The DRM Modding team have kindly given up the time to speak with RaceDepartment about the upcoming DRM Revival mod for Assetto Corsa...
You may have seen our preview article back on the 6th April showing some moving images from the upcoming DRM Revival modification for Assetto Corsa, well now we have had the opportunity to sit down with the DRM Modding Team project leader @dmatzies to discuss what motivates his team, what fans can expect from the mod, a few stories related to the making of this epic looking mod and what the future holds...
Without further preamble, let's hand over to @dmatzies and begin the interview...
RD: Hi, thanks for talking to us today. Firstly can I ask you to introduce yourself to our readers and tell us a little more about your role in the DRM Modding Team?
DRM: Thanks for inviting us to an exclusive interview!
Our team exists since 2007 with dmatzies and NIL as core members, after the loss of one team member during the decision to bring the mod to assetto, we were happy to find Soversand Jo for our project.
dmatzies: Germany, 49 years old
Role 3D, Textures, Physics
NIL: Germany, 40 years old
Role 3D, Sounds, Videos
Sovers: Brazil, 32 years old
Role 3D, Textures, hole ingamemanagement
Jo: Italy, 48 years.
Role: 3D, Kremer K3, CARMA 308 Turbo
RD: So how many people do you have working on the mod at present?
DRM: Just four crazy guys
RD: We have obviously seen some impressive renders and on track footage of the current version of the mod, how long has it taken you to get to this stage, and what sort of work has gone on behind the scenes to produce such stunning looking models?
DRM: It´s no secret that some models that you saw on the video were built for rfactor and GT Legends and they are now nearly 7-10 years old.
At the beginning of the current development we have focussed to bring a standard for the graphics in terms of shader settings, reflections, shadows etc. for the different materials.
After that we concentrated on the improvement of the 3d Models. Some major changes and improvements have been made for example new cockpits, rims, tires... a long list. We can only estimate, how much time has gone for all..
Just for example... for the rfactor version we have put in 1500 hours only for models and textures and all the improvements for AC took us another 800 hours...
Not to mention how many hours NIL invested in all the sounds.
The research was hard and even bring all sounds to Fmod... Nil isn´t able to count the hours!
We did over 450 000 test kilometers in terms of physics too, so if you count everything... it´s simply a horror.... but a funny horror.
RD: You must find it difficult to find any significant source data for cars this old, how much real world data have you used for the mod, and what sort of difficulty have you experienced finding out the information you need?
DRM: It was and is horrible. You can´t always trust the found data.
Very often the cars where heavily modified from race to race, the progress was often extreme.
We have focussed on the base solid data we received like weight, engine performance, tire width and height, wheelbase, overall measurements of the cars, Chassis layout and geometry etc.
Occasional we get correct values like curve speeds , G-Forces and gear ratios that us helped a lot.
Over the original movement and behaviour of the cars we tried bring it in game, we think we got it right...
RD: For a project that has obviously taken such a long time to deliever and to such a high standard, what motivates you to commit so much of your free time to creating a mod like this?
dmatzies: As a small boy I luckily saw the monsters in action live on track.
Back in 2005 , rfactor was born. I became interest in modding and was able to bring a car in game. That was the moment I wanted to have the DRM cars...
And to find same enthusiast like me was pure luck...
NIL: I wasn´t able to see that monsters on track at this time.
But during all the old fashioned race weekends like Spa classic, AVD OldtimerGrandprix, etc. I was infected as well.
Sovers: Actually I’m a bit new to this modding world, I’ve started in 2014 and although I already worked with 3d as a main job since 2007 it was always lowpoly, indie-like stuff. But being a gearhead myself I always wanted to do 3d cars, so when I was researching to make the zackspeed Escort I just “felt in love” with the DRM series and the whole Gr5 thing.
Jo: Find the passion for these cars when was building a Japanese model kit (Celica) then I did the school for car design in Turin and although I did not then the designer I always kept drawing hand and computer
RD: On a related topic, why have you chosen the DRM series to recreate?
DRM: The brutal cars where simply made without any assistants, safety ...just for pure racing , for being fast. We love the DRM cars.
RD: In terms of the mod itself, which cars can players expect to have access to once it is released, and will the real world liveries and drivers be represented in the mod?
DRM: the players can expect the following cars with real liveries from the Deutschen Rennpsort Meisterschaft, Langstrecken Weltmeisterschaft and the IMSA series.
- Kremer K1
- Kremer K3
- Schnitzer 320 Turbo
- Schnitzer 2002 Turbo
- Schnitzer M1 Turbo
- Schnitzer Celica LB Turbo
- Beta Montecarlo Turbo
- Zakspeed Capri Turbo
- Zakspeed Escort Turbo
- Carma 308 Turbo
DRM: All cars will come with tire model V10.
The brake temps are not implemented at this stage because the influence on the physics and the control of the temperatures through the setup is not yet given.
If Kunos implements this feature well in our opinion , than we bring it in the mod aswell.
RD: Can we expect to see further updates once the mod is released, and what are the prospects of adding further cars from the series in future? Either those missing currently, or maybe cars from different eras?
DRM: Simply Yes, beside a new 3d model of the Kremer K1 , we plan another car, which one will be later released.
We want to have another one, than the DRM 1977-1980 will be complete. We don´t focus on another eras and we don´t want to.
RD: I understand you have suffered from some hardware issues during the development process, losing a lot of important work on the mod. What sort of progress did you lose, and how has that affect the moral of the team?
DRM: Honestly, we have lost in time...
Biggest part, is the private life nearby modding such a big project.
Sovers has lost 4 month brake of modding due to a hardware crash, luckily nearly all stored data was rescued, so during this time we continue working on the physics and sounds then Dmatzies PC gone as well, but all data safe. We are like race drivers, we are always looking for a good excuse...
RD: So the big question really, when can we expect the first version of the mod to be released, and do you plan on releasing templates for the cars before the full mod release?
DRM: When? We don´t understand that question... We don´t know it simplified, currently we are working on the LODs that are very important for online races and overall performance. Then the new cockpits for the Carma 308 and the Beta Turbo are in progress. After that we will create the user manual, for us important as well.
It seems that September will be the month for a release candidate. Templates will be ready after or during release, not earlier.
RD: Once the mod has been released, do you plan to continue supporting it with new features and updates in line with new Assetto Corsa builds? I'm thinking such things as new tyre versions, latest fMod updates etc?
DRM: All future updates by Kunos will be supported by us to deliver a functional DRM mod
RD: I appreciate it may be some way off in the future, but once all work is complete on the DRM package it would be a shame to lose such a talented modding group. Do you as a collective have plans on working on another major mod for Assetto Corsa, or even as individuals continuing work on new projects? And if so, can you share with us any hints on what these might be?
DRM: It is fact that modding a game will be harder, more difficult and more time consuming, even if you don´t start at Zero knowledge.
We want to be one of the best modders, but that#s impossible over a long time. Maybe our old fashioned style of modding needs to be overhauled as well.
But fact is that we bring Sovers Furiaand we think in the future we will hear from us...
RD: Last but by no means least, can you share with us a little bit of information about the DRM mod that no one else knows yet, something of an RD exclusive..
DRM: There will be no class rule or divisions like in rfactor. All cars are able to win the race.
But that's only possible due to different track layouts, race time, different fuel usage, tire wear, time for a pitstop. The "smaller" cars maybe have no chance to win a race, but they guarantee a chequered flag to ALL simracers
Secondly the DRM REVIVAL FOR AC will be free as base version. That features all car models , skins, drivers , default sound and default physics. However for 9.99€ you can purchase a FULL upgrade for all cars in terms of physics, sounds and support.
RaceDepartment would like to take this opportunity to thank @dmatzies and the DRM Modding team for the time taken to complete this interview with us, and for the impressive work that is going into the upcoming DRM Revival modification for Assetto Corsa. Stay tuned to RaceDepartment over the coming weeks and months as we track the progress of this mod and keep you up to date on all the latest developments.
RaceDepartment have our very own Assetto Corsa Modding Discussion forum, a location where community members can share progress on the latest mods, download new content and interact and ask questions about the world of mod creation in Assetto Corsa. Check out the Assetto Corsa Modding Forum for details and take a look at our general Assetto Corsa forum where you will find all the latest news items and community discussion topics.
Also please remember what you came here to do in the first place, and that's to race cool cars on awesome tracks! If you love clean and fair racing, want to take advantage of a professionally run and super friendly environment in which to race then look no further than our superb Assetto Corsa Racing Club here at RaceDepartment. We have great combinations of cars and tracks, brilliant TeamSpeak banter and friendly drivers, all packed into full grids and with regular event live streams to boot! Hurry over to the Assetto Corsa Racing Club forum and get yourself signed up to an event today!
Did you enjoy our DRM Modding Team interview? Are you looking forward to the mod releasing for Assetto Corsa? Are you a fan of the real series? Which car are you most looking forward to driving once the mod releases? Let us know in the comments section below!