Project CARS aims to replace bits and bytes with true character

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Project VROOM

Racing is probably one of my least played game genres. I enjoyed the Need for Speed franchise a while back, but I’ve never been one for the more hardcore side of things. If you are though, you have probably been keeping a firm eye on Project CARS. We caught up with Stephen Viljoen, the game’s director, and picked his brain on the upcoming racing simulator.

I asked Stephen about the game in general, their connection with the professional racing scene, as well as the game’s community. Do excuse my verbal diarrhoea. I like, say like a lot.

For those who can’t watch, I’ll give you a brief overview. Project CARS is a Racing game with its flag firmly planted on  the simulation side of things. Slightly Mad Studios want to provide a level of realism that has never been experienced before. Stephen says that racing is organic, and thus, a racing game should be more than just a bunch of bits and bytes. They are building in a level of character into each aspect of the game. For example, in the real world, there may be a hot track. This in turn will affect the grip of the tyres. Project CARS attempts to encapsulate that sort of realism into its engine.

There are some big racing names helping with development too. For example, Ben Collins, who has not only been a professional driver for years, but has taken the role of Top Gears’ ‘The Stig’ several times. There are also other drivers not affiliated with the development, but that enjoy the game so much that they use it as a form of practice for their races in real life.

The game has been developed with community involvement first and foremost, and would not exist without their constant involvement. The name in itself is a giveaway, as CARS stands for Community Assisted Racing Simulator. Stephen told me how normally, games are developed to the point that they are somewhat playable before developers get the community involved for feedback. This is not the case with Project CARS, which has involved the community from day 1, and had over 80 000 people giving feedback right from the get go. The game is designed by gamers, for gamers.

There is no official release date just yet, as the publishers want to make sure the timing is perfect. The game will be landing on every current gen platform, even the Wii U, which I think is rather nice as Nintendo’s console tends to get little love these days.

As a non petrol head, I can honestly say that I am intrigued. This may be the game that racing fans have been waiting for. It certainly looks and sounds spectacular.

Last Updated: October 14, 2014

Matthew Figueira

Defence of the Ancients? More like Defence of the cabbages! Have you seen my head? I look like a Merino Sheep on pole. NO SHANGE only SHAPPIES! :D

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