RaceRoom to go Unreal 4 in Future

Paul Jeffrey

RaceRoom Racing Experience BMW M6.jpg

Sector3 Studios to upgrade RaceRoom Racing Experience to Unreal Engine 4 and include day / night cycle, enhanced weather and improved physics in future development plans.

When RaceDepartment went to visit the new UK office of SimBin Studios a few weeks ago we had the chance to have a chat with Sector3 Studio Head Christopher Speed, where we took the opportunity to speak about the future of RaceRoom Racing Experience and gauge how the Swedish developers plan to prolong the relevance of the title in light of an increasingly competitive sim racing marketplace.

Many of us know the history behind RaceRoom Racing Experience, and the great strides the game has made under the leadership of Sector3 following their formation back in 2014. However with many top quality games such as Project CARS 1&2, Assetto Corsa, rFactor 2, Automobilista and many others flooding into the racing game space, what do Sector3 intend to do with RaceRoom Racing Experience in order to improve their positon in the sim racing pecking order?

"We know with R3E the game engine is old in comparison to the competition, there is no doubt we are missing certain elements and eye candy the others have. We took the decision that Unreal is the way to go" said Chris Speed.
This is indeed exciting news for RaceRoom fans, and with a new graphics engine sat in front of an already very enjoyable force feedback experience and some incredibly well made content, a move to the Unreal engine and the addition of all the benefits that will bring could prove to be somewhat of a game changer for the title - proof positive that the current investment of both time and money fans have dropped on RaceRoom Racing Experience won't be wasted in light of the GTR3 announcement.

"Eventually RaceRoom will move across to this new technology, but first and foremost it's GTR3. Then we look into what we can do with RaceRoom afterwards.... he continued.
Of course with SimBin Studios UK dedicated to working on the new game, and Sector3 still progressing with the current RaceRoom project as well as lending support to GTR3, it will be some time until the benefits of the Unreal 4 development see light of day in RaceRoom.

"There is no doubt that the work that is going on for GTR3 we will see in RaceRoom when we make that decision to switch, which means day night cycle, weather, improved physics, AI and visuals. All these goodies will be coming across when the time is right" added Speed.
This is very positive news for fans of R3E. With the long term aim of SimBin and Sector3 to get the Unreal Engine 4 working to it's maximum potential, Speed was at pains to stress that the continual development of RaceRoom remains Sector3's priority. He went on to acknowledge the fact that many currently missing features that fans consider to be essential content are in development and should be included in the title as part of future update.

"No doubt there is still some key elements missing in RaceRoom... Flag system, tyre compounds on certain cars is being worked on. Multiclass racing we have a design on paper and will at some point work towards that but first and foremost we have to get the structured MP racing features done"
When pushed on the subject of the sheer volume of work to be undertaken in order to get both games where they want them to be, Speed explained a little more about the division of resources

Think of it like this, two separate studios working on two separate products. We are under the same umbrella but we are two separate entities working on different things. We are supporting one another in different areas and provide feedback where necessary, but the Swedish studio is still solely responsible for RaceRoom whilst the UK studio is responsible for GTR3.

This is a very intelligent move by both development teams as it allows Sector3 and RaceRoom Racing Experience to benefit from a considerable jump up in technology and graphical standards, without the need to undertake a costly development exercise in terms of both money and resource if the team were to go it alone with just the RaceRoom product. Basically by developing a shared structure of support with SimBin and GTR3, Sector3 will be able to utilise the hard work and development effort that goes into producing the new GTR3 game for the benefit of R3E, a move that may have been more difficult and costly to achieve otherwise.

For a sim running an older engine and DX9, RaceRoom still looks a very visually pleasing title and stands well amongst it's sim racing rivals. The studio are well known for the quality of their content, and have some very impressive licences already under lock and key in terms of the WTCC, DTM and ADAC deals, plus some interesting open wheel vehicles and a number of official licenced cars and manufacturers, so a move over to the latest generation graphics and inclusion of weather, time of day, improved physics and all those other things that are yet to be revealed, it looks like the future of this game is very secure and rather exciting indeed.

In case anyone wondered how much more development RaceRoom has in front of it in light of the new announcement, I'll leave that over to Chris to put those doubts to rest.

"We want to assure everyone that RaceRoom is going to be here for a long time."

We will be publishing the full RaceRoom interview sometime in the next couple of days. We will talk more about the future development, have a deeper look at the focus on eSports racing, chat about some new content coming to the sim and take a look behind the scenes at what RaceRoom has in store for their fans heading off into the future.

Stay tuned to RaceDepartment over the weekend to read more!

RaceRoom Racing Experience is a PC only racing simulation from Sector3 Studios. Available to download for free with limited content, further cars and tracks can be added either as individual items or full packs via the in game RaceRoom store.

RaceRoom Racing Experience Eau Rouge.jpg
RaceRoom Racing Experience GT3.jpg

Here at RaceDepartment we do club racing. We do club racing very well indeed. If you feel the need for an online fix then please head over to our RaceRoom Racing Experience League and Club Racing forum to have a look what we have on offer and sign up for an event - all skills and experiences welcomed.

If you don't want to get involved in the racing action then head on over to the RaceRoom Racing Experience sub forum to catch up with all the latest news and discussions regarding the game, download a mod or two or just simply hang out with like minded individuals. All here at RaceDepartment.com!

Do you feel excited for the future of RaceRoom Racing Experience? What do you most anticipate? What series licences would you like the developers to secure for the game? What new features are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments section below!
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I'm an R3E fanboy, so I can't help myself. :D All aboard the hype train!

And wow does that cockpit shot of the M6 look absolutely fantastic! Give it to me already! :p

Fantastic news Paul! I really hope this all comes to fruition because R3E has so much potential with the direction it's headed. When they do make the jump to UE4, along with a day/night cycle, weather, etc., if will open up a ton of possibilities for leagues and amazing events. I know I may be speaking from a "rose-tinted" glasses perspective, but boy am I hyped.

Obviously lots of development time before this ever happens, but I'm really looking forward to hearing about progress in the future. :)
Well, GTR3 will come in 2018 so we will need to wait another year to see a big change on R3E, btw i expect them adding all the R3E cars on GTR3, because having Gr.A cars done and not adding them in their game is senseless.
Well it's early days about the move to UE4 for R3E but it's excellent news regardless. For me it's refreshing to hear a developer be so candid about the plans for their games, and reassuring to know they have big plans for R3E.

I mean come on, moving to UE4 and all the stuff it brings is basically just like bringing out R3E 2, it will be that much of a difference.

Super pleased about it.
What will be the difference between R3E and GTR3?

Totally different games :)

GTR3 will be a specific racing game with a focus on a specific series (or two?) and R3E will be what it is now, with more features and a focus on online organised eSports competition (more on that in the interview to be published probably tomorrow now).

Appreciate S3 and SimBin are under the same umbrella, but the games are still going to be different things. Like comparing AMS to rF2 for example. Similarities between the two, but different things entirely.
Not exactly shocking seeing as how we've seen Raceroom in the U4 engine time and time again now. But still it is good news and as the article states an intelligent way to get Raceroom updated. Also really good news as we're likely to benefit from GTR3 even if it turns out to be a poorly thought out arcade racer cash grab, not that I think it will be.
Well the pessimist in me is doubting that the move to UE4 will result is as good a handling and FFB model as is currently available. Unreal will need adapting to simracing quality whereas Raceroom engine was purposely built for it.

I'm also wondering if Raceroom is screwed up in the porting over, if we'd be entitled to a refund as we'll be basically forced to play a title that would not be in the state as it was originally released and therefore "invested" in. Maybe they should leave the existing version permanently available and just drop support for it once the Unreal version is released.
Finally a decent data display.
And lots more coming as well. In the dev stream back in November, they showed a ton of new displays that were going to be included in the game to update a lot of the older cars, with a bunch more that they hadn't shown yet. Some of these displays will also have pages of data for you to flip through which should be a great addition. :thumbsup:
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