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Velo
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damn cyclists


« on: October 12, 2011, 08:09:53 PM UTC »

Just gone live, interesting thing IMHO

http://www.wmdportal.com/

community supported sim development...
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slaWter
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iRacer


« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2011, 08:17:04 PM UTC »

Tried it today. Huge performance hog. Of course without a SLI profile.

It's very obvious that the base for this title is SHIFT 2. It even has it's strange menu navigation in some areas. This also means that is has SHIFT 2's horrible control/input management. I haven't messed with it much but it's not easy to get your wheel adjusted right. If this want's to be a sim like iRacing, a proper calibration method is a must!

Visuals are nice. That's probably the key feature of the current build Wink Although I had corruptions in DX11. Tracks aren't laser scanned but they just announed 4 UK based tracks what will be laser scanned. Cars are highly detailed as well.

It has a lot of potential. But I'm not sure what their target group is: mass market (with a console version) or hardcore PC simmers. Given their recent history, I'd say the first...
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2011, 10:06:53 PM UTC »

Yeah I think they are a bit too focussed on the eye candy, but there seems to be a true interest to get the physics right.

I lurked the whole thing on the nogrip forum when it all started, some sparkle there.

For now I am impressed with some aspects of the handling, but it is ridiculous: even when set all to absolute minimum, fps are really low compared to every other sim, there is something just not right there. And since the handling is obviously related to the fps: Houston we have got a problem....

Oh, and what do you mean recent history, they are independent (I hope lol)
I give them- him- Ian Bell the benefit of the doubt but hey I'm a sucker :)
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slaWter
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« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2011, 04:27:21 PM UTC »

No the devs have a huge history. It started all great with the really good Simbin Games like GTR and GT Legends. But their most recent projects like the SHIFT series wasn't all that great from a sim racer's point of view...
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slaWter
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2011, 03:28:41 PM UTC »

More feedback from my short test session this week:

-Looks beautiful with stunning car models. The reason everyone got excited even for such an early build Wink
-Tracks not accurate at all, but they just announced that four laser scanned UK tracks will join the service.
-Performance hog. Not optimized at all and of course no SLI profile yet.
-Graphical glitches in DX11 mode for me. DX9 was fine.
-Can't hide its SHIFT 2 roots: this starts with the less than optimal menus and ends with the still a bit floaty handling.
-Unfortunately, this also means that the horrible wheel "calibration" menu is in there. Nearly impossible to get a 1:1 calibration done. Also no proper support for load cell brakes.
-Strange car sounds.
-So-so Surround support: lots of FOV settings for each camera but it's not possible yet to switch back to a single screen, fullscreen resolution with blacked out side screens. The game will start completely stretched. I had to play in windowed mode or disable nV Surround completely.
-No independent screen rendering.
-SHIFT 2 like handling, not as bad though. But I need to give it another go after spending a few hours tweaking the controls thanks to the horrible calibration method.


At this point it's definitely not worth trying it. Save the money and come back in a few months.

Overall the title has a lot of potential and an impressive feature list but I'm still not sure in which direction it'll go: Mass-Market racing title with a possible console port or Hardcore PC Sim.
I know it's an early version, but I listed some big no-gos when it comes to PC Sims: track accuracy, wheel calibration, bad performance for competitive racing and Surround Support. They NEED to fix stuff like that before they can even think about getting up there to the big players in this genre. The graphics alone won't be enough. Especially with a good looking rFactor 2 just around the corner and a DX11 iRacing version in the early design stages.
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2011, 03:52:33 PM UTC »

Totally agree on all points, a few things worth mentioning tho:
I would quote here but the server is down for the next update - the intention is to make a hardcore PC sim and port it in the final stage to consoles (adding career modes and assists I guess), as confirmed by Ian Bell.

Sounds are going to be improved a lot, there is an impressive list.

You can tweak your wheel settings and that makes already a big difference, for instance there is a devkey (F1) where you can choose hardware instead of software. Combined with the dinput8.dll (from a shift mod) the steering is much more accurate, but visually still suffers from fake car movement.
Also just found where you can edit your controller .xml, have to see how that works out.

Concerning the money: you keep the product when it is finished. If it is a success, you get your money back, maybe even more. So you pay once and you are done. If not a success, not a big loss, you can get in for 10,- already.


My opinion for how the current build is now-
the bad:
horrible framerates, have to set all to "ridiculously low" for triple screen to get 35 fps, barely driveable. Low fps hurts ffb, steering, visuals, lag etc. My biggest gripe. On single screen better fps but this engine needs to be optimized soon.

The good:
really good sense of speed, great vintage cars. Surprised that even with 15 (very stupid, beta) AI hardly any fps drop. Maybe because  that was on 3screen and the low settings helped by reducing the lod on the ai.
Also pleasantly surprised by some aspects of the handling, catching a slide feels natural, nothing like the iRacing slide&goodbye.

Weekly updates, a lot of user and dev input on the forum, it could turn out great.
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2011, 05:14:23 PM UTC »

Interesting to follow the interaction with the devs on the forum, even my little input gave a nudge in the right direction.
The last build feels not bad at all and if the rate of improvement continues like this it could turn out a sim after all.

Fun to see the Stig pop up now and then and read what he has to say about sim and real racing.


* Stig in CARS.png (20.83 KB, 235x229 - viewed 156 times.)
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slaWter
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« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2011, 05:37:04 PM UTC »

I'm definitely going to try another build in a few months, maybe early next year. It should be a good title.
But since it'll be multi-platform, there will always be the chance that they'll get where the big money is and that means mainstreaming it...
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2011, 06:02:29 PM UTC »

Yes I am afraid of that too. Still the intention is to make it a true sim so lets wait and see.
It can look very pretty though, lots of lighting settings in the dev menu. Isn't that very tempting for you, screenshotwise Wink
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slaWter
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« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2011, 06:12:57 PM UTC »

The visuals were the only reason I even tried the first build Wink But without a proper SLI profile, it's nearly impossible to run it in Surround.
It was even sluggish at only 2560x1600.

Did you see any tips/profile values for SLI users in the forum by any chance?
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2011, 06:16:09 PM UTC »

No, what I can recall reading a while ago is that you had to turn it off. Could have changed by now, will see what I can find.
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Velo
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damn cyclists


« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2011, 06:22:22 PM UTC »

search for SLI returned nothing ??? but found this in the graphics faq

Does the game support SLI?
SLI is not yet supported, but the usage of more GPUs is possible with the renaming of cars.exe to AFR-FriendlyD3D.exe.

 Confused
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Gerdoner
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« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2011, 07:29:44 PM UTC »

I take it's still a performance hog?
My system is almost identical to the minimum spec they're quoting and I don't want to waste my money on a slide show :S
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Frank
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« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2011, 11:46:49 PM UTC »

I take it's still a performance hog?
My system is almost identical to the minimum spec they're quoting and I don't want to waste my money on a slide show :S

oh yes, and they do not plan on making it run on lower power machines.

they are however, going to make it easier on rigs with big cpu so that not so much load goes on your pc/gfx card.
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