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What league racing got and what it still needs

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by HelplessDeer, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. HelplessDeer

    HelplessDeer Simracer

    Well, as the title says recently we've seen some nice patches aimed to improve league racing, and with that I mean Kunos gave us:

    • A proper way to do pitstops (no more need for pitconfig or clicking, something that gave you a massive disadvantage in league racing).
    • Mandatory pitstop(window), forcing pitstops.
    • Reverse grid races
    • the first baby steps towards driverswaps (let's hope this becomes a thing!)
    • Pretty decent GT3 BoP (will come back to this later)
    All these changes were nice, and some were even unexpected. I know for instance that this helped my fellow moderators over at ACRL a lot, as they no longer have to rely on self-made scripts to do things like the reversal of grids for a 2nd race and checking the server logs to see if someone had pitted during the race.

    But, now that Kunos is seemingly switching the focus from SP to MP racing, I thought this might be a good time to adress some things that are still missing. Also if you have some other things that are missing and can realistically be done by Kunos, please discuss that here as well!

    So now, on to the list of what (I think) league racing still needs:

    • Max cars rendered / visable.
      AC is a great looking game, if not the best looking sim out there (opinions differ on this, but it looks better than rf2 and iRacing combined. PCars vs AC is a preference thing, as both look good in their own way). Problem with the game looking so good is that it takes a toll on less powerful machines. Grid sizes of 40 cars are mostly impossible in league races. Not because of the servers, but because less powerful machines cannot handle the sheer load that is put on them, even on the lowest graphic settings. The max we have achieved is a 35 car Cayman Clubsport grid, at Paul Ricard WTCC. Most people in the back of the grid saw their FPS suffer and drop to about 30-45-ish. Not brilliant.
      To avoid this a Max Cars rendered/Visible option could fix this. Or an option to only render cars within X amount of meters from the player. If the game only renders, say, the 14 cars closest to you, you could make it so that even less powerful PCs can cope with the big grids, because they don't have to render all the cars on the server. This in turn would allow for bigger grids in league racing, making it possible to recreate the big Blancpain grids we see in Real life or make multi class races more interesting, as each class will be able to have more cars in them without affecting the performance of some less powerful PCs.
    • Spectator slots / Race control slots on a server + Instant Replay
      This is a thing mostly for Leagues that like broadcasting their races. It seems more leagues are broadcasting races, ACRL has (almost) weekly broadcasts and with Eurogamer running an official sponsored event, it'd be better to have this ASAP. It is rather annoying that you have to A. Back to Pits as soon as the race starts otherwise you'll be on the grid, potentially a danger to other cars or B not click "drive" so you get ported back to the pits automatically and then potentially miss the start of the race as broadcaster. On top of that if you don't click drive you will have the kunos options on the left hand side of the screen (drive, setup, etc) which doesn't look all too brilliant in a broadcast.
      A Broadcasting slot would fix a lot of this. Not only would it remove 1/2/3 cars from the server and thus leaving more spots for racers, but it would also fix some of the other small annoyances surrounding broadcasting races.
      Instant Replay would help broadcasts out as well, as for now theres no way for broadcasters to go back a couple of minutes or even seconds to rewatch a nice overtake/crash/spin/pitstop whatever.
      Better broadcasts would also mean better (and more?) exposure for AC as a game, potentially converting more people over from other sims... eventhough we're 3 years since release, making people aware of the improvements that AC has seen might just be enough to hook them
      A Race control slot would also work, allowing people to join the server as a Race Controller, potentially enabling the next point:
    • Real time Penalties handed out by Race Control + Instant Replay.
      One thing that is affecting league races as well is that penalties like the standard drive through penalty cannot be handed out during a race, but must be applied after the race in the form of a time penalty. Problem is, this can have a major effect on the results as a DT penalty that had to be served within 3 laps may have potentially dropped someone way back in to the pack and thus would have forced him to overtake other cars.
      Real time penalties would also help with track limits abuse. Currently ACRL is using a special cutdetection plugin to see what cars cross the white line (track limits) in a place and counts all these over the course of a race. This then results in a penalty applied afterwards. If race control / stewards had the ability to hand out real time penalties for track limits abuse, you would be able to punish them directly, and once again not afterwards, potentially having a very different outcome for a race.
      Once again, the instant Replay Feature would need to be available to racecontrol, otherwise they can't possibly make right calls and hand out correct penalties.
    • GT3 Tirewear rework and a pitstop rework
      Tirewear is a massive issue for GT3s. It's actually too low. Soft tires easily last 40 minutes without losing too much pace, Meds easily last an hour and 10 minutes and Hards are obsolete. Like properly useless. There are currently 2 viable strategies for 1 hour races (the standard in GT3 Racing currently) and the strategies aren't decided based on speed, tirewear or anything like that, the only thing affecting it is the weather. Strat 1: Is it too cold for meds? Then you do a 1 stop on softs and pit halfway through the race. Strat 2: Is it too hot for softs? Then you do a fuel only pitstop on meds and pit as late as you can, to maximize low fuel. Cars with a fuel tank in the middle of the car can even do a 1L refuel to mandate the mandatory pitstop, as they lose the least amount of time. Fuel tank in the front (Porsche) will need to do a 70% fuel start + 30% Refuel, to make sure the car doesn't ruin its balance.
      These are legit the only viable strategies for a "standard" GT3 league race. Anything else loses you time as has been proven time and time again the current GT3 Season over at ACRL. Fresh meds won't win you back those 13-15 seconds you lose compared to doing fuel only, and a non-stop on softs ruins the tires. Saying a tire stop is mandatory is not possible, because if you force a guy who is forced on meds due to this car to swap tires, he'll be at an incredible disadvantage to someone whose able to run softs.
      Now complaing is easy but coming up with a solution is harder, there is however something that could work:
      Rework of the pitstop system, making it so that tires are done after the fueling (like in real GT racing) combined with a max fuel tank capacity in the server settings. Currently we are able to set a multiplier for tirewear and fuel usage, so why can't we have a max fuel tank capacity %? If we could set that to 60-65% we could force people in to pitstops and make it so that those who run softs will have a disadvantage because they spend longer in the pits, while the guys who want to double stint tires have the ability to do so, but they will lose some extra time because they can no longer do the mandatory 1L refuel just to obey the rules.

      For the tires I would suggest going back to the old system. Softs as qualiying tires, meds for the 35-40 minute stint and hards if you want to do a double stint. Currently the hards aren't used because they hold no advantage over the meds. If you double stint hards for 90 min you win nothing over meds, because you'll need to refuel anyways. And because fueling and tires are done at the same time you dont lose anything by swapping to a fresh set of medium tires.

      And finally for the tires, stop making them dependent only on the weather. Tires should be a strategic choice as well, not just a temps + car based decision, but also based on what strategy do you want. Currently the Porsche is unable to run softs tires for a stint anywhere (even Monza at 19C), whereas the BMW can do it on almost every track, giving that it's not ~30C or higher. This makes it so that the Z4 can always be the car on the offensive, while the Porsche is always the car on the defensive, making a racing season rather... frustrating for some drivers.
      (also please take a look at the Porsche 911 GT3R tires. It almost seems like the meds have the soft tires temperature curve, whereas softs are supersofts and the hards are the meds, compared to other GT3s, astleast)

    • And finally, BoP for cars that aren't GT3s. For instance the 90's DTM cars are basically 3 differents classes. Same goes for GT2. This might actually the best example of it:
      The BMW, Porsche 2017 GTLM, and Vette + Ferrari are 3 different GT2/GTE eras of GT2 rulebooks. Stop grouping them together or fix them, please. The Vette for instance is waaaay too fast for a 2014 spec car. It's only 0.3 seconds off the GTLM Porsche, while it should be a whopping 2 seconds off its pace, according to the news articles describing the 2016 rules for GTE.
      The 458 GT2 and the Corvette C7R should be relatively close, but even those 2 are about .4 to .5 off eachothers pace. With the BMW being even slower, this makes it so that we had to run super high ballast in the Corvette in the Multi class seasons over in ACRL, up to 50kgs for the C7R. Not the most ideal conditions.
    • I know the focus is on GT3 for Kunos, but please do not neglect your other classes, as those can provide some brilliant racing.
      GT4 also falls amongst that category - The Clubsport and Maserati are quite far removed in pace. Almost a second between them, which is a shame because IRL GT4 cars are the next big thing it seems, providing excellent close racing, thanks to BoP.
    English is not my native language so apologies for any ****ty spelling mistakes / wrong words used. Tried to be as clear as I could here.
    Houskič, TemeASD, Eimantas and 16 others like this.

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  3. baboon

    baboon Hardcore Simmer

    First 3 points I agree, would be nice to have. Lost you then...

    Kunos shouldn't adjust tires to your liking so you can have "strategy" in an 1 hour sprint. They also shouldn't BoP cars from different years or classes or series which never utilized BoP. The Cayman Clubsport GT4 is not a GT4 class car btw.

    I also don't get what you mean with "stop grouping them together or fix them" and what this has to do with a news article.
    SvenUilhoorn and cerebralvortex like this.
  4. HelplessDeer

    HelplessDeer Simracer

    First thing about the tires: There is no strategy atm, that's what I'm trying to communicate. You don't have any strategy choices available to you in the GT3 races. It all depends on the weather and car combo that you're driving.

    With grouping them together I mean that they advertise those 4 GTE/GT2 cars as one class in game (GT2 tag), whilst in reality they aren't. They either have to say these aren't the same class and shouldn't be balanced towards one another, or say they are in the same group and thus we BoP them, but not this half yes/half no situation that we currently have, because that's doing no good at all.
    With that reference to news articles I want to point out that the 911 GTE car is nowhere near the same group of car as the Ferrari, Corvette and 100% not the BMW M3 GT2 car, due to the big regulation changes for GTE cars in 2016

    I also know that the Cayman GT4 Clubsport is not a true GT4 car, yet in many championship accross the globe (not VLN, but French GT, British GT) it is raced in the GT4 class. GT4 dues utilize BoP, and that is done by the SRO motorsport group, the same guys that do the GT3 BoP.
    mtz.enjoi and baboon like this.
  5. kofotsjanne

    kofotsjanne Alien

    I dont think the GT4 clubsport is a GT4 class car. Im pretty sure its a single class race car and has GT4 in its name because its made out of cayman GT4. :)
  6. baboon

    baboon Hardcore Simmer

    You're right with SRO doing the (base) BoP for GT4 but some series may do their own BoP on top of this. Problem for leagues is we don't have the tools to do BoP except for ballast. Would be nice to have some :)

    The GT4 version of the GT4 Clubsport is called "GT4 Clubsport MR" ('upgrade' developed by Manthey-Racing)
  7. Peter Burke

    Peter Burke Racer

    Yeah, the MP friendly options that have been added recently are quite nice additions. Good to see MP league play getting major love.

    Having run with NAGP for almost a full season now; I would totally love to see spectator/broadcaster options. And a "live" instant replay would be epic. So often NAGP broadcasters are saying; "well we must have missed something there" or "something happened to so-and-so, maybe a spin". It would be so nice to have the ability to step back in time and actually see it. That said, I have no idea how it would be done. Beyond my skill level by far. I'll add one more left field suggestion for this spectator mode; PIP. I know that one is a really big stretch, but I said it anyway.
  8. Andy-R

    Andy-R Alien

    Power restriction is the only BoP tool I really crave in AC. We can do a lot with fixed setup, ballast and tyre limitation but adding too much ballast can have undesirable side effects. Oh, I would also really like to be able to limit the cockpit adjustable stuff via fixed setup as well e.g turbo boost percentage & brake bias.
    cerebralvortex and baboon like this.
  9. TRIAS

    TRIAS Racer

    Somehow, I think if all those issues can be addressed - it is in AC2. My understanding is that AC was created by very small team and for obvious reasons they couldn't cover everything, more so to make such an undertaking to change code (without bringin in bugs) at this time to fit all features that you asked for (replay, for instance). So put yourself in Kunos shoes, and it doesn't take a genius to figure out that at this point in time it would make more sense (financial) to keep working on AC2 (with all above mentioned features and some more) then to try to insert those features in AC now (is it even possible at this point without huge effort on their part?). Someone said that AC is like a house with many rooms, some are brightly lit up (physics, tire model), others not so much and some are completely dark (rating systems). What can be changed is BOPing, absolutely agree. I certainly hope that Stefano is taking note on what direction rFactor2/Iracing/Simbin guys are going.
  10. martcerv

    martcerv Alien

    Why are you forcing stops, if you want proper strategy then leave it open unless you want to run forced stops and force of tyres or fuel in the stop. Using 3rd party apps you can monitor who adds fuel or changes tyres, have a league based rule and anyone that doesn't do the mandatory stop is DQ it can be combined with the mandatory stop. I think the current in game mandatory stop is fairly useless for league racing and even pub server races as there is no requirement to do anything other then stop and add min fuel. In a 1 hour race if a stop is not compulsory people will likely run the tyre they can the full stint and here possibly the harder compounds may be needed in some conditions or split the race into a softer compound but in 1 hour its unlikely you would make up the time lost in a fuel stop.

    This mandatory stop would really need more server side settings to make it useful such as forcing rules like, must change tyres, must change compound, cant change tyres, must add min fuel amount, cant add fuel etc. This way we could use the option for league racing and not needing external apps to monitor that all drivers fulfilled the required stop as set out for the race.
  11. baboon

    baboon Hardcore Simmer

    Yes boost would be something. Can ride height be done now with fixed? With some more tools it would be even possible to recreate the rules for the different real series. Maybe even refuel times and such :)
  12. Andy-R

    Andy-R Alien

    Only the cockpit adjustable stuff is missing from fixed setup AFAIK. For a real series application someone might want to force the factory ABS in the Cayman GT4 race car which I dont think is possible ATM. I would use boost limitation more myself, the CTR on low boost would be fun either on its own or with the Countach :D
    baboon likes this.
  13. martcerv

    martcerv Alien

    With fixed setups it would be nice if we could fix min and max limits in setups rather then just fixed or open adjustments. You could then set fuel limits, ride height, aero, boost etc within a set range which would be pretty handy for most leagues or even for other servers wanting to limit adjustments for some cars as a type of BOP for cars. Also limiting tyre choices in fixed setup options would allow using different compounds for some cars but the server side tyre limits mean if 2 or more cars use the same compounds then you must allow or deny it from all the cars not just 1 specific car to run its own compounds.
    baboon likes this.
  14. Andy-R

    Andy-R Alien

    You can limit compound with fixed setup e.g m3, elise and 4c say you want the elise on sm and other 2 on st you can set compound in cfg to open or sm and limit the 1m and 4c to st's via fixed setup. Unless your talking about pitstop, if the 4c and 1m pit they may be free to put sm's on, im not 100% sure about that though.
  15. martcerv

    martcerv Alien

    In earlier builds you could change compounds in pit stops, I haven't tested this recently so not sure how it works atm.
  16. Andy-R

    Andy-R Alien

    oh yeah, same with limited fuel tank. I wonder if it has been fixed now or not. havent tested it for a long time.
  17. Berniyh

    Berniyh Alien

  18. WallyM

    WallyM Alien

    You can't any more.
  19. WallyM

    WallyM Alien

    I like the OP's points about tyre compounds. Everyone seems to end up on the same tyres, implying there are no less-than-obvious strategic choices to be made with tyre compounds.
  20. HelplessDeer

    HelplessDeer Simracer

    Another idea :

    Per car driver aid server settings.

    Currently we can't fully disable the assists for 1 class of cars while keeping it on for other cars, say for instance disabling all assist in the 911 cup car, but keeping ABS and TC for the Cayman Clubsport.
    Unless I'm mistaken and this can now be done with server controlled setups (and without being able to adjust in the cockpit while driving).

    This allows for multi class races with one "pro" group and 1 "pro am" group of cars.
  21. Andy-R

    Andy-R Alien

    Adding cockpit adjustable settings (electronics tab mostly) to fixed setup would do it.

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