The Full Developer Experience

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.

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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.

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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.

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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?

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100 thoughts on “The Full Developer Experience

  1. “Any other title lacking the features below would be utterly blasted by the community.”
    Well that rules out AMS, R3E, rfactor 2 (no VR), iRacing (no custom championships or offline mode)

    You heard it on PRC first, Project CARS is the only racing simulator.

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    1. my thaughts exactly.

      Reading lines like:

      “Assetto Corsa was originally intended to be a replacement for aging racing simulators based on the isiMotor engine”
      exposes Jame’s motives for what they are. AFAIR Stefano’s brainchild has everything to do with him exploring his own path into building a racing-sim and nothing with replacing another teams’ effort called rfactor.. Two very seperate entities that just so happen to share the same spotlight.

      That’s not to say the guy who is currently being stoned in your articles is without fault. Are you?

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  2. “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. ”
    Major disinformation, they were banned for completely inappropriate posts, generally after being specifically warned to stop.

    Reading between the lines here, I think the real problem is that Assetto Corsa fixed so many things that you had on your complaint list that you’ve had to start fabricating issues entirely. Kunos remains the most responsive to bugs of any sim dev (within the last week they’ve patched 6 times, fixing both short-term bugs like Spa’s missing collisions, and longer-term ones like camber sensitivity and multiplayer collision). But the key to that is they’ve cultivated better bug reports by banning people who pollute the forums with nonsense.

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      1. “Let’s Play Game Designer” thread asking fans for their input & thoughts = official complaint poll ?

        Like… really?

        From the thread itself: “…the poll is more a way to let all of us (devs and players) understand how different opinions can be from what we think.” – Lord Kunos

        At least they’re interacting and shit, rather than going Polyphony Digital and bailing on the community.

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      2. now stefano is actually keeping his promise, about banning people left right centre. you should go check it out, it’s comedy central over there.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. >nor can you flash your headlights at slower cars indicating for them to move out of the way

    Yes you can. There is a headlights key in controls and it does exactly what it sounds like it does. Never let facts get in the way of a good story though.

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    1. A much better, and actually worth mentioning, thing to say instead would be the engine’s mysterious 1 light limitation. It baffles me how you can write an entire engine to support only one light, but Kunos found a way.

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      1. Oh it baffles you? It baffles me that people only care about showcasing the sim’s night and rain racing on youtube in a couple videos. Then let’s do some hotlap or a quick race in those conditions, and forget for the rest of the year those things are in the game at all.

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      2. It’s not at all mysterious. The price of extra lights is framerate; PCARS and rf2 require beefier systems than AC at the same graphics fidelity. By cutting that feature entirely they let more people play the game. Or from another perspective, they let everybody have higher AA/shadows/reflections.

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      3. They’re idiots, simple as that. If it was actually an intentional call to save framerate -as our local fanboy implies- it would be an OPTION, not an engine limitation.

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      4. WTF are you talking about. They chose the render pipeline intentionally, and one limitation of this engine is that it renders 1 light source.

        It’s like complaining that Formula 1 cars only have 1 seat… it’s a limitation of the chassis that only one person can sit in it, they can’t just go back and add an option to let more people ride along in it. It’s built that way on purpose because a car that seats 4 people can’t go as fast as a Formula 1 can.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Haven’t played AC for a while and I honestly don’t have an opinion on this sim at all but some of the options are pretty ridiculous to be in a poll because they should be in any racing game, even the most arcade stuff out there. If I was a developer in this team I’d feel ashamed…
    Also looks a bit of a joke I mean… sparks and flashing lights in a poll together with base features such as false start and pit strategy? Really?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yet there are only a couple hundreds who want the “they should be in any racing game” essential features.
      Yea possible they should, and probably they’ll include them for a next game, but don’t treat those “essential features” as indispensable. I don’t see thousands of people every day or weekly on rf2 or ams using these so indispensable features and essential features. Yes is good for such features to be in the sim, gives more variety to the gameplay. but they aren’t the secret ingredient for people to come back every day or week to play your sim.

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      1. Sorry but no excuses for this, please don’t be a fanboy here, no need to defend a sim with your life.
        If you say you are going to create the most advanced driving simulation ever I expect you to have the basics such as brake temp simulation (did they implement brake pressure yet?), if you bring cars that are seen in endurance I expect you to give me pit strategy. If you say you’ll do the most advanced driving sim ever I expect you to let me do a mistake and jump the start. This is the basics of all the basics for a sim.
        As for rF2 rebuild that sim in DX12 or 11 with photo graphics, start bringing some official content instead of waiting for moders and you’ll get people to play it. That’s how things work now.
        AMS pffff great game but falls on the same graphic problems as rF2 and very unknown cotent, people want GT3. Maybe they’ll get it better in their next sim as I saw Renato saying they are playing with UE4.
        Unfortunately people care way too much about graphics, way more than graphics. Assetto Corsa and P Cars are a great example of all this. Someday we’ll see if a real sim with these graphics can actually keep people long enough to real with stuff such as the real dynamic rubber like in rF2.

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      2. If people care way more about graphics, they wouldn’t rejoice so much the improvement to physics and tyres in AC’s 1.5. Don’t create in yourself the false truth that people which don’t play at all or at least don’t use on a regular basis games like ams, rf2, iracing, but instead play AC, that they don’t care about physics. Because, despite you telling me to not be a fanboy, you are being a person with prejudice towards the people who play a sim that you don’t agree with, and treating them as inferior players.

        I’m not saying you’re wrong in your suggestions to what a complete or advanced racing simulator should have. But you need to understand this is how the company behind a specific sim wanted it to be. They directed resources to the specific things they considered important for a sim racing game and didn’t want to waste on things they considered trivial or things they considered not many people would use in comparison to the resources needed to make.

        When you talked in your post about rf2 and ams, you were mainly just focusing on their graphics. Never I mentioned anything about the graphics of those games. Yet you entered the subject that their graphics need to be replaced with something better. And then you accuse the players of AC to only care about graphics.

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      3. I get it man you are a fanboy… tolerating a sim missing so much stuff is ok for you, a lazy dev that could do better because they HAVE a better product in their hands is ok for you….
        Man there were less people like this on the internet 10 years ago

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      4. and nope, I don’t care about graphics, if I did I would have AC and P Cars on my PC 😉 I was very clear when I said that most people care about it, can’t you read or are tou just trolling?
        Facepalm….

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      5. How do they prove me wrong? The poll has a couple points about extra physics – brake temps, engine turn off – water, radiators. And rest is about game features. All this stuff is secondary to the raw simulation of the cars. Not many people voting on this doesn’t mean they don’t care about physics, because these things are only extra effects, things that bring wear to the simulated car. It has nothing to do with how the car tyres and aero behave. Simulating a car in perfect conditions is different than not caring about physics (And AC has tyre wear and damage, engine, transmission, aero damage). Not caring about physics means you play whatever racing game, like mario kart for instance. Or do you think if rf2 devs turned off brake temps, the cars in rf2 would now be simcade?

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  5. You forgot to mention that the Single player pit stops added only now in 1,5 don’t even work based on tire wear yet. AI uses same tires unless it needs to refuel, basally making all series that don’t refuel in-race broken. But you know, we only waited years for this basic feature offline. 😉

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    1. Does steam add taxes when you add the game to shopping cart in canada? You also said and showed screen that loeb rally evo special edition cost 99cnd, but the steam store shows lower price.

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      1. Canadian prices fluctuate a lot recently cause the dollar’s value relative to USD is not very stable. I don’t get separate taxes on Steam.

        Loeb Rally dropped $20 at the beginning of March so it’s now only $80 for the special edition.

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      1. rFactor 2 is the most authentic, realistic, and advanced racing simulator ever released, and has way more simulation value than Assetto Corsa. The prophet Tim Wheatley has blessed us with the greatest racing game of all time, and sinners still flock to simcade titles like Assetto Corsa. Don’t worry, as Father Associator, Father Hex, and the prophet Tim Wheatley shall all help you see the light, and choose rFactor 2 as your main racing simulator.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Except for VR, pretty much all points in that list should feature in the game. Forum banning over driving discussion is no longer something exclusive to Assetto and iRacing, by the way. The ISI forum has caught that bug in the past weeks.

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  7. How many AC people would have VR headsets as yet.
    Its good to look at the future but most of the other features as Gui said should be implemented no matter what.

    Starts, Lights, Timed Races and Championships should be Standard and shouldn’t need to be shouted by the community to add.

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    1. According to the poll, a minimum of 1100 people have a VR headset, or are getting one soon enough that they want to make it top priority. It’s probably more than that.

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  8. I did go harsh on their forum more than one time. The worst i got was deleting some posts and a few days ban. The most offensive probably was suggesting to take a deeper look at the rF2-Rip of Nordschleife instead of banning Download-sources and learn something about the better physics. I could understand that ban.

    But in the end (1.5) they did almost every change i suggested and very happy with this update. The people from Kunos exactly knows what´s missing in their title and this poll is one way to show it. The driving experience is now by far better in many cars (check out Cobra, F40, Ruf Yellowbird for example) than before and it´s now a good replacement for rF2 even some things are missing, but less than in rF2 by the way. Physics are awesome now.

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  9. So you’re saying that “Your racing simulator” tagline doesn’t live up to its name, but then you say that sim racers are sitting and waiting for something that isn’t rfactor. Many of those that are “sitting and waiting” are already playing AC daily, weekly, monthly. For a game that is an incomplete sim, is a big feat. Maybe for you being incomplete means I can’t play this right now. But for others incomplete means that I can still play AC, enjoy the cars, the tracks, the racing. 1.5.x made AI and Online better. Even more people are showing up in-game and in servers. Will you just decide to play AC once is complete? By that time you might be bored and won’t even play it that much. Life isn’t something to wait for everything to be perfect, life is meant to be used and abused. The journey of playing AC while is being developed and made better is more rewarding and meaningful than putting it aside and waiting for the final day. But I guess you already figured it out. Sorry for being condescending.

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    1. Kunos are rudderless. They got to a point where they felt the game was finished (even though it wasn’t) and only now seem to have realized there’s a lot more work to be done. This is not what I expected when I first booted up AC back in the fall of 2013. I just feel like they don’t know what they want this thing to be. Is it a hardcore sim? Is it something more forgiving that will appeal to a broader audience, hence the console release? Is it just a proof-of-concept tech demo? It certainly isn’t a finished game, I know that much. I think there’s a kernel of something great in Assetto Corsa and the way it drives, but the whole experience just isn’t compelling enough to keep me interested anymore. Two and a half years on, and it’s still really only good for hotlapping. That’s a problem.

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      1. They promised things for the game release, 1.0, after the early access program ended. All the content, features, and tools were there on that day. That is considered complete game for what they proposed to do when their early access was launched. It’s as simply as I described.

        If you want to say you don’t agree with their plans for 1.0, that’s your opinion. They promised the things they knew they could or wanted to release for 1.0. And don’t forget that they said the development of AC wasn’t going to stop at 1.0. And it didn’t.

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      2. 1.5.x version made better (and is actually good) the AI and Online racing. If you still just want to remain doing hotlaps, that’s up to you.

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      3. Go to Special Events and filter them by Quick Races. Now choose difficulty and race. Or do the solo player challenges. Or join an online race, and race.

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      4. What a bullshit. Apart from iRacing it has the best Multiplayer (at least here in Europe) and you find more serious servers than in pCars. The AI is good to race now and the mix of cars you can´t get anywhere else (and how ever compared AC to Forza should visit a mental health clinic). Try McLaren P1 vs LaFerrari or just Lotus 25/49/72D, the Cobra, Countach, F40 or the awesome old DTM cars, the KTM X-Box and so on. With the new tire model AC is really kicking. I love Raceroom as well as pCars, but AC is far less predictable and needs the most attention even without break temps.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Stefano Casillo is a social inept feeling like a kind of rockstar in his own forum and boosting his ego mistreating people and being disrespectful… he is pathetic.

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    1. It’s better to have confident, than to be a shy school boy like Gjon, watch the very first inside sim racing rfactor 2 interview, where Jessica interviewed puny grease headed Gjon, he couldn’t even look at when she asked him questions, he was like a little school boy, all shy and mummy mummy what shall I say next.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. So now that they’ve dumbed things down with the latest upgrade, screwed the tyre model, screwed the FFB, turned a once great experience into mere eye candy and admitted that brake fade isn’t modelled at all whilst engine heating/cooling is just like the NEW tyres and barely simulated…

    People still call this game a simulator…??

    It’s nothing more than a game aimed at people who play race car driver for 30 minutes to tell their friends they drove a licensed Ferrari on a laser scanned track… The sim racer isn’t the target audience…

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    1. I’m fucking glad I’m not the “sim racer” that you are, since your opinion of AC makes it perfectly clear that you have no idea what simulation is if you think it used to be better than it is now.

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    2. That’s not the way to boost up sales for your “simulation value” sim. By falsely denigrating other sims, more people won’t play your preferred one. At this point is pure loss of control and rage going in the minds of who have to denigrate other games. Are you already bored in playing your preferred sim that you need to find some entertainment by talking bad about others? I think the easiest solution is for you to watch a movie or a series. Watch Daredevil, good series.

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  12. regarding that last paragraph, what if:
    -AC is unfinished
    -a poll is a nice gesture towards the community albeit kunos will probably just not care
    -PRC enjoys the clicks brought by stirring shit all over the place

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  13. What about Dirt Rally? It says dirt rally, but we have snow, ice, asphalt, and dirt. I think they should change their game name to All Terrain Rally. I bought the game expecting to find exclusively dirt rally, I’ve been tricked and they gave me different things other than my expectations.

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    1. He doesn’t hate us, he doesn’t agree with certain things we suggest for the game. He will get annoyed if you keep insisting and demanding stuff for the game that he said is not possible now, or simply he doesn’t agree for those to be in the game.

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  14. Just by reading though his tweets, you can tell Stefano, 1) Is a keen guitar player, more so than a game dev or car fan, and 2) He truly, genuinely hates his own game’s fanbase, like, with a passion. Shame really.

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    1. He doesn’t hate us, he doesn’t agree with certain things we suggest for the game. He will get annoyed if you keep insisting and demanding stuff for the game that he said is not possible now, or simply he doesn’t agree for those to be in the game.

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      1. Because Queen is no longer an active band, has not been one for decades now? So why subscribe when no more new content will come out from them?

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  15. If that was a serious poll, I’d say 1 – 2 – 7 are the first things to do. Because they’re physics related, what’s really important to get right. Most of the rest is just optional. Maybe engine stall a priority too, but nobody plays without aids because they’re a wakling aids carrier.

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  16. Cry all you want Reiza fanboy from Race Department, but Reiza’s days of being a trusted and reliable developer are over, especially when Stock Car Extreme gets taken down. The content of Reiza’s games infringes on many copyrights, and they will be out of business soon. They won’t be missed either since they released glorified rFactor 1 mods EIGHT TIMES.

    Rest in Shit Reiza Studios

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  17. “Stefano Casillo ‏@KunosStefano 57 minutes ago
    Looking forward to a time when we’ll be able to have a space movie WITHOUT a strong female lead.”

    Proof that Stefano is not male lesbian.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Assetto Corsa fans don’t care about driving, racing or realism anyway, as evidenced by the fact that the winning option in this poll was VR support, rather than things with actual Simulation Value like brake temperatures, engine stalling or pit stop strategies.

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    1. Oh look it the retard himself Associat0r, he’s the only degenerate who capitalize words “simulation” and “value” in the middle of a sentence.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Beh, probabilmente manca di quelle accortezze che solo un team con alto potrebbe implementare, ma credo che in questi casi la cosa importante da chiedersi sia: il gioco funziona? diverte? Alla fine è la cosa più importante, no?

    Like

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