To get fans to add another iteration of long-running series Gran Turismo to their collections, The Romans wanted to stress the realism of the new game – Sport, for the PS4 – by working with a group who have to drive fast for a living. Who better than the police?
The goal was demonstrate that GT Sport is so realistic, it can be used as a training tool for high-speed police drivers.
After about a month of intense negotiation with numerous police departments, police lawyers, police insurers and the head of the force’s specialist drivers, a contract was signed.
Four specialist drivers were brought to Silverstone, home to the British Grand Prix, where they were timed driving a lap of the circuit. After spending time in a GT Sport driving simulator, they took to the track again. Each officer improved their previous time, one shaving off 5.7 seconds.
The campaign was covered in-depth on BBC and ITV News, hundreds of websites and in eight national titles, all including the realism message, generating launch-week reach of 1.6 billion.
GT Sport topped UK sales charts during the week of launch, selling almost three times as many copies as Xbox-exclusive rival Forza 7, released the same month.
"Near perfect; a fantastic idea. Audacious approach that has paid off"
And so we asked the police if we could use GT Sport to train their Specialist Driving Officers. We just never thought they'd say yes…