Simracing golden age - is it in the past, present or yet to come ?

Discussion in 'General' started by mantasisg, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. mantasisg

    mantasisg Active Member

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    Hello,

    Simracing to me is prestigious genre, but it is not properly defined and probably will never be, because what really defines if a title is a simulator is knowledge, common sense and level of standard of simracer. I think a lot of simracers are feeling at least a little bit proud. IMO all games are less or more a waste of time, from certain point when it is overused, IMO simulators probably has the highest time mark of all games from which you should start considering if you are still using your time properly, mainly because you gain lots of useful things, you are actually leveling up yourself. You are also potentially saving a lot of money which would be spent for real tires and fuel :D

    For quite a long time plenty of car games used to label themselves as simracing titles. Some of those games in my opinion really shouldn't be named like that, a lot of simracers with proper common sense understands that some of the popular simulators are probably replicating the most important stuff - physics, quite poorly. Of course maybe they are named as simulators because they are very good at simulating visuals, or sounds or whatever but physics.... So I think a vehicle simulator is a game/simulator or just simulator which uses as little as possible of placebo effect to be believable, critically it should be at least more true than placebo. But how do you know, how do you measure that ? I am afraid that there is no way of doing that.

    I'd like to point out few things that IMO is/was/will be a threat to simracing.

    First - getting popular. I am not going to try to convince you, but it is always like that - anything what is great is usually surrounded by the best, most creative people which leads to great achievements, great functioning communities, amazing vibes and so on. Naturally less creative people (mostly) will join later not because they understands the greatness and beauty of a thing, but because it is just getting popular, and thats just how it goes.... A concentration of great, creative members are dropping, the mass effect is slowly consuming the greatness, and anything what seems unusual to them, to make it worse best people of course are leaving for various reasons.

    Second - increasing visual focus to content, decreasing physical focus, not going past first impression stage. This is heavy problem IMO. We all want lots of content to try. But it is not being made to be tried once or twice in simracing. As soon as content will be made with a first impression, looks in mind, and as long as such content will be appreciated the most because simracers can't get deeper into a car/track, do more than fifteen minutes in it, won't appreciate different ideas - the simracing is doomed. Thats why big amounts of content is simracing can have a negative effect. I am not even talking about ripped content - most of that is the lowest low of simracing, apart those few who were just horrible people to make it, but actually made something well.

    Third - content creators, websites and communities which are blending simracing titles with simcade titles. While on one hand it is a good way to introduce new people from simcades to simulator titles, on the other hand it is just welcoming lots of negative people into the house. Simulator shouldn't be an apple hanging low, it should be the best apple not the easiest to bite, but the most rewarding.

    Fourth - monotony in online racing. People does that to themselves, suffers from it and doesn't realise what it is. Thats monotony. Thats because you don't like challenges, always staying in comfort zone, don't like variety, thats because you always seek to do only things that you are best at, and that are well familiar to you. That fits for 9/10 simracers. That is absolutely antisimracing phenomenon. Because that way people close themselves from new experiences, and new things to learn. How many times I saw people quitting because they don't win immediately, or because grip is not optimum, or because sun angle is too low and so on...

    Fifth - raw, real cars are slowly becoming more and more a thing of a past. In future less and less people will understand cars dynamics in wide range. Motorsports are becoming less appealing, drivers are getting less involved, cars are doing most of the work, I don't know how it is but these days it is probably mostly about having snake reflexes, perfect setups and super strict conservative driving style.

    Sixth - political correctness, and well image seeking. What could be more fake than political correctness and building up ones perfect image. Simracing is something about being real. If developers, or even modders in some cases wont tell things how they are, won't argue, or if cut their good thoughts because certain things will become unpopular to say, then the whole thing will turn out fake. In other words real stuff should be overshadowed by silly dramas and fights.

    I think simracing might be heading downhill in near future, especially popular titles. Mostly because the way userbases will be and already are from my latest experiences in few more popular places earlier this year.

    Thanks for reading, if you did. Huge sorry for wall of text, I feel frustrated myself for it because I have had no time for it, and still wrote it.

    WHAT DO YOU THINK, WILL SIMRACING BE ALRIGHT ? :)
     
    luchian likes this.
  2. AccAkut

    AccAkut Member

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    On „First“:

    Simracing still is far from popular if compared to the whole gaming world. It grew, which imo is most apparent with the bigger number of wheel manufacturers today, but from the software side, it is and was an everchanging spectrum. When I started around ten years ago it was RFactor, LFS, GT Legends at the core as “serious” sims with other titles like Race07 accompanying. Iracing was not released yet, and people were very sceptical about its subscription system. Today it’s the same, numerous titles with varying “degree of simulation”. The userbase also constantly was and is changing, don’t go into elitism here and say something like “everyone joining past 2014 is not a real simmer”. People age and interests change, always been like that, will always be like that.

    Second:

    Same as above, there has always been a huge spectrum. Did you forget the sheer endless number of mods available for the first RFactor? Or the thousand cars Gran Turismo 4 offered?

    Third:

    I see a trend of you forming a sort of “elitism” in your head.. you are not to decide what’s simcade and whats a real simulation, the border is blurry at best and down to personal preference. Websites and communities can decide themselves how they want to diversify themselves, and overlap helps each user find more content and more titles that may fit the personal interest, and ofc help a site survive.

    Fourth:

    Again, its all down to preference, and not down to you to decide whats wrong and right. Back in my LFS days ten years ago the most run combo was Aston National – GTR class. That server (Conedodgers) was full 24/7 basically. And it formed great racing, people were in general familiar with the track, everyone ran similar lap times and fought for ten laps, obviously fighting through the backmarkers who had just discovered the sim and joined the biggest server. I ran a lot of laps on it (1197 to be exact according to LFS World, split between three cars). IMO even if AC for example offered better mod support for the online mode, the track selection would not change much, people would still race/cruise around Nordschleife, Monza, Spa and Akina Touge with their favourite car, while others join leagues with a strict calender that allows for training and learning. People just like coming back to what they know and to what they are good at.

    Fifth:

    This is just wrong on your part. To be fast and competitive you need the same skill in a 60s Alfa that you need in a modern GT3. The scale just changed. A 50s F1 car also needed you to have snake reflexes, perfect setups and conservative driving style to be fast.

    Sixth:

    No idea what your on about here. Where do you find political correctness in simracing? Portrayal of “green” hybrid cars? I really don’t understand you here.


    Conclusion, IN MY OPINION, there is no downhill, no black and white, rather it’s an everchanging spectrum of titles, preferences and content that every user will choose from as they like. Some like hooking up their knackered G25 after tugging in their kids for the night for a race or two on Spa in their Z4 GT3, others have a full sim rig with a 1000€ direct drive wheelbase and custom rim, with which they follow a strict Excel formatted training plan for their IRacing league. Kids will find AC in the Steam sales, install it, join Nords with a gamepad, crash everything and insult until they get banned. And then there’s guys like us that just like the Lego aspect of it and build stuff, and enjoy driving self-build cars and self-build tracks. Simracing is not dead, and for me personally it is in a golden age right now.

    Breakfast over :p
     
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  3. mantasisg

    mantasisg Active Member

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    Thanks for your time and reply, AccAkut.

    I think it is clear that we have very different opinions, thats all right. Feels bad for being considered as elitist for some points, but I think, Acc, if you are simracer you really should feel a little bit above casual gamer. But it is really not about the person who is simracing being "elite", but a software being proper simulation being elite. And that thing is being blurred out, and it is dangerous, shame you don't see it. What is "realistic" shouldn't be anything like "personal preference", except for the things which aren't possible to tell. But for that you need people with proper sense, and opinions sharp enough. So community is insanely important, and it must be pure, or at least it must maintain its pure structure.

    In general I am afraid about the essence of simulation, which is pursuit of improving car handling and mechanical physics by making making things to work as similar as possible to how they work IRL. Thats the only thing which IMO make simulator a simulator. Who am I to decide.... not someone special or so, not a real racer, not a real vehicles mechanics engineer of some sort, not a simulation software developer. But definitely somebody even if just a user, of some things I am rather certain or close to being certain, and I think thats where political correctness/being mister nice guy and stuff like that kicks in, sometimes to preserve good things you have to be confident, be ok with discussions and arguments. If you'll be wrong you'll loose on that in the long run as someone with better knowledge will have better logic, or even some data. And you'll know that you were nicely defeated (or lets say fixed). I terribly dislike being reduced by fan boys, simpleminds who just are bandwagoning, average simcaders who has no idea about anything... Those people are becoming a critical mass at particular places, there are much more of those people than people who really digs stuff. Not saying that everything I know, I know well, but I definitely understand quite some bits, and I can argue I don't always accept to opposing opinions instantly, but you can't really argue against critical mass. When you have a good discussion, everyone is understood, and understands others as well, and you can feel it. I can see plenty of bright guys who just simply doesn't participate anymore, because it is not worth it anymore. I have used "critical mass" term, that means a material which at certain point will evolve by itself without any extra force. If you can't spot it, then I am sorry, you might be part of it.

    Why critical mass is dangerous to simulation. Well, some things are not necessary for most lets say "simracers". They can moan and be unhappy about a bit or two not being simulated, but they will never really go deep, and very light levels of simulation might be more than enough for them, a lot of things they want, they probably doesn't even need to, just for try (and devs knows so). There will be lots of "too difficult", and "too annoying" stuff out even if it will be important parts of simulation. Some might try to go maximum simulation mode, but will fail to pick up big userbases. Popularity of motorsports will drop down, because it just will. At some point simulation will just stall, not because it will get so perfect that everything will become similar (because naturally every sim dev theoretically is up to same thing), but because optimum ways will be found. The only thing which I hope for is that simulators won't be dragged down towards simcades side. I am not going to point out what and who, but modding community and such underground stuff is reliable source to predict future, and I can tell that people don't really care about simulation stepping up, new ideas, new theories, search, experiments... it is just about hype, getting new stuff, and other foolish things, the essence of simulation is not so important anymore. To make matters worse I have observed through some cases that bringing new ideas, and having a little bit different philosophy about a thing or two is very unappreciated. At the end I am just weirdo, for not being like the majority, and I don't feel bad for myself. Eyes and ears might be winning against arms, feet and brain.

    What is a simulator must be defined. Who will do it and how ? I have no idea, it is definitely not going to be me :lol:, I am just expressing the idea and opinion. But those blurring edges, and all the kool guys disappearing from active communities not going to result in good ways.

    Oh damn.... wall of text again.... I am really sorry, will have to write a book I guess :D Sure with more careful wording grammar, style and so.... ok just joking no one would read :lol: (sincerely disappointed that I couldn't express myself in much shorter way)
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2018
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  4. AccAkut

    AccAkut Member

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    I honestly can't comprehend what you're trying to express here
     
  5. mantasisg

    mantasisg Active Member

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    Maybe too much text, or you just don't actually care.
     
  6. AccAkut

    AccAkut Member

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    I do care, or else I would not have replied at all. But from second half of the second paragraph, when you suddenly start writing about political correctness the text basically turns to gibberish, I have no idea what you trying to express, its a big block of text that even after repeated reading does not make sense to me.

    I can just guess from the start of the post, but do you think racing sims are on purpose made "easier" to cater a wider crowd? That the developers could with ease just apply all the right real world equations but choose to not do that?
    It's not that easy.
    I studied engineering, I worked in tire testing, and what you learn early on is that every equation and model is ALWAYS an approximation, only applicable for certain conditions and subsets. Applied Mechanics, Physics, Chemistry, Thermodynamics, doesn't matter. You are always breaking down reality to observable and calculate-able chunks, and equations give the right results if you are inside the right conditions. Newtons Law's only work in specific frameworks, the "Ideal gas law" even tells in its name that it's not "true" but usable in most applications.

    Tire physics? There are no "true" tire physics, today's tire developers would not shred hundreds per day on test facilities if there was one "real model" they could just feed with numbers and create the perfect tire with. Subsets and subconditions, of course, there are simulations for them. But one tire developed according to such a sim may turn out totally shit in conditions outside the simulation.

    And remember, this is all before we come to real time ability of such a simulation, which is the main problem Stefano, Scawen and all the other devs have to circumvent.

    This is all i can say, as I tried reading your post again now, and got a headache now. Please don't take the whole sim racing zoo so serious, treat it as a hobby and have fun, as that is all that matters.
     
    garyjpaterson, luchian and paul_wev like this.
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