One of the big talking points in sim racing at the moment is Rennsport, but for some reason it does not interest many sim racers. Why could that be?
A new title on the block, Rennsport is one of the big games to look forward to throughout the rest of 2023 and into 2024. It is currently in its beta stage of development. But with more and more sim racers getting access keys to the public version, it is certainly coming along strong.
As an upcoming game, Rennsport should be garnering great interest and excitement among players. However, it seems that with little developer communication to the outside world, no concrete plans for the future and an overwhelming focus on esports, the everyday sim racer is not looking forward to this sim.
Titles like the upcoming EA Sports WRC and Le Mans Ultimate generate far more conversation online than this in-development creation. Here’s why Rennsport is not getting the interest it needs, and what it can do to improve its image.
The Esports Approach
Perhaps the main issue with Rennsport‘s lack of interest within the community is the image it presents to the outside world. From the get-go, this in-development simulator was first truly seen in the hands of professional esports racers. In fact, the ESL R1 series is the jewel in Rennsport‘s crown of acheivements putting on what is an impressively large competition.
However, the majority of the community dismisses sim racing esports as something they would rather do than watch. This creates Rennsport‘s esports problem. To many, there is no need to watch esports when you can jump in your own rig and race the same cars on the same track. As a result, why would the casual sim racer watch ESL R1 when they can boot up the likes of iRacing, Assetto Corsa or Automobilista 2 and do the same thing?
This is the only true showcase of what Rennsport can do. So taking in the title’s Unreal Engine visuals or collection of cars and tracks does not appeal. In fact, many are likely to be put off by this aggressive competitive focus.
With esports pros constantly in the loop of how development is going and gaining early access to the most recent version of the game, it gives off a negative image to most players. With these pros providing their feedback on each version of the game and its handling model, one may be put off.
In fact, professional racers often prefer a consistent title that will enable off-by-heart, repetitive inputs. This goes against the varying model requiring adaptability that most racers look for. With that in mind, those looking in from the outside may well feel like the handling alone will not tick the immersion or realism boxes.
Limited Content and Gameplay
Whilst the majority of sim racers have a distant view of Rennsport looking through the front window, a lucky few have access to the title in its Beta form. Here, players have access to seven cars and four tracks. Bar the Praga R1 and Porsche Mission R, no content in this title is ground breaking. GT3 well and truly dominates the car list. Spa, Monza, Hockenheim and the Nurburgring GP loop form what is a very vanilla track list.
To add to the low content numbers, it seems there is little to do in Rennsport. A recent update added online multiplayer functionality with matchmaking. But with few players gaining access to the title, reports suggest these online events are often empty. Furthermore, a lack of AI, setup work and offline game modes means five laps is where most players stop.
It seems then that the player looking into the title from afar will quickly turn away due to the lack of content. But the racer already playing Rennsport will also lose interest with little to do in-game in its current state.
No Real Plan
Here in lies the problem. No one really knows what is going on with the game. Aside from the vague announcement of modding, the developers have not said much about Rennsport’s final state. So there is very little to look forward to.
Even when it seems things are looking up, the team manages to put positive moves on hold. It then reverts back to its old ways in disappointing twists of fate. The Porsche 963 and Goodwood hill climb were both announced a while ago. Yet, the most recent update added the Porsche 992 Cup car with more esports competitions seemingly on the horizon.
How Rennsport Can Reclaim Interest
Clearly then, this up and coming title is facing a PR problem. The community has little to go by when it comes to learning about the project. Furthermore, the image it gives off is one that caters to esport die-hards.
There are not many ways for the developers to dismiss these rumours and beliefs. The best thing to do is communicate with the wide-reaching community. They must explain what the team hopes to do with its handling model and how the sim is improving. Other titles currently in development like AMS2 and ACC provide its community with teasers as development comes along. In fact, both games received big updates this year, announced months in advance.
But it is the title’s esports image that really needs attention. Currently, the only footage one has of the game is of pro racers nailing every apex following weeks of practice. What the community needs is more relaxed racing akin to the streamer events held by Kunos prior to major ACC updates.
If Rennsport can follow in the footsteps of other titles, it should begin return to the public eye. But there are so many big names out there that it is going to need much more than some PR work to garner hype across the sim racing community.
What is your take on Rennsport and what can it do to interest you? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!