Handling and Physics
Forza Horzion 3
Now that we gave a thumbs up to Forza Horizon 3 for the graphics part, let’s give it its deserved bashing for the way driving the cars feels. As we said before, it really depends on what you’re looking for in a racing game, but, if you want realistic racing and physics, this game is just not the one to go with. It’s a more arcade like racer, something like Need For Speed or the Test Drive Unlimited games. Some say that the Test Drive games even felt more realistic in terms of handling.
Gran Turismo Sport
Talking about GT Sport, they have willingly set the physics somewhere in between the easier to control for the masses and the racing simulation part, so you can have a good time if you’re a novice and also get a kick out of it if you’re a hardcore racer. There are some real life racing drivers that have achieved this by starting with the GT Academy, like Lucas Ordonez who now competes in real GT races and has taken part in the famous Le Mans 24 hour race.
Project CARS vs. Assetto Corsa
The serious comparison in terms of physics though, should be made between Project CARS and Assetto Corsa. If you’re a die hard racing sim fan, these are the ones you want to choose from. And it will be hard to do so, as both games are very realistic in this department. In both games, you will need to go easy at first and learn how each car works and what its limits are. The cars feel like they’re actually connected to the road surface and the tires play a big part in driving.
Because we can’t bullshit you, we must say that Assetto Corsa has a slight advantage here, in the tire discussion. In both simulators, the tires will impact performance and they get dirty when you go off the track. But, in Assetto Corsa, the car will be very hard to drive until the sand or gravel is cleared from your tires and you only then regain grip. A flaw we’ve discovered in Project CARS is the tire warming effect. In both games, as in real life racing, the car will be very unstable before you get some temperature in the tires. If you’ve ever watched a motorsport race, in any discipline, you have seen the drivers zigzagging on the track in order to warm up the tires. We’ve tried it in Project CARS and it has absolutely no effect. Furthermore, especially in qualifying, the tires will have no grip for the first lap and somehow, mysteriously gain total grip once you start the next lap. I mean, the tires should gradually warm up, but for example, the grip is minimal all through the first lap, even in the last corner, and then, in the first corner of the next lap, you will have perfect grip.
Another good aspect of Assetto Corsa is the damage system. If you hit the wall barriers or another car, it will drastically have an impact on how the car handles, to the point where you can’t go any further. Project CARS is not bad at this either, but it is more on the visual side of the damage system. If you have the damage set to full and you hit hard enough, parts of your car will just fly off, including the tires. In both games you will really need to learn the tracks, the grip levels and braking points of corners in order to set a good lap time or overtake your opponents.
In terms of AI, neither game is bad, but in Assetto Corsa the opponents seem to be more mindful of dangerous situations and give you more room or just stop altogether if you have stopped in the middle of the track. In Project CARS, the AI drivers are really very aggressive and will not back down, no matter what. Of course, you can choose how good they are, but they’ll still be aggressive, even more so than real life racing opponents would be.
So, this all being said, Project CARS and Assetto Corsa are the games to choose from if you like track racing simulations, but, our honest opinion is that Assetto Corsa is the better one, even though not by much.