Sony's newly-released Gran Turismo 7 has been essentially unplayable for almost 24 hours as ongoing server maintenance continues to prevent GT7 owners from accessing the game.
The problem has been reportedly pinned to an issue relating to the most recent patch, but there has been no further update from the Gran Turismo team in the past 16 hours and the game remains offline.
Due to an issue found in Update 1.07, we will be extending the Server Maintenance period. We will notify everyone as soon as possible when this is likely to be completed. We apologize for this inconvenience and ask for your patience while we work to resolve the issue. #GT7
— Gran Turismo (@thegranturismo) March 17, 2022
Unfortunately, despite its heavy single-player focus, Gran Turismo 7 requires an always-online internet connection to play. With the servers unavailable, players are unable to access their personal saves and garages and cannot race, hot lap, participate in licence events, or even customise their cars. Only two modes are available in GT7 when the game is offline: an arcade mode with a tiny selection of cars, and the eccentric and very limited Music Rally mode.
This extended server outage comes in the wake of heavy player criticism of the latest update for a range of noticeable reductions in the amount of credits rewarded for specific races. Shrunken payouts for a number of single-player events will make being able to afford GT7's most expensive cars more time-consuming than it was previously. GT7's Metacritic user rating is currently in freefall.
These newly reduced payouts also come after heavy criticism of GT7's startlingly aggressive microtransaction model, which was only activated after GT7's reviews were published. While cars in 2017's GT Sport were offered for purchase individually (priced between US$1 and US$5), GT7's cash-for-credits solution means players tempted to accelerate their GT7 car collections by using real money are being asked to shell out up to US$40 for a single car. These cars are available in-game by grinding credits, but the newest update has ensured that will now take longer.
IGN's Gran Turismo 7 review noted its gorgeous graphics, fantastic driving feel, and racing options galore helped make it the best the series has been since its dominant PlayStation 2 era, but stated its always-online single-player mode seems needlessly punitive.
Luke is Games Editor at IGN's Sydney office. You can chat to him on Twitter @MrLukeReilly.