Today was to be a glorious day. Gran Turismo fans the world over would be skipping work and school to pore over the game they’d been waiting years to play, but like so many times before a GT game missed its announced release date. Not that we’re bitter or anything.
As luck would have it, though, November 2nd, 2010 has a lot on its plate. While it’s no substitute for The Real Driving Simulator, here are some things you can go out and do right damn now.
Pick up God of War: Ghost of Sparta
When Sony announced a November 2nd release date for Ghost of Sparta a few months back, all I could think was how misguided it seemed. Sony wasn’t really expecting people to go out and spend $100 on to of its top franchises in one day, did it? It seemed that they were setting up God of War to fail, because let’s face it — people were going to opt for the game they’d been waiting years to play rather than a game that had been announced this May. On top of how slow PSP sales have been, it seemed like an all-around dumb idea.
Of course, that all became instantly irrelevant when GT5 was pushed back a few weeks ago. Maybe someone planted a few new trees around the Nürburgring last month and Yamauchi just had to include them. Maybe it’s a means to combat piracy. Whatever the case, Ghost of Sparta has November 2nd all to itself.
So go out and buy it. Take it from us — the game is really, really good.
Pick up Toy Story 3
Don’t even try to act like you’re too old or too cool for Toy Story. You’re not. Year in and year out, Pixar pumps out a great movie for people of all ages to enjoy, and this was no different. While the movie features the toys getting into their usual shenanigans, the second act of the movie takes a surprisingly dark turn. The movie’s ending is so touching that it’ll have you wondering how the hell it got so dusty in your viewing area.
If this is anything like previous Disney Blu-Ray releases, we already know to expect a film of the highest technical quality. This doesn’t just apply to the Pixar stuff, either — animated classics such as Beauty and the Beast, even drivel like High School Musical and Old Dogs, get the proper attention in terms of getting a proper BD transfer.
Play the NFS Hot Pursuit demo
Look, I know that a demo for another racing game is a stretch when looking for things to do instead of playing Gran Turismo 5, but just hear me out.
A (small) silver lining to GT5′s delay is that there will be exponentially more time to play what’s shaping up to be the best Need for Speed in years. The game doesn’t come out for a couple of weeks, but there’s an awesome demo that you can download on PSN right now. It features two races — one as a cop, and another you unlock as a racer if there’s someone on your friends list that has also played the demo.
The demo also showcases the game’s online Autolog, where you’re able to compare times, talk smack, and even add people to your friends list. While it sounds a lot like Facebook for cars, it actually works extremely well. Best of all there are no asinine Farmville updates to wade through. To top it off you get a small headstart in the game’s dual career modes just for playing the demo, which is a nice touch.
You may or may not have noticed with all of the political ads — “HE KICKS CHILDREN IN THE FACE” — but today happens to be Election Day in the ol’ US-of-A. If you’re 18, go out and vote. Sure, the people you vote for will most likely go back on their campaign promises and your vote will have been for naught, but at least you can say you performed your civic duty.
Speaking of politics …
Monitor Schwarzenegger v. EMA
As it turns out, it’s a rather momentous day for the video games industry on a political front, too. For the uninitiated, in 2005 the Governator signed into law a bill that would fine retailers for selling violent games to those under 18. Of course, the law itself is ridden with vague criteria such as “heinous violence”, “appeals to a deviant or morbid interest of minors”, “patently offensive”, and “causes the game [...] to lack serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors”.
Normally, the Supreme Court doesn’t bother itself with these things because of how blatantly they infringe on the First Amendment. The State of California pressed on after the law was blocked a couple of months after it was signed, however, and now here we are. If the Court for some reason rules against the games industry, it could end with the government deciding what’s appropriate for you to play. Thankfully, this is something that books, movies, and music don’t have to go through, yet games are cast aside because out-of-touch suits can’t see the artistic potential they hold and could end up being treated no differently than porn.
Kotaku wrote up a great primer to get you up to speed — check it out here. Hopefully the Court sees what’s right, otherwise we could be dealing with something far worse than any Gran Turimso delay.