Sony has officially announced the impending launch of the sixth title in the Gran Turismo franchise.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of Sony and Polyphony Digital's Gran Turismo — well, outside of Japan — and, at an event marking the occasion of its North American release on 12 May 1998, Polyphony Digital CEO Kazunori Yamauchi announced that Gran Turismo 6 is finally slated for a release towards the end of this year (confirming last month's rumours), three years after the release of Gran Turismo 5 (GT5).
"It is amazing to think that it is 15 years since we first released Gran Turismo," Yamauchi said. "Things have changed a lot since then, and now Gran Turismo 6 is a further evolution of my dream. We're pleased to deliver GT6 to PlayStation 3, as we have a very loyal community on that platform. However, we have re-factored the game to make it very flexible and expandable, with a view to making many future developments. I am very pleased with everything about the new game and the new additions, but the launch will be only the beginning for GT6."
Carrying on with Gran Turismo's tradition of hyper-realistic graphics, Sony claims to have kicked the "authenticity" up a notch, with new tracks, new cars and a new user interface. These will be included on top of the old cars and tracks from GT5, all of which will be carried forward into the new game.
Sony also plans to continually add new downloadable content (DLC) to the title, which includes new tracks, new cars and new parts to customise those cars down to the finest detail. Players will race across 71 tracks in 33 locations, and will have the ability to build their own tracks and share them online.
It seems curious timing for the game's launch, since the title is specifically slated for the PlayStation 3, and the PlayStation 4 is due at around the same time — especially since the PS4 will not be backwards compatible. While we doubt that PS3 owners will be chucking their consoles out the window at the first sign of a touch pad controller, it seems that Sony has missed an opportunity for an exclusive launch title.
That said, the game still may be released for PS4; and, either way, it's looking pretty polished. You can check out a small selection of the cars in the gallery below.