It's been a long time coming but Sony's racing exclusive has finally gone portable, meaning that you can finally take a stable of 800 cars and drift around 35 tracks whilst on the move or on the loo. Gran Turismo on the PSP distills the hyper-realistic motor action of its bigger brother, providing a game that's perfect for taking out for a quick spin.
If you're a petrolhead on the lookout for some mobile motoring then you'll be pleased to know that Play are offering new copies of the game for £12.99 each, saving you almost five pounds on the nearest competitor (DVD.co.uk - £17.91).
In my own personal experience I have to say that driving games pressing for a certain degree of realism tend not to do well in the portable arena. Having said that, I was terribly impressed with the level of detail in Gran Turismo on the PSP. The cars, of which there are many, all look excellent, it's clear to see that developers Polyphony Digital have pulled out all of the stops with this one, and it shows.
The gameplay itself works really well too. The cars handle almost as well as they do in previous instalments, and fans of the series will find themselves instantly at home with the driving mechanics, which feel a lot like Gran Turismo 4. The portable version is a lot less brutal than previous incarnations, however, and for the most part the AI drivers stick to the same racing lines, look to avoid you and generally go about their business as if you had less presences than a flea's ghost.
Unfortunately, though, the simulation-style gameplay is horribly let down by a structure that fails to support any gaming of real length. All of the game modes are geared towards the single race and there's no career mode to speak of. The greatest aspect of a series like Gran Turismo or Forza Motorsport has arguably been starting out in an underpowered skip on wheels and gradually working your way up the racing ziggurat, tweaking and modding, until you can start buying souped-up supercars and sticking it to your rivals. The PSP game has none of this, however, favouring a rather more arcade-y approach and it was something I found incredibly frustrating.
This may not bother you, and admittedly the driving is definitely up to scratch; but those looking for a full Gran Turismo experience might be left sorely disappointed.
Thanks to JustifiedAncient at HotUKDeals