Gran Turismo 7 1.29 - A Grand Update

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After a slow period following the end of year holiday season, Gran Turismo updates return with a pretty major one. PSVR2 support was of course expected, but it's not coming alone: the addition of Sophy just a year after being unveiled to the public, and the arrival of long awaited fans favourite. And of course, new cars.


PSVR2 support was avertised a while ago already, and a few priviledged guests got the opportunity to test it, with everyone speaking highly of it, and nobody so far has complained about feeling sick after using PSVR2 on GT7. VR is supported on the whole game, including Sport Mode and Showrooms, with the exception of split screen. Please note that PSVR2 is PS5 exclusive.

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Sony's deep learning racing AI, Sophy, also finds its way into Gran Turismo 7 with this update under the form of seasonal events that allow players to race against 4 AI opponent, with different difficulty levels to choose from. Sophys will make their mood known to you via emotes and sounds, and provide more human-like racing. Sophy is only available on the PS5 version of the game though - which was to be expected, a complex AI like this being extremely CPU hungry. And it works really well: Sophy is well aware of its surroundings, will avoid crashing into you even when you're performing unexpected manoeuvers, use advanced techniques like left foot braking with partial throttle on front wheel drive cars, and throw dummies and feint moves at you to overtake.

Fun fact: the sound assets seem to be taken from the Toyota Pod concept, a car featured in Gran Turismo Concept 2002 which expressed emotions through light diffusers, sounds, and a wagging dog tail.

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Long time Gran Turismo fans will be happy to hear that absolute classic Grand Valley is returning to the track roster, although the makeover makes it hard to recognize at first glance and might prompt mixed feelings. It is now even named Highway instead of Speedway. With Polyphony Digital's efforts to get every original track matched to a real world location and terrain, and the highly fantasy nature of the original track, it was already mentionned a few times in the past that this track would be a challenge to port to the studio's current standards.

Amazingly, they found a way to fit the original layout, mostly untouched, onto the Pacific Coast of California, even reproducing local architecture such as the Ragged Point Inn & Resort or the Coronado Bridge. The track has been modeled more like a road, using markings and signs fashioned like those of the famous Highway 1, but still retains racetrack like width despite appearances. A myriad of easter eggs have found their way on and around the circuit as well: trying to find them all if you own the game could keep you busy for a while.

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Last part of the main content additions, 4 new cars make their way into GT7, with 3 classics and a new VGT. First is the 1970 Citroën DS21 Pallas, at the time a flagship for french technology and luxury. It was famous for it's hydro-pneumatic suspension system, and for being one of the rare french cars to be exported to the USA. The DS21 is also famous for having saved french president De Gaulle's life from an assassination attempt.

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Following is the original Porsche 911 from 1973, in its rare Carrera RS 2.7 form. This is the car which basically set the trend for ducktail spoilers... and a lot of racing records. Its value has gone up tremendously in recent years, and the game reflects that with a 750.000 Cr price tag.

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Interesting and unexpected addition, we have an old Formula 1 car from 1965, a time when these cars had no wings and produced lift at high speeds rather than downforce. The Honda RA272 is known for being the first Japanese car to ever win a F1 Grand Prix (1965 Mexico GP). Its small 1.5 V12 engine will happily scream into your speakers as it revs way past 10.000 rpm.

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Finally, we get a new Vision GT car from Italdesign, the EXENEO. The car features a rear mid mounted hybrid V10 engine outputting a total of 1200 hp, and is available in 2 versions: the regular Street one, and an Offroad version with larger tyres and higher ride height.

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Photo mode gets its own update as well with a new feature: Drift Mode in Scapes. As the name suggests, this allows you to take pictures of a drifting car, and it does it in a very interesting way: you get sliders to adjust the line travelled by the car indepedently of the angle it's oriented, the steering angle, and even the amount, thickness and texture of the smoke (which allows you to match it to dirt or snowy surfaces for instance). It is also possible to pick which wheels are producing the smoke, and the option is not tied to the car's drivetrain, meaning you do stupid things like make the tutorial's RX-7 look like it's doing a burnout from the front wheels.

Moreover, it turns out this feature is also very useful for regular dynamic scapes pictures: you can turn the smoke effect completely off and just use the feature to get a finer control of how you want the car to move across the scene.

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The update also adds a bunch of minor features and bug fixes, with a little Quality of Life addition to lobbies in the form of a results screen that can be accessed after a race. Dirty air on "real" slipstream setting seem to have been reduced - which is a good thing as it was overly exagerated before, to the point the World Tour build of the game used a different version of it. BoP changes affect the in-game classes, and Sport Mode gets the ability to restrict specific setup options for races - a feature that would be desperately needed in lobbies as well, but like many other Sport Mode specific features, the mysteries of Polyphony Digital's game design decisions keep holding back important features away from most players and crippling lobbies' potential.

Overall, this update is really nice, although only PS5 users will get the most out of it. The game still needs to fix some important underlying issues it has by design, especially regarding the single player career experience and lobbies.

Find the full patchnotes on the next page of this article.
Next page: Patch Notes
About author
GT-Alex
Global motorsports enjoyer, long time simracer, Gran Turismo veteran, I've been driving alongside top drivers since the dawn of online pro leagues on Gran Turismo, and qualified for the only cancelled FIA GTC World Tour. I've left aside competitive driving in 2020 to dedicate myself to IGTL, a simracing organisation hosting high quality events for pro racers and customers, to create with friends the kind of events we wished we could have had. We strive to provide the best events for drivers and the best content for viewers, and want to help the simracing scene grow and shine further in the global esports scene.

Comments

PC release please! Each article on Gran Turismo I've been hoping for a PC announcement. It never happens. And I just keep carrying on. I can afford a Playstation 5, but can't justify buying it only for Gran Turismo. There is literally an entire world of customers on PC. Polyphony Digital just doesn't want money I guess.
 
I think after some decades sticking to console only and the competition already jumping to PC as well, Sony have started doing some proper math when it comes to potential income. I've only owned Playstations for GT, however the PS4 is the last one I buy for this franchise.
 
As an AI nerd, curious to see how the Sophy AI races.
Same here.
Will be watching peoples reviews of this first time potential real Artificial Intelligence.
Hehe compared against all the Artificial Un-Intelligence all other racing games does offer.

CatsAreTheWorstDogs: Sorry iRacing you does maybe offer the only exception ;)
 
Same here.
Will be watching peoples reviews of this first time potential real Artificial Intelligence.
Hehe compared against all the Artificial Un-Intelligence all other racing games does offer.

CatsAreTheWorstDogs: Sorry iRacing you does maybe offer the only exception ;)
Eh. With the right attitude, the right car/track combo, and possibly some tweaking, you can have a fun AI sim racing experience in Grand Prix 4, NR2003, GTR 2, rFactor 1, Automobilista 1, and even sometimes rFactor 2 (esp. with the recent updates) or RaceRoom.

That said, we could use some innovation in the AI space. Would love it if GT Sophy took it to a new level.
 
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Sophy doesn't manage damage, doesn't take care of the engines, brakes and physics and .... of the cars so yes, making an AI that is responsive is affordable.

After that, it's like FIFA, it's a sales trap, because Gran Turismo seeks above all to hold players hostage so that they have to play it for long hours. It's not like Forza, which are ephemeral games that you have fun with but then you move on to something else.
 
you can have a fun AI sim racing experience in abcde.
I fully agree with that.
But it depends of your personal mentality if you are able to take the existing unintelligent AI bots serious.
Personally I cannot - because its so obvious they are just completely unintelligent and simple code calculating If-This-Then-That.
As I said above only iRacing is a bit different because (as I understand it) they are able to include in their real time calculations what human iRacing drivers as an avg use to do in similiar situations.:roflmao:

CatsAreTheWorstDogs: If something like Sophy is able to simulate the neural network based decisions human drivers does then Im all in - eventhough we must probably accept a lot of shortcommings in the beginning of this new area.:cool:
 
Can't wait for the day when i will read the headline "Gran Turismo 7 coming to PC"
I guess if GT7 would have a 120fps performance mode or unlocked framerate i'd even consider getting a PS5 just for the game...
 
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Club Staff
Premium
It has 120fps performance mode on PSVR 2
It's reprojection though to allow smoother visuals when you are moving your head, from what I can gather the game is still running at 60fps. Hopefully I'll have a good idea how well this compares up to the PC approach of doing this later today as it can be a bit jarring.

I got a good few laps in against Sophy last night. Was actually really impressed; she was jinxing around when I was going for an overtake to put me off and avoiding my careless divebombing to undercut me. I also didn't notice any of the 'strangely slow in this bit' that I usually experience in most titles.
 
The biggest thing GT needs to improve in my opinion is cockpit view, aids strictness, and it's custom tracks.

1. The way the cockpit view portrays the physics in GT is pretty terrible. It makes the car behaviour and overall physics look really off and unnatural (even though the game itself drives fairly naturally and even more naturally than "hardcore" PC sims in certain situations). I suspect this is why the vast majority of GT players, including really good players, almost always use lame bumper or roof view instead of cockpit view.

2. There needs to be servers or game-modes or.something which fully ban aids or sets aids no more than realistic setting. Unlike PC racing where almost noone uses aids (unless driving a lame modern GT series car), every one, and I mean EVERY ONE, in GT uses aids. It doesn't matter if they're in the top 10% or even top 1% of drivers/times with a wheel & pedal setup, they'll always, ALWAYS be running with aids, ALWAYS.

Try to find me some Youtube videos of at least fairly decent drivers running with cockpit view and no aids. I can't. The closest I can find - and "closest" isn't saying much - is roof cam and ABS.

3. The GT custom tracks are all so generic, uninspiring, and repetitive. Compare this to incredible custom tracks from ISI in rFactor 1 and 2 such as Toban, Mills, Sardian Heights, Essington, Lienz and in all their variations. Those tracks are all incredible, different, and absolutely oozing with character from not just an atmospheric perspective but, most importantly by far, a driving perspective.

4. Further work on sound, not just from a core sound-engine point of view but on individual car sound samples and sound generation, but, then again, there's not a single racing game out that captures the rawness, the organic naturalness, the depth & complexity, of real life audio (wether in actual real life or real life videos) therefore I can say this about any racing game/sim, not just GT.

Looking forward to GT7 coming to PC, it looks like a real sideshow to the proper sims. That Highway track looks EPIC.
I'd love if GT came to PC. is there any confirmation on it coming to PC?
 
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I'd love if GT came to PC. is there any confirmation on it coming to PC?
The only thing we got is some months ago Kazunori himself saying that they are of course looking into the possibility, but there is nothing to say at this point in time and there is also no actual work being done for it.
But to me thats already "great news" because i don't really remember when Kaz even took the word "PC" in his mouth the last time in some official interview.
He could've easily said "There are no plans to bring GT7 to PC, it is a console exclusive". Yet he said smth else.
 
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its got to be a secret road or tunnel to the beach on that track, it just has to be.
 
PC release please! Each article on Gran Turismo I've been hoping for a PC announcement. It never happens. And I just keep carrying on. I can afford a Playstation 5, but can't justify buying it only for Gran Turismo. There is literally an entire world of customers on PC. Polyphony Digital just doesn't want money I guess.
Here is an article from GTPlanet about Gran Turismo coming to PC, written back in late November 2022, in-case if you haven't seen it.
https://www.gtplanet.net/gran-turismo-on-pc-could-happen/

I also want the Gran Turismo series on PC to feature proper hardcore Sim Racing driving model/physics, so the PC players with Sim Racing peripherals and cockpit can have a proper realistic pure racing experience.
 
"I also want the Gran Turismo series on PC to feature proper hardcore Sim Racing driving model/physics" ---- well, this definitely won't happen, Gran Turismo is not about hardcore simracing physics. If it comes to PC it will come exactly with the same physics and tyremodel thats currently on Playstation. Only changes it will have is of course that you will have all the graphics settings one is used to from pc games, but as far as core gameplay goes, i would not expect any change quite honestly.
 
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Here is an article from GTPlanet about Gran Turismo coming to PC, written back in late November 2022, in-case if you haven't seen it.
https://www.gtplanet.net/gran-turismo-on-pc-could-happen/

I also want the Gran Turismo series on PC to feature proper hardcore Sim Racing driving model/physics, so the PC players with Sim Racing peripherals and cockpit can have a proper realistic pure racing experience.
It's not "it's coming", it's Kaz saying "I have started thinking about it, but it would be in many years and there are a lot of challenges". Which realistically means IF it happens, it's gonna be closer to a decade further down the line.
 

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