Racing with Custom Cars, Catchup OFF

#1 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

Because seriously, what's the point of lovingly souping up your cars and bikes for hundreds of thousands of bucks, and then not race 'em for reals? Yes - it's unfair if you haven't got a sweet ride of your own, but does it really matter if it isn't? As far as I'm concerned, it's what the whole *persistent world* angle to gaming is all about. Otherwise, why even bother with a persistent world and character progression? Just play any damn non-persistent game, which are inherently designed to be more even-handed and fair.

Racing without custom vehicles and catchup on is like what Blizzard has done to World of Warcraft when it introduced resilience (mitigates PvP damage/control effects). They broke the game's cohesive persistence in two - by establishing two completely seperate paths of itemization - into PvE and PvP progression. That's when the game's persistence began to become meaningless. So you are one of the legendary heroes that vanquished the world's greatest evil first? It doesn't matter in the world at large. Some intermediate skill-level goon in resilience gear will akin to an untouchable god to you. You are the greatest Gladiator that ever lived? Well - that monster there doesn't care about that. You are powerless. Before resilience, I was a Warcraft player. It was one game, one world, one life, one love. After I was either a PvE or PvP player, or both - but never whole again.

So for the love of god, embrace the tuning culture and tune-up rides to race them, because that's how it's supposed to be. If you are a racer, you want your car to be the best. You deserve an advantage over the racing peasants who race stock cars. Racing culture is more than just showing up at the starting line. It's striving to buy a sweet ride, and tune it up to the gills with power, and adding frills to make it your own. Ontop of that - whitewashing races with the catchup setting is the worst thing ever. So you get ahead of the pack, don't fuck up, and yet whatever you do, you'll get slower and slower, and if worst comes to worse, the timing works out just right that you don't have a chance in hell to win anymore when they finally catch up, breezing by with slipstream speed just before the finish line while you're stuck with a crippled gaspedal from catchup.

btw. decent matchmaking would go so fucking far to accommodate for both, but damn if it isn't shit. I'm sitting in a lobby right now. Already waiting a half an hour for somebody, anybody to matchmake into it. If matchmaking was better, I'd have lobbies full of serious racers with souped up rides all day long. Grrr! I mean how do you manage to matchmake millions of people worldwide and end up with empty lobbies abound? By being really fucking bad at it. That's how!

#2 Posted by mosespippy (4052 posts) -

Catch up fucking sucks. I hate it. If I win I want it to be because I'm the best driver out there. If I lose, I want it to be because I fucked up. Then it's just a test of how well you recover and how well you battle with the pack. I don't mind losing. I just want to perfect my lines and finish as well as possible.

The reason insider trading is illegal is because it creates an unfair advantage. It can drive up prices artificially which is bad for the economy overall, or it can cause stock prices to be sold off at below their actual value, which fucks over the guy selling it. Unfair advantages are just bad.

#3 Posted by Humanity (8874 posts) -

No catchup is fine with me but custom cars can break the race. Since a lot of the time lobbies aren't separated by levels you can get people racing with access to upgrades that others simply do not. If you could filter only certain levels, with certain cars and a set amount of upgrades then sure - but if it's just who has the most expensive cars then what's the point? I much rather race with the exact same car because then I know for sure it was skill that won the race and not how much money someone had.

#4 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

The reason insider trading is illegal is because it creates an unfair advantage. It can drive up prices artificially which is bad for the economy overall, or it can cause stock prices to be sold off at below their actual value, which fucks over the guy selling it. Unfair advantages are just bad.

So on the topic of Custom Cars, you'd rather not have Custom Cars in favor of even-handed competition?

#5 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@humanity said:

No catchup is fine with me but custom cars can break the race. Since a lot of the time lobbies aren't separated by levels you can get people racing with access to upgrades that others simply do not. If you could filter only certain levels, with certain cars and a set amount of upgrades then sure - but if it's just who has the most expensive cars then what's the point? I much rather race with the exact same car because then I know for sure it was skill that won the race and not how much money someone had.

If your problem is with custom cars, turn those off. Catchup however cripples everything about a race by crippling the leader. It's not racing, if you can't push for better if you're in the lead.

However, progression is what a persistent online game is all about, and custom vehicles are a big part of character progression in GTA Online. I've got a fully souped up sports, muscle, coupe car, as well as a motorbike - and it's these that are the best most meaningful things I've ever bought in-game.

I like to bring that meaning into all aspects of the game. Become a tuner yourself and take on the challenge. If there weren't any settings that would mitigate the persistent nature of the game, it would make for a much more fascinating experience.

#6 Posted by Humanity (8874 posts) -

@seppli: without any sort of regulation or standards it's pointless in a way. You like your souped up cars and that's cool but when you get into a race with some guy who just bought Rockstar dollars over the marketplace and got the 20 million dollar car that accelerates and outruns everyone else in the race by a magnitude of a 100 then it's no longer even a race and a lot less fun to be basically battling for second.

#7 Posted by mosespippy (4052 posts) -

@seppli said:

@mosespippy said:

The reason insider trading is illegal is because it creates an unfair advantage. It can drive up prices artificially which is bad for the economy overall, or it can cause stock prices to be sold off at below their actual value, which fucks over the guy selling it. Unfair advantages are just bad.

So on the topic of Custom Cars, you'd rather not have Custom Cars in favor of even-handed competition?

My insider trading comment is more so about the unfair advantage created by catch up, not about custom cars.

I'm fine with everybody using stock cars since that'd be an even field. I'm fine with everybody using custom cars, because in the long term it will be an even field as the population unlocks the various upgrades.

#8 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@humanity said:

@seppli: without any sort of regulation or standards it's pointless in a way. You like your souped up cars and that's cool but when you get into a race with some guy who just bought Rockstar dollars over the marketplace and got the 20 million dollar car that accelerates and outruns everyone else in the race by a magnitude of a 100 then it's no longer even a race and a lot less fun to be basically battling for second.

The point is meaningful progression. Denying meaningful progression with settings is denying the reason for existence of a persistent world. Sure - rockstar dollar do dilute the whole thing a little. You still got to place first lots of times to actually unlock the meaningful upgrades though.

What's more frustrating? Making progress and not getting anything out of it? Or not having progressed yet, and being beaten by people who have prgressed and hold a momentary advantage?

#9 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@seppli said:

@mosespippy said:

The reason insider trading is illegal is because it creates an unfair advantage. It can drive up prices artificially which is bad for the economy overall, or it can cause stock prices to be sold off at below their actual value, which fucks over the guy selling it. Unfair advantages are just bad.

So on the topic of Custom Cars, you'd rather not have Custom Cars in favor of even-handed competition?

My insider trading comment is more so about the unfair advantage created by catch up, not about custom cars.

I'm fine with everybody using stock cars since that'd be an even field. I'm fine with everybody using custom cars, because in the long term it will be an even field as the population unlocks the various upgrades.

Sure, catchup is just an outright aggrievous mechanic. Custom cars is more of a preference, but in the context of the persistent online world - it just seems to me that it's pointless not to race with 'em.

#10 Posted by Clonedzero (4101 posts) -

my main issue with racing is that you need 1st to earn the upgrades. I mean i get 2nd and 3rd alot, but rarely first. It sucks cus i can't upgrade my car to help with that, so i'm sorta stuck.

#11 Posted by Humanity (8874 posts) -

@clonedzero: well we sure won that team race! That firt lap where I slowed down and they all blew each other up with rockets was priceless.

#12 Posted by Ramone (2960 posts) -

Catchup does help to mitigate some of the bullshit that occurs when people drive dirty on purpose.

#13 Edited by mosespippy (4052 posts) -

@ramone said:

Catchup does help to mitigate some of the bullshit that occurs when people drive dirty on purpose.

How so? Dirty drivers typically don't hit a clean enough line to be in the lead, so catch up is only bringing them to the front of the pack.

#14 Posted by Clonedzero (4101 posts) -

@humanity said:

@clonedzero: well we sure won that team race! That firt lap where I slowed down and they all blew each other up with rockets was priceless.

Oh yeah! that was alot of fun. I was just DUMPING the entire time haha

#15 Posted by Demoskinos (14596 posts) -

Ive won plenty of times with catch up on. Its not that hard really.

#16 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@demoskinos said:

Ive won plenty of times with catch up on. Its not that hard really.

That's not the point. I'm winning lots too, I just hate the setting - that's all. It's not really racing cars anymore. To a certain degree it's managing catchup and slipstream, rather than about racing cars.

Catchup is a rather shitty crutch really, because it's not a crutch for the crippled, but crippling the stronger drivers' ability to drive properly. I guess the constant pushing and shoving and the chaos of being in the pack is the upside, if you are into such random things.

Getting away from the pack is what interesting to me, when it comes to that. There's not much of getting away with catchup active, unless the pack is really really stupid.

#17 Posted by Demoskinos (14596 posts) -

@seppli: Id rather a race stay competive even if it is through artificial means. Being in first place in any racing game is the most boring position to be in. Having to constenly watch your back lends a constant threat that heightens the excitement.

#18 Posted by Ramone (2960 posts) -

@ramone said:

Catchup does help to mitigate some of the bullshit that occurs when people drive dirty on purpose.

How so? Dirty drivers typically don't hit a clean enough line to be in the lead, so catch up is only bringing them to the front of the pack.

Well it stops people who just ram others off the track/into a spin from taking an unassailable lead early on in races.

#19 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@seppli: Id rather a race stay competive even if it is through artificial means. Being in first place in any racing game is the most boring position to be in. Having to constenly watch your back lends a constant threat that heightens the excitement.

With how important risk management is in GTA Online Racing, I'd argue that's far from true - at least if there's worthy competitors in the field.

#20 Posted by Jaqen_HGhar (871 posts) -

Yeah, I wish more people set the catchup to off. It's not fun when your car noticeably starts running worse, slows down enough for someone to do a pit-maneuver on you which sends you flying and cause you to lose the race. This has happened to me several times the last few days. I also do whatever I can to gain the lead without crashing other cars out, which makes it all the more frustrating when someone I have managed to get past can just crash me out like that. Hell, the races I have won have been the ones where I stay back for most of the race, then swoop past the last stretch.

I also wish more people chose to race with "muscle" cars, as my personal vehicle is one. Everyone just want to race "super" cars all the time.

#21 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@jaqen_hghar said:

Yeah, I wish more people set the catchup to off. It's not fun when your car noticeably starts running worse, slows down enough for someone to do a pit-maneuver on you which sends you flying and cause you to lose the race. This has happened to me several times the last few days. I also do whatever I can to gain the lead without crashing other cars out, which makes it all the more frustrating when someone I have managed to get past can just crash me out like that. Hell, the races I have won have been the ones where I stay back for most of the race, then swoop past the last stretch.

I also wish more people chose to race with "muscle" cars, as my personal vehicle is one. Everyone just want to race "super" cars all the time.

Muscle cars are definitely the most accident-prone. For lovers of risk managment, it's great. I love 'em too, unless it's rainy. Fuck driving muscle cars in the rain.

There's also entirely too much highway racing going on. More technical tracks get rarely repeated, whilst often it's hard to ween a group off your average highway race.

#22 Posted by Coafi (1481 posts) -

I wish we had a setting where other players couldn't bump into each others cars. I love racing, but everyone insists on ramming you off the road. Goddammit! I just wanna race!

#23 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

Tonight I got matchmade into the perfect lobby. 5 highlevel tuners racing Dock Ring - my favorite track thus far - won 2 out of 4 races, placed 2nd in the other two. Loved the discussion that was happening too. How GTA has a more realistic driving model than Gran Tourismo. I should put that up for vote.

#24 Posted by Skyrider (334 posts) -

I actually want to spend more time racing, which is odd because I don't like racing games, but absolutely adore racing in this game. And yeah, I prefer catchup being off, even if it means I get left in the dust.

As for behaviour and etiquette in races, I probably flip-flop between looking like a very clean racer, or one who takes the phrase "rubbing is racing" a little too seriously. In reality, I just suck and my attempts to avoid ramming other cars either succeed brilliantly and I look like a pro, or fail miserably and I end up looking like the biggest ass to ever drive the roads of San Andreas.

#25 Edited by SgtSphynx (1276 posts) -

Since I've only played two races in Online, can someone explain how the catchup mechanic works?

Also, I fucking love the muscle cars in this game, even if the closest thing I can get to my actual Challenger is a Camaro/Challenger hybrid.

#26 Posted by mosespippy (4052 posts) -

Since I've only played two races in Online, can someone explain how the catchup mechanic works?

Also, I fucking love the muscle cars in this game, even if the closest thing I can get to my actual Challenger is a Camaro/Challenger hybrid.

The guy in the lead gets a lower top speed. It's as simple as that. It seems to be a calculation that predicts the leaders finish time and the trailers finish times and adjusts players speeds so that they finish at approximately the same time. Add in the speed boost from drafting and the guy behind will win every time. I guess they want close finishes so that people who can't tell the difference think it's such a great racing game.

I've decided that from now on I will always quit if catch up is turned on. It feels too much like the computer cheating, which is exactly the kind of bullshit that existed in the 80's and 90's that was criticized so much that games finally got rid of it in the 2000s.

#27 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

Since I've only played two races in Online, can someone explain how the catchup mechanic works?

Also, I fucking love the muscle cars in this game, even if the closest thing I can get to my actual Challenger is a Camaro/Challenger hybrid.

Catchup slows down the racer in the lead. The bigger the lead, the slower you go. It's rubbish, unless it's a GTA race - where it makes some sense.

#28 Posted by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

Fuck catch up so fucking hard. I don't need to explain how fucked that is in the context of a RACE. Like some others in this thread, racing is my specialty.

#29 Edited by ZeForgotten (10397 posts) -

Catchup is weeeeird.
I could be in the most shitty car in the world and you could be in the most outfitted-with-everything beast of a car and make one mistake and I would go from last place to Winning in a matter of seconds.
Makes no damn sense.

#30 Posted by Optix12 (611 posts) -

I only just got hit with the catchup system now. To this day I thought it was simply that super speed you get from drafting behind another player and easily taking their spot but today I luckily avoided all the crashes in a 16 man point to point and got ahead of everyone else crashing into each other by quite a margin and noticed my car started to die or something. I seriously thought my controller wasn't working any more for a period. So I went from first to about 12th because, naturally, as the fuckers passed me they decided to also crash me into a spin. I shouted a "fuck that, fuck this game" as I was pressing my consoles power button.

#31 Edited by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

@optix12 said:

I only just got hit with the catchup system now. To this day I thought it was simply that super speed you get from drafting behind another player and easily taking their spot but today I luckily avoided all the crashes in a 16 man point to point and got ahead of everyone else crashing into each other by quite a margin and noticed my car started to die or something. I seriously thought my controller wasn't working any more for a period. So I went from first to about 12th because, naturally, as the fuckers passed me they decided to also crash me into a spin. I shouted a "fuck that, fuck this game" as I was pressing my consoles power button.

haha We were racing earlier. I had catch up off though.

#32 Edited by Optix12 (611 posts) -

@mideonnviscera: yea I spotted the session invite. some good racing there, I just need to win a few more races so I can start putting in the saved money/that 500k into upgrading cars

#33 Posted by Rebel_Scum (646 posts) -

I had my first couple of races last night (on motorcycles) and found the most annoying thing apart from catchup was other people deliberately ramming you on purpose.

Is this how most people race as well because I remember playing Daytona online and that was really frowned upon.

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