Those of you that know me will understand that i am not really a forum user. I tend to avoid them where possible as many of the threads and posts turn into unconstructive criticism and results in the use of language that would make Frankie Boyle/Chris Rock and Roy Chubby Brown blush and proclaim .... "<stiffUpperLipAccentricBritishAccent> oh, that's just nasty </stiffUpperLipAccentricBritishAccent>".
Despite my motives for ignoring forums, rF2 has got me infront of my keyboard to express my sheer delight at what ISI are doing.
Back to the topic! For years i have been very unhappy with the state of sims primarily based on the FFB quality and more importantly, the un-direct nature of the steering system.
Why? We are not sat in the car, so we dont have the chassis torsion and movement to base to understand what the vehicle is doing, we only have one device, a FFB wheel. So why then is FFB the most overlooked, poorly modelled part of a 'sim'.I wont dwell on them here as the subject has been done to death, but a few things worth mentioning include. 1. resistance to turn the wheel left or right is not FFB. 2. Canned effects are misinformative and if switched off can give a driver an advantage because he is not responding to info that isnt really happening on track.
RealFeel, was an eye opener for me, because it connected the controller to the wheels, and instantly showed me that most mods in rF1 where badly modelled. I am not saying i could do it better myself but as a modding enthusiast, digging around and using ReelFeel is a great way of highlighting that many times, the steering/suspension/tyres never came into contact with one another. The 'Spiking' felt was simply the rF engine desperately trying to understand the mess on these poor mods.
One major advantage of turning it on was the increased responsivness of steering. It reacts much faster for me, and i am unable to drive 'standard' ffb now because it feels slow in comparison.
Realfeel simply tells you what the wheels are doing, so that left me driving mods that were constructed well, which unfortunatley are few and far between. The problem is then, that you can get a dead feeling, why? a few reasons include, 1. the tyre model of rF1 is not good, 2. Tracks, for the most part, are very smooth.
What do i mean by that? Every sim out that there (and i am including other sim titles/mod combinations) will allow me to literally take my hands from the wheel down the straight, sip tea and perform brain surgery in a clam and collected manner, before returning my hands to the wheel, getting comfortable in my seat and braking for t1.
I myself had 'given up' on sim racing due to it all feeling very dead behind the wheel.
Returning to my dislike of internet forums for a second, one of the others reasons for this include that it is opinion based. While i personally like reading and gathering opinions, to consider different angles and ponder a new approach i had not thought of before, many times opinions get in the way of facts.
So lets look at a few,
What is it that we need from a future sim in terms of driving feedback ?
No effects, what are the tyres or suspension/chassis actually doing?
We must have the wheels connected to the controller.
Tracks are not smooth.
Anybody who has driven on a race track will know that running on to a kerb or off road, shakes your teeth out and makes your eyes vibrate in your head like you have just recieved a tazer hit to the temple. When you come back onto that track you are convinced you have damaged the car in some way, or taken some life out of it.
I appluad ISI on this single subject and i am very worried that changes will be made to numb down the vibrations/or hard code in a damper.
The thing is, we desperately need to feel every track surface change, undulation, bump because, simply put, it is that way in real life. I hope it is an area that gets even more attention, joking for a second, i want to be able to drive over a coin and be able to proudly announce on teamspeak which way up it was.
Seriously though, as dynamic tracks surfaces and weather gets developed and come into play more and more we will need as much information as is possible. We need to know what the car is doing, and what it will do next in a forever changing environment. This really is critical to .. well, dare i say it.....driving.
rF2 has moved on leaps and bounds in this department and it is a pleasure to finally return to a hobby that i love, and its all because, for the first time ISI have made us feel more connected to the car. The car is alive.
So, to ISI, please keep this the way it is and don't disconnect us from the car. On my knees, i beg you.
To the community, please consider what i have wrote constructivley and think about making rF2 and future isi titles ahead of the curve, chasing the limits of what a sim can be while others make games to please the majority.
Thanks for your time and effort.
-Ian (G25 User)