Just when you thought the new year would bring a bundle of optimism to the genre of sim racing, we instead flip to January 2016 on our miniature Taylor Swift calendars to see Stefano Casillo of Kunos Simulazioni calling those unhappy with the current state of Assetto Corsa “losers.”After a very mixed reaction to the end-of-2015 blog post by the Italian developer, users on RaceDepartment promptly blasted Kunos for focusing too much on downloadable content while omitting to flesh out the game around it. The critical discussion of the popular Italian PC racing simulator proved to be too much for Stefano to handle, as he jumped into the fray by claiming those critical of the game are simply losers with nothing more productive to do.
The irony may be lost on some users, so I’ll bring you up to speed: Kunos began the Christmas Holiday season by implementing very strict moderation rules on their own official forums, ones intended to curb hostility, end personal attacks, and extinguish the rather toxic environment that had spawned over the previous year. However, outside the boundaries of their own forum, they have no problem stooping to the same level they claim to be above.
The thread, which can be read in full over at RaceDepartment, continues on with Stefano continuously taking shots at PRC.net in a non-direct fashion, claiming our site, which has routinely leaked genuine insider info about their product, is “cancerous”. He then goes on to say “it’s no surprise every developer avoids users like the plague” – referring to their own customers. Again, ironic, as Kunos Simulazioni run a community beta program, allowing several prominent sim racers a chance to beta test upcoming builds of Assetto Corsa and form connections with the developer team on a personal level.
Of course, Stefano’s multi-post tirade doesn’t end there. RaceDepartment user DewCrew88 uses the presence of Stefano on a public forum to inquire about certain aspects of Assetto Corsa, and some of the answers are rather shocking – especially for a game that will land on the Playstation 4 and Xbox One in a few short months. I’m chopping things up for readability, but you can read his answers HERE in full.
Stefano says the ability to select the color of your car for an online race in a hardcore PC racing simulator is a “minor feature” and “isn’t worth the hassle to improve”, but only a sentence later admits the whole thing was messed up from the start because of how the entire multiplayer component was built to begin with. In short, they made a bad call, and it makes you as a customer ponder what other bad calls they’ve made along the way.
DewCrew88 also asks about the constant physics updates, only for Stefano to tell him that every version of Assetto Corsa is a step forward. This nugget as info comes even as our boy Sev is seen in the thread a few pages earlier openly saying he believes the physics in Assetto Corsa are being simplified for a console release; this claim is backed up by Virtua Simulazioni team members finding bug after bug while in the process of creating third party content.
The hits just keep on coming, as Stefano then sets his target on Virtua Simulazioni member Qazdar Karim. After Karim asks when the coding livestreams will be back, Stefano immediately says Karim will be blacklisted from being able to watch and/or comment when the streams commence in the future.
The users at RaceDepartment don’t take very kindly to these responses.
Stefano then makes an effort to bow out of the conversation, claiming it’s a losing battle and that there can be no dialogue between Kunos Simulazioni and the community. Keep in mind, this is after he entered the conversation by stating all those unhappy with Assetto Corsa are losers with nothing more productive to do. Prior to joining into the discussion, the eight-page forum thread on RaceDepartment had been full of users critically dissecting the game, and worrying about the game’s future given the heavy emphasis on DLC, constant tire model revisions, and lack of features that come standard many other racing sims.
But it’s not over. After Qazdar Karim references an all-encompassing physics information PDF Kunos promised to release, one which would greatly benefit modders when figuring out how to accurately reproduce their car of choice within Assetto Corsa, Stefano claims this PDF doesn’t exist, calls him crazy, and tells him to get help.
Ten minutes later, Qazdar finds the exact YouTube clip where Stefano explicitly talks about this physics PDF.
- One interesting thing that I’ve started to do… It’s going to be a slow process, but eventually we will get there… I’ve started writing a documentation for the INI file(s) in Assetto Corsa. So, explaining exactly what each parameter is doing, and that’s something that will appear on the forum soon, because it’s something that I also need as a way of clearing up the INI files.
So not only has a developer shown up on a public form and called his customers “losers”, but now he’s outright lying and trying to label random modders as “crazy.”
Now, the worst part of this whole New Years Day meltdown, is that we’ve seen this before from Kunos. First, Stefano has deemed his audience to be “retarded monkeys” during a livestream of a coding session.
Next, after people find flaws in the AI that basically prevent any sort of meaningful multi-class racing from occurring (a big deal with the inclusion of many GT-spec cars and the newly announced Audi Prototype in Assetto Corsa), people are told to “work with the software, not against it.”
And lastly, people reporting more issues with the game’s dreadful Artificial Intelligence are deemed to be suffering from psychological problems and told to find a doctor.
While Ian Bell over at Slightly Mad Studios had become notorious for his harsh, derogatory forum posts towards his own fans after the disastrous release of Project CARS, sim racers believed the team at Kunos Simulazioni were a developer they could respect and trust with the future of Assetto Corsa. After today’s tirade, it has become apparent that in less than a year, three of the prominent sim racing developers have displayed they simply can’t take criticism, and each of them will lash out at their own customers in their own special way.