The long running racing series Gran Turismo is making its return later this year and aims to be the most realistic driving simulator to date. Known as Gran Turismo Sport, the racing sim has partnered with the International Automobile Federation, which will add new competitions and real prizes to the title. After being announced last October during Paris Games Week, Sony also confirmed a beta that would arrive prior to the game’s release in an effort to have players help the game reach its typical and specific brand of perfectionism. Unfortunately, these plans may have changed, as developer Polyphony Digital is cutting a certain promise to ensure that the game makes its release date later this year.
Series creator Kazunori Yamauchi has confirmed in a recent interview that the team at Polyphony Digital has decided to completely cancel the beta test scheduled for later this year. The main reason was the fact that the developer would have first had to make a gold master of the beta test code, which would have delayed the full game, likely pushing it into 2017. With the release date having been recently announced, the added pressure of working on a second gold master would have required as much effort as it would on the full version.
By cutting out the need to work on a beta master completely, the studio has saved itself about three months of additional development time. When asked if any additional betas or testing periods were being planned, Yamauchi confirmed that it wasn’t likely.
“Just because it’s beta we can’t just throw it out there. It’s required that in order to do an open beta we have to create a proper master for it, and considering the release timing that we announced, we decided that we just don’t have enough time to do two gold masters for the game. By omitting that it saves us about three months of time.”
As many Gran Turismo fans are well aware, the series is known for having extended development time, as indicated by the oft delayed, Gran Turismo 5. Even though players will no longer be able to participate in a beta and get hands on with the game before release, Polyphony Digital’s decision to scrap the beta entirely is ultimately a good thing for fans as it prevents having the game pushed into 2017.
As Gran Turismo is a major first-party title for Sony, having it pushed out of it’s late 2016 window into the next year would have created a situation that occurred last year with Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. When Naughty Dog delayed that title, it left Sony with a sizable hole in its holiday lineup, a fact which the company acknowledged in interviews and never found a way to fix it. Even though PlayStation fans were left out in the cold somewhat with limited first-party titles late last year, it seems like Uncharted 4 was well worth the wait in the end.
Are you disappointed that the beta is no longer coming or are you okay with the decision as long as the game arrives on time? Let us know your thoughts below.
Gran Turismo Sport is schedule for release on November 15, 2016 for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation VR.