Archive for August, 2006

gtr2 – first impression

Dienstag, August 1st, 2006

the first impression is, this will be a damn nice game! even if i dislike the new interfaces, the whole interface looks clear, modern and some kind of logical. it is quite hard to tell because a lot of the functions are useless at the moment because there are no tracks nor cars to choose from but the way i have to select which mode i want and which kind of assistance is a little bit hidden but i guess, this has to be done just once. the garage is more scattered than in gtr 1, i really feel a little bit unconfortable with it. configuration of graphics and realism is great, a lot more things to adjust than in gtr 1 and so it is really easy to finetune the game to the current hardware. the ingame graphic is great, even on low spec systems. up to direct x 9 shaders are available and so it is possible to create a really nice looking environment. everything looks great, even on low or med settings, the lighting is one of the best additions overall
the sound is in my oppinion just a disappointment. still no 5.1 support, the whole environment sounds still too synthetic. i am really begging for engine sound on the right place (not in front of me if i drive a rear engine car) and it would be more than great to hear which wheel starts to scream under braking. it is also hard to hear where are the opponents actually. let’s hope there will be an improve until the full version.
simulation – that’s a tough part. my first impression was, closer to reality than gtr1. i never got it why a car with just 30-50 km/h will start to spin if i wave the steering wheel a little bit. i have never ever experienced just a behavior in real life. the next thing i really hate on gtr 1 is, if you know the next curve will be far away from being perfect, the situation was quite lost. there was no chance to ‘trick’ the car around the curve because the car spun or refused to react to steering. with gtr 2 this has changed. you have more opportunity to rescue the situation, even a small drift is possible without loosing the car. compared to real life, this is much closer to reality than gtr 1. i don’t talk about that the simulation is easier now, driving very fast is still as hard as it was in gtr 1. but especially under changing conditions or during light contacts to opponents, the chance to handle the situation is much better now. the next improvement is the tire model. the difference between cold, warm and hot tires is more tangible now and i am really looking forward to the final release with full live track technology to check the difference between being on the line or being off the line.
force feedback – i didn’t recognize any major difference to gtr 1 with my logitech momo racing. still this kinda anoying swaying feedback on straights, raddling and hard one direction force while standing in the box but nice and precise feedback in curves.
performance – as stated above, the range of hardware which is capable to handle gtr 2 is much wider than for gtr 1. i have tested the demo on my vaio 2 ghz/2 gb notebook with an ati x700/256mb (direct x 8 shaders) and it runs fine. depending on the shader level i get up to 60 fps (limited by the display) on 1280×768 widescreen. even with all settings set to max i can play the game with 25-30 fps (cockpit view). keeping in mind that the game looks much better than gtr 1 this is quite qreat. but no apple without a worm, the performance with rain or with headlights is very weak and inconstant with this demo, let’s hope for some improvements in this part for the final version.
motec – the good news, it is still there, the bad news, it still eats up as much cpu power as gtr 1 already did. no whining about that, just to mention it.
3rd party stuff – i’ve just tried the conversion of the nordschleife for gtl and despite some small issues, this track runs fine. the look is great, much more life due the lighting system and better orientation for braking and turn in/out. i really beg for a nordschleife version with life track.

gtr2 demo released!

Dienstag, August 1st, 2006

long time no comments, it’s summer time. so in summer i am always very busy with outdoor activities and especially for the last weeks, it was simply too hot for racing. with more than 30 degree celcius in my room, i am really not in the mood for hours of racing (even if this is closer to a real race car ;). but now it is a little bit colder in germany, i am back from holiday and everything is a little bit more calmy than the last weeks.
i have spent some more time on statistics, because it is my job now, and so i have started to dig deeper into this huge amount of motec data. i have found some very interesting things about analyzing logs so this will be a new section of this page soon (or later, it depends)
another major happening is the release of the demo of gtr 2. i really have to state that i was some kind of excided about this release because i am really looking forward to gtr 2. and i am not disappointed. so there is a short review of the demo in the review section.