E3 2004: Gran Turismo 4 Impressions
Making its second appearance at E3, Gran Turismo 4, yet again, delivers the goods. Since last year and since the release of GT4: Prologue, Polyphony Digital has tightened up the physics even more, and has made the handling feel even better. You can feel the car better than you could in GT3 or the Prologue. In addition to that, Polyphony has added a few new visual touch ups to the game. When in first person view, the camera will tilt down if you brake hard. If you crash into a wall, the screen will shake furiously to simulate the impact – we thought it was a very cool feature.
Visually, it seems some additional touches have been made as well. The reflections are more apparent and the lighting in general couldn’t be better. It looks considerably better than GT3, which is saying a lot. But some things that still irked us were that the rims on the cars were 2D. It especially bothered us because nearly every other racer displayed at E3 (excluding Street Racing Syndicate) had cars with 3D rims. New to GT4 is a photo mode. You choose one of the game’s courses and select an area of it where you want to take a photo of a chosen car. If you remember the initial shots of GT4, you may remember a shot of a Mini Cooper in an alley way, and a Subaru Impreza WRX STi driving through an alley of bamboo trees – those two screens were actually shots of the camera mode.
Sony displayed a great build of GT4, and there’s no question about it. There were 100 cars and 10 tracks, including Hong Kong and Nurburgring. Online gameplay is still in and will make the final release of GT4. Look for GT4 later in November.
5/12/2004 Arnold Katayev