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Racing Update

August 23rd, 2011 by Troy Goodfellow · 10 Comments · Me

Before I jump firmly back into the loving embrace of Pride of Nations, Supreme Ruler: Cold War, Toy Soldiers: Cold War, Six Gun Saga, Sengoku, Sword of the Stars II and every other amazing strategy game to come out this fall, I should update you on how the racing is going.

Hood Sans Ornament

This is how a lot of my races are ending on my first drive through a new course in Shift 2: Unleashed, which has become my racing game of choice. F1 2010 is what I want to play, especially with the new one right around the corner and looking great, but the map is useless and I don’t know the tracks well enough to do more than get in everyone’s way.

Dirt 3 still looks great, but doesn’t handle very well. I’ve learned just how different driving games are, because while Shift 2 fights me hard and gives me good feedback on traction and corners, Dirt 3 always feels like I am driving on ice, except – as my racing coach and fellow Canuck Jenn Cutter notes – when you are supposed to be driving on ice; then it’s like you are driving on some unholy mess of god knows what.

But I am improving, and a lot of the advice from the comments in the earlier blog post helped. I turned off most of the driving aids, focused on learning the braking lines and sticking to beating my own times, racing against myself. Shift 2 desperately needs stewards or something, because they will penalize you a lap for the slightest cut across the grass but someone can T-bone you into a concrete barrier and no one seems to care. So I may be a little “aggressive” on my starts now.

I have made podiums, souped up my car, beaten proper lap times, raced on Suzuka and Nurburbring. I am getting the hang of this bit by bit.

But it will soon be time for world conquest again.


10 Comments so far ↓

  • Shaun

    You might not want to hear this – but memorizing the tracks is going to be a necessary part of the learning curve.

    Also – are you and geometry good friends? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circle_of_forces

    You’ll know your deep in the rabbit hole when you download MOTEC software to record telemetry.

  • admin

    Oh yeah, I know that I will need to memorize the tracks. But the first time through I would like more than a very inaccurate not quite to scale SURPRISE CHICANE guide.

    Shift 2’s maps are very good for learning the first few runs and then you know the course easily, no matter what. Spinning out onto the gravel or hitting run off areas like I do in F1 is not helping with track recall.

  • Shaun

    One thing I’m very curious about: How is your time with these games changing the way you interact with motorsport? I know this sounds a bit elitist, but I can never get myself to really enjoy F1 anymore – certainly not the way I enjoy endurance races like 24h of Le Mans and touring car races like the BTCC. I’m wondering if a game like Shift 2 actually makes someone want to branch out and watch a GT race or something similar. (If I remember correctly, the FIA has recordings of all their races as well as streaming options at their website.)

    If you feel inclined, there is a lovely weekly podcast that discusses all things racing called Midweek Motorsport. They’re very British. Take that as you will.

  • Kalle

    Car games? Your strategy gaming purity has been compromised.

  • admin

    Kalle, I have been sullied in a million little ways.

    But my armies are calling me.

  • garion333

    Time to bring in Tom to talk about how all games are really strategy games. ;)

  • RiskOnlineGame

    I and my friends thoroughly enjoy this game. It’s one of my favourite racing game with strategy. I have been into it more since the last update. Also its better than Dirt 3 in all those aspects mentioned above and really feels natural while playing. Simply love it.

  • Phil

    No love for Dirt3? I’m enjoying it…except for the gymkana bits. One thing that helped me is to map the e-brake to the clutch. In D3, its not binary, its progressive, and using a button made it uncontrollable. Not sure how it works if you are using a gamepad and not a wheel. Only drag for me if how slow everything works in MP between races. In the races, everything works great, but it seems to take forever to go from checkers to the next race.

    If anyone wants to come do some fun racing, I’m part of a group running Spec Miatas on Sunday evenings at cmsracing.com

    I will say driving game have made me a much more avid motorsports fan, specifically because I understand now more about the strategy involved. Tire strategy, fuel strategy, car setup strategy, passing strategy, etc….before I was just watching cars and rooting for drivers. Now I’m watching how the cars move and thinking about how the teams/drivers are managing the race.

  • Troy Goodfellow


    For me it’s the opposite. I watched racing as a teenager, but never really understood a lot of the strategy, and it was a different era and I had no one to explain much of it.

    But now I can get up early on a Sunday morning, watch an F1 race and get good commentary from the broadcast team, do a search for references I don’t quite get, plus I often have a friend online to help with the hard stuff or explain why something that looked cool really was cool. The changes to F1 rules this year are a part of the package, but now I can look to next year and anticipate how the rules will affect certain teams.

    This made me want to do it – to race and drive and plan a strategy. Soon, I will be good enough I hope. But Codemasters is doing an online game to coincide with F1 2011 – that will help.

    Maybe I will get into touring races next year. Unless I find a really great game on the Peloponnesian War.

  • Venta de Autos y Venta de barcos

    thanks for post I’m wondering if a game like Shift 2 actually makes someone want to branch out and watch a GT race or something similar.