GT5: Prologue to Follow Warhawk to PSN and Retail

Gran Turismo 5

The hotly anticipated Gran Turismo 5: Prologue will follow in the footsteps of the recently released Warhawk for the PS3 according to Eurogamer, receiving both a downloadable PSN release and a full Blu-ray retail release. It will feature a car count somewhere north of 40, three tracks (Eiger Nordwand, London City, and Suzuka), and 16 player online racing. It will reportedly run at 1080p and 60fps in race mode, while replays will only hit 30 fps.

The game is currently slated to drop in Japan and Europe sometime before the end of the year, but no North American release has yet been announced. However, even if it doesn’t get picked up for release, the region-free nature of the system should make importing easy … should you be so inclined.

ProStreet Hits the Strip

Need for Speed: ProStreet

Voodoo Extreme has a set of (heavily retouched, we fear) pictures showing off the drag mode in the upcoming Need for Speed: ProStreet release. The graphics look fantastic and the nose-up launch of that Hemi ‘Cuda certainly looks authentic, and we’re hoping that the overall experience will be slightly more exciting than that seen in other drag games, which tend to be more like reflex tests than anything to do with driving …

GT5 Interview – Professional Physics and New AI

Gran Turismo 5

Any cynical fan of the Gran Turismo franchise is probably sick of hearing about “rebuilt” opponent AI in the game, because every single iteration of the game has promised just that, with none really delivering anything but the same ‘ol freight-train bumper-cars action. However, that’s exactly with series producer Kaz Yamauchi is promising for Gran Turismo 5 according to an interview with Kotaku. Kaz’s reasoning is that with 16 cars on track some updates were needed to prevent that bumper-car action … which apparently was acceptable with 8 cars on track.

Also mentioned is an in-game TV channel that may include footage of real racing, and a new “Professional” physics model meant to appease those looking for something a little more hardcore than the earlier releases … color us interested.

Wipeout HD = PSP port?

WipEout Pulse

An interview conducted by Sam Kennedy from 1UP, speaking with Sony Liverpool director Tony Buckley, has been posted at the 1UP site which makes some interesting revelations about the upcoming download-only Wipeout HD for the PS3, hinted at in his earlier preview. It seems the game will include just 8 tracks, all sampled from the two PSP releases, Pulse and Pure. The code for those tracks is lifted directly from those games, along with much of the rest of the game engine itself, with the visuals of course polished and smoothed to look appropriate on the PS3 … mostly anyway.

This means Wipeout HD isn’t going to be quite the next-gen Wipeout experience many series fans have been hoping for, no more so than Gran Turismo HD was for Gran Turismo fans. However, unlike that one this one won’t be free …

NFS: ProStreet Updated Impressions

Need for Speed: ProStreet

GameSpot has had the opportunity to check out an updated version of Need for Speed: ProStreet, and have posted both an updated preview and a video interview with Mark Little, one of the game’s producers. Interestingly, they stress how the game has taken a turn toward realism compared to the previous entries:

As we discovered in our hands-on time with the game, each of the event types in ProStreet has its own charm and its own challenges. With grip races, the challenge is dealing with the heavier feel of the cars. We tried a couple of different grip challenge races with cars, such as a Mitsubishi Lancer, which–while not the hottest car in the lineup–is certainly no slouch. The more realistic feel in ProStreet is most evident in weight transfer, which plays a big role in achieving quick times around the circuits. If you can manage to roll your momentum through the tracks, you’ll be that much quicker each lap. Interestingly, some grip events will feature two classes of cars, and your goal will be to win the race in you current class.

We’ll believe that when we see it, of course coming from the latest NFS entries, it wouldn’t take much of a change to be more realistic. Anyhow, check out the rest of the preview for more impressions of the game, and check out the video interview below.

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More PS3 Racers Slipping and Sliding Away

Juiced 2: Hot Import Nights

Fatal Inertia wasn’t the first PS3 game to have its release pushed back, but going from PS3 exclusive to Xbox 360 exclusive at one point (and back again), it’s certainly been one of the more publicized ones. Now, Evil Avatar has a report on a few more floundering PS3 racers. Juiced 2: Hot Import Nights has gone from a September release to an October release on the PS3 and PSP, while the 360, DS, and PS2 versions are still on track for Sept.

Meanwhile, Stuntman: Ignition has been the subject of another indefinite delay on the PS3. 360 and PS2 versions are still slated to drop at the end of this month, but there’s no longer any estimate given for when the PS3 release will drop.

NASCAR 08 Reviewed — Badly

NASCAR 08

EA’s trend when new consoles roll around tends to be get a stripped down, barely passable release out the door the first year, then follow it up with a proper installation the next. However, with NASCAR 08, it seems they’ve missed that target, according to GameSpot’s review delivering a fairly mediocre entry to the aged franchise:

NASCAR 08′s box touts the fact that EA’s NASCAR series is the top-selling NASCAR franchise, but nowhere on the packaging does it tell you that it’s the top-selling franchise because it’s the only NASCAR franchise. However, the fact that there’s no competition is made apparent as soon as you play. There have been a few improvements to how the game plays and you can now drive the Car of Tomorrow, but inexplicably, there’s less to do in NASCAR 08 than there was in NASCAR 07. It’s still a competent racing game, but you can’t shake the feeling that NASCAR 08 would have been a whole lot better if there had been a competing NASCAR game out there.