Project Cars, as a series, is a strange beast, what started out as a crowd funded game, then became crowd developed, then publisher backed, thanks to Bandai Namco and then released and that entire process took a lot of years, so hearing that the sequel is getting released this year, well that took some convincing and at a E3, I was lucky enough to go Behind Closed Doors to hear what makes the game a real sequel.
With the game coming out September 22nd and to multiple platforms, the team wanted to talk about what made their game one of the top racing games. The series was known for its large track selection in the first game and it now has more tracks to choose from in the sequel, in addition all the weather and day/night cycles work on each and every track, with nothing scripted. On top of that, the seasons are also dynamic, so you can race the same track multiple times throughout the year and end up with a host of different outcomes. For example, when racing closer to the north pole, in the summer months, the sun sits lower in the sky, so while the straight might be exposed to sunlight, the back section of the track, might still be in shadow and as such, covered in ice or some other sort of hazard. Everything that the game presents is done with the teams Livetrack 3.0, so players will have to keep thinking about the weather in addition to everything else.
Each of the tracks that are in the game have been laser scanned, which is standard for all racing games these days, but the team at Slightly Mad Studios are living up to their name and actually sending drones up in the air and capturing the entire course from above, so not only are you getting a millimetre accurate scan of the track, its also the most realistic, because the trees alongside the track are in the same place as they are in real life, even the bloke selling hotdogs on the third straight will be in the same spot. So if you spend a lot of time in game, hitting the track in person will allow you to be able to recognise the elements off the track as well.
Project Cars 2 is also going to add Rally Cross and Indy car to the game as well, bringing even more types of racing into the game was something that they wanted to do, in fact the game even supports multi class racing. Multi Class is where you have people in super sports cars, like Ferrai’s or Porches alongside people racing in their Ford Focus or Toyota Prius, well maybe not the latter, but when you have people in cars of varying classes, you can see some unquestionably cool racing. Of course, as a racer in those events, you only need to worry about the other cars in your class, but if you are in the faster classes, you could be slowed down by a bunch of slower cars, letting your opponent’s catch up to you, so it really will provide a challenge unlike any other.
Finally, the team wanted to bring eSports and tournaments in game, so no longer would you have to deal with creating your own event and managing it externally, the game does it all for you. Once you have created an event, you can send the invite out to players and the game will take care of the rest, even cooler, if you want to broadcast your big race, you can do that with the tools built into the game, including swapping from different camera angles and such, letting the people watching, experience the race from the best view point possible.
With what the team have done, it shows that they have been hard at work in the past few years and while I am not super into realistic racing games, the level of detail being added here, well it still wows me. We will see how it all comes together when the game is released this September for PlayStation 4, PC and Xbox One and the game will support PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X