Reader Submission #80 – The Absence of Oval Racing

It’s been a while since we’ve received a fully detailed Reader Submission here at, but thankfully one of our avid readers by the name of Darren has come through with some relatively shocking info. Despite advertising American Oval Racing as one of the many disciplines to be featured in the controversial crowdfunded racing sim Project CARS, and several unlicensed oval tracks appearing in beta builds of the game, the team over at Slightly Mad Studios appear to have shelved things altogether until the inevitable release of Project CARS 2.


Hi James, been watching your site for some time and I’m liking the Articles you provide, as well as your opinions.

Lately, Slightly Mad Studios have been pussy footing around the oval Tracks for Project CARS and if they are coming or not. With Ian at times saying yes but only a small handful of tracks, then it turns out that pCARS2 has three oval tracks in early stage,with another two in a work-in-progress state. Well, a reply from Mr. Bell has mostly confirmed that we’re not getting oval tracks in Project CARS.

pCARS no Oval tracks

I’m a NASCAR fan, but the fact they have two American Stock Cars with no oval tracks is a bit laughable. Now a number of Americans are wanting answers, as very early in the game’s development Slightly Mad Studios confirmed there would be a number of oval tracks to compliment both stock cars. It seems that Project CARS is getting shafted, and pCARS2 will get the content intended for the original game.

After next weeks release of the American Car DLC pack, it has been revealed that only one more DLC pack is coming in April or May this year before making the big push to Project CARS 2. I’m extremely annoyed to discover that Project CARS is merely a test game for the sequel.

Ian Bell is in complete damage control now because of all this. First, he lays the blame on the game itself simply having too much content.



Then, he blames publisher Namco-Bandai Games for restricting their post-release content plans. Namco-Bandai believe some teams run into problems sticking to a consistent development schedule and delivering updates on time. Bell admits that this was a good call, as the team at Slightly Mad Studios indeed could not stay on schedule.


Then Ian Bell goes back to replying to a number of users with the exact same excuse of “we have put in 37 additional features requested by community members into Project CARS.” I just don’t understand where this guy’s head is at.

pcars 1

pcars3.PNGDo what you want with these. I enjoy Project CARS but this Ian Bell guy is a clown.


He is our own personal jester, and I’m glad we here at can provide him with the finest stage available. I get that it’s bad business for the head of a game development studio to come out and say “guys, we sort of fucked this one up.” As we saw a few weeks ago at the end of Super Bowl 50, owning up to your role in your team’s loss is something that even professional athletes can’t handle. But unfortunately, Mr. Bell is not the starting Quarterback of the Carolina Panthers – he’s in charge of creating a product for people to enjoy.

And Ian’s at the point where he promised a bunch of shit that people can easily use the search function to bring to the forefront, and none of the stuff is there.

Ian said Project CARS would have oval racing. It’s now been shit-canned. Ian said Project CARS would run fine on the Wii U. The Wii U release was cancelled three months later. Ian said Project CARS would feature the Verizon Indy Car Series. Both Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the 2015 Verizon Indy Car Series are nowhere to be found. Ian said there would be proper triple screen support added in during the game’s post release lifespan. It still isn’t there. Ian said there would be both setup management and setup sharing. Neither feature has yet to appear. Ian said the game’s performance on AMD cards would be optimized for the PC version. These fixes still haven’t been implemented. These are just some of the many things Slightly Mad Studios failed to deliver on, and I’m sure the many Project CARS owners here on will be able to flesh out this list a bit more.

Five years into the future, I’m sure merely mentioning Project CARS in any sim racing forum will warrant a ten page discussion full of words like “scam” and “pyramid scheme”. The video below was uploaded today and displays the sorry state of the game despite something like twelve post-release patches intended to make the sim somewhat playable. The fact that people actually defend this due to sheer sales numbers is absurd. This game is demonstrably broken despite the shills babbling on about the initial spike of Steam activity, and the team at Slightly Mad Studios clearly don’t give a shit about finishing the game – they have your money, the patches aren’t doing anything, and they’re making another one whether you like it or not.



50 thoughts on “Reader Submission #80 – The Absence of Oval Racing

  1. Wait for the “I’m an investor and I love SMS and pCARS” posters to come out of the woodwork.

    As soon as pCARS 2 became reality, pCARS was going to be given as little support as possible. SMS release a few DLC packs and patch a few of the many bugs that were present and move on.

    Remember Ian Bell felt we should all be grateful to SMS for fixing bugs as it cost SMS so much money per month ($40K IIRC) to have employees fix bugs. Now it’s looking like Namco-Bandai are to blame for no ‘season pass’ which echoes the ‘it’s all EA’s fault’ with Shift and Unleashed. Long term support my arse.

    I wonder how many people will remember all of this when pCARS 2 comes out?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. But hey, they’re at version 9.0, so clearly they’re doing something to fix all those bugs that should have been fixed by release, right?



    1. The best bit is when I read on neogaf “its an incredible experience when you’re on track, you forget about the niggles”. Usually it comes from one guy with 1,200 posts on the SMS help forums…and he’s not a financial backer!

      Still some amazing issues to be fixed, despite 9 patches:!-Updated-21-12

      Cars crashing into invisible obstacles and hear ratios that change on their own are showstoppers that aren’t fixed!


  3. Yes I am an investor but never liked or really played the game (under 1 hour). First I thought it is good that this present keeps giving me money. But somehow my inner human starts to emerge and feel that it is somewhat wrong if the game really is this crap. I am part of the problem, part of the scam. I make money out of scam.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am interested what these 37 requested features are they didnt plan to include from the beginning. I mean, the game is mediocre at best even with these mysterious 37 features. What would the game be without these? A graphic tech-demo?


    1. they are probably stuff that was there that was easy to to,or would cost the least to implement.
      this whole sim racing genre is a fucking joke.
      no wonder we get laughed at,just look at the twats who make the games.


      1. really? I’d say the toxicity comes from several people in the sim racing community. A normal and educated person wouldn’t start insulting people or the devs which make these games.


  5. Mr. Bell is da BOSS and Pcars investors are very happy for the profits and work he has done and you all will be shocked when Pcars2 will even bigger success than it’s predecessor when it’s released in 2017.


      1. #2 Take a giant shit and call it a game. Get all the fanbois to run into every forum and tell the world that the #2 you just dropped is the greatest thing ever.



    1. You don’t think PCARS v1 kind-a hurt the brand? Where is SMS going to find people interested in racing who know nothing about PCARS, yet?


      1. The fun part is that PCARS2 will be a bigger success.. because of PCARS! Looking at this blog pcars in the imaginary is complete crap, but out there you have millions customers that likes it.. and no matter who is “really” right, for the devs the numbers counts, not the opinions of 100 hardcore chaps. Welcome to the reality!


  6. Project CARS really is the best racing game experience for PC. Not such great simulation as rFactor 2 or Assetto Corsa but more playable. And the graphics is amazing. Only Driveclub for now have better picture.


  7. Hey James, you´ll probably want to correct the “they have you´re money” bit. Great article once again, good to see you don´t forget about this trainwreck and keep reporting on it.


  8. SMS have zero experience of doing oval AI. ISI have years of oval AI experience but rF2 oval AI is still broken. The real surprise is that SMS thought that they could do oval AI in the first place, not that they’ve found they can’t.


    1. Uhh they can’t really do normal AI either.

      RF2’s oval AI is at least starting from a good basis and isn’t too bad if you do some messing with it.

      SMS still needs to fix their damned game in several divergent aspects, that’s the problem.


    2. Thats no excuse at all, pcars is rf1, with the physics fucked with a bit and a new api with a few nvidia plugins, including the base AI, so they have at least isi AI base from rf1, which although not great at ovals was more than a good base to sort in 4 years of dev with the largest team in sim racing.


  9. What a joke of an article, Ian Bell is being 100% reasonable in these posts. Yes, leaving out oval racing is disappointing, but what the fuck do you want from him? It didn’t work out, they couldn’t include it.


      1. You’re kinda double faced, James. After you said in this post, in the past you made other posts or articles complaining when devs don’t talk about the future and future features or future fixes of the game. Then say they stopped development.

        And for example you complained when AC was announced as feature complete on 1.0; it was because they delivered all the features and content promised for 1.0 (it wasn’t advertised as the most complete, but complete for what they set to do until 1.0), but you complained and now you’re complaining when devs or companies promise features/content and they weren’t able to deliver as planned initially.

        So what’s the deal then? You want to expose devs who mislead customers and at the same time you also want to expose (portray as negative) when devs don’t promise anything if they don’t know about features or fixes for the future.


    1. PCARS shilling at its finest. SMS failed to stick to their promises for PCARS, and released a buggy broken sim on day one. 9 major patches later and the game is barely functional. The fact that Ian Bell and SMS expects us to take their word for the features that will be in PCARS 2 after the shit they pulled with the first one is absolutely laughable.


      1. They doesn’t need “you” to believe their words… they just need to mention “Ferrari, Porsche, Lamborghini” on the game box, and pcars2 will sell some another millions copies to the kids out there. 🙂


  10. My understanding is that had the oval racing been included it would have been a disaster so their decision to not include it after all the other faults with the game is probably the right one.

    It is pretty obvious that all the current racing games are so complicated that without massive resources it is impossible to deliver a racing game that is stable and performs as described before release.It is going to be interesting to see how good Project Cars2 is on release.


  11. Why should they bother with oval racing? They can’t even fix road (real) racing after 9 (Nine!) major patches.

    They can’t even do dlcs right. A Nascar car sold as a dlc for a game that has no Nascar tracks minus a single road track (Watkins Glen). How can people possibly be hyped for that crap? They must be retarded. Or they must be our beloved (?) graphics shiller Melanie.


  12. I paid for the game, I’m a bit disappointed by ovals being canned, but life goes on. I still enjoy the game a lot despite the bad points


  13. Stop talking shit about the panthers or I’m gonna cut you 😉

    For real though, the submitter needs to give up on this one and look to rf2 for oval if he has the option.

    pcars tyre models are not being fixed last I heard, might as well wright off oval even if the content shows up.


  14. Well I cant comment on the pc side of things but the XBOX one is a complete broken mess , as for the ps4 it crashes and corrupts saves from time to time , Mr Bell has constantly placed miss information on the pcars webpage about upcoming indi and ovals.

    I can guarantee you there are more than a few people who purchased the game for this aspect hoping for something decent in the way of these categories only to find they have been dumped.

    Completely miss leading information from SMS and Ian Bell . Very sad when companies do this to a user base .

    At the end of the day the game bring nothing new to the genre .


  15. I don’t really care to be honest. I got some nice profits from the scheme and all I had to do was to shill on forums for about 12 months.


  16. I criticise pCars as often i can, but in the end it´s a good title and when i want to race Le Mans in a LMP1 car with day&night transition or Bathurst or Spa, it can show it´s muscles. I like to play more AC, because i like more the simulation value, but when i get into pCars, tweak a nice setup, it´s very decent with more features like night & rain.


  17. Is that video for real? If so then I am almost speechless. I cannot remember a single racing game I have ever played that had cars which just suddenly went BOOM. What is even happening there? Are the physics of the game such that the car suddenly dips into the ground or something?


      1. Yeah, I have seen him. He looks like a big muscle bound queer that could kick my ass and guys bigger than me. What does his size and muscles have to do with the fact that he looks like a queer pedophile in the face?


  18. The last DLC for pCARS is the April/May. There’s the USA pack with the Ford Fusion Nascar and the Indycar.
    Then just 1 last pack after this as they concentrate on #2. Bugs and issues will be still looked at but a smaller team. Apparently they are all ready behind on #2 ??

    But who the FUC& knows with them, could change .


  19. Well, at least Mr. Bells communication has become clearer and more respectful. That’s something, right^^

    Glad I didn’t buy this game although I certainly wouldn’t mind PCars2 being good.


  20. Yes it has become very clear that after patch 9.0 that there are still crashes and they don’t know how to fix there own engine…… or they seem very reluctant to mess with it for fear of breaking something else .


  21. It’s quite obvious they scammed people on Pcars with a recycled isi engine and some pretty graphics. But the game really is broken in many ways that make it unplayable. Good sim if you completely discount features like setup saves and many other core features.
    Sadly, you could see it coming a mile away that this was just a tease\money grab to get some interest going and some revenue flowing to support a second offering that hopefully actually delivers the goods. And by goods. I mean profits for SMS. The $12 they sold it for on PSN says all you need to know about it.
    Cheap development from cheap developer. Using recycled tech they can’t manipulate or modify wirhout breaking it.
    Rent Pcars 2 or buy it after a few months and the hype dies down for half off or more.
    It’s more than these sadass developers deserve.


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