In a recent interview, Gran Turismo series creator Kazunori Yamauchi gave some hints about the future direction of the franchise. He stated that the series could be returning to its offline, single-player roots in the future to help newer players.
Talking to GTPlanet, Yamauchi stated that they needed to add more offline gameplay to the series. Specifically, he stated that offline gameplay was a way for players to get better and become more confident to race online.
“The other part of it, is that I think it does have a lot to do with the offline mode,” Yamauchi stated. “If we can motivate players more so their car driving improves more, then when they go online — rather than just not knowing what’s going on or what to do at all on the track — they will know. That is a force that tries to go from the bottom up, so I think you have to do both.”
The most recent iteration of the franchise, Gran Turismo Sport, focuses heavily on online play, and was developed with the help of the FIA — the international governing body for motorsports — to promote online racing and motorsports in general.
As part of the interview, Yamauchi gave some figures regarding Gran Turismo Sport‘s playerbase. He mentioned that over 3.5 million players participate in casual lobby races. Of this, 1.5 million join in on the official Daily Races. The numbers go down when looking at the FIA certified GT Online Championship, with only 358,000 or so players joining in on the FIA Championship events.
In response to this, he stated that his team at Polyphony is working on finding ways to encourage players to eventually join in on the championship. Additional offline content, including more license tests, would be part of this initiative.
“You have to make sure that the players do not lose their motivation,” he said. “That is the important part.”
The most interesting part of the interview is where Yamauchi stated that these changes that the team is working on may not make it into Gran Turismo Sport. This could be taken as a hint that Polyphony is working on the next entry in the the series.