Fri. Jun 2nd, 2023

It’s going to be a busy year for racing games. At some point we expect Gran Turismo Sport to finally come, Forza Motorsport 7 is on its way, and then there is Project cars 2. The first Project cars, which arrived a few years ago, was an uncompromising sim racer of the kind hitherto unknown on consoles. It was also devilishly difficult, something that fans took as proof of how good a simulation was compared to, say, Forza. But here’s the thing: Just because a game is really hard to master doesn’t necessarily mean it’s accurate for the real thing. That’s reassuring, that’s a view shared by Rod Chong, COO at Slightly Mad Studios, the game’s developer.

“If you look at sim racing as a whole, there’s the misconception that it has to be really, really hard, or it’s not a sim. This isn’t a simulation, that’s not reality,” Chong told me. So it’s heartwarming to hear that in the quest to improve the game’s physics, especially the tire model,Project cars 2 should be both a more accurate simulation of real life, but also a much more accessible game.

Better tire physics

“The acid test is taking a powerful rear-wheel drive street car on road tires and [trying] to drive it. If you go over the limit and burn the tires, will the sim get up? The answer was no, it wasn’t,” Chong explained. It goes in the original Project cars was how the tires behaved once they exceeded the limit of grip. Unlike a real tyre, dealing with that game’s physics once the grip was gone was merciless: the rear pops out and the car is gone.

The original Project cars was notable for spending several years on development, during which time 30,000 community members tested the game in beta. Project cars 2 has been tested with a much smaller group – about 700 gamers – and with a group of professional drivers who have made the game’s cars behave realistically. These racers include Tommy Milner of Corvette Racing, a driver with not only a lot of hands-on experience but also a long background in sim racing. And like Chong, he also thinks sim racers sometimes focus too much on difficulty as a sign of truthfulness.

“Here, hardcore sims have gotten a bad reputation at times. It’s really easy to drive 80 percent in these race cars in real life. Maybe there are other factors that make it hard to go fast, like the sheer speed or not being used to it.” But driving under the limit in these cars is very easy,” he told me. “I used to find a lot of sims that were really good in a lot of ways. Some were really well under the limit, and when you hit the limit and a little bit over, it got really hard to drive. Sometimes that was billed as realistic hardcore sim because it was hard but there’s a good balance between being too easy and so far out the window that it becomes its own challenge Some cars are easier than others and some sims are easier than others It’s hard to just saying, “This one is better because it’s the most realistic.” It’s a subjective experience.”

When Milner tested an early build of the new game last year, he found that the tire physics was lacking. Handy to the developers, Milner has a wealth of experience working with race car engineers, which was used to good effect on a dry-erase board to create a graph of what the tires were doing in-game and how they would perform. have to wear.

“As in any racing situation, you need to have a good rapport with your engineer to give them the right information to figure out how to make the car go faster,” said Milner. “In this situation I’m the driver and talk to the engineer and try to make the car and the sim more realistic. I’ve had some experience in the past looking at tire models and seeing how they should look like and then trying to deduce what that feels like in the simulator and put it all together – I could use as many words as I want to describe what the cars were doing, but it was the easiest way to describe what I felt, and it turned out that what I drew was exactly what was calculated by the match, and there was something wrong with that.”

“It was great after offering that suggestion and seeing the process the guys went through modeling the tires, looking at what the problem might be, manifesting it in the game, fixing it, then a few riding in the sim weeks later and a really noticeable difference,” Milner said. “Likewise, seeing the feedback from the team members and how they reacted to it was a transformative change in the driving experience. It was cool to see that come to fruition.”

By akfire1

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