Sony has confirmed the game "performs online access not only when participating in online races and using community features, but also when starting the game and during the various screen displays in GT Mode." This is causing "online congestion" and the publisher is working on "several different solutions" to improve the network.
One of the solutions should come this Saturday, November 27, as GT creator Kazunori Yamauchi says a patch will fix several issues, including "the usability of the game to make it a better experience." He noted the game's data center was "set up to handle 500,000 connections, but the number of connections we received greatly exceeded that amount and there was a high chance of experiencing problems as a result."
Wait, wait, wait. Gran Turismo 5 was designed in such a way that it constantly pings a data center that was only set to handle half a million connections... for a Gran Turismo game? It sounds like Sony hired the same consultant Battlefield developer DICE uses to come up with its launch week capacity requirements.