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Tracks Italotracks payware thread - Napoli 1934-57 released

Italotracks

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Hi everyone!

I posted about my track building project in the 'What are you working on?' thread, but as I have finished my first track I thought I would post here.

I've been quietly working on some payware historic Italian tracks, amongst them Napoli 1934-57, Pescara 57, Bari 1947-56, San Remo (Ospedaletti) 1948-51, Livorno 1937... and all at various stages of development and based on LiDAR and photogrammetry data.

The first of those, Napoli, is released and available to buy at my sellfy store for 3GBP.
https://italotracks.sellfy.store/

The historic street layout is 2.5 miles / 4.1 km of challenging corners of all types - the hills of Posillipo playing host to such greats as Stirling Moss, Juan Manuel Fangio and Alberto Ascari.
The AC version features 20 grid spots, and Rain FX and Grass FX config files. As such it is best enjoyed with Content Manager, CSP and SOL.

For 1 GBP extra you can alternatively buy a pack featuring both AC and AMS1 versions (with an unsupported rF2 hotlapping version included as well.)

So why a pay mod? Well, so far I have spent over 1000 hours on these tracks, money on photogrammetry software, 3D software, books, electricity, visits to tracks. I have dreamt of being able to recreate these tracks in Assetto Corsa and other sims, and it is very rewarding, but at the same time there are parts of the process that are tedious in the extreme and a huge time sink. By charging a small amount for the track and hopefully generating a modest income for the time spent and money invested, it will hopefully make the whole project financially worthwhile, and infinitely more likely that I will be able to finish these tracks in the future, because otherwise the chances are zero, unless I win the lottery and never have to work again.


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Really liked your preview, was very much looking forward to this will definitely check this out ASAP - by the way, your signature doesn't show on mobiles, so in case anyone was wondering...




By the way, I really suggest adding a video to the sellify page; will really add a lot of info that can't be gleaned from 3 screenshots.


Edit: and looks like Stefano's a fan of your choice ;)
 
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Italotracks

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Really liked your preview, was very much looking forward to this will definitely check this out ASAP - by the way, your signature doesn't show on mobiles, so in case anyone was wondering...




By the way, I really suggest adding a video to the sellify page; will really add a lot of info that can't be gleaned from 3 screenshots.


Edit: and looks like Stefano's a fan of your choice ;)

Thanks a lot Rodger for the link, and for the suggestion, I'm working on that as I type. :)
I didn't insert a link as I assumed it would get taken down.

And yes, I'm honoured! :)
Thanks again.
 
Messages
395
Points
527
So the track is excellent, great job especially to say it's your first release. Spent a happy hour 3 wheel drifting the Alfa GTA around there, so I've already got my money's worth!

There are some really enjoyable corner sequences, not least that fast left handed turn one, the two 90 degree right-handers (neither of which have a straight entry) and the blind left-hander over the crest at the very top of the hill.

Some thoughts:
  • If you're focused on making enough sales to continue your project, and I really hope you do because I've love to see more Italian tracks of this era, then you're going to have to 'sell' it a bit more. Ask some of the AC YouTube guys who do great focuses on historic content (@GPLaps Billy StrangeSimRacing604, Chris Haye etc) to feature/review it, get some of the guys who do great screenshots (not mine!) to plug it (especially on Facebook), show it off in some of the... shadier channels than RD - feel free to DM me if you want suggestions
  • For future tracks, show off a bit more of the development in the What You're Working On thread, get feedback (and encouragement!) as you go
  • Every other track I have for AC has no spaces in the folder/KN5 naming - I don't 100% know why, but I believe it's best/recommended practice not to have any
  • The AI is really good for sprints, does a great job in navigating the (many) hazards, but they have some issues with leaving and entering the pits - perhaps look kindly in the direction of one of the gurus like @kevink63
  • For a city circuit in the '50s, the atmosphere is a little lacking - especially on the rooftops and balconies, but also in some areas like the piazza before the sharp left hairpin - I get that they're a bit of a resource hog, but a few more 3D people close by the road and 2D ones on the buildings would add a lot in this regard

On the whole though, fantastic job; the little details are very good (military uniforms at the barracks, the care on the billboards and posters) which adds a lot to the immersion. I really hope you stick with it and we see one or two others from your list in future. You've got me hooked on reading up on Italian GT racing in the '50s (oh, the sound of a Fiat 8V :inlove:) in the same way FatAlfie and THL have me looking up results from obscure Germanic circuits of that era!

Right, time to load up @|Viper| 's Alfa Guilietta for a spin...
 

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Italotracks

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40
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So the track is excellent, great job especially to say it's your first release. Spent a happy hour 3 wheel drifting the Alfa GTA around there, so I've already got my money's worth!

There are some really enjoyable corner sequences, not least that fast left handed turn one, the two 90 degree right-handers (neither of which have a straight entry) and the blind left-hander over the crest at the very top of the hill.

Some thoughts:
  • If you're focused on making enough sales to continue your project, and I really hope you do because I've love to see more Italian tracks of this era, then you're going to have to 'sell' it a bit more. Ask some of the AC YouTube guys who do great focuses on historic content (@GPLaps Billy StrangeSimRacing604, Chris Haye etc) to feature/review it, get some of the guys who do great screenshots (not mine!) to plug it (especially on Facebook), show it off in some of the... shadier channels than RD - feel free to DM me if you want suggestions
  • For future tracks, show off a bit more of the development in the What You're Working On thread, get feedback (and encouragement!) as you go
  • Every other track I have for AC has no spaces in the folder/KN5 naming - I don't 100% know why, but I believe it's best/recommended practice not to have any
  • The AI is really good for sprints, does a great job in navigating the (many) hazards, but they have some issues with leaving and entering the pits - perhaps look kindly in the direction of one of the gurus like @kevink63
  • For a city circuit in the '50s, the atmosphere is a little lacking - especially on the rooftops and balconies, but also in some areas like the pizza before the sharp left hairpin - I get that they're a bit of a resource hog, but a few more 3D people close by the road and 2D ones on the buildings would add a lot in this regard

On the whole though, fantastic job; the little details are very good (military uniforms at the barracks, the care on the billboards and posters) which adds a lot to the immersion. I really hope you stick with it and we see one or two others from your list in future. You've got me hooked on reading up on Italian GT racing in the '50s (oh, the sound of a Fiat 8V :inlove:) in the same way FatAlfie and THL have me looking up results from obscure Germanic circuits of that era!

Right, time to load up @|Viper| 's Alfa Guilietta for a spin...

Thanks a lot for your advice and valuable insight, I will definitely take it all on board! I'm delighted you're enjoying the track. :)

It would definitely help to have some exposure through those various channels, I would indeed love to continue with the project. I do really like the screenshots you've taken, you have a flair for it :thumbsup:

The AI pitting is a compromise, it probably could be better, but as there is no separate pitlane and no way of removing the speed limiter, what happens is that the AI in the grid slots on the right (and humans too I guess) enter the pitlane polygon mesh and on comes the limiter. To avoid that I set .... IS_PITLANE=0 for the pit area mesh in surfaces.ini, so they can at least go through at racing speed at the start. The pit behaviour is normal if you set that value to 1, but a good number of cars essentially have a drive through penalty at the start of the race.

You are right though, there could indeed be more spectators dotted around to give more atmosphere. Thanks for the feedback and for your kind comments. :)
 

Gevatter

The James May of Simracing
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Just to be nitpicky: Maybe don't name the download file "tracks.zip" but give it an actual name :)

That is all with criticism because the track is fantastic. I've yet to complete a resonably fast lap with the Autounion Typ C without crashing but it's really very well done and well worth the asking price imo. The track radiates that 1930s Italian flair and you can almost smell the breeze from the sea. I may be very wrong but isn't @StefanoCasillo from that region?

I hope you continue to release your other tracks as well some day.
 

Italotracks

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Thanks for all the kind comments guys! :)

Just to be nitpicky: Maybe don't name the download file "tracks.zip" but give it an actual name :)

That is all with criticism because the track is fantastic. I've yet to complete a resonably fast lap with the Autounion Typ C without crashing but it's really very well done and well worth the asking price imo. The track radiates that 1930s Italian flair and you can almost smell the breeze from the sea. I may be very wrong but isn't @StefanoCasillo from that region?

I hope you continue to release your other tracks as well some day.

Thanks a lot for your feedback! Yeah I know tracks.zip isn't particularly inspiring but I thought that for simplicity's sake if the download on extraction is in a 'tracks' folder it's obvious what to paste and where. With the AMS version, if the file paths aren't just so, (folders inside folders etc.) the game doesn't pick the track up, or there are crashes on loading.
 
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Outstanding vintage track, very high quality work, well done indeed!! Already put the 250F round, the layout is just lovely, and the setting is unique. Hustling along the seafront under the shadows of the pine trees, up the historic town through narrow alleys, and speeding along the avenue, just beautiful!
For anybody who's into vintage stuff, this is a must have!!
Best of luck with your next tracks, and if you ever fancy selling season passes, I'll have one:laugh:
 

Italotracks

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Outstanding vintage track, very high quality work, well done indeed!! Already put the 250F round, the layout is just lovely, and the setting is unique. Hustling along the seafront under the shadows of the pine trees, up the historic town through narrow alleys, and speeding along the avenue, just beautiful!
For anybody who's into vintage stuff, this is a must have!!
Best of luck with your next tracks, and if you ever fancy selling season passes, I'll have one:laugh:

Thanks a lot for your kind words! It's a unique environment for a Grand Prix, Naples is really beautiful in places, it has a reputation for being dirty and can be a little bit looked down on by some people, but it has so much to see and do: history, scenery, amazing food...

I dragged my poor girlfriend on a track walk, and the list of stuff nearby that we missed by not googling the area and only found out about later was incredible. Looking towards the right along the coast there's a supervolcano that could end the world, a huge extinct volcano crater, underwater Roman ruins with mosaics and statues at Gaiola and Baia , At the cliffs below the track (not modelled) there are the Roman ruins of Pausilypon. And that's forgetting the better known stuff like Vesuvius, Pompei, Sorrento, Herculaneum, Capri, Ischia etc..

Thanks for your well wishes, I'm not sure whether I make tracks quickly enough to justify a season pass though! :D
I'll be sure to keep you all updated with progress on future works :)
 
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...Naples is really beautiful in places, it has a reputation for being dirty and can be a little bit looked down on by some people, but it has so much to see and do: history, scenery, amazing food...
You've certainly taken care of that though. Your rendition of Naples gives an almost overly clean appearence:D They have certainly cleaned up the place before the race:laugh:
 

AccAkut

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You've certainly taken care of that though. Your rendition of Naples gives an almost overly clean appearence:D They have certainly cleaned up the place before the race:laugh:
part of that is that there's not much Ambient Occlusion on most of the scenery and objects, or none at all. Every object is rather uniformly coloured and appears very bright. Immediatly caught my eye.

No question its a brilliant work of art already... but those last few % can make it shine... or in this case shine less :geek:
 
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Italotracks

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part of that is that there's not much Ambient Occlusion on most of the scenery and objects, or none at all. Every object is rather uniformly coloured and appears very bright. Immediatly caught my eye.

No question its a brilliant work of art already... but those last few % can make it shine... or in this case shine less :geek:

Thanks for you feedback! :thumbsup: It was a (perhaps poor) design choice on my part to more or less neglect AO from the outset.

With so many buildings to model, it was very daunting at first. it was impossible to get useable facade photos of them, and I wanted to make them as accurate to their real life counterparts as I possibly could (windows and balconies in the right places etc..). With that in mind I created each building from zero as its own object and to minimise texture usage all the buildings etc, are simply box mapped with differently coloured repeating seamless plaster textures, with dirt decals added over them in places. That as far as I understand, makes AO on those impossible in AC. (AO has to share the same mapping as the diffuse?) I could be completely wrong...
As I developed it in parallel for AMS as well, there are RAM considerations too, so if most objects had their own AO texture, the texture usage would take it out of the realms of playability, it's already pushing it.

However, for future projects (at Pescara for example) I will see if a modular approach to the buildings works better, there will be a shedload to make! I'm committed to it being in at least both AC and AMS, but there will be less compromising the AC version this time.

Thanks again for the advice, I'm hoping to improve my skills all the time because at the end of the day I want you guys to be happy with and enjoy the tracks I produce. :)
 
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Sergio Loro

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Thanks for you feedback! :thumbsup: It was a (perhaps poor) design choice on my part to more or less neglect AO from the outset.

With so many buildings to model, it was very daunting at first. it was impossible to get useable facade photos of them, and I wanted to make them as accurate to their real life counterparts as I possibly could (windows and balconies in the right places etc..). With that in mind I created each building from zero as its own object and to minimise texture usage all the buildings etc, are simply box mapped with differently coloured repeating seamless plaster textures, with dirt decals added over them in places. That as far as I understand, makes AO on those impossible in AC. (AO has to share the same mapping as the diffuse?) I could be completely wrong...
As I developed it in parallel for AMS as well, there are RAM considerations too, so if most objects had their own AO texture, the texture usage would take it out of the realms of playability, it's already pushing it.

However, for future projects (at Pescara for example) I will see if a modular approach to the buildings works better, there will be a shedload to make! I'm committed to it being in at least both AC and AMS, but there will be less compromising the AC version this time.

Thanks again for the advice, I'm hoping to improve my skills all the time because at the end of the day I want you guys to be happy with and enjoy the tracks I produce. :)
once you mapped the building, create a unwrap for map channel 2 (i use flatten mapping) and use render to texture to create a texture with AO, replace the map ch 1 for the map ch 2, use the texture you just create and you have a building with AO. not the most technical explanation, but let me know if you want some help.
 
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