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Featured Have Your Say: Mods and Sims and the Complications of Installing

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Paul Jeffrey, Nov 17, 2017.

  1. Paul Jeffrey

    Paul Jeffrey
    RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief Staff Premium

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    Have Your Say.png
    Plenty of the sims of today have a raft of exceptional quality free and payware mods, but why do we rarely see these in use online?

    We've tried modded content in our racing clubs here at RD and the numbers just plummet through the floor within one or two events, despite some mods having over 100,000 downloads in our modding section. Why? Why do open servers on highly moddable games like Assetto Corsa rarely stray away from default content?

    From my positon I see plenty of cars and tracks getting the download treatment, but rarely does the opportunity to take these online against my fellow sim racers appear, and when it does the desire just doesn't seem to be prevalent in the community to make use of the content. I want to know what you folks think are the stumbling blocks.

    Is it mod quality? Do you find installation of said content difficult? Mismatches online cause you problems? Share with us your thoughts, solutions and workarounds to the perceived black art that is modded content in sim racing.

    While I have you on the subject, for those of you who haven't seen it yet check out this mega useful video from the awesome @Shawn Jacobs:


    So for the topic on conversation this week we ask:

    Mods in sims, do you have an appetite to play these online and why does the number of downloads far outweigh the open servers with modded content?

    Have fun debating folks and have a great weekend!

    Sim Racing Is Awesome.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2017
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  2. Paul Jeffrey

    Paul Jeffrey
    RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief Staff Premium

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    While I have your attention!

    I want to say a big, massive, heartfelt thank you to each and every modder for all and every game past and present that brings us some incredible content to our sims. Some of the things I've seen people do, in their spare, time blows me away. You folks are the backbone, heart and soul of sim racing. From me, and on behalf of plenty others too I dare say, thank you all so very much for your efforts.

    Everything you do is appreciated and I have more respect for you than I could possibly put into words here.

    Thank you.
     
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  3. Araripe

    Araripe

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    I got used to the rather complicated process of installation, but i have to admit that it would be better if they had a sort of built-in mod manager, maybe even Steam Workshop (like rFactor 2). Still, as complicated and time consuming it might be, it's pretty much error-proof. It always works as it should.
     
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  4. Danneskjold184

    Danneskjold184

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    I am a giant fan of mods. But as someone who tried to walk a lot of people through installing mods in AMS, some people are just incompatible with them.

    On the other hand, RF2's mod system, while well built, makes the game spectacularly difficult to use for any Pick-up races, even for stock game content. I.E. I have to jump through so many hoops just to host a server on my PC to race 1 car at 1 track, and god forbid the same car at 2 tracks. It's probably RF2's greatest fault, and needs to be fixed / made easier to access for general gameplay.
     
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  5. Matheus Machado

    Matheus Machado
    Talking Door Racing Premium

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    1- most of the content isn't up to the same standards as official content
    2- it doesn't get the same rate of updates of official content in 99% of the cases
    3- most of them have issues that or prevent them being run on leagues
    4- They come as isolated cars and tracks with no correlation with each other.
    5- car and track selection is extremely hardcore in most cases. Appeals to a rather small amount of users and it is difficult for the average driver to enjoy it properly.


    Although it can be hugely successful on a organized environment. It just needs to be done right.
     
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  6. Durge Driven

    Durge Driven

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    300GB of JSGME-OVGME mods

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Using a "base" pack you could solve cross site permissions and mod conflicts forever

    So much for complications ;)
     
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  7. Cote Dazur

    Cote Dazur

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    I spend more than 50% of my time in AC using mod content, either cars or tracks. This afternoon I drove the newly release Road Atlanta 2016. Last week end I mostly drove the V8 scorsa at Bathurst.
    Since the last update and with Content Manager ability to randomized strength and agressivity trough the AI field, using all the amazing MODs available as never been more fun.
     
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  8. Ghoults

    Ghoults

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    I think the main reasons why not as many people install mods is because they don't visit the forums very often and as such don't really have an idea what is a good mod and what is not so good. Or what is new and popular and what isn't. There is a lot of good content available but there is also lots of content that is not up to date. Nobody wants to install a mod only to find out it doesn't work. Is it not working because I installed it wrong or is the mod faulty? Your average racedepartmenter has the skills to find the solutions but people who log in couple times a year have no idea. If they don't get it right the first time then they probably don't try second time.

    Another issue could be that because these people are not very tech savvy they might think that if they install a mod wrong they could break the game. Which in the old days was true. A mod could interfere with the game and cause issues and crashes if you got the wrong mod version for wrong version of the game. Maybe this could be explained some how so people who install their first mods. But still it is bad when a mod doesn't work. It is even worse when it breaks something else. A mod after all means a "modification" of the game. Even if in reality a mod simply adds something and rarely modifies anything that is already in the game.

    But at the same time I think people are a bit scared of fiddling with their games.

    It could also be that people are not very tech savvy and a simplest of obstacles can stop them from installing a mod. For example if the mod is packaged in .7z format instead of .zip then the native windows file explorer can't open it. Same with .rar files. Installing software to open those files is easy but it adds more steps. Game supported mod installer is not good solution either if it add more steps where you need to know what to do. Needing to register on a third part site also adds another obstacle.

    I think one issue is that for some reason some modders don't add any text files. No readmes and no installation instructions of any kind. If it is the first mod you are downloading you need that information or people won't install your mod. It takes 5 minutes to write that text file. There is no reason not to have it. Imagine downloading your first mod for some game you have rarely played. Imagine the mod comes with no documentation. Can you guarantee you'd install the mod instead of simply deleting the files and going doing something else?

    Some mods also offer additional files without any clues to what those files do. Don't do that! Not all mods can be installed the same way so every mod should come with its own instructions. Relying on general instructions could mean some parts are left out.

    Also a lot of the time people first hear about a mod when they are browsing the game servers and see something they don't have. In most cases there is no way to get those files even if you wanted. Not everybody knows about racedepartment for example. Googling the files is not easy either if you find several mods and versions. What is the correct one?

    I don't really have many solutions for any of this. Some are just common sense things. Others are things modders could improve. And some things are for game devs to improve. I don't think every mod should come with full video of how to install the mod along with 24/7 tech support but I think the first time mod install experience could be a lot better. Overall I still think it is strange how online leagues suffer from this. Even if you provide direct links to files with instructions there is this reluctance to get it.
     
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  9. Newproto

    Newproto

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    Updates for the game make a lot of broken mods.
    Each player must independently track new versions of the mods.
     
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  10. Fabian Biehne

    Fabian Biehne
    Premium

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    I still wonder why so many good mod tracks (and cars) are not used online in Assetto Corsa, as we have a great amount of really well made tracks available which could make for much more variety (not just Spa, Monza, Nords). I tried it for about half a year with an own server and other (=mod) tracks but it didn't quite work out (even though I posted it on the forum). As I had better things to do than staying for hours on my own server waiting for people to join I canceled it.

    Perhaps the average Joe just wants to use what he knows and in most cases that's Monza with GT cars all day long. 5 lap race. Again and again.

    So much potential, so little use of it.
     
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  11. ears

    ears

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    Actually i disagree here. There is a lot of high quality content uploaded here and much of it is, in my opinion, to a higher standard than the Kunos content. A modding team can take over a year focussing on one car, whereas Kunos are more of a machine.

    The nadir. for me. was Kunos 2013 Ferrari F1 car. It sounded awful, drove like a VW Beetle. Many, many independent single seater mods have been FAR superior to that.

    I think this is more an issue with the regular game-changing updates of the core game. Maybe this will be a thing of the past now as their attention seems to switch to a successor.

    Overall it's frustrating for me that mods don't get the attention they need and deserve. Here are my thoughts.

    • Many of the high quality mods are high performance single seaters that don't lend themselves to ... amateur ... racing. Use your servers for track days for these cars. Let people hotlap together.
    • Mod tracks are more likely to take off online than cars I see VIR is being used this week, a good quality Road Atlanta has appeared
    • Some combinations work better than others. F3 cars at Donnington are great fun, for example
    • Start with an 'only one mod required' approach - so either the car or the track are a mod, and if car, single make. Ginetta Supuercup at Brands Hatch might be fun for example
    • As you do quite often now, have the server open for a few days before the event so people can join and make sure they can connect
    • Speak to the modders and see if they'll be happy with you putting 'mod packs' together. I see other online series doing this. A one download, one unzip, collection of say 5-10 mods that enables someone to enter a series of races. Maybe make that collection 'premium only'
    As with any online races, it just needs a core group of people to support it and more will follow. If you do it, I'll do my best to attend. I don't have the ready to race or Ferrari packs on AC, for example, so my opportunities to enter AC races here have been limited of late.

    If that Audi TT was swapped for a Ginetta Supercup I'd be breaking my neck to be there every week!
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2017
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  12. chargingcar

    chargingcar
    Premium

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    I always loved that rfactorcentral quite a few years back ,
    choose a mod and it will install it for you , this new contant manager I use for AC is amazing also best tool I believe I have seen ,
    Always wondered why RD does not have a system like RFC download and install content for you ,
    even charge a fee each month IDK makes sense , with auto updates thats how stuff should be :)
     
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  13. Stephen O'Sullivan

    Stephen O'Sullivan
    Premium

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    I agree that (the wonderful) modders should be more explicit about file structure and precise installation instructions. Too often, I am left guessing as to where I should put a mod.

    Having said that, JSGME is a great help. It makes installing and deleting mods quick, easy and safe.
     
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  14. apex11

    apex11
    Premium

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    Rfactor is the best by far, even better that if you go online it will install the car/track for you if you dont have it..brilliant.
    Worst is AMS for me.
    AC is easy but such a shame so many mods have no engine sounds in relays...
     
  15. chargingcar

    chargingcar
    Premium

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    Use content manager for AC it detects faults and issues with mods ,
    audio if there is an issue you can simply swap the audio for another one ingame or installed in seconds , keeps the mods alive!
     
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  16. apex11

    apex11
    Premium

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    How would i do that ? Fell free to PM me so we don't take the thread off tangent, cheers.
     
  17. chargingcar

    chargingcar
    Premium

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    Its simple man , install CM if you not got it already ,
    click on cars / content you have installed ,
    at the bottom here you can see "replace_sound" click on it and simply pick from the list of installed audio ,
    obviously something that is similar sounding of course ,
    has tons of features , best tool currently for AC , makes skins , screenshots , previews , renders , data , audio , does everything you need it to do :)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2017
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  18. Patrik Marek

    Patrik Marek

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    steam workshop makes this really easy on end users, if more companies took advantage of it, it will be much easier to use mods
     
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  19. ltcars

    ltcars

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    I see what you did there:D
     
  20. ltcars

    ltcars

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    I like the Assetto Corsa mod installing system, as it is really logical. Content>Cars/tracks>Your track/car
     
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