They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and a screenshot of a brand new poll on the official Assetto Corsa forums has proven just that. After a substantial amount of post-release downloadable content, recently pushing out a mammoth Version 1.5 title update, and now setting their sights on the next generation console launch of Assetto Corsa, Kunos Simulazioni have indirectly admitted that the game is still lacking a whole bunch of stuff. For a game claiming to be “Your Racing Simulator” and retailing at nearly $70 CDN for the complete package, the list of notable omissions – as named by Kunos themselves – contradicts much of the praise the game currently receives. Any other title lacking the features below would be utterly blasted by the community.
It’s important to add some context to this poll, so let’s start there. Stefano Casillo of Kunos Simulazioni originally opened a thread within Assetto Corsa’s official forums calling for the community to vote on the next big feature to be worked on for the game. While not a terrible idea to begin with – this approach fueled the entire development of Project CARS – Casillo immediately boasts that he’ll permanently ban anyone who doesn’t “keep it clean.” Making these kinds of ridiculous threats towards your loyal fanbase are simply not necessary, especially given the ban-happy atmosphere of the official forums established a few short months ago. Prior to Christmas of 2015, Kunos staff members essentially admitted they could not deal with widespread bug reports and criticism of their title, publishing lengthy tirades boasting about removing massive amounts of users who were “only there to satisfy personal vendettas” – something eventually proven false when banned individuals began to speak up on other message boards. So you have a developer who can’t take any type of criticism asking the community to be blunt and make suggestions to help improve the game – but he’ll permanently ban you if he doesn’t like your tone. Awesome.
Now I could sit here and dedicate entire paragraphs to each of the listed proposed features, and explain in detail why it’s absurd that each specific element is missing for a multitude of reasons, but I figure for the sanity of our readers, it’s best to condense everything into one miniature rant:
There are numerous Endurance racing vehicles available in Assetto Corsa, with many more planned for upcoming DLC packs, but there is no option to score the race length by time, nor can you illuminate other cars indicating for them to move out of the way. Assetto Corsa is planned to compete against Forza Motorsport 6 on the Xbox One – a game boasting a highly detailed career mode, livery editor, and upgrades system – but you cannot select the color of your car in most online lobbies, nor is there any meaningful single player progression. Assetto Corsa was originally intended to be a replacement for aging racing simulators based on the isiMotor engine, but for a game advertised as “Your Racing Simulator”, there is no brake fade, ability to stall the engine, steering ratio adjustments, brake pressure adjustments, engine cooling elements, pit stop strategy configuration, or ability to jump the start. In short, we’re looking at a game that can be described as Milestone’s take on the Forza franchise – a title which in no way sounds appealing on paper, yet very well sits in the library of many sim racers under the name Assetto Corsa.
This is a game that basically isn’t finished by any stretch of the imagination – an issue made worse by the fact that sim racers have more or less sat around waiting for something that isn’t rFactor. Instead, after months, maybe even years of hype, the hardcore virtual drivers among us have essentially been handed little more than an appetizer, with Kunos proceeding to feed them generic press releases indicating more downloadable content is on the way.
The Kunos apologists will eventually make their way over here, claiming a forum poll of all things is evidence that the developers truly care about the future of their game before launching into a tirade explaining how PRC.net is a click-bait blog intended to provoke the forum trolls. It’s happened basically every single time we’ve posted an article like this, and will continue to happen well into the future. However, at this point there is no denying that Assetto Corsa is missing a bunch of shit it shouldn’t be, as the omission of any one feature listed above would cause mass virtual riots had these features been left out of a title such as GTR Evolution or Richard Burns Rally.
So why is this suddenly acceptable from a developer in 2016? And more importantly, why, after continuously being exposed as an asshole to your customers, is it smart to begin a feedback thread by threatening to ban anyone unwilling to challenge the echo chamber environment?