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F1 2020 Performance mod - Trial, error and discussion

F1 2020 The Game (Codemasters)
Hello! I am writing this here as I appear not to have enough privileges to post it in the mods forum. This is a long post but I thought it would be interesting to know how a newbie approaches mods and interesting for me as I want to share my thinking and experience, even to be corrected, helped and guided. So if interested, have a good read!

I never made a performance mod before, but I wanted to try and modify the cars performance based on my taste and opinion. So this can be a discussion about the procedure and what I did wrong.

First, to have an idea, I watched this video by Alex Gillon, who discussed and studied what was modified and how after the performance patch in October:
but the only value truly upfront that I can find in the vtf files is "mass" referred to chassis weight , I cannot find the downforce and engine values in the vtf files as he explained them.
It looks like that engine values are composed by several lines in the vtf files, that I think could be copied and paste to switch between an engine performance to the other, in the sections "engine" and "fuel".

My idea was to start from this base and adjust the performances according to my opinion, which can indeed be very wrong - Please use the attached image file as reference. Mercedes will not have improvements as it is considered the benchmark. So if the original performance on a scale of 10 out of 10 can be seen as Mercedes 10, Red Bull 9, BWT 8, Ferrari 7, McLaren and Renault 6, AlphaTauri 5, Haas and Alfa Romeo 3 and Williams 2, I would like the new performance overalls to be: Mercedes and Red Bull 10, McLaren and Ferrari 8, AlphaTauri 7, Alpine 6, Asto Martin 5, Williams and Alfa Romeo 4 and Haas 2.

As per the video by Alex Gillon, engine should be the easiest to be modified as you have only 4 engines in the game but simplified further in 2 tiers: before the performance patch the higher tier were Ferrari and Mercedes and the lower tier were Renault and Honda, after the performance patch Ferrari was downgraded to lower tier thus making Mercedes the only higher tier engine.

My idea is to make Honda the 2nd higher tier engine, therefore I simply wanted to copy-paste the Mercedes engine and fuel lines to Red Bull and Alphatauri to give them a more powerful engine and even things out between the 2 top teams, Mercedes and Red Bull. This will also be acknowledge in the "quali mode", the MAX fuel mix that for Mercedes engine is at 1.08 instead of 1.07.

Now in 3rd place we have Racing Point: I wanted to simply give the Racing Point performance to McLaren, to reflect the fact they are the 3rd force, and this will also allow to give McLaren the Mercedes high-tier engine as in real life. But I will let McLaren have the original mass chassis value, so 746 instead of the Racing Point's 742.

As per the improvements of Ferrari, I will also let Ferrari have the Racing Point performance, but with its Ferrari engine thus copying all the lines. To balance things out, I will let Ferrari have its original chassis mass at 740 instead of 742.

Then my idea is that Alphatauri can be the 5th strongest car: I wanted to give them the Ferrari performance but with Honda top tier engine (Mercedes lines) and I will give them a mass of 745, midway between Ferrari's 740 and original AlphaTauri 748.

Then Alpine-Renault can stay the way it is, I would only make the chassis mass 748 instead of 745.

Aston Martin I want to downgrade it by giving them the AlphaTauri performance but with their Mercedes Engine and 745 mass.

In the lower field, I want to give Williams and Alfa Romeo a lighter mass at 748 and Haas can have the original Williams value, but with Ferrari engine that will lower the performance even more.

As you can see, I did not modify the downforce but simply switched performance overalls between cars, just to have a grid that can reflect more my opinion.

About MASS: if I am using skind mods that use the FOM CHASSIS, do I need to edit the vtf file of FOM car? Or if I am using modular mods performace templates it will receive that info before switching chassis?

But then I tested it in Australia and the results were not satisfying: the only thing that did satisfy me is that Mercedes and Red Bull were more even, but Ferrari and McLaren were sill under the Racing Point (which had the AlphaTauri performace). Maybe the Alphatauri performance with a Mercedes Engine was made OP because of the good aero and chassis Alhphatauri had? Maybe Racing Point was 3rd overall only because of lower drag and powerful engine? But McLaren was really low in quali and race, about 10-11th. And also Williams was always last and Haas was in front.

So thank you for your attention and I hope this discussion can be interesting and useful! Cheers!


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Modular Mods Creator
I only say this:
  • fomswaps contain vtf files, so fom_car is not even touched and not use because it is the multiplayer car
  • performance template loads first, but it does not contain the fomswaps adjusted vtf files, so if you want to use it, you need to import the vtf from fomswap into the performance template
  • changing mass only is quick and dirty, but bad for the player - because the mass change affects the player way different than the AI and one would have to adjust the AI difficulty each time you drive a different team
  • so tweak the min and max aero a bit, lower aero makes cars faster (you can actually have negative values and go jet style) and play with the rev spline additionally to changing the mass a bit (25 equals 1 sec for the A.I.)
Thank You Park! I understand all you said, but It is indeed more complicated for my knowledge at the moment so I don't think I will be able to translate it into a real mod but it is still very interesting.
Ok so I did something, I mixed up with help from raw files from the performance patches before the October update. If somebody wants to test my mod, I can give it away to try. The mod features the 2 ERP files from the Modular Mods templates with:

Realistic damage mod by StrongestFish + Slipstreaming modified from 0.9 to 0.85 for more speed when following on the straights.

This performance mod wants to reflect only my opinion and I understand yours can beg to differ!

Honda engine becomes top tier engine (Mercedes-like) but not for "my team", so Red Bull and Mercedes will be more even, as it is this year. Mercedes was not modified as it was and still is the benchmark.
I did not touch performance of "my team" files, only slipstreaming and realistic damage, because I wanted to modify only the real car performances.
This engine situation will bring Honda and Mercedes to high tier and Ferrari and Renault to lower tier.

Ferrari gets back the performance it had before the patch (so less drag and slightly more downforce) but respecting the current engine downgrade, not anymore high tier by copying the lines.

McLaren gets the switch to Mercedes engine and lighter chassis from 746 to 742. This should make for good fights for the 3rd force betweeen McLaren and Ferrari.

Alphatauri: I gave them chassis mass 745 instead of 748 and Honda new top tier engine. The purpose is to reflect the improvements they had in 2021.
Alpine: did not change performance at all except +5 chassis mass and +3 engine mass because this year it is huge.
Aston Martin: gave them back their old Racin Point mid-tier performance they had before patch 1.12. In my vision Alpine and Aston Martin can be slightly less performant than AlphaTauri.
Alfa Romeo: got back its performance pre-patch, so more downforce and less drag but downgraded the Ferrari engine to current level. Chassis from 750 to 748.
Williams: gave them also the Alfa Romeo pre-patch performance but lighter chassis and Mercedes engine. This should balance things out between Williams and Alfa, both stronger than in the original game but with different pros and cons.
Haas: gave them Williams performance but with downgraded engine, so it will reflect their condition of last force on the field.

So the ranking now should be:
Red Bull and Mercedes - 10
Ferrari and McLaren - 8
Alphatauri - 7
Aston Martin - 6
Alpine - 6-
Williams and Alfa Romeo 4.5
Haas 3

I am willing to send this mod template to anyone who wants to test it. I will do it next days!
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This mod is very beautiful, but testing it I found that:
Ferrari is too slow, most of the time it fights for the 9 or 10 position.
Aston martin is too strong, but Stroll is ok, Seb sometimes finished fifth.
Mclaren ok,
mercedes and red bull ok but in all the races I have tried he has always won hamilton even if vestappen was almost always second close to him.
Alpine slightly too strong.
alpha tauri is not the fifth force.
And the haas is almost always ahead of the williams.

I think this mod is very improvable, if you need to test the mod I'm available!