Latest Roadmap Update - April 2020

Discussion in 'News & Notifications' started by Christopher Elliott, Apr 30, 2020.

  1. Mibrandt

    Mibrandt Registered

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    From Marcel: https://www.racedepartment.com/threads/rfactor-2-the-big-interview-part-4.170419/page-2#post-3006054

    He also said somewhere that the team is roughly 50/50 between content creators and coders. So its pretty obvious there must be roughly 14 other coders.
     
  2. TJones

    TJones Registered

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    With about 30 employees you count everyone who works at S397, only a part do content creation and coding. I bet there are not more than 5 or 6 fulltime coders.
    There may be also a few, who work for limited time though.
     
  3. vittorio

    vittorio Registered

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    I know a lot don't like what i am saying now. But, if you want faster coding or modding (like AI corrections, new UI, new competition system, new PBR system, new cars and tracks) you have to pay more so S397 can get more coders and modders.
    I even don't understand that S397 can keep themselves alive at the moment with that less income (probably still cross-financed by Luminis).

    Just look around in sim universe. iRacing gets a lot of money by DLCs and subsriptions, there's even no discussion. Reiza and Kunos get money with new sold titels and all new sold DLCs. While in rF2 your up to 8 year old licence still works and all content is still compatible. Buying all rF2 DLCs probably is in the range of €50-100 (don't know)

    So, for faster progress S397 have to make more money (maybe even a chicken/egg problem) But I say it again, I would even pay €20-50 for a high quality historic car DLC by S397.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2020
  4. LokiD

    LokiD Registered

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    As much as i agree to your post somewhat @vittorio the partnership with mclaren has got to be worth a bit. They must have other partnerships. maybe fanatec?
     
  5. vittorio

    vittorio Registered

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    When looking at rF2 user statistics (like you get from steam databases), and comparing it to Kunos AC or ACC, which userbase is factor 10 higher. Or told by a friend with connections to iRacing, which userbase is alot higher too, lets say factor 10.

    I question: How can rF2 even survive. Lets not look about iR, we all know they probably make most money. So lets take a look at Kunos. Users paid a license for AC and ACC. While rF2 users only paid one license since ~8 years, so from early 2012. Kunos AC was released in end 2014 so ~5 years ago, and within that ~5 years users had to pay for already two licenses. AC and ACC.

    The same is true for content you bought. You can't get content you bought for AC to ACC. While every content for the last 8 years rF2 exists still is compatible and it was always a high priority for S397 to keep content compatible.

    But, still my question is. How will S397 make money, compared to other sim creators?
    (I expect rF2 to be actively developed for at least more 5 years. So no income in licenses. My only answer to that question without license incomes like by releasing rFactor3 is, by increasing the prices of DLCs. Even more if you want to increase development speed. As i said, i would even pay €20-50 for a high quality historic DLC by S397)
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2020
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  6. vittorio

    vittorio Registered

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    @LokiD Regarding partnership to McLaren, I have no clue. But what do you expect, McLaren cross-financing S397? For sure not. Maybe there is some agreement between McLaren and S397. Like, you give us a platform for eSport simracing with highest and unmatched simulation quality, we give you licenses and data for some cars.
     
  7. Yigit Yusuf Mutlu

    Yigit Yusuf Mutlu Registered

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    We are all here rf2 enthusiasts.
    If other sim racers see the development, more will come for sure, but before simracers come, you must show better things to them. I appreciate what s397 does to rf2, but the core code, the isi code is better all the other titles, the development here is so slow, the content is divert the ugly ones ( old content) and the beauty ones ( sebring and lemans), the updates alleays fixes one but at the same time bugged another one ( ai degretation, the boo to gt3 make gte’s rubbish etc)
    These fixes should be faster, like hotfixes as reiza and kunos do. I give the acc and ams2 examples cause of that, they fixed the game fastly if sth is broken.
    I know we all in hard times because of covid, but hey everyone is inthr same situation.
     
  8. Mike Cantwell

    Mike Cantwell Registered

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    I am looking forward to Portland. A favorite track from IndyCar Racing 2 days.

    Hopefully by June or July we may see some normality return to the world.
     
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  9. stonec

    stonec Member

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    My guess is it will survive more or less fine, otherwise signing deals for new content would make no sense. Steam is probably the number one reason a lot of these smaller titles and niche titles like sims can still exist. Even if Steam takes 30% of the revenue, having your game on Steam adds so much more visibility, you are basically guaranteed to have at least some flow of new customers every month.

    In case of rF2, it's probably not the base game so much, but DLC's that generate most revenue I would imagine. Even if you don't produce any new DLC, there is a certain inflow of cash from people buying old DLC's. For example, if you make a game with only one DLC, you are not getting very far, but say you add that up to 10, you may have that same customer buying maybe not all 10, but most of the DLC's, thereby you suddenly increase sales per customer significantly. Also this is where DLC price comes in, they may increase the price, but it might not be the right move if the customer now decides to buy fewer DLC's and get less invested in the game

    I'd like to see an rF3, but I don't see it making much sense financially the way old games are surviving on Steam, heck, the main competitor for ACC is still AC 1 and it's proven tough to beat that.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2020
  10. vittorio

    vittorio Registered

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    Unfortunately, that question cant get answered. Cause there is no racingsim devteam simulator. But for those ranting rF2 development is too slow it just means there aren't enough coding and modding resources. To archive that means more income for S397 to get more resources.

    So, in the end higher DLC prices. and of course as @stonec said thats not that easy either as it sounds, cause it will for sure mean less will buy DLCs.

    So it could just mean we who love rF2 are just screwed anyway, cause rF2 will die without any chance anyway with that kind of users (just me in pessimistic mode).
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2020
  11. Juergen-BY

    Juergen-BY Registered

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    Maybe it would help rF2 to survive, if someone would build a team of modder, to put all old isi tracks and cars to the actual rf2 level, with permission of s397. could be sold as dlc to help s397, or a kind of crowdfunding...
     
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  12. Comante

    Comante Registered

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    Why do you people still think it's just a money problem? Do you really think that money can solve all the problems?
    Most of you are long time RF1 and 2 users, you should have understood a thing or two about RFactor... right?
    It seems this is not the case.
    S397 took a software that was made by ISI and was evolved and developed in a long timespan. Rfactor was released in 2005, do you really think ISI scrapped it for good when started writing RF2 ? Not at all, the config files tell us a different story. Have you idea in 15 years how many informatic technologies have been developed and deprecated? S397 developer have not made mistery that working on the existing code is pretty difficult and often touching something in a area of the code mangle things in another department. Do you really think that simply putting more hands in the abdomen of a patient can make the it survive? Often is the exact contrary, and I fear this is one of those situation. Being smart and genial and being meticolous and orderly are different things, RF2 code is probably a minefield and those guys are making a lot of effort to defuse them all. Maybe they will succeed, and after that development could really take off, and then yes that more developer could improve pace, maybe things will remain stagnating to our eyes. What I know is that today RF2 is a product I can use and enjoy, when ISI was in charge that was far from true, CTD's were the norm for me. I have faith in the new developers, and I'm not used to look into the pocket of other people. ;)
     
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  13. vittorio

    vittorio Registered

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    @Comante Agree, I am not used (and want) to look into others pocket either, its not my business.
     
  14. Christopher Elliott

    Christopher Elliott Administrator Staff Member

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    I think you should focus on driving and enjoying the sim, leave all the above up to us ;) They need not be your worry.
     
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  15. burgesjl

    burgesjl Registered

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    Well, that roadmap was certainly a bit different.

    I'm not going to lie, as I was reading that, I got quite down about everything. I fully expected the last paragraph to start as follows:

    "Following discussions with management at Luminis, due to current events, we are going to shelve development of rF2 for the forseeable future..."

    Talking about Stefano leaving/not doing sims any more, frustrations with not being able to release cars (content) tied to manaufacturers, frustrations with not being able to release new code, it just seemed that was where it was all heading.

    Having read it several more times, it is in fact much more hopeful than it seemed in that initial reading. The prior Dev video certainly didn't seem to imply impending shutdown, but maybe the boss man knew different from the staff. They seem to be working on new content with new or existing partners, and there has been some nice stuff with the historics/legends series and FE on esports.

    Having said which, there's clearly enormous challenges still. S397 has not been able to take full advantage of the latest surge of interest in esports to get people to actually drive the sim as opposed to watch it, since the UI/competition infrastructure isn't in a position to do so.

    When S397 took over 3 years ago, they inherited an interesting if incomplete code base with some class-leading features (physics/tires) and some enormous holes and drawbacks. Back in 2009, I'd gone with iRacing as my simulator of choice, for all sorts of reasons, some of which are covered in the Dev video about the UI. First of all, it provided a simple "click-and-drive" format without any annoying messing with mod files or obscure settings. I've been reminded of just how nerdtastic rF2 is, since an old buddy of mine has just bought a new rig (PC, high end wheel and pedals) and is taking up sim racing once again, which he last did maybe 10 years ago in NASCAR 2003/Papyrus land. In order to get him going before signing up to iRacing, I'd encouraged him to buy and run rF2. Both have proved a challenge to get him setup and for him to understand the new capabilities, but there's little doubt rF2 was worst; and its the worst of any similar game/sim out there by a long way. Second, it provided a full competition infrastructure environment, without having to manage servers, create leagues/websites etc. which I'd previously done with rF1 and other ISI sims. I was sick and tired of doing that. Having a way to do matchmaking based on skill and bring everyone together was a great thing. Third, it was a completely different feeling simulator from the driving aspect. This carried over a lot of what was good from NR2003 and also GPL; the cars behaved uniquely and each type was completely different. As time has gone by, I've thought very little about the first issue (it just all works with minimal effort) even with their own Beta UI vs old web UI. Sadly the second part has been fragmented with too many leagues undermining the 'official' series, and much of the same in-fighting and politics as I remember from running leagues even in those official series. But I became very disillusioned with the physics and dynamics of the cars, especially the tire model, that racing and driving the cars just was not fun any more. See the Niels H. video for a good introduction to those issues, which I agree with.

    So S397 came along and said, we're basically going to put right the crazy nerdtastic infrastructure, and make it click-and-race. We're still waiting for this to come about, even in offline mode. They've fixed many of the limitations of poor content and graphics, for the most part. Clearly many are not happy with the focus S397 appear to have with developing the online features, over and above the offline ones. But clearly, thats where iRacing have all the competition beat even now; no other sim as anything like the competition infrastructure. It's here I worry about just what resources S397 will really have; I just can't see how they can match or exceed what iRacing have, for either fully hosted 'official' racing or leagues. Even with the new UI finished for all other aspects. And now, I also think they've done most of their aspirational content as well. We've got LeMans (happy surprise), Nurbs, Sebring. There's a few more key tracks that we need good laser scanned versions of, so there's scope here, but all activity seems to have died away from this in the last 6 months. For cars, we've got LMP and GT cars as much as is really needed, and now only lack touring cars for modern series. [I suspect the "new car" alluded to is in fact the Toyota Hypercar, or similar, but given todays announcements I doubt that will ever see a racetrack in anger]. I doubt there is enough development of the "core" sim for offline that can generate enough interest to really make waves; the answer is in the online capabilities. So we wait for those... and my desire to find something to replace iRacing has to wait, as I wait for them to sort out their tire model as an alternate, to get the driving enjoyment I want plus competition with real humans.
     
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  16. Lazza

    Lazza Registered

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    I think you're not the first to express that, but I simply don't get it. There's no hint of frustration in it; it's a monthly roadmap, and if things aren't ready (or able to be released) when a roadmap is written, then it's not ready. It's not a random update.

    These parts: "after another extremely busy and exciting day" "Our track team ... are working on two brand new tracks, as well as a few updates to our existing ones." "Our developers have been testing our new overlay system, making tweaks ..." "We also fixed a few long standing issues with our package management system, ..." "Development on the lighting system is now in a phase where artists and developers are ..." "We are also fixing some smaller bugs and discussing physics improvements." all say one thing:

    It's Go! Go! Go!
     
  17. davehenrie

    davehenrie Registered

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    But all that came after Marcels rather unusual introduction paragraphs. I clearly thought, at first, something was afoot, but by the end of the April Roadmap, it was clear things were moving forward, just not at the pace we'd like.(talk about a run-on sentence!)
     
  18. ADSTA

    ADSTA Registered

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    Marcel was just using the Hollywood script writing formula. A happy ending is the only ending.
     
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  19. MarcG

    MarcG Member

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    Yeah unfortunately for S397 they've slightly missed the boat but there was nothing they could do about that, fact is they have increased in popularity (like all the Sims have) so at least there maybe some new players joining who might stick around, this from Steam Charts shows the increase in numbers this year alone:

    Month - Avg. Players _ Gain % _ Gain Peak - Players
    April 2020 - 700.5 _ +159.7 _ +29.52% - 1,584
    March 2020 - 540.8 _ +90.8 _ +20.18% - 1,479
    February 2020 - 450.0 _ +12.4 _ +2.84% - 1,012
    January 2020 - 437.5 _ -23.4 _ -5.07% - 1,018

    https://steamcharts.com/app/365960#3m
     
  20. hitm4k3r

    hitm4k3r Registered

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    I think rF2 is doing pretty good given the noise/flak that it get's on sites like RD or here in the forum. What I find pretty interesting is the fact, that products like AMS2 that get very good feedback on RD and are hyped to no end have far more worrying player numbers. I know, it's EA and all that but I just hope for Reiza that they can pull this around. Kunos made pretty good progress with ACC the last couple of months, but their biggest problem with that title is AC. It reminds me of rF2 that was released when rF1 was in it's prime time. Raceroom is also doing pretty good right now. But as you said, now it's up to S397 to make those players stick around. So let's hope they don't feck up the UI release and Portland :D
     

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