You know me, I love my motorsport, I love my cars. And man o man I love my racing games. Formula One has long been my console game of choice, but I’ve dabbled heavily in Gran Tourismo, Forza, and more recently Project Cars – so Assetto Corsa has a lot to live up to.
Like you, I’d never heard of Assetto Corsa. Playing Project Cars really gave me an appreciation for how much detail could go into a Simulator game.
However, with many of these games, my challenge is – I’m time poor. Like the majority of casual gamers, I fit in a few laps between work, family time and more work.
But it’s fun. And yes, I’m pretty lucky to have an amazing Red Bull Racing F1 Playseat and the Logitech G29 wheel.
So I threw the disc into the PS4. First impression – fast. I was able to get started without some long installation period.
What they’ve done is hard installed the base code and a couple of tracks and cars. In the background the PS4 downloads a whole lot more cars and tracks.
The game features over 80 cars – licensed and reproduced in collaboration with the manufacturers. Every one of them have authentic and unique characteristics and handling according to the game makers.
And this is not some multi-national giant corporation. There are at most 20 people working on the development of this game.
Despite their size, they’ve managed to get premium rights from Porsche to use their cars in the game, Ferrari gave them full access to the SF15-T Formula One car, and Red Bull worked with them on a “Red Pack” downloadable content offering featuring the Red Bull Ring track.
They want this to be an accurate simulator – “the best on the market” they say – using their own in-house handling & physics model along with some pretty advanced laser scanning of every square inch of the circuits themselves
Getting into the action is fast. You can jump straight into a practice session where you have free use of a track and car.
You can get into a quick race weekend, or start a whole career. Multiplayer mode is available, though as a preview tester I wasn’t able to get into that in terms of how things would work with others online.
There’s a hot lap mode where you’re racing the clock, time trials and get this – drift mode.
Drift mode is everything I want in a game like this, turn off the traction control and try get your car sideways as much as you can in a set space of time – love love love this.
Out on track, taking a high end Ferrari or a Lotus F1 car around Barcelona or Monza, I didn’t feel the same as when driving in the F1 game, but I did like the steering wheel response more – so I feel they’ve put more effort into the force feedback for wheel users.
The graphics are excellent, track realism is excellent and all car views both inside are out will not disappoint.
Setup can be complex, but for me, I just want to get out on the track. Damage and off in the sand didn’t seem as “real” as in the F1 game, but on track, I do think I got the car more on edge – yet I also found it easier to drive.
A bit of a mixed feeling really. I can’t say which is more realistic as a simulator, but I do think as a “fang around the track” gamer – I enjoyed Assetto Corsa more.
Compared to Project Cars, I think Assetto Corsa has similar handling characteristics, yet Project Cars seems more customisable and overall more realistic.
This is really fine stuff though, we’re debating the difference and benefits between three very very strong racing Simulators.
I’m not going to get caught in the trap of saying one is better than the other. But, What I will stay is that my first hour driving Assetto Corsa was more enjoyable than the same time spent on Project Cars or Formula One 2016.
There’s no story arc to wait through, no complex requirement for setup – you can get straight into the action here.
If you love cars, If you love racing – get Assetto Corsa, enjoy the drive.