In what seems like a significant update, Spec II of Gran Turismo 7 will include Sony-AI powered rival cars, a new track, seven additional cars, a new game intro and, surprise, a refreshed single-player structure.
As per usual, the game will not be playable online between the hours of 6 am BST and 8 am BST during that date, during which the patch will be released for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5, which will be playable once the servers are back on stream.
Gran Turismo Sophy 2.0
The potentially revolutionary artificial intelligence agency, GT Sophy, will re-appear in November’s Gran Turismo 7 update – only this time more adept. The AI learns your driving style and, in theory, is much smarter than previous single-player rivals seen in GT7 or prior GT titles.
It has the possibility to not only be quick, but also learn your driving style, plus defend and attack in a more naturalistic fashion. We’ve seen several demonstrations against the best Gran Turismo esports drivers in the world, a drifting test at the recent Showdown event in Amsterdam and even played it earlier this year when a limited-time test was available to all in-game.
It now returns, on PlayStation 5 only. Instead of the limited set-up, now it’s claimed that Sophy can drive 340 of the cars in the game around nine of the tracks. We can see that it now includes Gr.3 cars in the recent trailer, and tracks such as Grand Valley Highway 1, Road Atlanta, Tsukuba and Circuit de la Sarthe, Le Mans.
Instead of a separate test area, Sophy is now integrated within the World Circuits single-player events, and on PS5 there will be the option of ‘regular AI’ or ‘Sophy’ pre-event.
Single-player World Circuits structure
We enjoyed playing through the Cafe Menu books, alongside completing the Missions and Licence tests. But, once you’d completed all the volumes, the remaining World Circuits single-player races felt banal in comparison.
Each month, a few more would be added to the game, and there didn’t seem to be any real incentive to complete them.
That will hopefully change with Spec II, but let’s see how it plays out in the fullness of time. What we know is that once you reach and watch the end credits (by completing Cafe Menu Book No 39), Weekly Challenges will be playable.
Each weekly challenge combines events from World Circuits into a form of championship, but without points standings. Instead of the Sunday Cup, for example, events seemingly being disparate around the map, there could be a weekly challenge of completing all of the events within seven days.
In the teaser image released, complete races unlock roulette tickets where cars, cash and parts can be obtained.
Seven new events will be added to the existing roster, too, details we’ll share when the update arrives. Smaller tweaks include ‘Arcade Race’ becoming a ‘Quick Race’ option and a new event directory menu.
50 further licence tests
A staple since the first Gran Turismo game in 1997, licence tests provide a short, sharp, challenge with an online leaderboard to push you even further – if being awarded a gold rating wasn’t enough in the first place.
Somewhat surprisingly, 50 more of these challenges will be added to the game with Spec II. Entitled ‘Master Licence Tests’, these will be split into five categories: National B, National A, International B, International A and Super Licence. Once again, there will be rewards for achieving all bronze or all gold results, seemingly a roulette ticket for all-bronze and a car for all-gold.
When you combine new World Circuits events, these additional licence tests and the weekly challenges, it sounds as if there’s more reason to return to the single-player portions of Gran Turismo 7 thankfully.
Lake Louise venue
A new track has been added, but no, it’s not what you expected.
A fictional snowy venue set in Canada, Lake Louise will come in three layouts: Short, Long and even Tri-Oval.
No matter when you drive this track, it will always be covered in a layer of snow, reminding us of Gran Turismo 4’s Chamonix venue. At night, it looks as if there is moody blue and red lighting to boot.
To take part in an event at this new location, snow tyres must be equipped – a new addition to the Tuning Shop.
New car line-up
Further to that, following our speculation over the weekend as to what the seven cars are, these have now been confirmed with specific trim levels, evolutions and years now locked in.
- Dodge Challenger SRT Demon ’18
- Dodge Charger R/T 426 Hemi ’68
- Lexus LFA ’10
- Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II ’91
- NISMO 400R ’95
- Porsche 911 GT3 RS (992) ’22
- Tesla Motors Model 3 Performance ’23
There’s nothing really new here in terms of the vehicles if you read our previous article, although it’s worth noting that the 190E is an Evolution II which was homologated for DTM racing and we now know that the Tesla is in the fastest Performance trim.
Once the update is live, we’ll update our Brand Central, Legend Cars and Used Cars compendiums with the PP levels and pricing.
Four-player local split-screen
Much like GT Sophy, this one is only for PS5 players. But after the update, split-screen will support four players, whereas previously it was only two. Let’s hope the big where the second player couldn’t change their driving assists is also remedied…
Spec II intro cinematic
As has been the trend with the likes of Gran Turismo 6 and Sport, once a significant update hits, developers Polyphony Digital like to introduce a new game cinematic upon launching the game.
We think we’ve hit our capacity for hearing Paul Mauriat’s Nocturne by now anyway…
Speaking of the Polyphony team, its Tokyo offices will be added to the Scapes locations and three new Extra Cafe Menus will be added: road-going racers, Lexus and Red Bull.
These are simply car collecting challenges – own the prescribed vehicles, and unlock a reward.
Slower shutter speeds in the post-race replay photo mode, down to 1/1 – 1/30, will also be available and the largely pointless meeting places will now turn into a paddock where you can use an emoji to compliment someone’s car. The player profile will be turned in a ‘dashboard’, with further stats about car collection on display.
We’ll be back with the full changelog and our impressions, tomorrow.