Thanks to the boys over at the European Endurance Center, the last major gap in Automobilista’s spotty car roster has been filled in a major way. Version 1.0 of the group’s mammoth GT3 mod – plus a small array of patches – has been released to the public for consumption, bringing a huge selection of familiar cars to a PC simulator notorious for an obscure roster of vehicles and locations. However, there’s a catch. Most of the 3D models used for this package have been… Shall we say… Lifted from other commercial titles by the author’s own admission, and your enjoyment of this download will be directly related to your overall stance on ripped content.
Car models have been yanked from a variety of sources including Forza Motorsport, Need for Speed Shift, Real Racing 3, and even rFactor 2, though all of the 30+ vehicles included in this download have been polished up by the EEC team to achieve a uniform quality standard throughout the release – and there are tons of them to go through on your own accord. The EEC guys have done more than just package up the current flagship car for each manufacturer; almost every car that has started a GT3 race dating back to 2011 has been faithfully replicated, with the initial download weighing in at 1.02 GB. Again, your desire to have the most complete set of GT3 cars ever fielded in a modern racing simulator will be directly competing against your moral stance when it comes to stolen content.
Regardless of your opinions on how third party modders should conduct themselves when it comes to adapting content from one simulator into another without the artist’s permission, I’m happy to report that my initial laps spent with the EEC GT3 mod in Automobilista have been quite satisfying – and this is a pretty big deal considering carsets of this size have a tendency to be half-assed just to get the damn thing out in the wild. Though there isn’t any sort of season package to compliment the release – all cars are restricted to just their debut liveries, which can be quite ugly in some cases – the sheer driving experience really drives home how much Reiza have changed things under the hood with Automobilista. Let’s face it, GT3 cars are in practically every modern simulator on the market, and even if you don’t like them, you’ve probably been forced to drive them at some point. For those that brave the large download size and internal ethical questions, these are probably the best GT3 cars to ever appear in a simulator in terms of the raw racing experience. It’s really impressive what the EEC group have managed to do with this mod compared to previous renditions for GTR 2, rFactor, and Stock Car Extreme.
The cars are planted for the most part, but skate around when you ask them to. On corner exit, you can really balance yourself on the edge of the tire and maintain a satisfying slip angle just by carefully working the throttle – something that you can sort of do in RaceRoom Racing Experience, but can never fully accomplish thanks to the weird lack of mid-range RPM torque issue that Matt Orr described a while back in one of his YouTube videos. They hop around when you’re a bit too hard on the brakes coming into a corner, and understeer in such a way that you fully understand why most GT3 series are populated by middle-aged rich dudes with more money than talent. They aren’t the most exciting cars to drive, and compared to the default content in Automobilista they certainly aren’t the most unique or challenging by a long shot, but it’s definitely nice to experience the improvements Reiza have made to the engine powering Automobilista with a familiar set of race cars.
To get people started, I’ll throw up my baseline setup for the 2015 Audi R8 as a way for the readers of PRC.net to learn what a half-decent configuration looks like for these cars. As a word of warning, the default setups are fucking brutal, and the cockpit view is way too far back for anyone sane to try and deal with – so you’ll need to manually make some Cockpit.ini adjustments – but for a mod that is something like 80% ripped content, this is a surprisingly worthwhile addition to your Automobilista collection.