Gran Turismo 5 Prologue

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue is the latest installment in the Gran Turismo series and a PlayStation 3 exclusive title which was announced at the E3 2007.

The game was released on both the PlayStation Store and Blu-ray Disc on December 13, 2007 to celebrate the series' 10th anniversary. The PlayStation Store version requires 5,121 megabytes (just over 5 gigabytes) of available hard disk space. The Blu-ray version may cut down on this. The Blu-ray version costs ¥4,980 (inc. tax) and the PS Store version costs ¥4,500 (inc. tax). This short version title is a precursor to Polyphony Digital's planned Gran Turismo 5. Gran Turismo 5 Prologue features 16-player online races (starting in Christmas 2007), 37 cars, 10 tracks, and 7.1ch (LPCM) high definition sound.

A free playable demo version was available in the Japanese PlayStation Store from October 20 to November 30, 2007, and a North American special version was available at the 2007 SEMA Show on December 6th.

The "Prologue" suffix is a self-reference to the million seller Gran Turismo 4 Prologue released in Japan, Korea, South-East Asia and Europe one year before the full version of Gran Turismo 4 for PlayStation 2 which came out in 2004. It is unsure if the the Blu-ray Disc version of Gran Turismo 5 Prologue will be released in North America as the Concept and Prologue Gran Turismo short titles were not released in this area, furthermore no official statement has been made so far. However, Vision Gran Turismo is available for pre-order on the Best Buy website, with a release date of December 31, 2007. The Best Buy listing should be an error, as Vision Gran Turismo was only a concept shown at various gaming conventions.

New to the Gran Turismo series, is the ability to race with up to 16 cars at once. The AI has also improved from previous Gran Turismo games.

Also new to the series, is the new, realistic in-car view feature. It includes functioning speedometers and odometers, reflecting rear-view mirrors, wing mirrors and real time in-car lighting effects (casted shadows). Players driving with a supported steering wheel have the ability to look left and right in the cockpit of the car by using the D-pad. Any PlayStation 3 compatible steering wheel works with Gran Turismo 5 Prologue. The engine also sounds different according to which view is selected among the available four. Back view is also specific with the in-car view.

Online Play modes will be available by Christmas 2007. On the official GT5 Prologue Website on the 25th December 2007, players will be able to download network battle updates for the game's Arcade and Time Attack modes. Also available on this day will be a Museum mode, featuring histories of various car manufacturers.

In terms of game modes, a total of three will be available at launch.

* Arcade (single player with 16 cars)
* Arcade (time trial version)
* Event Race (4 categories, 32 events)
* Dealer Race (one make races)

In terms of physics the game will allow simulation selection between "Standard" or the more realistic "Professional" gameplay, (this feature was not available in Gran Turismo HD Concept) along with adjustable Active Brake, Active Stability Management (ASM) and Traction Control System (TCS). All of these features are already available in the free playable demo.

The game has a totally new interface, called My Page. It acts as the player's personalized menu for the game. The icons include; Race (which is obviously racing), Garage (where the players' cars are viewed), TV (which will give the player access to real-life car related TV), Album (for viewing pictures taken in the photo mode), Option (various options settings for the game), Profile (the player's online profile), Home (in conjunction with Sony's 'PlayStation Home'), and Calendar. The Calendar icon opens up a calendar with upcoming race events marked on it, a world map with the player's play area marked in red, weather read-outs for major raceways, motorsports related news, maps, and a clock. When the game starts up, the player is taken straight to the 'My Page' area.

The Home icon refers to Sony's 3D virtual chat space, Home. The plan at the moment is to create a Gran Turismo universe in Home. Players will be able to jump in and out of Gran Turismo 5 Prologue and back into Home as often as they wish. To coincide with this, Polyphony hope to add some sort of friends list and other social network features to the game. During online races players will have two options; play with voice chat on, or play with it off.

Famitsu magazine's latest update reveals that Prologue will include a new 'GT.TV' mode where real-life motoring shows like the BBC's 'Top Gear' (the Top Gear test track will be a drivable track in GT5) and Japan's 'Car Graphic TV' will be able to be viewed in episodic content. There will be a charge for this feature. On 24 October, a press release confirmed that Top Gear will be featured in Gran Turismo 5 Prologue.

Also Yamauchi explained to the magazine that the 16-player online play will probably be slow unless all players racing have a high-speed connection. On launch day, Prologue will experience some limitations to its online mode. Only one mode will be available to play at launch and that will be 'Arcade Free Battle' mode where players are chosen to race at random. More modes might be added later though, such as 'Chat' and 'Friend List'.

Famitsu also reports that the game will employ a special rewards system similar to Achievements in XBox 360 games. These new rewards will be added to the game episodically. Upon completing certain challenges, bonus cars, tracks, and content will be unlocked. The extra cars and tracks include vehicles and courses from Motor Toon Grand Prix and the mech from Omega Boost. The additional bonus content includes making-of videos, television commercials, and "ghost" races against development team members' best times. Full versions of Omega Boost, Motor Toon Grand Prix, and Motor Toon Grand Prix 2 will eventually become available as downloadable rewards for special online racing events.

Thirty-seven cars from twenty-one worldwide automakers (including Nissan, Ferrari and Ford) have been confirmed to be available in Gran Turismo 5 Prologue. Some are included in the demo, though most of them are not playable. The vehicle list is available on the Gran Turismo 5 Prologue official website.

Ten cirucits are included in the game with reverse versions. Some of the tracks will have different versions instead of a reverse mode. For instance, the Fuji Speedway circuit has an "F" circuit and a "GT" circuit. The tracks (including their variations) are, Suzuka Circuit, Suzuka Circuit East Course, Fuji Speedway F, Fuji Speedway GT, Super Speedway Daytona, Road Course Daytona, Eiger Nordwand Course, Eiger Nordwand Course (reverse), London City Course, London City Course (reverse).

A free demo has been released on the Japanese PS Store on October 20th, 2007 with the Suzuka Circuit and 7 new cars playable. The demo unlocked cars as they were unveiled at the 40th Tokyo Motor Show because the demo coincided with the large scale event. The free demo will come off the Store on November 30th, 2007. Then the actual game will be released on Blu-ray Disc and PlayStation Store as a download on December 13th. This demo replaces Gran Turismo HD Concept that was removed from the Japanese PS Store on September 30, no international release has been announced for the Prologue demo.

The demo initially only came with 4 playable cars, with the upcoming Mazda ATENZA Sport, Lexus IS-F and Subaru Impreza WRX STI marked as unlockable respectively. However, each of these cars have been progressively unlocked as they were unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show (10.23~25) simultaneously, along with the unmasking of the new 2009 Nissan GT-R, which had its defining panels concealed to prevent unwanted media attention and was renamed "GT-R Black Mask". The Black Mask was removed from the car section on October 23 to coincide with its official unveiling at the Tokyo Motor Show. The unveiled GT-R was available again on October 24 now with the in-car view enabled.

The Gran Turismo 5 Prologue demo is the first PlayStation 3 release supporting both Dual Shock 3 controller vibration and racing wheels force feedback feature. Logicool, the Japanese branch of Logitech which is releasing official racing wheels for the Gran Turismo series has launched the G25 Racing Wheel for PS3 on October 25, 2007. This wheel is a rebranded version of the Logitech G25 Racing Wheel. It features a gated shifter with 6 forward ratios plus reverse, a clutch pedal and dual motor force feedback. The G25 is supported along with the previous GT designed models (Driving Force Pro, GT Force, Driving Force and Driving Force EX).

The new Gran Turismo TV feature was introduced in the demo version. This VOD service was activated on October 22 with three free SD trailers for motorsport TV programs (being Super GT, D1 Grand Prix or Best Motoring). Since October 24 "Gran Turismo TV Special" exclusive full-length HD videos are released for free, these include Tokyo Motor Show video reports and Kazunori Yamauchi interviews. DRM activated GT-TV videos are downloaded within the HDD, nevertheless GT-TV download service will end up on November 30, only HDD stored videos will remain available. Full-length videos of the free trailers will be available for purchase from the full version of Gran Turismo 5 Prologues GT-TV. On October 24, 2007 Top Gear have confirmed that select classic episodes will be available for viewing on Gran Turismo 5's GT-TV mode. Starting on launch day (13/12 in Japan), distribution will begin on free video content with two programmes, "Tokyo Motor Show 2007" and "First Impression Lancer Evolution X". Before the end of this year (2007) more GT-TV content will be available to download. "The GT-R Legend Inside Story II" on 14/12 and "The GT-R Legend Inside Story III" later in December 2007.

Online service has ended on December 6th for the demo, as a result the GT-TV mode is now disabled as well as other online related contents like the "News" feature and the motorsports news related live RSS feed. Videos downloaded from the GT-TV mode's servers are still saved within the demo's HDD slot but are not available anymore. The demo's original filesize was extended from 736MB with an empty GT-TV mode to 2.576GB including all six downloadable VOD files.

Among the real time "Autodemo" unplayable content are two courses (Fuji Speedway and the newly added Daytona Speedway), two dozens of old and new cars ranging from the 1990s to the 2000s and two Photo Mode stages set in the Nürburg town and castle. In this latter mode the selected car is set in a Full HD advanced 3D environment with a 360° camera work and the GUI's real time zoom-in function is enabled.

The game outputs a 1080p Full HD resolution while it remains compatible with NTSC SDTV (480i). Although GUI display (MyGarage, Album, etc.) is widescreen full pixel 1080 60-frame progressive, in-game racing is anamorphic full screen. Replays are rendered at a reduced 30-frame progressive (anamorphic full screen) due to added music video-like visual effects.

Audio quality varies according to the selected output, from AV Multi's analog 2ch to HDMI 1.3a's 7.1ch LPCM. S/PDIF optical output allows Dolby Digital 5.1ch.

The demo's main theme is "Check" taken from the Bring It On LP performed by Belgian band Goose.

An alternative version of the Gran Turismo 5 Prologue downloadable demo was presented at Sony's booth during the 2007 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was the first time the North American version of Gran Turismo 5 Prologue was unveiled.

Compared with the Japanese demo this North American version adds previously locked contents such as the rolling demo's tracks (Daytona International Speedway and Fuji Speedway F) and American cars (Dodge Viper GTS '02 and Ford Mustang V8 Coupe Premium '07). The online Manual was removed from the Japanese version though.

An extra car, Art Morrison's Chevrolet Corvette '60 SEMA version 2006 was also included. New SEMA show cars have been selected by Kazunori Yamauchi to be featured in the upcoming Gran Turismo 5 like it was done earlier with tuner cars in Gran Turismo 4 (e.g. the HPA Motorsports Golf R32). These 2007 Gran Turismo SEMA awarded cars are the Factory Five GTM '07, Bully Dog Ram '07, GReddy 350Z '07, HPA Motorsports TT '07 and the Ringbrothers Mustang Fastback '67.Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts.
Virtual Magic is a human knowledge database blog. Text Based On Information From Wikipedia, Under The GNU Free Documentation License. Copyright (c) 2007 Virtual Magic. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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