Just one article like this is too many, but to me it seems a very real trend has now established itself. Back in October of last year, we posted a very straightforward Reader Submission regarding a prominent Assetto Corsa modder, who had been removed from the game’s official forums simply for criticizing the default sound effects bundled with the vanilla copy of the game. Assetto Corsa fanboys rushed to label Fonsecker as someone who had been toxic and unhelpful within the overall community, but his contributions clearly outweighed any sarcastic or genuinely critical comments he had made on the official forums. Considering the guy was clearly a talented individual, he had every right to shit on the sounds n Assetto Corsa – he’s creating a quality add-on in his spare time, shouldn’t those getting paid to design the game’s sound effects put out an even better product?
Six months later, we’re basically about to write the exact same article, all over again. Assetto Corsa sound modder AmplifiedNL has also been banned from the game’s official forums. However, the infraction earns the spotlight from PRC.net for a much more unique and worrying reason – Amplified received a ban from the official forums for something he posted in a private Facebook group. Kunos Simulazioni are sending their own informants into the outskirts of the sim racing community to locate anyone who may be critical of their product anywhere, and dropping the ban hammer without warning.
It’s really shitty. A company should not be doing this, especially after the next-generation console version of their title has been delayed not once, but twice. It’s a waste of time. They have better things to worry about than some kid shitposting on Facebook, right?
I guess they don’t.
Good evening, PRC. I’m a regular reader of your site, and I really wanted to get something off of my chest. I got banned today from the official Assetto Corsa forums. Surprising? Not really. I guess I hurt someone’s feelings, and he didn’t like it. You already know who it is.
Or maybe you don’t.
I’m a sound modder under the online alias of AmplifiedNL, and I mainly keep to myself working on my audio editing skills. I do this for fun. From time to time, I upload a YouTube video showing some progress or new techniques I’ve discovered. I feel like I’m getting there as a modder, and I’ve certainly got the hang of things. On a daily basis, I receive sound modding requests, a lot of positive feedback, questions on sound modding in general, and tons of complaining about the stock Kunos Simulazioni car sounds. Many sound atrociously bad, and are not acceptable after all this time spent in constant development.
Objectively, I can safely say that people who understand the effort and technicality that goes into audio editing, respect me and think I’m one of the best in terms of raw knowledge, quality, and mixing skills. I’m good enough to get paid in private to help with the audio portions of Assetto Corsa mods. Large scale modding projects have asked me to assist, because they feel there is no substitute for my mixing skills. There’s a real scarcity when it comes to people like me in the sim racing scene. Look at how people talk about R3E’s sounds, compared to Forza or Gran Turismo.
I recently joined Facebook to get in touch with some people, mostly on the sim racing end of things. I wanted a bigger audience to show off my work to, and more or less congregate with the community. Now, there’s this massive Facebook page called the Assetto Corsa Racing Community, and I’m on good terms with many people inside this group.
As soon as the Japanese pack was about to be released, I was already receiving requests from others to allocate my talents into improving the default DLC sounds. People were afraid they would be awful, and require my improvements. Not long after, a developer livestream post hit the page, and I was listening to the new feminine Miata. Seeing that I was not on the official forums, buddies from Skype were already commenting on the weak sounds from the video’s stream, and I decided to join in the fun. The Facebook group was supposed to be a safe haven from the dictatorship policy on the official forums, so I spoke my mind.
I made a beautiful shitpost on the Livestream thread in a closed Facebook group, full of either kids, or people just having a good time. I never expected to receive a ban from the official forums from this, but that’s exactly what happened. I was banned from the official forums for “trolling”, exactly like Kunos would in their own environment – calling people “sick”, “retarded”, etc. I made a certain post, comment, whatever, and it followed me back to the official forums. Now either Luca, Stefano, or one of their “henchmen” are lurking in the shadows of these little Facebook communities, but regardless, these posts are getting seen by the developers in some fashion. I couldn’t care less how they’re seeing all of this, I care about how they’re dealing with this. Running around to these little private groups, tracking every last person down who says something bad about Assetto Corsa, and banning them… What a waste of time.
What I do find interesting, is that they are responding to these manners without saying a word. Blocking me from replying, making excuses, spreading lies about me… That’s a backdoor kind of thing you’d only find when your boss is smelling somebody’s coming for his place because he lacks talent and gets proven wrong occasionally. And people are starting to notice because someone actually wants that all-encompassing “simulation value” bullshit.
Kunos was seriously on the right path, but now they’re failing to take any sort of criticism, and losing their minds over it instead. It is such a shame, as they could achieve more when certain people would not have their egos and friendships in the way of this business. But the day you name people all kinds of ugly things because you are so big and holy, you silence the knowledgeable and spread false propaganda for the sake of it… Something in your company is dead wrong.
After receiving my ban from the official forums, I wrote this within the closed Facebook group. Excuse my English, it’s not my primary language.
Fun thing this evening. It seems our mentally unstable friend at Kunos named Luca got butt-hurt because of a troll post i made on this very page and banned me on the official AC forums. Now I don’t know if either he read it himself or a friend of his on this group passed it on to him buts its very funny and i feel flattered. Honestly.
Rather awkward he gets to feel hurt and impressed by a post that is not on his own dictatorship forum. Also full with teenagers and rip mods they are so fond of banning and staying away from at all cost. You and your team give away an example on your very own forum, somebody makes a joke out of it and you get even more hurt and hope your reputation doesn’t get blown to bits even on a message board outside of your dictator jurisdiction.
Of course you, Kunos, can call people retarded, needing to see a doctor, laugh about people’s religions and health state because you mean more than other people. But dare not reverse the process when one of your own incapable hobbyist PC employers fucked up and doesn’t know what he is doing.
After all this time there is no real progress in the simulation value of the physical sound aspect itself. For starters you can greatly hear what he did record himself and implement and whatnot. Yet there is no simple mixing, no dynamics,wrong use of production techniques, no frequency analysis and so on. Nothing.
The FMOD implementation was a joke from a production point of view because there is no understanding of the fundamentals and usage of its true capabilities. You could still throw samples in text files and mix them and we wouldn’t hear the difference(as people told you already Kunos).
As even with FMOD and its in-house preview options you still manage to phase sounds incorrectly making it sound like synthesized airplanes going bonkers. Because the samples are overlapping in a faulty way and you are to lazy to listen and correct it which is a matter, of dare I say… what… 10 seconds tops?
Heck you guys haven’t even figured out how to stretch and pitch samples 100% straight and how to re-synthesize those and correct them from hiss and wind noises if necessary.
I could go on and get real technical into all of this but the bottom line is they don’t have a real sound designer and he couldn’t find a way around FMOD if his life depended on it. He is just in place because he happened to be there being a hobbyist, not because he is fit for the job with the right knowledge and motivation with the necessary brain capability of achieving next level things the people are waiting and craving for in their ears.
Keep being stuck in the cycle of others telling you how to achieve things and do stuff,keep your eyes closed, while in the mean while my message box keeps filling with people complaining about these very shit sounds and skills and their annoyances of yours truly: The Kunos Sound Department©.
Well this has been a long writing for me, I’m not used to it. But I just wanted to get this out in public, and share it with people who are curious as to how far this dictatorship extends.
You actually aren’t the first Assetto Corsa critic to receive a ban for something they’ve said outside of the official forums. If my memory serves me correct, Eduard Mallorquí, from the high profile modding team Virtua Simulazioni, was banned from Assetto Corsa’s official forums for something he said over at RaceDepartment – an independent sim racing message board. And a similar “scandal” occurred with several high-ranking drivers over in the land of iRacing. Like Assetto Corsa, there was a massive private iRacing Facebook group dedicated for all of the decent drivers on the service, and occasionally discussions descended into shitposting about the administrators of the service for being, well, kind of biased and terrible. A snitch got into the confines of the private group, and sent everything off to the iRacing stewards, who obviously weren’t happy that their iron fist did not extend past the member forums.
To some extent, if you run a message board, it’s your call on how you police it. If you want to ban everybody who is critical of your product, that’s entirely your call, but beware you’re going to receive a pretty nasty reputation, fairly quickly. Yes, I’m saying it’s well within the powers of a notoriously disruptive team like Slightly Mad Studios or Kunos to be as ban-happy as the want to be, but I’m also saying that if they choose to go down that path, word will spread extremely fast, and it may piss a bunch of people off. If they want to look like booty-blasted children, they’re allowed to, but it’s not exactly the wisest of decisions.
But the whole concept of Kunos now following people around to private sim racing outlets to monitor any discussion that may be critical of the product, and then basically banning those who refuse to drink the Kool-Aid… Naw dude, that’s ridiculous. If I were to sit down and try to ban every problematic user from PRC.net, it would take several days to locate every last individual, their aliases, various IP locations… Time consuming is what I’m getting at.
And yet, a game developer believes this to be a perfectly fine endeavor to embark upon.
This is a company who is trying to put a title out on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, yet after two fairly substantial delays, they are instead on a mission to track people down on Facebook who’ve said mean things about their game. Are you fucking kidding me? What happens if there’s a third delay? Are Kunos seriously going to tell those who have pre-ordered the game, that they needed more time to stop the shitposters on some Facebook group with 2,000 people?
What is even going on here? It’s like we’re watching a nuclear meltdown as it happens. Give it like a week or so, and maybe we’ll find out the entire Japanese pack was outsourced to amateur modders – or something equally as ridiculous – all the while more bans have been handed out. On, and maybe physics files will be decrypted to show that the Ferrari F40 doesn’t have a rear wing, while the BMW M3 E92 street car features an invisible rear wing that’s twice the size of the car.