Slightly Mad Studios entirely maddening gamepad control in Project CARS (PS4, Dualshock 4)

Project CARS
Project CARS

Slightly Mad Studios have produced driving games with arguably the most intense and thrilling driving experiences available: Need for Speed: Shift, Shift 2: Unleashed, Test Drive: Ferrari Racing Legends and now Project CARS.

They all have something in common: nearly undrivable gamepad control out of the box. Amazingly, they are clearly aware of this and so consistently and uniquely offer a bewildering array of unexplained, sometimes cryptically named sliders that allow you to fine tune the controls to your preference.

Project CARS on PS4’s Dualshock 4 is no exception and it took around 18 hours of play before I finally got a controller setup I was happy with. Here it is:

Gameplay / Authenticity

  • Steering Assistance: No
  • Braking Assistance: No
  • Anti-Lock Brakes: Yes
  • Stability Control: Yes
  • Traction Control: Yes

Controls / Configuration

Go down and set this first:

  • Controller Input Mode: 2
  • Advanced: Off

then

  • Steering Deadzone: 0
  • Steering Sensitivity: 0
  • Throttle Deadzone: 0
  • Throttle Sensitivity: 5
  • Brake Deadzone: 5
  • Brake Sensitivity: 30
  • Clutch Deadzone: 13
  • Clutch Sensitivity: 45
  • Speed Sensitivity: 65
  • Controller Filtering Sensitivity: 65

It’s making the game most enjoyable again and if you’re looking for a gamepad setup for Project CARS I hope it helps.

Driveclub™ (2014, PS4 exclusive) – 8/10 racing game review

Driveclub™ (2014, PS4 exclusive) – 8/10 racing game review

AmazonBuy Driveclub™ at Amazon

Cast / crew
Game Director: Paul Rustchynsky

Driveclub™ (2014)

8/10

Serious launch errors and delayed features (replays, photo-mode and weather) have undermined Driveclub and shapeless mobile game presentation will continue to undermine it but the thrilling experience of driving on spectacular, fun, original tracks make this a racing game to relish. A racing game isn’t likely to differentiate itself through a real world car list (GT6‘s Vision Gran Turismo and Red Bull X programme excepted) but through the track list. Driveclub‘s beautiful tracks are expertly designed so that they can be bounced around but accuracy will always give you lap time and sweet satisfaction. Driving them in a different class of car is like driving a new track; you discover new yumps and curves just because you’re travelling in a much faster car. It is entirely wonderful and helped by a choice of superb exterior and interior driving views. Even without the Challenge system and consistently working leaderboards (most of my times do not upload even though I’m connected to Driveclub‘s servers and earning Club points), Driveclub‘s outstanding racing and driving experience is enough to recommend it.

Classified 3+ by PEGI. The game is only suitable for persons who have reached the age of 3 or over.

Links

Old PC racing games now working on Windows 8.1 with Steam custom images: CannonBall, Juiced, Le Mans 24 Hours (2002), OutRun, Sega GT and Sega Rally

Old PC racing games now working on Windows 8.1 with Steam custom images: CannonBall, Juiced, Le Mans 24 Hours (2002), OutRun, Sega GT and Sega Rally

Steam icon 48x48Steam allows you to set custom images for all items in your library, including non-Steam games.

It was with some surprise that I revisited some old PC games on Windows 8.1 and found them working again for the first time since Windows XP.

Often you need fixed versions to remove copy protection that no longer works and if they are running from protected locations (like your system’s Program Files folder), they will need Run as Administrator set in the Compatibility properties page.

Here are some Steam custom images to integrate them into your Steam library.

CannonBall / OutRun
CannonBall / OutRun

Cannonball is a reassembly of the OutRun arcade machine and adds widescreen and 60 fps support to your MAME-compatible OutRun ROM.

Juiced Steam custom image
Juiced
Juiced transparent Media Center Steam custom image
Juiced (transparent)

Juiced is a game with ambition and ideas and lots to do but it never quite found a big audience. It runs in widescreen resolutions and has full controller support.

To get Juiced to run:

  1. If you want to use a noCD patched version, copy the fixed Juiced.exe over the original.
  2. For Juiced.exe, set Compatibility Mode to XP Service Pack 3.

To set up controls:

  1. Copy diactfrm.dll, diamp.dll and Fix DInput.bat into Juiced folder (if this doesn’t work copy it to %windir%\SysWOW64 and run from there).
  2. Open an Administrator command window (or Right-Shift Right-Click and Run as Administrator) and run Fix DInput.bat. This registers diactfrm.dll using the command: regsvr32.exe /s diactfrm.dll
  3. Run JuicedConfig.exe and set Juiced to 640×480 Windowed Mode.
  4. Run Juiced and select Controls from the Options menu. Now you can assign your controls using the old Direct Input controls editor.
  5. In Juiced’s options, adjust steering sensitivity to a preferred value as it will be a bit too sensitive for a gamepad.
  6. Then you can exit and set Juiced back to full screen using JuicedConfig.exe

Juiced saves:

  • Located in %appdata%\THQ
Le Mans 24 Hours (2002)
Le Mans 24 Hours (2002)

Le Mans 24 Hours aka Test Drive: Le Mans, the 2002 game from Melbourne House and Infogrames is one of the best racing games of all time.

It has full controller support and recognises all 4:3 ratio screen sizes registered to your display. (4:3 on a 1080P display is 1440×1080 pixels.) All controls are rebindable.

  • If you don’t want to see the intro movies you can rename or delete the Data/FMV folder.
  • You can force anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering using your graphic card’s control panel.
Sega GT Toyota Celica Steam custom image
Sega GT (Toyota Celica)
Sega GT transparent Steam custom image
Sega GT (transparent)
Sega GT Steam custom image
Sega GT

Sega GT was Sega’s attempt to produce a Gran Turismo class game. It spawned a really good Xbox-exclusive double sequel (Sega GT 2002 and Sega GT Online) but the original game was let down by baffling handling. The game surrounding it was quite good but the core gameplay was not. The chance to race around original, non-real world tracks is worth it though and the tracks in the sequels are superb.

The Dreamcast version was good-looking but the PC version was not. With your graphics card control panel you can force anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering but it will still only be 640×480.

To get Sega GT to run:

  1. Set Compatibility Mode for SegaGT.exe to Windows 95.
  2. If you don’t wish to see the intro movies which pop up in silly little ActiveMovie windows, simply delete or rename them. The game will then launch directly.
Sega Rally transparent Steam custom image
Sega Rally (transparent)
Sega Rally red Steam custom image
Sega Rally (red)
Sega Rally Steam custom image (1)
Sega Rally

Sega Rally is the PC version of the original arcade game. It is surprisingly good, arguably better than Sega Rally 2 thanks to more consistent and understandable handling.

CRC 2005: Cross Racing Championship (2005, PC) – 9/10 mixed-surface racing game review

AmazonBuy CRC 2005: Cross Racing Championship 2005 at Amazon

Cast / crew

CRC 2005: Cross Racing Championship 2005 (2005)

Drive a handful of vehicles on tarmac, snow, gravel, mud and through streams on your way to achieving the full prestige of being Cross Racing Champion.

9/10

Despite an obtuse career mode (the aim is to complete races on lower difficulty to earn upgrades and championship points so you can unlock and win every race available on the hardest difficulty, earning 100% “Prestige” to complete the game; but it’s not obvious), this is one of the greatest racing games ever available on PC. It’s looks and sounds fantastic and the cockpit view is the best I’ve ever used. It’s immersive, convincing and, miraculously, you can see out of the windscreen. You’d be astonished at how many racing games have a cockpit view that you can’t see out of. The handling is responsive, convincing and simply thrilling to feel. The England track, in particular, is breath-taking at every corner in every car on every lap.

Links