When Stunt Rally project initiated I was very skeptical about it. How can a fork of VDrift which is under extra-heavy development be stable and successful in any way?
As new versions of Stunt Rally become available, I gradually rescind my negative thoughts about the project and actually already enjoy this racing game a lot!
Version 1.9 was released a few hours ago and having played 1.8 extensively I could mainly ask for more realism. I was happy to see that realism (among many other things) received great attention from the developers of Stunt Rally this time, bringing the game into the position of finally being a serious competitor for the best open source racing game title.
This is not something that happened out of the blue in just a new release, but instead it is something that was slowly and carefully built within the project with the love and passion of the developers. So we now have a game that compares to the rest open source racing games as follows: it has the best graphics, best gameplay experience, best sound effects, best map plethora (if not superabundance), best menu design and most informative screens, while the only things it was missing is the better performance, more cars and better realism.
Addressing these issues the developers did the following this time:
- Easy (beginner) and Normal (simulation) modes allow players to choose their desired realism and thus difficulty level.
Simulation fixes (Big changes):
- New Tires – more grip driving and more control when sliding
- Torque curve – fixed unrealistic behaviour at low rpm
- No control in air after jump (only by flip)
- Flip car speed and boost reduced
- Suspension – soft for terrain, hard in jumps and pipes
- Downforce – better handling at high speed
- Proper center of mass, more mass
- Car performance statistics on Gui (acceleration times, engine power etc.)
- New graphs in game (for torque curves, power, clutch, diffs)
The in-game acceleration graphs look cool, but are not very much usable really
The already in very high level graphics section was not left behind this time eithe,r as the following things were done for 1.9 release:
- New grasses on all tracks
- New trees (generated with SnappyTree)
- Decreased shadows options – better Fps
- More trees 1,5x, grass range 2x
- Option for Impostors Only (low quality trees but fast smooth fps)
- Fixed black terrain issue on some cards
Although the performance is still not at the level I would like to see it, the two options that allow users to get higher fps without sacrificing much optical realism are a good step towards the better in this sector too.
Diving into the water will make your rally car go slower, but realism disappears when going completely underwater where your engine still works fine and graphics are not shown any differently (somewhat cloudy or mangled)
Creating new maps seems to be the favorite thing for the Stunt Rally contributors so we couldn’t not have new maps for version 1.9 and thus 7 new maps are added to the total 111 available tracks that fall in to 2 new scenery categories: Autumn and Moss (mossy jungle).
Mossy Jungle scenery map from cockpit camera
While this game still has room for improvement in every aspect and it could have more cars, it definitely did great progress in the realism sector that takes it to the next level. I am sure that the next releases will take it to the top making it the most enjoyable open source rally game out there (if it isn’t already).
There is no need to install anything, just download the latest version, unzip the downloaded file and run the binary file (stuntrally) found inside the created folder.