In this dev blog I'll be focussing on damage to the car and how that affects your race.
The damage dilemma
I think it's important that your actions in the game can affect the car. For example, if you have a big accident and hit a wall then this needs to be reflected in the game. The dilemma is how much impact that should have on your race (and, potentially, your fun). In essence, should a big accident put you out of the race?
I think it a big accident should end your race but I am expecting to need to allow players to configure this. I've not decided on the options yet but I think it'll take a lot of testing and discussion with testers to find the right balance. However, I have decided that there should be functionality that means a big accident can put you out of the race even if some players turn that option off.
What bits can fall off?
I've focused on damage to the wings (front and rear) and the wheels for now. Losing the front wing is something that affects performance (you get a lot of understeer) but will be something that can be fixed during pit stops (albeit causing a longer stop). Knocking off a wheel or the rear wing will end your race (as it does in most forms of open-wheel racing).
I've spent quite a lot of time working out what magnitude of impact should result in damage to the car and think I've got a good balance. I want players to be able to tap a wall or other car and not cause damage but if it's a large impact then the car should be damaged. I've also been working on the effects so that a big impact produces a shower of bits:-
Pit stops and next month...
I've also been working on pit stops and the car can now enter the pits and stop in a pit box. For the coming month I'll be doing more work on pit stops so that players can change tyres and repair damage and I'll also be working on some menu screens as it would help development if players can toggle options on and off.