Project CARS is a growing franchise within the racing world! The franchise contributed great sim-racing content for both hardcore racers and those who just want to have fun. It first debuted back in 2015, which turned out to be a success. Slightly Mad Studios later developed a second game with even more tracks and vehicles. Their third game, however, may not become the racing game we wanted due to removed content and an “arcadey” feeling, as most fans claims.
What went wrong?
There’s nothing wrong with the physics model itself, it’s everything else! The stunning graphics and new vehicles may attract players to give it a try, but the whole atmosphere does not feel very attractive for sim-racers. Unfortunately, it might damage the franchise, since a large amount players in the community are sim-racers. Graphics wise, the new game has received a more cartoon-looking HUD layout and changed the contrast, making the colors and brightness slightly different, compared to their previous release. Although it does not affect the simulation, it’s like I mentioned—a more cartoon feeling. The game’s graphics do not look like a disaster in my opinion; however, it’s nothing fans would’ve expected.
Additionally, Project CARS 3 comes with a unique kind of assist. The early gameplay footage revealed a new “perfect corner” system, which assist players to take corners properly (like a checkpoint). It’s similar to what the F1 games have. It’s somewhat unnecessary because it could be replaced with the typical “racing line assist.” It even provides more accurate racing lines. Hopefully, the game will feature racing line assist too, but it would definitely be unnecessary to have both options, unless taking those “perfect corners” actually gives you a reward. Luckily, the HUD and assists are both optional.
Not only did Slightly Mad Studios change the graphics, they decided to remove desirable content. Every racing simulator should include pitstops and tyre wear. Well, that’s not happening. This move caused a rapid outrage among fans. For that reason, players consider this game “arcadey”. As you can see in the video above, the pit’s entrance is blocked with barriers, and so it applies for every track in the game. Instead, it could’ve been optional, since pitstop is a highly requested feature nowadays.
Response from the developers
In defense, Slightly Mad Studios wanted to explain their decisions for us fans. Apparently, pitstops seems to be unnecessary, according to the developers. Pitstops are presumed to cause a large gap between race winner and last place. Supposedly, Project CARS 3 will provide more consistent racing with more battling between the cars. Moreover, the team did not leave any further comments on the other changes. All negativity aside, this could be an opportunity to introduce new players to the franchise. Considering most players actually play games with controllers and aren’t into motorsport only, this may even attract fans from the Forza franchise. It seems like the developers have taken inspiration from currently successful games, such as Forza Horizon 4. You may now also customise your cars, as well as personalise your character.
Developing Project CARS 3 was a huge risk for the entire team. All in all, the game could turn out to be better than expected. Until today, we have only seen early gameplay footage. On the other hand, judging by the comment section on Youtube and amount of dislikes the Project CARS 3 video got, the future for the studio does not look very bright.