The NISMO PlayStation GT Academy European Race Camp gets underway today at the Yas Marina Formula One circuit in Abu Dhabi today. The intensive, week-long racing driver boot camp sees 56 Gran Turismo gamers from 11 European countries gather in the United Arab Emirates’ capital city. They will compete for the chance to embark on Nissan’s all-encompassing Driver Development Programme and the chance to become a real racing driver, with Formula One technical genius Adrian Newey OBE on hand as head judge.
The Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer stands alone in Formula One, with his designs having won 10 Constructors’ titles for three different teams. The British engineer has worked with some of F1’s greatest drivers, including Nigel Mansell, Mika Häkkinen and Sebastian Vettel. He now turns his attention to spot a rising star from the gaming world.
“I have enjoyed a long association with Gran Turismo having designed the Red Bull X2010 prototype for the game, and we have also done some work at Red Bull with Jann Mardenborough,” explained Newey. “As everyone knows, simulators play an increasing role in real-world racing and it is no surprise that Jann and the other GT Academy winners are enjoying successful racing careers with Nissan. I am looking forward to getting involved in unearthing the next new talent.”
Newey will have close support from GT Academy’s experienced chief instructor, sports car racer Rob Barff, as the racing driver hopefuls are put through their paces on and off the track in a series of challenges to test driving skills as well as physical and mental aptitude. Barff leads a team of top-level GT Academy instructors and high-profile country mentors including: ex-F1 driver Max Chilton (UK); Dani Clos (Iberia); Olivier Pla (France); JP Kraemer (Germany); Tim Coronel (Benelux); Michela Cerutti (Italy); and Josef Král (CEE).
GT Academy is getting bigger and better each year. In 2015, 24 countries across the world have participated in three virtual-to-reality competitions. Champions of Asia and an International competition have already been crowned at Silverstone, the traditional home of Race Camp, but the European competition is ringing the changes with the move to the warmer climes of Abu Dhabi. The sun, sea, sand and impressive skyscrapers of Abu Dhabi will create a spectacular backdrop for the GT Academy TV show which was watched by 27 million people in 2014.
“We’re very excited about our move to Abu Dhabi’s fantastic facilities,” explains Olivier Pierini, Nissan Europe Manager of Sponsorship and Partnership. “As always, Race Camp will be a very tough test of the competitors’ natural talents and determination to succeed. At the end of the process we shall have one winner who has a chance to make his dreams come true and join the ranks of our Nismo athletes competing around the world. Our past successes, with the likes of Lucas [Ordoñez], Jann [Mardenborough] and Wolfie [Wolfgang Reip], who has just won the Blancpain Endurance Championship, demonstrate how much is at stake.”
The winner of GT Academy Europe will embark on the Driver Development Programme with the aim to progress to a career as a racing driver. The results of the programme have been spectacular: Lucas Ordoñez, an MBA student from Spain, spearheaded the programme in 2008, now races for Nissan in Super GT500 class in Japan and has two Le Mans 24 Hour podium finishes to his name; Jann Mardenborough, the 2011 winner from the UK, competes in the GP3 Formula 1 feeder series; and in just three years, Wolfgang Reip from Belgium has been transformed from gamer to Blancpain Endurance Series champion racing a Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3.
“Race Camp is something that is exciting for everyone involved in PlayStation and Gran Turismo. The manner by which the fastest gamer impresses the judges, and transforms from a virtual to a real racer, brings me great joy every time.” comments Gran Turismo series creator and President of Polyphony Digital Inc., Kazunori Yamauchi. “There’s no need to stress the fact that it’s possible to give birth to a driver who has the potential to succeed in international circuits through this program anymore, but I think it is important to note that this experience at race camp is a moment in the limelight in the lives and memories of all its participants. I wish this year’s European challengers good luck.”
All the action at the GT Academy Race Camp will be filmed and a GT Academy TV show aired across Europe in the latter part of 2015 and early 2016.
Since the GT6 “Track Path Editor” finally launched last week, GTPlanet users have been sharing thousands of their custom creations in our forums. It’s been difficult, though, to see who’s making the best tracks and how to download them for yourself – until now!
Today, I’m excited to launch GTPlanet’s GT6 Track Database – a new way to share, download, and organize all the custom tracks created by our users.
Click here to start adding your own tracks to the database.
- Track Ratings & Reviews: Every track in our database can be reviewed with a five-star rating system, to help you find the best tracks and to share feedback with track makers. Every track also gets its own dedicated forum thread for more in-depth discussion.
- Download Counts: See how many people have downloaded your tracks, or use the download counts to see which custom tracks are the most popular.
- Post Updates: Users can “follow” or watch each track in the database. Authors can post updates to their tracks, and everyone watching it will be notified of the new changes.
- Categories & Organization: Looking for a real-life track replica? Rally or point-to-point roads? Ovals? We’ve got you covered with specialized categories and filters.
- GTPlanet Profile Integration: The track database is fully integrated with GTPlanet’s forums and profiles, so you can follow your friends and quickly see all of the tracks they’ve created.
- Keyword Search: The Track Database is fully integrated with GTPlanet’s search engine, so you can look for tracks by keyword, type, author, and other parameters.
We have also re-arranged our GT6 Course Maker forum, which has been exploding with activity over the past few days. The new organization makes it easier to find the discussions about using the Track Path Editor apps and track-building techniques.
Remember, just about anyone can get in on the track-building fun, thanks to this handy guide from our own Kyle P. that will show you how to get the Track Path Editor app running on just about any PC with Android emulators.
GT6 Photomode image by ac1.
– Mercedes-Benz Actros as it appears in Euro Truck Simulator 2, September 20th, 2015, courtesy of spinner.
Summer no longer burdens me, for I am free to enjoy the crisp, brisk winds that usher in the final months of the year; autumn is here and as every year that has preceded, I couldn’t be happier. With September behind us things are beginning to calm down and return to a near-normal state, however, that wasn’t before the month ended on an unexpected high note: the Course Maker for Gran Tursimo 6 is now a thing you can use to your heart’s content!
Now comes the obvious question of “Was it worth the wait?”, and while I haven’t used it just yet there seems to be some very interesting recreations already out in the wild. Having glossed over what the improved feature is capable of, I’m looking forward to the recreations of Gran Turismo’s legacy tracks, the likes of Seattle Circuit, Grindelwald, Tahiti Road — all of the tracks we look back on and wish they’d never been left behind.
There’s plenty to get through, so who’s ready for the Spotlight?
GTPlanet Picture of the Week
This week’s featured image comes to us courtesy of ac1 and features two GT300 class racing machines in the Subaru BRZ and Mazda RX-7 battling for position.
If you like what you’re seeing and have a suggestion for next week’s featured image, start a conversation with me, entitle it “GTPlanet Picture of the Week” and fill it to your heart’s content with suggestions and they’ll be featured in upcoming Community Spotlight articles. NOTE: You cannot elect your own work.
GTPlanet Gallery of the Week – Weekly Art
– Let the sparks do the talking, April 4th, 2015, courtesy of FutureJustin.
Once a month, instead of highlighting a single gallery and placing the spotlight on one individual, the spotlight will be placed on multiple people at once showcasing their work in a gallery open to everyone, thus allowing for even richer discussion and participation.
This week’s featured gallery is a community effort all in the vein of weekly automotive art.
“This thread is a filtered, “one stop shop” of the best pictures we have created using the GT6 Photo Mode. Here, YOU will post your best photo but only once a week. It doesn’t matter if you edited it or not. The aim of this tread is to keep it simple and have your best photos showcased in an uncluttered space. A visiting guest will not be bothered by bad, better or good photos…only the best ones out there. This is a place where you can stop by and revisit great photos from members of our community, get inspiration for new ideas and see what is possible.”
You can find the thread and all of the fantastic attractions here, put together by our own Metalsun, should you want to have a look around and contribute to the gallery yourself. There are a lot of great pieces in the thread so I would advise to not commit to a favorite until you’ve gone through the entire gallery if possible as I can almost guarantee you’ll be replacing your former favorite with a new one; it’s just that good of a gallery.
If you like what you’re seeing and have a suggestion for next week’s featured gallery, start a conversation with me, entitle it “GTPlanet Gallery of the Week” and fill it to your heart’s content with suggestions and they’ll be featured in upcoming Community Spotlight articles. NOTE: You cannot elect your own gallery.
GTPlanet Thread of the Week – No Friend Requests Necessary!
– A daring battle of Lexii, May 23rd, 2015, courtesy of G_Parilla.
The Course Maker for Gran Turismo 6 is finally here and unlike its implementation in GT5, a friend request isn’t required to enjoy (and save) community-made creations, meaning you no longer have to deal with the hassle of having an inbox bustling with requests nor do you have to deal with a daily or even weekly rotation of accepting requests to accommodate those wishing to trial your work.
What is the answer then you ask? This thread, put together by Ameer67 details everything in seven easy steps and all, bar the final step, take place at the comfort of your laptop or computer.
What are you waiting for? Stop by the thread right here and get a move on, and don’t forget to partner these steps with our Course Creators Registry to expand those horizons twofold!
Cabin Accessories Now Available for Euro Truck Simulator 2
The trucks have returned, and who doesn’t appreciate cabin trinkets? This is a departure from the usual paintjob and maps SCS typically provides, but what a welcome departure it is — I’m beginning to think there’s simply no wrong that can possibly be done in ETS2.
The Cabin Accessories DLC is accompanied by Update 1.21 which updates the game to fully support the physics of the accessories themselves as well as including fixes to the game as a whole, and those are as follows:
- Improved reflections in the cabin interior
- Fixed spider paintjob from Halloween DLC missing for some variants of DAF Euro 6 cabin
- Adjusted external interior for Actros 2009
- Added automatically generated Range-Splitter layout for H-Shifter
- Improved compatibility with G29 force-feedback
- Improved sounds of tires and suspension
- Improved sounds for manipulating blinker and brake sticks
- Reduced volume of interior stick noises
- Workaround for missing geometry on low-end Intel GPUs on OSX
- Fixed possible use of incorrect files after switching between profiles with different set of mods
- Corrected vegetation sometimes appearing at wrong places in the map
- The hud mirror switching key (F2) now enumerates all combinations: both off, only far on, both on, only near on
- Improved road collisions
The Cabin Accessories DLC is available now on Steam for $3.99 USD, but is on sale for 10% off at $3.59 until October 7th.
Aston Martin Expansion Now Available for Project CARS
– September 28th, 2015, courtesy of K34sc at the Project CARS forum.
The Aston Martin Expansion Pack for Project CARS is now available as a part of Slighty Mad Studios’ “On Demand” efforts to continually keep the game feeling new with fresh monthly content, and this month’s content delivers handsomely by introducing three new Aston Martin racing machines, as well as a brand-new location with six variations.
Keep an eye peeled for the full announcement of everything included in the expansion.
GTPlanet Vehicle of the Week
Drawing inspiration from the brand’s successful racing history tradition in which Bugatti enjoyed great success during the 1920s and 1930s, the historical theme used for the design of the Bugatti VGT is the Type 57 Tank and its victories at Le Mans in 1937 and 1939. Making its appearance in the classic blue two-tone finish of the Type 57 G Tank.
“The Bugatti design team normally works only for the exclusive and very distinguished circle of the brand’s customers. Now Bugatti Vision Gran Turismo has given us the opportunity, for the first time, to do something special for our fans as well,” explained Achim Anscheidt, the head of Bugatti Design. “When the target group suddenly grows from 450 Veyron owners to several million fans, gamers and high performance aficionados, it is a very exciting matter. We had a lot of fun with this project.”
Despite the concept being in a class where the cars have little to no relation with their road-going counterparts, two things remained important to the Bugatti design team: the virtual car should look unmistakably like a Bugatti and completely embody the brand values of ‘Art, Form, Technique’, and second, every part of the vehicle should have a real function.
Flying Finland Pack Released for DiRT Rally
Full details on everything included in the pack will be along shortly, but in the meantime here’s a look at some of what’s included.
- 12 new rally stages near Jämsä, Finland
- All new 2000s vehicle class
- 2 new cars – Subaru Impreza 2001 and Ford Focus RS Rally 2001
- Custom Championships – You can now tweak the number of events, stages and AI difficulty. This will mean that you can set up an event that suits the amount of time you have available and get rewarded accordingly.
- Mouse Support! – Yep you asked for it so here it is. It’s still a work in progress so please give us your feedback on how we can improve it.
Keep an eye peeled for full details!
GTPlanet Tune of the Week
Once every month we showcase the community’s efforts to tame/tune the Car of the Week, and this month is no different, so let’s get right down to business.
“In my neck of the woods, few Muscle Cars remained into the mid ’80s. But the the Camaro and Firebird Trans Am were among the few. Then there was the rebirth of the Mustang, and from ’86-91, the 5.0 GT was quite popular. The IROC Z28 was a very popular car and the rivalry was reborn. Sadly, the IROC in game is not quite what I think it should be, and no ’80s Mustang is represented. Along comes the ’90s and both were given make overs, and popularity here in the North East began to drop and Asian FF cars became more popular. That is, until the early 2000s. The Camaro SS was not getting as much attention as it once did but Ford gave us three desirable Mustangs, the GT, “Bullit” and the Cobra. All still show up even today when the weather is nice, although that will be changing soon.
So this month, we will take on the ’88 IROC-Z Concept and the ’00 Mustang SVT Cobra R, as suggested by our friend Motor City Hami. The IROC can be a difficult car, but enjoyable on the right track when tuned right. The SVT Cobra however, is in my opinion (and this from a Chevy guy) an underused and appreciated car in GT6. On the right track with a good setup, this thing will surprise and could be a sleeper, if that’s even possible.
So grab one and get it tuned, let’s see what you can do with these machines. As always, just give a track suggestion if necessary and tire choice. Or jump into one of the tunes posted or linked and give a review.
Now let’s have some Modern Muscle Fun shall we?”
What you have here is a unique challenge for the month of October that just so happens to focus on American pony cars – later generations of the original two, as a matter of fact. How do you intend to tame these out and out muscle cars? If you’re up for the challenge, and want the smell of burning rubber to loom about, then have a look at this month’s thread and have at it!
The Last Lap
I was having a bit of difficulty getting this week’s festivities off to the usual start, which funny enough is often the most difficult part of the entire piece because not only does it set the mood for the rest of the article as a whole, it typically determines whether the week’s article is either ‘must read immediately’ or ‘must read over the weekend’. Of course that point is slightly marred by the fact the Spotlight has been off schedule for the past few weeks through no fault of my own, the point being that I’m no stranger to the reality that some Spotlights are much better than others and I’m continually striving to make every Spotlight better than the one that preceded it.
October is here which means it is once again time for me to start my addiction to candy corn and watch hours of horror movies, most notably those of the ‘Halloween’ and ‘Friday the 13th’ variety as those are my favorite franchises in the horror genre, yes, even Jason Goes to Hell despite how absolutely horrible it is. I’ve never seen Halloween 3: Season of the Witch and I intend to keep it that way.
Again, keep an eye peeled for the DiRT Rally and Project CARS news in their own articles starting next week, alongside some great Assetto Corsa news regarding Dream Pack 2. Until then, you know the deal, keep racing!
Unless your current address is under a considerable land mass, you’re likely to be aware of a certain long-awaited feature recently finding its way into Gran Turismo 6. That’s right, the Track Path… Importer. Rather controversially, the Editor itself is not present in-game, with Polyphony instead deciding to let users build their tracks separate from the game on a dedicated app.
This approach certainly has benefits – having track creation done off-screen allows for super-quick edits to be done as a track is being test-driven, for instance – but some players have voiced frustration at the app being limited to iOS and Android tablets only.
Good news: we’ve got you covered. Thanks to various members of the community, the Track Path Editor is available for plenty more platforms than officially announced. Below, we’ll detail some of the more common options, including Android smartphones, PC-based emulation, and Apple computer emulation.
Android users have it easiest. Simply download the Track Path Editor APK file on your device (care of forum member @A.D.I.O.S), free from the restrictions imposed on the Google Play store, and you should be able to install it just as a tablet user would. This is the exact file that tablet users download to install the app. Sure, it’ll require a lot more zooming in and out than on a bigger screen, but you’ll get the full portable experience.
PC users have a few options. The two most popular Android emulators are Bluestacks and Andy. Forum member @G.T.Ace picked the latter, much as I did for Apple emulation, which we will cover later. Ace’s instructions are as follows (find them on our forums here):
- Download Andy, the friendly Android simulator: http://www.andyroid.net/
- Install it like any other program (the needed virtual machine is included).
- Start it (if it won’t start, make sure you have “Virtualization” enabled in your BIOS) and once it’s booted, log-in with your Google Account or make a new one.
- Go into the Play Store, search for the app and install it.
- Follow the instructions and everything should work.
Lastly, Apple users. With there being no easy way to trick an iPhone into thinking it’s one of its big brothers, your best bet is to also use Andy on a laptop or desktop. That’s just what I’ve done, and I’ve had a perfectly functioning app since. Here’s your step-by-step instructions:
- Install Andy, the friendly Android emulator. A default installation works fine. For me, as this is for the app and absolutely nothing else, I’ve turned off things like Google sync, and definitely unchecked the “tell me more about updates” box.
- When Andy has loaded up, point the browser to the Editor app on Google’s store. Login with your usual Google account, or create a fresh one if you’d prefer, it doesn’t matter.
- Download the app. You should be able to check the progress by heading to the top left corner, and clicking on the down-facing arrow.
- You might want to head to the browser (the globe-shaped icon on the main Android screen) while the app loads, to save any reference images you want.
- Load up the app.
You’ll encounter a few foibles along the way though. When placing a reference image, you’ll need to click and drag to move it, while holding Option/Alt down will allow you to rotate and scale, unfortunately both at once. You’ll see simulated finger-tips on screen which helps, so getting the hang of rotating without seriously resizing, or vice-versa, will take some patience.
Note that when placing a reference image, you cannot zoom in or out but once placed, the ability to zoom returns (with Option/Alt). You can also go back to the image placement step if you’ve found an issue, though note that you’ll be re-importing from scratch, not changing the existing one.
When you hit Transfer after creating your track, the browser will open. Enter in your PSN details, and you’ll be transferred back to the app, hopefully with a successful transfer message. Open up in GT6, and enjoy.