It’s probably not the news console sim racing fans wanted to hear less than a week away from the launch of Assetto Corsa on next generation platforms. After several major online leagues pledged to make the jump from the ailing Project CARS to a title they perceived to be the superior multiplayer racing environment, it has been revealed on the game’s official Twitter feed that you will not be able to create custom sessions for your friends on the console version of Assetto Corsa. To combat the lack of online functionality, developer Kunos Simulazioni plan to open an abundance of servers for the public, ensuring there’s something for everyone to drive. Provided that those servers also rely on the same structure as the PC version, we’re looking at a future where a whole bunch of gamers will be dumbfounded that they can’t drive the Corvette they paid extra for because too many people are already in the Corvette.
Does this sound like it will be a complete mess? That’s because it is. Console racers are about to go from a land where they can plaster dicks all over their vehicles and host elaborate online championships, to a platform where you can’t even hold a private race with friends to avoid blatant online wreckers and talentless turn one heroes. This one is bound to sting quite a bit, especially after numerous fluff pieces endlessly praising the bastion of PC sim racing finally making the jump to consoles. People are going to be choked to discover an integral part of online racing has been left out entirely.
But to be fair, we saw this coming. After months of delays that were casually brushed aside by mainstream sim racing publications, a review embargo which prevented Billy Strange of ISR from commenting on obvious bugs during his preview videos, an aggressive fanbase given free DLC keys to attack users critical of the game, and a developer who labelled almost all individuals unsatisfied with the product as “mentally ill”, it’s only fitting that Assetto Corsa’s console release has turned out like this. Project CARS was just the pre-game show.