Late to the Table: Gran Turismo 4

I originally got this game when it had reached Greatest Hits status, but only just got into it now. And I have to say that this game is extremely robust. This game would easily be lumped into my “way too long” category in my “How Long Should Games Be?” article.

But one interesting feature that I came across was the Photo Mode. Polyphony gives you the ability to take pictures of your in-game garage and save them onto a USB Memory Stick. You can then take these virtual “snapshots” and print them out at your local camera shop.

Based on the settings you use when taking the photos, the pictures can look amazingly realistic. It then turns into somewhat of an RPG, where you try to take pictures of all the cars in the game. Kind of like Pokemon, but not stupid.

Anyway, it then dawned on me that this is probably the best example of a developer using a system’s ability for “multimedia.” The big three are music, movies and photos, and it’s really cool to see someone combine one of them with gaming. It may be small to the unsuspecting consumer, but I think it adds a lot to the whole experience, especially in GT4, where it’s all about the world of cars.

It’s also surprising that no one really thought of this earlier. The PSP/360/PS3 are all primed to do this stuff, but everyone seems so reluctant to do it. Someone was developing that game where it incorporated your mp3’s into the game for the PSP, but I’ve been informed that that game has been quietly canceled.

Ah well. I guess all I have left is Gran Turismo 4, which by the looks of it, will keep me busy until PS4 comes out.

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