously long to develop the games, they shouldn’t have a problem.

  9. thenardo55

    If Ps3 was the nightmare, the why the hell you made and released GT6 on ps3? GT6 shoud have been a Ps4’s launch title!

  10. VBR

    While the PS3 is known to be difficult, plenty of other developers made great games on it. Ever heard of GTA 5 Kaz? Or perhaps The Last Of Us & the Uncharted series? Maybe Kaz hasn’t heard the saying; “a bad workman always blames his tools”! Most of the problems with GT on PS3 from a fans point of view was about bad game design, not console limitations.

    1. Johnnypenso

      “A bad workman always blames his tools”! If I had a nickle for every time my Dad said that!…lol.

  11. I_Cameron_I

    I would agree those games lacked substance, but they were still some great memorable games, that kaz, even under the pressure of making a gran turismo 4 follow up, squeezed every ounce of effort he could with those games. I honestly didn’t like gran turismo 6 because it felt forced, like they had to put something together quick in order to say they made a 15th anniversary game. Still liked it tho, and its weird to to hear a games producer to say he/she didn’t like a certain hardware, understandable.

  12. Sky

    If PS4 is so good, how come GT Sport still has poor crash physics. For a game that emphasises online mode so much, how come all the multiplayer mode videos I saw are laggy just like GT6.

    1. CarBastard

      Ahhh, yes, the good ‘ole “it’s not 100% done/it’s a placeholder” excuse! Sorry, but if they aren’t showing it yet it’s because it’s FAAAAAAAAAAAAR from being something impressive. And, there’s no way they can add such a thing so late in the development cycle.

    2. Isho

      Did you seriously just use the “its not 100% done yet” card? This would only be valid if it was an early stage phase but this game is pretty much finished aside from a few tweaks. Plus, showing us an unfinished game at a big gaming convention isnt really a smart idea.

    3. Sky

      I am not saying PS4 is weak. It seems like GT’s focus has become a brand rather than a game.

      I am also quite disappointed that I still see laggy online mode when they demonstrated the game. Keep in mind that it wasn’t even true online. The competition was held “locally” between consoles.

      I have heard the same excuses “wait for the game 100% done” & “wait for the patch”. I already lose faith with PD.

  13. Dushan 77

    This is so true. I had problems with both of Gran Turismo 5 and Gran Turismo 6 on PS3. I had so many download patch failures on Gran Turismo 6. Not to say it was a stupid game, but to say it was a problem the downloads. I really got annoyed with the download failures on Gran Turismo 6 only. Gran Turismo 5 was a problem with the DLC confirmations for me. Thats all I have to say about my Gran Turismo nightmares.

  14. Isho

    Pretty sure most of the flaws people found about the game had nothing to do with PS3’s hardware capabilities.

  15. CarBastard

    Bovine manure. Pure and simple.

    Like it was said already, the game-breaking problems in GT5 and GT6 have nothing to do with console hardware but rather with pretty poor design decisions and an unparalleled disregard for fans’ suggestions. An extensive career mode that took advantage of the games HU-GE car list? Nothing to do with hardware, GT4 was able to do it. Extensive customization (i.e: bodykits, engine-swaps, liveries)? Nothing to do with hardware, plenty of other games for PS2 and PS3 were able to do it. Races without a ridiculous mish-mash of car classes and performances? Nothing to do with hardware, just a matter of common sense. A car list that reflected the desires of the paying public? Nothing to do with hardware, just a matter of, again, common sense. They even managed to screw the license tests, one of the defining features of GT since day one (Forced SRF? Come the **** on!) and failed at properly bringing back race modifications which would’ve been an amazing addition!

    Stop the PR talk, Kazunori. Man up and admit it, the only reason GT is going downhill is because of your poor design choices.

  16. Johnnypenso

    It remains to be seen if, “this time we’re really able to do and achieve what we want to do” is what the fans really want out of a GT game.

  17. Speedster911

    I’m sorry , but I will have to respectfully call BS on this. They said the SAME thing about the PS3 – how it would revolutionize GT and that the PS2 just wouldn’t let them do things they wanted to.

    Fast forward to PS3, same simplistic physics model with uninspiring car sounds. Fast forward to the GTS demo and pretty much the same crash physics, lack of proper car sounds and toned down/assisted physics model.

    It is not the hardware, but PDs vision: mark my words, GTS and the next one after it will be a game to showcase graphics, more than anything else. They will introduce licenses and online academies and all the other marketing hoopla to elevate the GT brand, but one thing the game doesn’t want to get serious about are the physics and real-life car sound.

    I don’t mean to spread negativity around the board, but it all looks a bit too similar to me.. been reading Kaz say the same things over a decade, and he is stuck in that mindset. He does not want to change.

    1. Northstar

      After awhile you just have to start wondering if perhaps PD just isn’t that great at actually developing games.

    2. johnnyman123

      Speedster911, ABSOLUTELY! I was waiting for a Gran Turismo vet whos played the series since GT1 to call of Kaz on this. I dont believe his jabber one bit, he has been saying the samething exact thing since the PS2 era. He has become a pathological liar to be honest, its sad.

      with that all said, I have enjoyed all the GT’s immensely, I have been playing GT6 for over 2 years now basically non-stop..and for that Kaz deserves nothing by phrase.

    3. infamousphil

      Speedstar, l’m not a race car driver, just acted like one in the late 80s as a youth. But l’ve always liked GTs physics. And we have yet to hear what Turn10’s former employee has to offer.

  18. cocoflowa

    Dynamic weather and time on nightmare console and not dynamic weather and time and no career on fun console. Rubbish.

    1. Leggacy

      One of the qualifications for earning an FIA virtual licence is:
      Achieve “silver” or better results in all of GT Sport’s “Campaign Mode” events

    2. Johnnypenso

      Read the details of the “Campaign Mode”. It’s about as far from a racing career as you can get. It’s nothing more than a series of tests.

  19. cjr3559

    Considering it was a nightmare the games turned out pretty well. Most things I wanted in the PS2 era were included in the PS3 era. I’d call it a win. Lemonade from a lemon.

  20. Rubencho

    yes yes they’ll be able to do what they want… like release a full game in the mid-cycle of the console lifespan

  21. celtiscorpion73

    I could be wrong, but what this says to me is, “We’re done with all games on the PS3 and are only going to work on any games for the PS4 from now on.” Guess we know that any updates on GT6 are pretty much out of the question now.

  22. Oyashiro-sama

    Excuses. The problems with GT5 & 6 were not hardware related. Graphics were good, driving physics felt good. The problems were the simple things:
    -> Better solo campaign (always chase the rabbit, no qualifying…)
    -> Online shuffle racing missing on GT6
    -> Since we have day/night races, why not full cycle (why do timer stops at midnight)?
    -> You can’t run a weather changing race against AI in arcade because they don’t know how to pit
    -> Same for fuel consumption
    -> Online room settings are quite limited (no option to forbid downtune???, same car race with only a handful of models, etc, etc…)
    -> List goes on…

    As I said, the problems were on the details. The details.

    1. jergto

      Agreed. All the GT fan boys saying sound was fine throughout the series and then a couple months or is it years now?, we get news that PD is FINALLY fixing the sound. Yawn.

      If you want to stick with routine Nissan GTR updates this is the game for you. If you want the likes of a 5th Gen Camaro Z28, 2016 GT350R (and regular GT350), Viper ACR, Challenger/Charger Hellcat, basically AMERICAN cars. This game IS NOT for you.

    2. David Brooks

      Agreed. I was annoyed when gt5 was new because I couldn’t use the RA menu with my g27 wheel. Thankfully they fixed it with a patch. Should be good for gt6 then. No. Same bug, and what’s worse they NEVER fixed it.

  23. Octopuss_911

    Who might belive it… I’m not trusting any talk from K. Y. or PD, just surprise us all with GTSport that this game is actually as good as the old one and even better!

    1. SavageEvil

      What constitutes a “better” game though? Tighter physics on all fronts, better communication of what your car is doing, better overall presentation, tighter focus of car types, better representation of locales, better implementation of rules and infractions, better sorting of online racers to match with players of equal skill and ideology? What constitutes a “better” game for you is a “better” question.

    2. Octopuss_911

      Let us start by the sounds the cars have and was promised for GT6 to be changed and end by a not arcade physics compared to what is now up to date.
      I had a lot of fun with GT5/GT6 but so many promises and what do we have? An uncompleted game till now!

  24. Zyla

    GT5 was better than GT6 to me. Neither were my favorite of the series, but they weren’t horrible. I personally expect a good turnout for the PS4 game(s).

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