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rF2 New UI, DX11 and Content Updates in August Development Roadmap

Discussion in 'rFactor 2' started by Paul Jeffrey, Aug 20, 2017.

  1. Paul Jeffrey

    Paul Jeffrey
    RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief Staff Premium

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    rF2 jayarrbee36 2.jpg
    The August 'Development Roadmap' for rFactor 2 has been released, with some new details on licencing agreements with a well known single seater manufacturer...

    You can check out the full rF2 August Development Roadmap post below;

    It’s summertime, and we are all but on holiday at Studio 397. We’ve passed the half-way mark in August, so it’s time for another roadmap update.

    UI
    In the last couple of months we have shown you various bits of the new UI. We are now at a point where we have basically incorporated all features of the existing user interface into the new one, with a few extensions. In the upcoming weeks, we will be testing the first beta of this user interface with our testing team. During that phase we not only intend to focus on bugfixing, but also usability testing, so depending on how our testers respond, we might make further changes to parts of the interface. Obviously we can’t predict yet how long this phase will take, but it should tell you that we’re pretty close to a first public beta release.

    rF2 Development Roadmap 1.png

    Competition
    The first two rounds of qualification have been completed by now, with the live broadcast of the Zandvoort race coming up on Sunday, so this is a good time to look back at what were basically two very exciting weeks. Last week’s broadcast has seen a combined number of views of well over 600.000 on Facebook and YouTube and the 20 drivers in that race showed some very fast and clean racing. The top 5 finishers ensured themselves a place in the final, so congratulations to them! Many others put in a tremendous amount of time and effort, arguably in the toughest time trial ever seen in simracing. For example, at Silverstone, Miguel Ballester drove 1469 laps to earn his place in the top 20. Our second round at Zandvoort showed that the top 10 in terms of number of laps on average clocked well over 1000 laps. In the first two rounds combined, approximately 260.000 laps were driven. We wish everybody competing in this competition the best of luck!

    rF2 Development Roadmap 2.png

    We’ve also had quite a few questions about the brand new competition system that is hosting all these sessions. It is actually a perfect example of how we were able to leverage some of the existing technologies that have been developed within Luminis. For everything we do, our development workflow starts with setting up a fully automated system to build and deploy code. This allows us to quickly code, test and set live updates. In this case, any code update we push can be deployed to a staging environment for testing within minutes, and with a flick of a switch we can also update our production systems. In fact, our production systems use a method called “blue green deployments” to end up with zero downtime: we deploy each update to new servers, switch traffic from the old to the new ones, and then stop the old servers. Our production environment also has built-in redundancy where we run at least two servers at all times. We actively monitor those servers and if any of them goes down, it immediately gets replaced with a new one. This all happens in the cloud and the system that manages this is called Cloud RTI (run-time infrastructure).

    rF2 Development Roadmap 3.png

    Cloud RTI management dashboard showing our fault-tolerant production servers.

    rF2 Development Roadmap 4.png

    This is the custom monitoring dashboard we use to have a real-time view on competition statistics.

    For horizontal scalability reasons, all our server side code is stateless, but of course we want to keep track of a lot of data and statistics. All of this is handled by another product we could leverage, the Information Grid, which is a layer on top of all kinds of data stores that manages the schema of the data and all changes to that schema over time. It allows us to work with data at a much higher level and adds extensive semantics to that data that ensure it stays manageable and usable over a long period of time. Information Grid builds on lots of cloud based data stores and adds security and advanced search capabilities. All of this infrastructure ensures that we can keep our focus on building the features of the competition system, without having to worry about a lot of infrastructural concerns.

    rF2 Development Roadmap 5.png

    Information Grid dashboard showing some global statistics about the data stores in use.

    For the actual code, we leverage another open source project we’ve co-founded with a few other companies: Amdatu. Amdatu is a stack of modular components to build cloud applications. It provides building blocks for web based, modular user interfaces and it is in fact this toolkit that also is the basis of our new in-game UI. As soon as that is ready, you will see the competition and in-game UI merge into one seamless UI that can be accessed both in-game and outside of it. That way you can always keep up with what’s happening in the world of rFactor 2!

    Content
    As you know, for the competition we released an early version of Zandvoort, dubbed 0.20, indicating it is not finished yet. Although the track already is very drivable and enjoyable, we intend to further improve it over the next couple of months. Also, we’ve learned that for the DTM race this weekend, they repaved the final section of the track, and made some curb changes to the “Audi S” curve, so we’ll probably take a closer look at those for the final version.

    In the mean time we have news to share on the licensing front. A lot is going on there, also in terms of tracks, but as a general rule we do not talk about licenses until the deal is sealed. We are proud to be able to announce that we signed a multi-car deal with the Italian race car manufacturer Tatuus. This will bring several of their current racing cars to rFactor 2, which should be very exciting for all the fans of open wheelers!

    DX11
    In May we announced the “open beta” of our brand new DX11 engine and in the following months we have received a lot of feedback and support from the community that have lead to numerous improvements to the performance and visual fidelity. Our plan is to make DX11 our new default at the end of September. At that point we will also update our current demo version. We will keep the DX9 builds in sync until the end of the calendar year. We will continue to improve the fidelity of our DX11 engine, improving every aspect of it step by step, and this process will continue in the years to come. As we discussed last month already, we also fully intend to provide an exciting new solution for plugins to render to the screen as part of this ongoing development and we will look at what information we should really be providing “out of the box”.

    That’s all for this month, we hope you enjoyed the update, and enjoy the summer!

    rFactor 2 is available for PC via the Steam Store.

    rF2 datasting.jpg rF2 jayarrbee36.jpg

    If you like a bit of rFactor 2 action on your home PC setup then check us out! We have a great rFactor 2 Racing Club where Premium members are welcome to come try your hand at plenty of different online events. Those of you with a taste for the more extreme can check out our current RDLMS by Vesaro league and other rF2 based league events coming over the next months. If offline is more your bag, or you want to make some tweaks to your base install, check out the rFactor 2 Mods forum or have a look through our community created Setups forum. All fun and games here at RaceDepartment!

    Have you enjoyed the August development roadmap for rF2? Looking forward to the future of the sim? Happy with news of the Tatuus licencing agreement? Let us know in the comments section below!

    Image Credits - jayarrbee36 (opening image and second McLaren), datasting (BMW)
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2017
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  2. Will Mazeo

    Will Mazeo

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    Tbh I dont get much that tech part there, wonder if that means they finished something important and things will happen at a faster pace now
     
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  3. TheReaper GT

    TheReaper GT
    Learning stuff, eating cookies. :D Premium

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    And yet my g29 do not have auto rotation... Not amongst the best wheels for sure, but arguably the best selling of the current in the market. Logitech being the only brand officially available in several countries, one would assume developers would have interest in making their software compatible... Reiza, Sector 3, Kunos, SMS, and even Euro/American truck's developer have done it... Seems easy.
     
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  4. Durge Driven

    Durge Driven

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    I will swap Tatuus and raise you a UI for a Historics upgrade lol
     
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  5. pcraenme

    pcraenme

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    Looking forward to the new UI, new content and updated version of Zandvoort. :)

    But... no news about any new GT3 cars that will be part of the GT3 Power pack that was already released (first car in the pack was the McLaren)?
     
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  6. Lars Rystedt

    Lars Rystedt
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    I had the same issue with my Logitech G920 before but something seems to have change in the last month or so, if it is in Logitech LGS or inside rF2 i do not know but now I can turn into a corner properly.
    True that the visual wheel is not an exact match of the real one and that there can still be some shoulderpopping situations but not nearly as bad as before.
     
  7. Naish

    Naish
    Premium

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    Wich WTCC mod is the first picture?
     
  8. Lars Rystedt

    Lars Rystedt
    Premium

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    Looking at the effort S397 is putting into it's backbone IT system it looks way to much for just pushing out client updates and occasional events/competions. Are they maybe going forward towards league and memberservice like IRacing as it is in the text mentioning automated services and deployment. If they are they have begun building a good infrastructure for the future. Looking forward to hear more of this!
    With the DX11 update almost everything look fantastic in comparison too DX9 and still with very good fps, this in default graphic settings and without post processing.
    Since Porsche seem to be licensing their brand all over now, I really hope S397 will get it and realease the latest Porsche GT3 car in its GT3 pack.
     
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  9. Jockey

    Jockey

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  10. Jockey

    Jockey

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    I'm wondering on this too.

    I already imagined a "matchmaking" service. Here is how: I want to race with a car. So I select the car and a track for it. Then the game start searching around the other clients. And if there are others who want the same combo the system would start a new server for the selected combo.
     
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  11. TheReaper GT

    TheReaper GT
    Learning stuff, eating cookies. :D Premium

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    Happy for you, not good enough for me, unfortunately... This issue just adds to the shameful launcher situation...
     
  12. Lars Rystedt

    Lars Rystedt
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    I am just speculating here so please do not take anything I say for a fact or truth.
    Would need a really large, I mean a really large playerbase to make this feasible. There are to many parameters to have it working like how many drivers want to drive that car on that track at this exact minute.
    Dont think it would be fun driving ten laps against one or two more drivers not to mention waiting for others to join.
    The IRacing way would in that case be a better way forward: Sign up for a race that starts at a certain time at that day say at 16.00, Next race with the same car and track would be at 18.00 and so on.
    I believe it would be easier to get drivers to join for a certain time of the day than hope for pure luck that more would like my preferred car and track. But this is also if S397 want to be hosting races themselves, the races hosted by communities are not very different from your idea but they are for most part empty:(
     
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  13. Lars Rystedt

    Lars Rystedt
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    Sorry to hear that :(
     
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  14. SAGY31

    SAGY31

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    I really hope S397 will work on AI line fixes (sooner rather than later), there's way too many tracks where they basically make big mistakes lap after lap.

    Btw what's the name of the track on penultimate image?
     
  15. Steve Bird

    Steve Bird
    Racing Since 1978

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    Looks like SIMCO's 2016-17 mod.
     
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  16. Andy Jackson

    Andy Jackson
    Retro PC Sim Racer Premium

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    I'm loving the new DX11 graphics. I also love RF2's damage model.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Marcel Offermans

    Marcel Offermans
    Staff

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    To respond to questions about the infrastructure part of the blog, I thought it would be nice to give you a bit of insight into the backend we are working on. I'm fully aware that this might not be interesting for everybody, or partially too technical to understand. Rest assured, we are not just building this for an occasional hotlap competition, but fully intend to have continuous competitions, both organised by Studio 397 and third parties (existing leagues and sites like RaceDepartment) and make all of them much easier to find in-game.
     
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  18. DriverJay

    DriverJay

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    Thanks for the update, and great news on the single seater licence would love to see some of there classics in the game :inlove:
     
  19. Dajonaga

    Dajonaga

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    Beign an IT Engineer and Network specialist most of my life, I appreciate the information. It brings a whole new level of professionalism to the table. I guess this is what differentiates game from simulation.
     
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  20. thepharcyde

    thepharcyde

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    not another open wheeler :(.
    When is the gt3 pack rooster going to be announced?
     
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