Monday, January 17, 2011

Best Video Game Franchise Ever

When it comes to video games, I have a few things I look for them.  Replay value and enjoyment are two of the key things.  Graphics mean little to me.  Storylines don't mean much, either.  (Most of the storylines in games are awful, and when someone says something like Doom has a great story, I have to question his sanity.)

The Gran Turismo franchise has all this and more, and that is why I consider it the best video game franchise ever.  (Granted, I haven't played Gran Turismo 5, but I imagine it lives up to the series' high standards.)  Some of you will disagree, mainly fans of Mr. Mario, but hear me out.

Besides the incredible replay value, the GT franchise offers something few other games do: it teaches you and gives you the most thorough sense of accomplishment deemed possible in a video game.  Yes, that's right, it teaches you.  Mastering this game will give you a good knowledge of cars and actually make you a better driver.  Few games can make such a boast.

Yes, getting Gold in all the license tests is an exercise in determination and self-control, but if you get that, you deserve them.  While other video games determine if you win or lose by a point or lives, in the GT series you are dealing in thousandths of a second.  If you have to complete a test in 39 seconds, you will fail if you hit 39.001.  Frustrating?  You bet.  But if you stick with it, you will actually deserve that medal.

The series is not without flaws, though.  In the GT community, these flaws are well-known and often discussed.  The AI of your opponent cars is laughable at times.  Up until the fifth game there was no car damage, either.  The damage you can do nothing about, but if you race your car as if it were a real car and try to keep off your opponents you'll find that the game experience is almost makes up for that lack of AI.  It truly is a game that gives you more if you put more into it.

I know my take on this will be contested by people, and I'm fine with that.  Everyone has their favorites.  If all my games but these disappeared, I'd be okay (well, I'd miss a lot of them, including all my FIFA games).  If my GT games disappeared, however, I would be seriously upset.

If you want to argue against it, go right ahead.  I'm waiting ...

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