IndyCar Secures Game Assets Following Settlement With Motorsport Games (Updated)

IndyCar-Game-MSG-Settlement.jpeg
Image: Motorsport Games
After intending to terminate the license in late 2023, IndyCar has reached a settlement with Motorsport Games, handing the game assets to IndyCar themselves. Hope for a standalone game is rekindled as a result.

UPDATE JUNE 6, 2024

According to Motorsport Games CEO Stephen Hood, the settlement has been completed without iRacing stepping in for the final part of the payments. "The final part of the NASCAR license sale to iRacing is that there is one more payment that iRacing are due to make to Motorsport Games, which at the moment is scheduled for the end of the year. It could be triggered earlier, if we pull the NASCAR games from sale, because we still have the license to sell them until the end of the year."

Essentially, the iRacing payment mentioned in the deal acted as security for IndyCar, as the two entities have a business relationship already. "If Motorsport Games wasn't here tomorrow, they would still get their money", Hood continued. "It was an interesting idea, maybe more complex than it needed to be. But that was all cleared up anyway - we cleared up the remaining payment, so there is nothing outstanding, and the deal is concluded. iRacing are not involved in any capacity."

ORIGINAL ARTICLE MAY 24, 2024

In a rough end to 2023 for Motorsport Games, the company first saw its BTCC license terminated (although both sides have reconciled since), then was served with the notice that IndyCar intended to do the same. MSG was supposed to create standalone games for both series, but failed to fulfill its agreement terms with each of them.

Shortly after this, iRacing brought back IndyCar to its service, including the Indy 500 Special Event due to take place from May 28 to June 2. Having struck a multi-year licensing deal, sim racers hoped that maybe iRacing could deliver a standalone game for the premier US open-wheel racing series.

Fans can get their hopes up again now: A new SEC filing states that Motorsport Games and IndyCar have reached a settlement that will have MSG pay $400,000 instead of an approximate $2.9 million that the company owed the Indianapolis-based racing series. This is to be split into a $250,000 payment to be made by MSG immediately, and another $150,000 payment to be made either by MSG within 30 days of the agreement, or by iRacing until December 31. An option to create the game or the result of other paragraphs regarding the IndyCar license? Time will tell what option is going to go ahead.

IndyCar Game Motorsport Games.jpg

Originally, the IndyCar game was supposed to be released in 2023. Image: Motorsport Games

IndyCar Can Choose Studio To Resume Development​

More interestingly to sim racers, however, the settlement also includes the transfer of the rights to all licensed intellectual property for the "IndyCar development project for PC, PlayStation and Xbox formats, including the software source code, tools and applications necessary for a professional development team to resume development and production".

Furthermore, MSG is obligated to work for a smooth handover, according to the settlement. The company is to provide up to 50 hours of consulting "to facilitate the transition of the IndyCar series game development [...] to the software developer of IndyCar's choice."

Who this software developer could be remains unanswered for now, but with iRacing being listed as an option to pay the $150,000 part of the settlement, it could point towards the US-based racing simulation developer. Supposedly, the game (initially supposed to be developed by Motorsport Games Australia) was relatively far along in development already.

Should the IndyCar game finally materialize somewhere down the road, it would be the first standalone game for the US open-wheel series in at least 20 years. IndyCar Series 2005 was released in June 2004 - at the time, the Indy Racing League and ChampCar World Series were still going head-to-head as part of the Split from 1996 to 2008 - a vastly different landscape in American open-wheel racing.

Are you excited for the prospect of the IndyCar game seeing the light of day eventually? Let us know on Twitter @OverTake_gg or in the comments below!
About author
Yannik Haustein
Lifelong motorsport enthusiast and sim racing aficionado, walking racing history encyclopedia.

Sim racing editor, streamer and one half of the SimRacing Buddies podcast (warning, German!).

Heel & Toe Gang 4 life :D

Comments

after a reskinned rF2 as LMU, a next rF2 reskinned as Indycar ultimate ?
No thanks, rF2 already does everything and better.
Logic says if another studio / developer took it over than they would likely just take the models and transfer it to their game engine of choice. But the line about source codes, tools and applications does make you wonder. But that would also be effectively giving away rf2 to someone else. So not very clear what's happening here.
 
Logic says if another studio / developer took it over than they would likely just take the models and transfer it to their game engine of choice. But the line about source codes, tools and applications does make you wonder. But that would also be effectively giving away rf2 to someone else. So not very clear what's happening here.
imagine BTCC reskinned rF2, LMU reskinned rF2, and Indycar reskinned rF2, a scam. But the worst is when 3000 LMU players are saying "wooow what new game". The world is down.
Im out.
 
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OverTake
Premium
Logic says if another studio / developer took it over than they would likely just take the models and transfer it to their game engine of choice. But the line about source codes, tools and applications does make you wonder. But that would also be effectively giving away rf2 to someone else. So not very clear what's happening here.
according to information, the indycar game is NOT running on the rF2 tech but was build on Unreal (as the MSG australia team should consist of people from the Kartkraft title).

So they wouldn´t give away rF2/code/tech to anyone with this. I also wonder if they could even give that tech away at this point, since, according to sources, MSG did not pay the previous owner of rF2 tech/studio (Luminis) the full amount just yet.
 
according to information, the indycar game is NOT running on the rF2 tech but was build on Unreal (as the MSG australia team should consist of people from the Kartkraft title).

So they wouldn´t give away rF2/code/tech to anyone with this. I also wonder if they could even give that tech away at this point, since, according to sources, MSG did not pay the previous owner of rF2 tech/studio (Luminis) the full amount just yet.
Ah yes of course, forgot about that part with the Aussie guys. Makes sense.
 
imagine BTCC reskinned rF2, LMU reskinned rF2, and Indycar reskinned rF2, a scam. But the worst is when 3000 LMU players are saying "wooow what new game". The world is down.
Im out.
Yeah I get what you say, but then again GTR 1 and 2 were off of rF1, as well as Race07. So it happens quite a bit in the industry, especially from ISI game engines.
 
Premium
A multi-platform standalone IndyCar game then rather than incorporating it into the core iRacing product?
Perhaps continuing with a dev team based in Australia to get the game to market if it's close to EA stage?
 
Premium
Good to see all that hard work half-building a lemans project has raised some cash to go towards paying their way out of their failed Indy Car project.

Winning.
 
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OverTake
Premium
after a reskinned rF2 as LMU, a next rF2 reskinned as Indycar ultimate ?
No thanks, rF2 already does everything and better.
As Rene says (missed that before posting) The game development was done by KartKraft guys in Australia - guess if it used UE or ISI Motor under the hood.

according to sources
You mean the official SEC filing :)
"The remaining principal balance of the Deferred Payment as of March 31, 2024 was $0.6 million with unpaid accrued interest of $0.3 million."
 
OverTake
Premium
Assets ≠ code.
I am aware that assets aren´t code, but in this specific case (the previous comment) the discussion was about actual rF2 tech :)

rF2 assets could still work in unreal engine as we know, but it is not like rF2 had the entire track schedule already in game or such. And even bringing in assets from one engine to another isn´t super simple
 
Premium
Interesting. Don't take what I am saying as fact because I know nothing more about it than any of you. But if IndyCar struck a deal with iRacing to develop the game through the developers of their World of Outlaws and upcoming NASCAR title, they are already getting all the assets from MSG Australia, would that in theory conflict with the handling models they would have access to?

If it had been developed with rF2 handling, would it now be changed to be similar to iRacing handling?
 
OverTake
Premium
Interesting. Don't take what I am saying as fact because I know nothing more about it than any of you. But if IndyCar struck a deal with iRacing to develop the game through the developers of their World of Outlaws and upcoming NASCAR title, they are already getting all the assets from MSG Australia, would that in theory conflict with the handling models they would have access to?

If it had been developed with rF2 handling, would it now be changed to be similar to iRacing handling?
the question is, what is the underlying modell for the physics. It can be adjusted unreal, it can be self written, it could be adjusted ISI code etc. BUT physic engines can also be replaced with a lot of work, so if they think they have something on hand that is better/easier to develop or whatever, they could just use the already created unreal assets/game engine part and try to bring that together with whatever physics section
 
Premium
the question is, what is the underlying modell for the physics. It can be adjusted unreal, it can be self written, it could be adjusted ISI code etc. BUT physic engines can also be replaced with a lot of work, so if they think they have something on hand that is better/easier to develop or whatever, they could just use the already created unreal assets/game engine part and try to bring that together with whatever physics section
Yeah precisely, that is what I am worried about. I have been told in game development that trying to remove something from the code will cause more problems that is not worth it.
 
My guess is that iRacing want nothing do with any code, whether it's rF2-derived or otherwise, if only for legal liability reasons (you don't want to be accused of incorporating a competitor's proprietary code in iRacing under any circumstances).

Also what kind of moron agreed to a contract where you pays tons of money to a license holder for the privilege of spending your own money to develop a game and then giving away the developed assets for free? What exactly did IndyCar contribute here that made them deserve to get anything? They were just given a bunch of money and stuff for free.
 
It'll be interesting to see what company takes over this project...

Even though the possibility of the Unreal engine puts a lot of people off, that in itself could give a developer like the team behind Rennsport a real good shot at getting the rights... If Penske is indeed looking for a team with the skills to develop the title from whatever shape it sits in currently instead of starting from scratch with some models, textures and research on specifications...

If it was a similar project with the Kartkraft crew working on merging the ISI physics into the Unreal engine that would be an even bigger reason to hand the keys to someone working on that same principal...

I also half expect a team like Reiza to get in on it as well... Especially if the physics code is ISI under Unreal... As they could market their pitch in a "we can already translate that to our Madness engine" as well as add historical 90s options in a similar vein to the F1 series and they already have ties with a number of US tracks that would be needed and more thanks to their recent IMSA deal...

The idea of the Monster games new engine is good in principal, but would involve a reset to the timeline and delivery expectations that Penske and co may well have... And given the recent pressures from other Indycar team owners to improve the marketing of Indycar it's going to be very interesting if Penske goes against his drivers who were not fond of the IR18 in iRacing and goes with iRacing corporate entities as the choice for a title that many teams will want to see sooner rather than later...

I think most people like the idea of a new engine because of the different bugs to encounter and a reset on their patience levels whilst it's all brand new... I tend to side with that premise as well, hence I'm still optimistic about UE5 mixed with the ISI code... That idea is not a decade out of BETA like the Madness or rF2 engine, UE5 is still very much in BETA and so is the merger with the ISI code... However Penske is very much under the pump to get the marketing of Indycar turned around so whilst I'd like to see a new engine being the base it's not as likely as other options on the table...
 
With F1 24 looking like a stinker in terms physics and gameplay. There an opportunity for someone to come in and make a good single series, single seater, stand alone game.

Personally I would like Reiza to get joint rights to all the art work, track and car data to just reduce the cost and time to create a Indycar DLC for AMS2. While someone else creates a stand alone game.

Would like to have Indycar title that isn’t just online multiplayer
 

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