Keeping up With….Everything that’s New In Project CARS 2

Ever since the first Project CARS 2 video trailer and first gameplay footage has hit the net yesterday, bits and pieces of information on the new title have been floating around the internet.

If you’ve lost track of all the new info, here’s a rundown of new features & improvements that Project CARS 2 will deliver, based on what we know so far.

Content

Project CARS 2 will come with 60 tracks, all of which are powered by the title’s new Live Track 3.0 technology that allows proper simulation of all seasons (including heavy winter & snow!).

Unlike other titles, these weather effects will be available on tracks accross the board as players are not limited to enjoying these challenges on only a few particular venues.

New additions to the Project CARS franchise are build on scan data that has been accquired using high-end drone technology. Several of the venues available in Project CARS have been rescanned as well for improved precision.

In terms of cars, Project CARS 2 car roster is expanding to 170 vehicles with a focus on motorsports and the most iconic cars that have competed in each decade & form of racing covered by the title. While a bunch of new additions have already been revealed in the first trailer, the studio still has most of its major lincensing aces up their sleeves, to be revealed in the coming months.

The vehicle choice will not only expand in numbers but in variety as well as brand-new disciplines such as rallycross and the much-requested oval racing are joining the franchise for its second installment.

Graphics

Despite Project CARS already having set a new standard in terms of graphics quality in the sim genre, Project CARS 2 is beefed up in this area as well with comprehensive VR & 12K support as well as proper triple-screen functionality for those who have not yet joined the VR hype.

Other graphic improvements include much more detailed track environments as well as much-improved performance on AMD cards, a common complaint with the title’s first installment.

With the eyes having been taken care off, the players’ ears will be enjoying an all new fmod-based sound engine equipped with custom plugins to bring enigne sounds in Project CARS 2 to a new level.

Online

Project CARS 1 has been at the forefront of popularizing eSports in racing games thanks to a strong partnership with ESL as well as manufacturer-backed competitions & several official leagues that offer high-quality racing.

These aspects will be strengthened in Project CARS 2 as league creators will be given all-new tools to organize their leagues and create professional-grade broadcasts to entertain their audience.Users can take over dedicated Director & Broadcaster roles that will allow anyone to create professionally-looking online race coverage complete with data overlays, commentary & more.

Online play is further strenghened by a new Online Championship Mode that allows easy creation of leagues and results tracking while a sophisticated driver rating & licensing system will make sure to pair up players of similar skill to ensure clean online competition.

Physics & AI

Offline racers can look forward to a more lifelike AI as well as all-new pad controls for the console crowd that have been built from the ground up to make Project CARS 2 a satisfying experience on all platforms and control methods. Wheel users will be happy learn that comprehensive improvements are coming on that front as well.

And last, but definetely not least, Project CARS 2 will of course also improve on the physics end with a further evolution of the title’s bleeding edge tire model that is fine-tuned by an ever-growing army of professional race drivers that are providing feedback to the SMS development team.

So……When?

The studio is aiming for a Septemberish release, with the official release window being „Late 2017“.

A more precise release date will be revealed at a later date, alongside plenty of other features & additions that are yet to be revealed by SMS.

GTOmegaRacing.com

  • http://www.simrace.pl/ rauf00

    Deja vu. From French is the phenomenon of having the strong sensation that an event or experience currently being experienced has already been experienced in the past.

    • punkfest2000

      yup deja vu – you’ll be buying pcars 2, just like you did pcars 1

      • http://www.simrace.pl/ rauf00

        already did 😉

      • noroardanto

        Is it significantly improved from pCARS1 in terms of FFB feel, engine sound and UI?
        One of the main problems with pCARS1 must have been the termination of the first WMD system by authorities, so SMS had to develop the game with less than expected budget(?)
        Now that SMS developing pC2 with more predictable budget/resources, I hope the final results will be much closer to what have been “advertised” so far

  • Kondor999

    I like the focus on race machinery. Leave the street cars for Forza and GT.

    • HardRock

      I hope they kept the street cars from pCARS 1 though. The Caterhams for example, and some of the supercars were great fun.

  • Dan Webber

    Septemberish, so they really mean march 2018 then

    • HardRock

      It would be fine by me. Looking at the recent videos and pictures, the list of new features (finally an online license!), they can take all the time they need to get this right. 🙂

  • Dab o’ Oppo

    Translated: it will be released mid-2019 with AI cars that experience no loss of performance in adverse weather. snow will be promised for a later release then quietly abandoned when they encounter the first setback in implementing it. NSX GT3 car will be available as part of a $20 DLC pack bundled with 5 identical versions of the Toyota GT86. And oval racing still won’t happen.

    • HardRock

      I don’t know, they seem to have implemented snow and ice quite well already: http://www.virtualr.net/watch-new-project-cars-2-ice-racing-footage

      I think you forgot that this time around they had a base to build on with pCARS 1, so while the new features and promises are many, they had working systems they could tweak and build upon, which is much easier than starting from scratch.

      • Dab o’ Oppo

        They had working features in early builds of PC1 including ovals that were cut later.

      • HardRock

        Indeed, however working doesn’t mean that they were up to the quality standards of the rest of the game. Quite a few tracks were cut from the initial release version, because they were far behind the others in terms of detail, including the ovals and some of the historical tracks IIRC (definitely classic Spa). As someone who played builds from the beginning trust me, it was better that they were left out and released as DLC later (very reasonably priced as well if you ask me), as they wouldn’t have done the source material justice at the time the game was released.

        Specifically for ovals, I think they were not released at all in the end because the AI probably isn’t up to some well-mannered oval racing in pCARS 1. Hell, with open-wheel cars they are a menace on other racing circuits as well. For oval racing you have to minimize contact, and that wasn’t a strong suit of the pCARS 1 AI at all, and I say that as someone who generally enjoyed racing them.

        So things were cut because game development rarely goes smoothly, schedules changes, priorities shift constantly. In case of pCARS 1, the switch to the SETA tire model mid-development alone meant a huge delay and shift in focus, but I think the game got better for it in the end, as this way the artists had more time to spruce up the tracks with even more detail as well, not to mention the improved car handling in the end.. Unfortunately it had its downsides also, choices like this are rarely all positive. The extremely detailed tire model had to be simplified for the AI (there are no PCs even today that could handle it with 20+ cars on track), which is partly why they weren’t affected the same way as the player was in the rain.

        I think you should also consider, that with the fairly open WMD development model the public saw a large amount of content they wouldn’t have with a standard, closed development models. As someone who worked in game development I’m a 100% sure all of your favorite games had tons of content cut from them before their release, you just don’t know about it. Ignorance is a bliss and all that.

        With pCARS 2 though SMS could take what they had in the previous title and work on what was missing, including the shortcomings of the AI and to bring back tracks and cars planned for the first game. They had a base which I think worked very well in specific circumstances, and they had roughly 2.5 years by the time of pCARS 2’s planned release to improve on it. If you take a look at SHIFT 2’s graphics engine, which served as the base for pCARS 1, I think you’ll see why I and many others are optimistic about SMS’s ability to do an awesome job.

      • pez2k

        Yeah, the oval AI wasn’t near release-worthy at the time of the content freeze, and as far as I saw it that knocked the tracks down the priority list for being finished up, so they were eventually cut as they needed art work plus the AI work that other tracks didn’t.

      • Dab o’ Oppo

        All of which is why I’m worried this is going to repeat the same mistakes of Project Cars 1. In PC1 they tried to bite off way more than they could chew, hyped up things they couldn’t deliver on, and left the thing with a still crash-happy and weather-impervious AI once they got distracted with collecting donations for the sequel. And now for the sequel, we’re being promised an even more extravagant overly-ambitious moonshot of different directions and cutting-edge, groundbreaking, trailblazing new features.

        Having snow, dynamic seasons, off-road surfaces, etc alongside a traditional pavement circuit racing game is a hugely ambitious goal. The physics demands of handling that range just boggles the mind. It would be a serious challenge to the most established veterans of the genre. With Project Cars, you have an outfit that wasn’t able to master AI on road courses, couldn’t make ovals work at all, and struggled to have the AI realistically simulate the adverse impact of simple rainfall and wet track surfaces. I would expect the first sequel to focus on fixing those glaring issues, then moving on to the next step once they’ve mastered that. Instead, they’re promising to add even more complexity before demonstrating that they’ve addressed the things that were too complex for them the first go around. That’s concerning.

      • HardRock

        If by saying “hyped up things they couldn’t deliver on” you mean the cut content, I think I already mentioned you could only see most of those because the WMD community was allowed to share their enthusiasm for them in public videos. The pre-alpha tag wasn’t just for show in those videos. IIRC at no point was it ever promised that everything you could see before release will be in the game at the time of release or later as DLCs, although the vast majority of content and features did make it in the end. Obviously that was the plan though, because otherwise the time and money spent on licenses and developing features were wasted, but like I said, plans change, game development isn’t exactly the linear process most people imagine it to be. A more open development like WMD shows this in detail and sometimes I really feel that the general gaming public really needs to learn to manage their expectations better before they are ready to see behind the curtains.

        As for the new features in pCARS 2, yes, they will be challenging to do and I’m sure they won’t be be perfect right off the bat, but the trend in sims is moving towards dynamic environment and tracks (which I welcome wholeheartedly) and so personally I don’t feel like SMS is promising anything that the competition isn’t also working on. You can argue that they have issues to fix, which I agree with, but so do they: http://www.virtualr.net/andy-tudor-sounds-off-project-cars-2

        If you check out the many recently released new gameplay footage on YouTube it’s quite obvious that the AI is already much more well-behaved than in pCARS 1. Only time will tell though how they behave in vastly varying conditions, that much is true, but the progress is already quite apparent if you are looking for it.

        Talking about dynamic conditions, in pCARS 1 the apparent lack of adverse effects on the AI in the rain (they ARE actually negatively affected by it) isn’t due to AI proving too complex for SMS. It was mostly down to two factors, lack of time and lack of system resources. Like I mentioned, the complexity of their new SETA tire model (which was probably the best thing that happened to the sim) meant that using it in full force for the AI was out of the question due to how CPU intensive it would have been, so they went with a simplified version, which was affected differently by the rain. Balancing the two was time consuming and in the end, depending on the car and exact conditions the AI was left with an advantage. It’s very unfortunate, I agree, but the choice was between keeping the previous tire model that often didn’t produce the desired output or being honest about it and moving forward with a new one, that allowed them to do so much more. It wasn’t complexity for complexities sake, in fact like I mentioned the tire model was simplified for the AI and some of its advanced features were left out even for the player’s car. The goal was to make the sim better and more accurate in many regards, in the time constraints they had. Choices like this are often a compromise however, even if you have the best intentions, something will suffer.

        About ovals, the situation was similar to what happened with the AI. Lack of time meant that the tracks and the stock cars simply weren’t ready, but in addition to that there was also the feeling that there simply wouldn’t have been enough content anyway to flesh out this part of the sim, so the team started to focus on the core features instead and ovals were left for the next title.

        In conclusion, personally I feel that you are misrepresenting quite a few things about SMS. First of all, they are absolutely veterans of the genre, which is quite apparent when you the chance for a conversation with them day to day about their sim. The people they have really know their stuff. They weren’t afraid to cut back on features when necessary, but they were also pushing the envelope when possible. The issues with pCARS 1 aren’t due to lack of effort or competence, but due to the realities you have to face when you don’t have infinite resources. You can argue that they don’t have your exact priorities or that you don’t like the end result, but saying that they are not capable of admitting their mistakes and improving on what they have is flat out wrong.

      • Dab o’ Oppo

        By hyped up things they couldn’t deliver on, I’m referring to things like how directly on their website, in announcing the Indy 500 -leaving aside the oval aspect for now since we’ve addressed that already – they also promised in clear, unequivocal, precise terms that it would feature all drivers and cars from the 2015 season. Instead we got fake, not-even-replica liveries, fake names, generic 2014 Dallara bodywork, and a single generic engine.

  • Captain Stabby

    Interlagos is going to be in possibly not on release but DLC

    https://www.gtplanet.net/interlagos-coming-to-project-cars-2/

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