McLaren polished

When I wrote the Making-Of for Toro Rosso I already had a second text in mind for the McLaren. However time constraints pushed it back several times. Also I was waiting for somebody to actually ask for it. I ended up sending Mediocre to send somebody to ask, to keep the illusion. I prepared the text anyway. 🙂

This is about the chrome-effect of McLaren. Continue reading McLaren polished

Patch 1.1 Progress part 2

Good afternoon,

Some you may be wondering what is it with the patch, moving arms and what else , when when and when 🙂  Probably you know us well enough by now, that it is done when it’s done, but I’ll give you a little update.

The patch has been in testing  now in the last week(s) or so.  We’ve also had some feedback from top leagues such as FSR since the initial release, such that we have been able to tweak the physics. This has been mainly in the hands of our Physics Guru Michael Borda (aka speed12) , who probably had to endure most of the stresses for this patch,  but ultimately we are limited in resources, and we have no intention of releasing it without feeling the job is done.  Nevertheless,  the iron is getting hot, and the time drawing nearer , so completion looks more likely by the day.

The cars wont feel very different from the base release, it is mostly minor tweaks, but the tyres have had quite a significant overhaul with better heating and tyre wear.   So now you really got to test those componds every race and decide which one works best for you over a stint. 

In addition, the tyre slip curves have been improved with increased resolution, to provide a more precise TC response, this means that both for the non-TC and TC drivers,  this gives a better feeling to the driving experience, however, it has alse been received with some mixed feelings, hence, the TC system is currently being tweaked, and hopefully finalised today. Your previous setups for V1.0 will probably need revising, personally I have found this to be the case.

On the multiplayer side of things,  I have been working on making a compact version of the dedicated server version.  An idea I had some time ago that dedicated servers don’t need to  nearly as big as the actual mod itself, this will make an interesting story that I’ll write about some other day.  However, while this idea is true, it didn’t come witout some issues in testing, which hopefully have now been resolved.  Currently, the uncompressed version of the dedicated server is around 70 Mb, around 10 times smaller than the compressed version of the installer for the V1.0  dedicated server release.  After encrpytion this server size will increase by 20% or so, but still, the dedicated server installation would be less than 100 MB uncompressed.  It is however still in the hands of a few testers, to see if this  idea holds ground in all scenarios, before we can definitely promise this compact version, but we hope so, and it is looking more likely by the day.

This kind of server installation is useless as a client, you simply wont see any cars in the showroom if you tried, it is for the dedicated server only and nothing else.

As said before the moving arms will also be released,  we only need an installer for it, but it will not be on the same day and will not be part of the main installation, but as promised, shortly after.

That’s about it from the CTDP world and patch V1.1.

Thanks for reading 🙂

Numb3rs

I should be working, but I’m procrastinating the half day already, so I continue.

Today we got the 55th league asking for the token. I had no idea, the league scene would be so big and diverse. Gotta say, if we had known, we may have thought of another solution for the token distribution. I didn’t hear alot of questions or complains about its use, but the work involved for us, always copy-pasting the mail and responding is underestimated. 😀 Still we are very happy about the interest, I hope everyone has a great time driving the mod. 🙂

I asked Gonzo for some more statistics. Even if I tried, I couldn’t really figure out how many times the mod has been downloaded. All I know, I seeded 31 copies, in other terams 29 GiB. So while thereal numbers can only be guess work, Gonzo has the numbers from his server, which hosted the mod and had a traffic of 3242.23 GB for all december. This equals in 2400 complete downloads on this server alone and not counting torrent seeding.

So much for dry numbers. How about you, how many laps have you coverd in the mod? How long do you drive usually? Any guesses? 🙂

Music, the great recipee for taking a break from all your troubles

Ok first the real news: Soundtrack of CTDP 2006 is released

Lars did all the music in the mod and put them all in a cool netrelease. We didn’t include all of them in the release of the mod, more will be included with the path 1.1. So if you want to hear them all here. I really like, that he put it under Creative Commons-license, so feel free to remix. 😉

On other news. Well there is not much.
Of course, right before the release of CTDP06 and the imidiate weeks afterwards had alot to talk and write about. In January for many of us real life kicked back in, for me in way of exam weeks and now my Bachelor thesis. Alex has been working alot on the patch. I’m not sure how much there is to do yet, obviously it will need some testing before it gets released. Looking at the changelog, it’ll deserve the term “patch” 🙂

Marco, Mediocre work on 1994, but you know, since they posted here before. Andy while taking a small detour from modding formula-cars and working on a fantasy touring-car project and on the new Bahrain-version. There our biggest bottleneck is the lack of more trackmodders. Our call for help with the AIW wasn’t really successfull, so work is a bit slow. Another bottleneck being, that we lack a good helmet-modeller. Our helmets for 1994 need more attention and while Marco is doing his best, somebody who knows what he is doing would be very helpfull right now.

So much for today, I go back to catching up with work and life and listen to some music.

Oblique cars in multiplayer

This is about an issue that has been reported several times in very many occasions. We’d like to take the time now and talk about the problem. It has been reported, that sometimes during online races the cars begin to drive oblique. This looks very strange and obviously neither good, nore realistic.

© Maranellofan

The issue, that cars begin to lean to one side during online gaming is known, but unfortunately, that’s not an issue we are responsible for, but a bug or rather a shortcoming of rFactor.
You see our mod has one of the most advanced physics ever developed for rFactor. Our physics-guys went into great length, to use every option available to simulate the driving as realistic as possible. We are at a point, where we touch the limits and unfortunately this tilting is one sign of rFactor giving up on us.

Basically it is caused by 3 factors:

  1. the damper settings. We have the option to either use unrealistic values to workaround a graphic-bug, or keep the realistic physics and accept the bug, which is only caused sporadically. We chose the latter.
  2. the setup: It’s not really clear how, but the setup has some influence on the problem, but it doesn’t cause it.
  3. the track: The modelling-detail of the track-mesh influences how precisely rFactor can calculate the correct position of the car-model on the track. On tracks with low surface detail, low face count and large faces, the scanning looses precision and can also cause this bug.

Obviously, we are not happy about this either, we were in contact with ISI, but obviously they won’t fix it untill a possible successor of rFactor. We also can’t do the track-modelers/-converters job, to deliver good tracks, who don’t cause problems. Also, as far as we know, we are not the only modding team having this issue.
So you have the option: either accept the bug or check for damper-settings in the physics files, play with the values and find a change, which avoids the bug, but still gives you tolerable driving.

CTDP 2006 V1.1 patch progress

I am back in full swing after an extended Xmas vacation.  We have had many reports about things from various forums, some of these things we fix.  In some cases  we’ve ignored  requests if they are not deemed serious enough, or they are simply too much work at this stage, that is mainly things like an extra or new feature.

In spite of that a substantial amount of work has already been put into the patch.  For sure we hope that we will have addressed ALL the serious issues in the new version, with a few more minor things and extra requests thrown in as well. 

I hope to see this patch close to finalisation at the end of next week ready for packaging. I still have to check with some of our physics guys how much there is to do, so it is an approximate figure, but for sure we are not talking months but weeks/days.

We now all have other things to work as well, so ultimately we have to draw the line on CTDP 2006  mod, that was such a joy, but at some point we have to say “END IT”  Hopefully that will be the 1.1 patch.  A v1.2 would only address anything that was overlooked in 1.1, or gone seriously wrong  i.e. mistakes that are “crtitical” but hopefully a 1.2 will not be needed.

I made the 3D arms addon too, so that will be ready around the same time as this patch. I have send them to one external tester to try out already, he reported no bugs in an earlier version I sent. so that addon will be delivered too.

Fattura del Toro Rosso

I have been asked nicely and because I liked the idea I proceeded and wrote a little Making-of for the Toro-Rosso livery. I’d like to explain a few things about the way I made it. The car got alot of my intention, because by the time I made it in late 2006 there were very few good STRs done and so I was challenged to recreate the car as authentic and as high-quality as possible. Here is the full story with full-size illustrations.

Continue reading Fattura del Toro Rosso

League physics requests

I have been sending out the league-physics-token in the past 2 weeks. I got more than 35 requests and I got a few things I’d like to ask for:

  • Please don’t write more than one mail. I can’t check every name and every address if I already send it, if you are already in the list or if you are new.
  • Please don’t hurry! I am a busy man and it may take 1-3 days to respond. So hurrying, won’t get you faster.
  • Talking to other members of CTDP may get you a file, but at the end it will be confusing, because I can’t check who already got the token, who mailed for it.

I caught up with all requests so far. Please mail me again, if I haven’t responded to yet.

Thanks for your attention!

Templates & Viewer release

Ok, took a few days, but I finally finished work on the templates. This involved 3 parts:

  • The templates itself is an archive with all psd-templates for all cars (all teams + SA06 and Safetycar).
  • The viewer, which is the ISI gMotor Viewer from the SDK. We included Scene-Files for our cars, so you can preview your textures in the actual game engine.
  • Documentation about the templates and the viewer.

I order you to paint, I want to see great cars! 🙂