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  1. #1
    Don't spooge your pants just yet....

    Its not really a true game to be fair. It?s a promotional product using the game to portray a car. Its an interesting concept and Polyphony only pull it off because few games programmers have the time or dedication to produce such a detailed game. I?m sure it will benefit both companies, unless you want a Prius to race about in.
    If anything it reinforces the fact that the GT series are driving simulators rather then racing games, but then, driving a car, however physically modelled, is quite dull.
    Racing them is much better, but then, this product is not for sale either. I would guess that using games to convey products will be the next big thing as graphical models have been used for years. Why not make them interactive?

    Anyway Got hold of this the other day (its about a bit apparently) but this copy was sent by a friend of a friend who lives in Japan. Had agood pllay during the weekend and thought I?d post my thoughts as its not a review as its unfair given the mass of variety on offer here. (Please ignore my sarcasm).

    The game features 1 track to play, which is Tsukuba (Japan).
    The playmodes are Prius Touring Vs Prius Touring, Prius Touring via orignal Prius. That?s it. No two player modes. You can also watch (replay only) modes of Tokyo City and the E3 featured Italian street track.
    A forth option allows you to watch promotion material of the show and the car.

    The music used is from GT3 so is unlikely to be featured in the Full/Prologue versions.

    Once you?ve chosen the car, you get the choice of around 8 colour schedules. Silvers, Grey and white dues, Black, Blue and Red.

    The gameplay has improved somewhat, and is a little more precise then GT3. Being a true race track, the graphics are nice, but scenery minimal so if you like grandstands, you?ll be at home. A small, animated graphic in the bottom left shows you what looks like petrol being pumped around the car engine. God knows why. Some special function in the car itself is likely but not being able to read Japanese I?m not sure.
    Its for promotional purposes only so will not be seen in the full game anyway.

    Pop-Up was evident once, during a long straight, but this was not evident everytime, going over the same stretch in other races. I?m not sure if pop up could be affected by heat causing problems with the GPU. Will2003 (Ex London Consoles) said my machine was dirty when it was chipped and I?ve not cleaned it since. Given the programming skills of Polyphony and the time they?ve had to refine the (albeit completely new) graphics engine, it could be that. Saying that, in GT3, R11?s industry section had terrible pop up at times although this was not evident throughout. It was certainly not evident during the Tokyo or Seattle stages where you?d have thought it would have been most evident.

    The is obviously no crash deformation (this being confirmed ages ago) but the game runs is silky smooth at around 55-60fps (est). The amount of detail in something as anal as a headlight is testament to the effort made by the team.

    Finally, the AI. Well, I dunno. I don?t think its that different to GT3 and using cars to cut corners can still be done, without penalty. Of course, racing with all cars of same type was always more challenging in GT anyway. Slipstreaming effects were not really noticed.
    I must also add that that ?climing a mountain? feeling that you got with the GT series (from GT2 and on) was that you know the early races are going to be slow paced, given the cars you were able to afford. This is very much in evidence again here, and I believe the lack of a damage model to be a main cause.
    It would make the primlinary races far more exciting.

    Much of this, no doubt, will be subject to change in the Prologue and Full releases of course, but we?ll just have to wait and see.
    I will say this? the A.I. (in current form) is not, seemingly, that much different to GT3.
    Extensive play-testing of Prologue will reveal more.


    Steve.

  2. #2
    Hmm, sounds pretty good. The one worrying thing still is the lack of scenery detail though, and I remember this being a concern people had with the early videos of GT4. Hopefully this is only going to be the case in the track stages, and we'll see a huge increase in roadside detail on the more scenic countryside and city sections. I know that both PGR2 and R:RE have some great scenery, and I can't really see Polyphony playing second fiddle to them where this is concerned, especially considering that their game is more recent.

  3. #3
    I had a brief go on this a while back when I had it, I have to say that it didnt really grab me perhaps as there was so little here. The Prius is hardly the most interesting car in the world, so things were a bit too slow and mundane for me. As a taster it was fine however, and its nice to know that GT4 draws ever closer. For me though Im wondering if the series is beginning to burn out, Ive always taken issue with a game that claims to be the realistic driving simulator which spurns reality by having no crash damage, once they deal with this issue (if) then for me the game will not be bettered. More "meh" than "wow" so far as Im concerned.

  4. #4
    I'd dispute the scenery thing. Their City tracks are very impressive, but proper race tracks by their nature are pretty dull.
    As marcus says, the Crash 'issue' is important to keep people from losing intrest. It plays very well. Theres not many games that 'feel' the way GT does. Its somewhat 'analog' rather then digital - if you get my drift.

  5. #5
    I'm interested what people expect from a crash system?

    Is it like PGR2, where the damage is cosmetic, and only really affects how pretty your car looks on a replay, or like TOCA where it is race and performance specific, or CMR where it is the same as TOCA but for a whole race series or permament unless fixed by paying in cash?

    If its the later I doubt that it is possible on the PS2 without a hard drive - the damage model to the car models would be too large to be save/loaded to the memory card when you have 100 car garages.

    I'd like to see damage implemented as in CMR, it would make you more careful - and I find Polyphony's excuse that Honda will not let the damage the cars pretty lame when PGR2 has Hondas.

    What ever model does get implemented - probably with GT5 on PS3 as I think its pure grunt thats prevented it for GT4 - it should not be permament when playing online (just for that race or series) - imagne getting your pride and joy wrecked by the type of losers who think its fun to block the track in Moto GP.

  6. #6
    Thats exactly what i'd expect from a crash system.
    On GT you can ram cars to gain places on corners. on TOCA you severly damage your front end and lose places (you can use this to your advantage, but only if your side by side on appraoch).

    In Burnout 2, you'd proberly end up with a sixty car pile up, as the traffic would all crash too!

    Also, GT4's replay mode is still the best around and when you look at the actual car physics, it looks real. Until you crash. Also tracks (Like the final chicane on Deep Forest) have a high bump strip. On the said track, you can fly and totally avoid the corner. The GT physic system resticts flipping of cars in any direction, so again, you gain places.

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