Race Sim Studio Interview and Prize Draw

We sat down with Ali, head director of Race Sim Studio, to talk about the past, present and future of the team.

"Race Sim Studio is a leading 3D modelling service specialising in the creation of vehicles for businesses, personal users, and driving simulators. The team combines the talents of some of the best 3D Modellers, Sound Designers and Physics Experts to create the finest examples of vehicle simulation projects currently available".

This small excerpt is what you can find written on the RSS website, in the 'About us' page. I tried to come up with an opening that could present this Studio and explain who they are in a concise yet eloquent way. I kept thinking and thinking, looking for an inspiration, lost for words because how do you synthesize the work that this team produces without inevitably missing some small but significant piece along the way? Then I found that passage, and with it the wording: the finest examples of vehicle simulation projects currently available.

Here lies what Race Sim Studio not only does, but is. A small group of like-minded and passionate people, eager to produce what is more than the simple result of a beautifully executed work, but an expression of art in its own way. We are not yet living in an age where modeling is considered a true art form, except for a few unique cases, but when you look at something like this, you wonder why it still isn't. Each curve, each joint, each line, perfected by the dedicated eye of those who have poured their intelligence, heart and soul into it. Given a "skin", a likeness, through high-quality texturing, and then suddenly a growl, a snap forward... it is alive.

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What is the philosophy behind Race Sim Studio? Which is the objective that you guys pursue?

In its simplest form: to bring a new high-quality standard to the world of sim racing and to really put it on the normalized global map for casual, simulator and eSports consumers.

Race Sim Studio (RSS) began as a group of people who had a passion for sim racing and motorsport who somehow found each other through Assetto Corsa (AC) in early 2014. As with most things in life, none of us began with the expectation of how things turned out today. It was just an organic process of people who had the expertise from various technical fields miraculously coming together without a plan. That’s what is really hard to replicate for anyone who wants to do this long-term: it must be real to be real.

What’s funny is we all quit the scene back in 2016 to varying extents; we just couldn’t put out such high standard content (for the standard at the time) and balance it with our normal life. Until one day our physics lead decided “we have all this expertise, all this know-how and connections, why let it go to waste?”

It’s important to remember we work exceptionally hard. It’s not a punch in and punch out timeclock. We’re always actively working and questioning our work and thinking of new or improved ways to do things, so we’ve always strived to produce beyond what was already available in sim racing.

Every product you see from us is the result of each person’s life experiences put into practice: this person’s engine sounds are that way because he picked up the guitar as a teenager and learned about sound design, or this person really understands his physics design process because his childhood upbringing made him a rational and deep thinker inspired by complex possibilities. Again, that’s what we’re conveying in our work that it should feel as real as possible beyond just the sim racing world.

During the years you have been focusing on GT and Formula type cars, producing exquisite, high-quality content. Will you delve in the future into different categories too or will you keep focusing and expanding on the aforementioned classes?

We love to look for new and emerging categories or try to fill in a gap elsewhere. Yet we always get asked to supplement categories that have already been done several times over. I suppose that’s the trust in our work at play.

I think we’re at that transition point where you may get renditions of your favourite cars from time to time given that this is the reality we’re familiar with, but we have further ambitions for other categories to work on including more of our own designs to fit into various tranches of motorsport. You’ve seen this already with Formula Hybrid and will see more of this in the future.

Beyond that, we do get requests from drivers and teams from varying motorsport disciplines to produce content for them to use in their simulators. Working with teams, manufacturers, as well as governing bodies behind the scenes for driver training tools and eSports has been a great experience we’ll continue to push.

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Has the pandemic affected your business or team workflow in any way?

We were lucky in the sense that the “stay at home” message meant the gaming industry itself was booming. This helped us stabilize throughout 2020, but it could have easily been the other way.

The events of the past year have been devastating for most of the world, and as individuals rather than the company, we’re contributing privately to causes that can support some of those most affected by the global pandemic. Regardless of circumstances and beliefs, nobody is “immune” from the lasting effects this can have on the behaviour of society.

Some of our contractors working alongside us were affected in such a way that it made us reassess the intensity of our projects. You know, as past industry professionals from the Finance sector, a couple of us know first-hand how the office life has transformed, yet the corporate objectives of large businesses remain the same. So, anything we could do to be the opposite of that, focusing back on the reality and backbone of our company which is the people has been the most important aspect to our activities from years before.

Where do you see Race Sim Studio, 5 years from now?

Shall we make a game? Does RaceDepartment even want another game in their ever-growing list? We see a real demand for competitive (and realistic) eSports.

Currently, we’re investing in ourselves as (feels odd to say it now) gaming industry professionals, learning new skills in the industry that can take our team to further heights as time passes. An example, each of us specialize in multiple disciplines of sound design, coding, graphical design, 3D modelling. It’s that kind of weird mix of being a jack-of-all-trades that makes the ethos and work-ethic of RSS quite interesting to say the least.

While it still has some years to go, AC has been far too good for all of us in the sim racing community and we’re thankful it entered our lives. Although our artists have produced for many of these simulators already prior to RSS forming, we’re hoping our paths cross professionally again if Kunos chooses to do something after ACC and wants to work with us.

Otherwise, we’ll be a visual effects company and you can spot our work on Netflix’s Drive to Survive Season 8 with Max Verstappen battling for his third world championship.

Either way, whatever we do until then every single one of us (that’s you included) has an obligation to sim racing to uphold its standards so those that come after us can continue to do the same.

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What has been the highlight of the team all these years, a moment you guys will never forget?

It has to be three types of highlights all connected to the people since there’s a lot of reasons that make us get up out of bed and travel the long commute away from the fridge and to the computer table each day.

The first would be the number of real-world drivers and teams that use our cars. How crazy is it that drivers and brands from Formula 1 among others are using these cars in a professional or leisure capacity?

The second comes from the numerous stories we received about how our work provides people positivity. This is probably one of the biggest achievements you can get as a content developer. We’re real people behind the logo, ultra-protective of our work; we have our good and bad days too, so it means a lot for people to take the time in their day to talk to us about their experiences.

Finally, AC and sim racing gave us a platform to shine; one that we didn’t expect. These days we do the same for developing livery artists and 3D developers. Our cars have been a canvas for people to discover their passion in content creation. All the success stories from people who were just like us and used our content to grow and grow and then connect to companies in motorsport resonates closely with what the scene has done for us.

A special thank you to RaceDepartment for keeping us all connected in our ever-growing bubble of sim racing. ⦿

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Prize Draw​

While thanking Ali at the end of this interview, and Race Sim Studio for all the good fun they provided us with their content during the years, we were also lucky enough to be gifted with 3 coupons for their Formula Hybrid Ultimate Pack, an homage to the RaceDepartment community from RSS!

Yes, you got it right, all of the Formula Hybrid cars ever made by Race Sim Studio, from the 2017 to the 2022 one, can be yours!

How can you win a coupon?
Simply leave your comment, telling us which is your favourite RSS car and why! Random winners will be selected on Friday, 30th of April, at 19.00 CEST, so that you will be able to enjoy the F1 weekend at Portimao both on your couch and your simrig.

You already own the pack or the individual cars included, or you simply fancy something different from their selection? Not to worry, Race Sim Studio are currently running a sale lasting till Sunday, 2nd of May.
Do not miss it!
About author
Davide Nativo
Petrolhead and Simracer, passionate since the cradle about cars, motorsports and simracing. I read a lot, and I love to share what I've learned with others!

Comments

For me the best RSS car is equally Formula Hybrid 2021 and RSS 3 V6. Formula Hybrid 2021 because its just amazing to drive this thing on the circuits. The looks, the handling, hotlapping in these cars and of course amazing liveries made by Race Sim Studio, or people on this site. Its pretty much the same case with RSS 3 V6, and yes it is slower a little bit but I just really like the model of this car.
 
Hands down the Formula 2000 V10 for me. That intense V10 screaming as the car balances precariously on the narrow contact patches of the grooved tyres, all in a package that has a certain agility and edge that the newer era F1 cars just lack by comparison.
 
I have started using RSS mods with Formula RSS3 V6, which is an incredible car to begin with single-seaters, as I preferred driving GT before. It helped me to change my mind and try to drive differently. After that I got to use the Formula RSS2 V8, which is as amazing!
 
My favourite is definitely the RSS 3, since it's a good starter point for me when it comes to F1, but without the boatload of power.
 
I bought the Formula Hybrid 2021 and was so impressed with the quality, look, feel, sound, everything, that I bought almost all their other models over time. They bring a lot of fun to AC, haven't driven any other car than RSS since weeks :) Thanks for the fantastic work!
 
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EZ The 2020 RSS2 Formula Hybrid car, the car that represents the 2020 Formula 2 season, my favourite car the look the tires and the handling combined with a MASTERPIECE sound and good looking flames at the back of the exhaust. FOR SURE my favourite car
 
My favourite car is the FH2022. The limited downforce gives a real challenge to the driver, and the sound is absolutely exceptional.
 
For me it has to be a draw between Formula RSS 3 or the Formula Hybrid 2020. The FH20 is a monster that annihilates the lap times of nearly anything it happens to come across. Whereas the FRSS3 is just the right balance of ''balanced on a icy knife edge'' and ''easy to handle and properly planted'' when driving. Also massive fun for Track Day hooning with a mixed field of cars.
 
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My favorite car is the Formula RSS 1990 V12. Why? It’s a V12 engine Formula One car! And I like how these cars looked like without all these aerodynamic stuff on the cars.
 
"Shall we make a game? Does RaceDepartment even want another game in their ever-growing list? We see a real demand for competitive (and realistic) eSports."

Yes. Please yes, we need another game that is not another GT3 simulator and that provides good (focused on single-seaters?) physics!
 
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My favourite one is a Formula Hybrid 2020, because tbh it was my first paid mod ever, but Im astonished by it, how detailed it is and how much effort has been put in it, really great job, totally worth every price.
 
Thanks for this great interview. RSS always delivers. I cant choose a favourite car from them...I like them all but if I try it I would say RSS 3 V6 and the Darche (Porsche). Oh yes and the Formula America....hhmmm and the Lanzo(Lambo)...oh yes and also the Formula Hybrid 2021. Would be great if Kunos makes AC2 in the Future to take RSS on Board and also Peter Boese (Sol) and the Guy who created Custom Shaders Patch. Hope if AC2 ever hit the market they make it moddable....otherwise the older brother always wins.
 
I have to say I love all of the Formula Hybrids but espacially the Formula Hybrid 2021. They all are a blast to drive and they get better every year.
 
The RSS car I enjoy the most right now is the Formula Americas car. I've fallen in love with IndyCar thanks to this mod! The attention to detail is just outstanding, as in all of their cars - but the FA just provided me with the most entertainment so far :D
 

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