Right up there with Uncharted and God of War, serious racing sim Gran Turismo is one of PlayStation’s most important and iconic franchises. Unfortunately, the last game in the franchise, Gran Turismo 6, was released on PS3 a month after the PS4 was already available – a move that disappointed many PlayStation fans. On the bright side, Gran Turismo 7 is in the works for PS4, though the game is unlikely to be released before 2017.
But when Gran Turismo 7 is finally released, developer Polyphony Digital will have far more to worry about than impatient fans. The series’ selling point has always been its impeccable level of detail, but now the competition is catching up. For example, Project Cars recently wowed with its graphics, PS4-exclusive Driveclub didn’t look half-bad, and EA’s upcoming racer Need for Speed is also set to impress when that’s released next month.
Something that has been suggested to boost the series’ profile, however, is PlayStation VR support for Gran Turismo 7. Speaking to Eurogamer at EGX 2015, Sony PlayStation president Shuhei Yoshida told the publication that “when Gran Turismo comes out on PS4, I’d like to see it support PlayStation VR.” Yoshida also revealed they have been conducting “many trial tests” of different genres that work with PlayStation VR and driving is one of the genres that works “fine“.
One the one hand, virtual reality and driving games go hand in hand, as most racing sims offer views from the cockpit. With Gran Turismo previously having featured the epic 24 hour Le Mans race, GT fans could use their PlayStation VR headsets to give themselves a seriously exhausting, but exhilarating challenge that feels just like the real thing. Plus, with a PS4-compatible driving wheel and a set of pedals, it could make GT fans feel as though as they are really sat in the game’s vehicles.
On the other hand, support from a franchise as big as Gran Turismo could help Sony shift some PlayStation VR units. The headset’s specs seem to be all there, though it’s likely to struggle if it doesn’t have a solid slate of games that people actually want to use with it.
There is one obvious flaw in Gran Turismo 7 having PlayStation VR support, though, and that’s the fact that if players are encouraged to play the game in first-person, they may miss the great visuals that the game is sure to have. So if Polyphony Digital does choose to add VR support to its upcoming game, the developer will have to a strike a good balance between emphasizing what made people love the series in the first place and embracing the new tech.
How do you feel about Gran Turismo 7 adopting PlayStation VR support? Do you think it is a good idea?