In a few previous entries here on PRC.net, we’ve taken a look at RaceRoom Racing Experience as a competitive online racing platform, and how the various bugs, glitches, and shortcomings may affect the results of the 2016 DTM Winter Cup in Sector 3’s newest racing simulator. Citing everything from basic online server stability issues, to hot lap challenge exploits that serve to undermine the credibility of the qualification process, the future of the competition is anything but optimistic as Elimination rounds are set to begin in a few short days for the sim racers who qualified for the lengthy knockout ladder.
The gameplay experience they have to look forward to leaves much to be desired, as the last online event I participated in using R3E was basically a complete disaster. To summarize, the guy starting in fourth lagged through the entire field and wrecked all of the leaders including myself as his car violently warped through the front of the pack. Upon things settling down, the DRS functionality in my car wasn’t available, as despite being less than a second behind the car directly in front of me, the race results routinely glitched on a per-lap basis and said I was 95 seconds behind the race leader, who was named as the driver currently residing in fifth place. It was pretty bad, but the racing itself was great once the server issues subsided. It just took a while.
To rectify the situation regarding the overall online experience, Sector 3 have opted to not fix what’s wrong with the multiplayer aspect of RaceRoom Racing Experience, but instead disallow everyone except Europeans from competing in the Knockout rounds.
With 96 drivers advancing on to the second half of the competition, this causes some major problems. Two of the top ten drivers overall are effectively disqualified through no fault of their own, and a whole bunch more will be left out of the festivities as well when examining the overall leaderboard. With RaceRoom Racing Experience already lacking the sizable following found in other online racing sims such as iRacing or Assetto Corsa, intentionally leaving people out because you’re afraid your game will break is an absurd move, to say the least. Why not just fix the game? Is that too much to ask?
The 2015 DTM cars truthfully aren’t too bad in a competitive setting, and once the server is finished having an epileptic fit, the raw racing action can be pretty damn good among the people who haven’t lagged out, received a fatal lag shunt, or been subjected to scoring issues. To see a developer build a massive online competition in an effort to promote their game, only to give the boot to certain competitors in fear that the game simply won’t hold up, is all kinds of wrong.