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ASA upholds complaint levelled against Sony over misleading Gran Turismo ad

Sony reprimanded for failing to specify that the "majority" of the game was unavailable without an internet connection

The Advertising Standards Authority has upheld a complaint levelled against Sony that a television ad for Grand Turismo Sport was misleading to consumers.

The ad, which appeared in the UK on October 23, 2017, was challenged because it failed to made clear than an internet connection was required to access content in the game.

As reported by our colleagues at Eurogamer, the ad showed gameplay that featured a selection of cars and tracks, only some of which were available on the disc for players who were offline.

In all, only 30 cars and three tracks were playable for anyone who hadn't connect to the internet. A connection is also required in order to save progress in single-player game modes.

"The complainant challenged whether the ad was misleading because it did not make clear that an internet connection and subscription to the PlayStation Network were required to play the game," said the ASA.

Sony responded by saying that an internet connection was not required to play the game. It added that although the exact track shown in the advertisement was not available without an internet connection, similar tracks which offered the same kind of experience were.

The platform holder added that there were aspects of the functionality of the game which required an internet connection, something which the average consumer would have access to, arguing that 75% of PlayStation consoles in the UK had been connected to the internet at some point throughout October.

Ultimately the ASA concluded that a "the majority of the game was not available on the disc" and required an internet connection to access.

"We considered that the requirement of an internet connection was material information that should have been included in the ad and therefore concluded that the ad was in breach of the Code," said the ASA.

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Ivy Taylor avatar
Ivy Taylor: Ivy joined in 2017 having previously worked as a regional journalist, and a political campaigns manager before that. They are also one of the UK's foremost Sonic the Hedgehog apologists.