Gran Turismo 7 Gran Turismo 7


Gran Turismo 7: For car enthusiasts

Car simulator extraordinaire



Gran Turismo is considered the de facto racing game for the PlayStation console. I know I’ve played my fair share of the franchise on the original PlayStation. As a dumb child-person-thing at the time, I only saw it as nothing more than a racing game. It wasn’t super appealing to me as I preferred the more bombastic, anime-inspired Bakusou Kyoudai Let’s & Go!! Eternal Wings. But times have changed, and so the Gran Turismo franchise and I grew up as well. 

For its 25th anniversary, the franchise is making a grand comeback with Gran Turismo 7. It’s the first main line game since 2013’s Gran Turismo 6. There was a Gran Turismo Sport for the PlayStation 4 in 2017, but it didn’t offer the full experience expected of a GT game. 

GT7 is a triumphant return, offering top-notch racing and driving mechanics, while offering an expanded experience. An experience that I think car enthusiasts or even just car curious people will enjoy.

Racing and driving still at its core 

Gran Turismo 7

There are no ifs and buts about it. The racing and driving experience is still the main draw of Gran Turismo 7. The sound of the engine, the way each car handles, and the diversity of the terrain. Polyphony Digital, the game’s developer, took its sweet time making this and it shows. 

The game is friendly whether you’re a beginner who’s not used to racing or driving games or you’re a seasoned pro. There are plenty of controller options and settings that you can tweak to your liking to really make the game work for you. 

When getting started, I picked the beginner mode on normal difficulty. Beginner mode turns on driver-assist settings that I wish were present in today’s smart vehicles. It’s especially helpful for someone like myself who has road trauma. Not only are there braking assists, this mode also turns on road indicators warning you of turns, where to brake, and where to position your vehicle. 

I got smug after a handful of wins on the racetrack and decided to turn-off driver-assist. The controls are easy to pick up. You hold down R2 to accelerate, L2 to brake, and the left stick to steer. You press the cross button (X) to go up a gear, and press square to go down a gear. If you’re not at all used to driving, mastering this while knowing exactly when to change gears or hit the breaks is a nice challenge to overcome. 

Ultimately, I went back to beginner mode because I’m a noob and I suck. But I’m not putting this game down until I get good at driving, so long as my work schedule allows. 

A guided campaign 

There’s a lot of handholding in the beginning of the game. Gran Turismo 7 takes great care in making sure no player is overwhelmed from the get go. What initially feels like a lengthy tutorial slowly turns into some kind of an educational tour of what the game has to offer. 

You begin by buying a used car. You then make a go round at the Café where you’ll get most of your campaign objectives. These are called menus and they’re tightly organized. Each menu introduces you to a different mode of the game as well as teach you about the cars available in the game. 

The game slowly opens up until you learn what each mode has to offer. From there, you can slowly climb up the ranks, upgrade your licenses, modify your cars, and the really fun part – build your car collection. 

Car Collection 

I imagine this will be the most rewarding experience for anyone who picks up Gran Turismo 7. Nearly every facet of the game is geared towards the player building and completing the Car Collection. 

There are a multitude of brands and cars here including those from top brands we know and love. You have Ferrari, Audi, Totoya, Ford, Lexus, and many, many more. The Car Collection can be sorted by country, manufacturer, and more. 

When you go into the collection, you can click on each car to learn more about it. This whole learning about cars is actually integrated into the campaign through the menus. You’re given objectives to complete and a lot of times it involves races to win cars. These cars are grouped together in a common theme and you learn about them after you complete objectives. 

Naturally, you can acquire cars in different ways. There’s the used cars store mentioned earlier, and then there’s Brand Central where you can buy them shiny and new. If you don’t have funds yet, you can always add certain cars to your wishlist. 

An audio and visual treat 

Gran Turismo 7

Part of the allure of the game are the many locations in which the races take place. While this isn’t Forza Horizon levels of visual prowess, there’s more than enough here to make you feel that you’re actually playing a next-gen game. 

You can choose Performance or Ray Tracing Mode but the game takes it upon itself to choose which one suits certain modes best. During my playthrough, I found Performance mode to be most ideal while shifting to Ray Tracing every so often to take in the view. 

The photo mode is rather unique. Instead of pausing during your gameplay, it offers the option to take your cars to a selection of scenic locations. From there you can customize the look and feel of the photo like you would in other games. Photo mode fans might feel limited by this, but the breathtaking locations are truly eye candy. 

Gran Turismo 7

The music of Gran Turismo 7 is chef’s kiss. Every track fits every game mode, location, and situation. During races, you’ll be treated to alternative pop rock tunes to get you pumped. There are even tracks that are reminiscent of background music in sports animé where the protagonist is about to bounce back. It truly gets you in the right mood, especially when you’re trying to overtake to win the race. 

This kind of consistency remains throughout. Museums in Brand Central offer regal and majestic music. Meanwhile, the café will treat you to some jazzy tunes to get your mind at ease. 

Is this your GameMatch? 

There’s a lot to love about Gran Turismo 7 even if you’re not super into cars. The game draws you in slowly and teaches you everything, every step of the way. Before you know it, you’re looking up more information online about the cars that really caught your eye. 

Performance-wise, it’s a truly next-gen game in presentation and experience. I already gushed about the visuals and music, but the controls and DualSense utilization are all on point. 

Gran Turismo 7 is an easy game to get into. It’s a game you’re going to want to keep installed as sort of an in-between game when you’re taking a break from story driven titles.


Razer introduces two new Ornata V3 keyboards

Slim, clicky, and ergonomic



Ornata V3

Razer is releasing two new entry-level gaming keyboards in the Ornata V3 and Ornata V3 X, which will both have Razer’s Mecha-membrane switches.

The new keyboards come with all the basics expected of an affordable gaming accessory. That’s everything from their keycaps design, RGB backlight, and more.

The two low-profile gaming keyboards come with smaller footprint and slimline keycap designs. The ABS keycaps are UV-coated for scratch resistance, while the Ornata V3 X’s keycaps are spill-resistant.

The keyboards also feature Razer Chroma RGB with 10 lighting zones. The V3 X has four lighting effects: Breathing, Spectrum Cycling, Static, and Wave.

Aside from these, they have backlit dedicated media keys for more convenient controls such as playing and pausing, skipping, or adjusting brightness or volume.

Adding value to the Ornata V3 and V3 X is their magnetic soft-touch wrists rest. These are not often included for keyboards in their price range.

Pricing, availability

The Razer Ornata V3 and Ornata V3 X keyboards are now available on Razer’s official website, Shopee, Lazada, and through their authorized sellers.

The Ornata V3 will retail for PhP 2,590 while the Ornata V3 X is priced at PhP 4,199.

Continue Reading


SteelSeries unveils Arctis Nova Pro series

The almighty future of audio



Arctis Nova Pro

SteelSeries has released the Arctis Nova Pro series. It’s latest and most advanced gaming and esports headsets yet from the company.

The series has two variants — the Arctis Nova Pro and Arctis Nova Pro Wireless. The new series is enhanced by SteelSeries’ Sonar Audio Software Suite. It helps deliver the ultimate sound quality and clarity.

The software is the first in-gaming Pro-grade Parametric EQ which gives gamers even more control over sound across games, team chat, and the microphone and allows them to adjust individual frequencies on the fly seamlessly.

Both variants come with immersive 360° Spatial Audio which is fully compatible with Tempest 3D audio for PS5 or Microsoft Spatial Sound.

They also feature Multi-System Connect which allows users to switch between platforms easily. Complementing the next-level sound experience is an AI-powered noise cancelling and broadcast-quality bidirectional microphone.

Price and availability

The Arctis Nova Pro will retail for US$ 279.99 for both the PC/PlayStation and Xbox options, while the Arctis Nova Pro Wireless is priced at US$ 379.99.

In Singapore, pricing are as follows:

  • Arctis Nova Pro – SG$ 439
  • Arctis Nova Pro (Xbox) – SG$ 449 (available in Sep 2022)
  • Arctis Nova Pro Wireless – SG$ 599 (available in Sep 2022)
  • Arctis Nova Pro Wireless (Xbox) – SG $620

There are also booster packs for users to be able to customize the headsets with headbands and metallic color speaker plates of their choice.

Continue Reading


Final Fantasy XVI producer reveals game details in interview

Things just got more exciting



Final Fantasy XVI

Ever since the announcement of Final Fantasy XVI a few years back, enthusiasts have been on the edge of their seats in anticipation how exactly the latest installment in the popular video game franchise would look like.

Now, no less than producer Naoki Yoshida is teasing us all with even more details for what is there to expect before FFXVI releases officially in the summer of 2023 exclusively on PS5.

Here’s a quick rundown of the highlights of his latest interview regarding FFXVI.

FFXVI won’t be traditional open world

Unlike previous iterations of Final Fantasy, the upcoming video game is going in a different direction as it will not be open world, surprisingly.

Instead, it will be an “independent area-based game design”. Still, Yoshida did give away that it will take a lot of inspiration from “triple-A open world RPGs” to allow players to experience the game on a “global scale”.

Clive’s got company — making battles more interesting

Prior to Yoshida’s interviews, players have been expecting FFXVI’s protagonist, Clive, to be a solo fighter which meant that the game would have been a single-player type for the first time.

But apparently, Clive’s got company — other characters who will fight alongside him but will be AI-controlled, according to Yoshida.

Something that will also resonate uniquely with players will be the Eikon-versus-Eikon battles. Players will be able to control an Eikon in real-time and engage with another Eikon.

Yoshida recalled the original Final Fantasy in making XVI

Citing the importance of making each of Final Fantasy’s releases true to its essence, Yoshida mentioned that he went to as far as thinking about the original Final Fantasy and remembering how it felt like while playing the lead role.

He said that he “wanted to recapture that feeling in XVI”, plus the advancements in technology and modern game design.

This is something Yoshida hopes could turn into reality for people to look forward to.

The game is almost ready as of the moment

Yoshida also mentioned that in terms of progress, the game is “fully playable from start to finish” already. 

As it stands, it looks like voice-overs in different languages are currently the focus as of the moment, as well as finetuning to make sure there are no bugs or glitches.

Since FFXVI is full of action, it is only natural for the developers to have it undergo several tests to ensure smooth gameplay.

A third trailer will drop later in 2022

Lastly, a third trailer that will succeed the “Dominance” trailer released a month ago will drop this fall.

That will surely excite players even more as they get closer and closer to Final Fantasy XVI’s launch next year.

Continue Reading