Q4 2021 to Q1 2022 Roadmap
By Jack Basford
Last updated: Sat, 30 Oct 2021 00:14
This blog will outline what you can expect to see in iGP Manager throughout the remainder of 2021, heading into Q1 of 2022. We’ve been very busy over the last few months creating a series of exciting updates for iGP Manager which will be arriving in this timeframe.
Early November - The next app update
Let’s recap where we are first, because it’s no secret that 3D was a disruptive update, necessary to achieve our long-term vision of where we see iGP Manager in a few years, but which introduced new requirements for software, hardware, bandwidth and development. The next app update, set to be released in early November, is the culmination of months of performance and stabilisation work on this new platform, applying everything we've learned so far. It should make the apps a lot more stable and performant on all devices. It will also feature race viewer improvements, with more accurate visual car positioning, true to the live timing in both 2D and 3D. We appreciate everyone in the community who has waited paitently for these updates, they will be with you within weeks.
We will be introducing TV Cameras in the same app update. They are ideal for streaming and broadcasting but also great fun for immersion and creating an authentic manager experience when managing a race (they're actually my favourite way to race!). Some of you that saw my interview with Traxion a few months ago have been asking when this was coming, and now it's almost here.
While on the point of circuits, a total of 5 of them will be rescaled in this update, bringing them to a more accurate real-world scale: Belgium, China, Malaysia, Mexico and Singapore. Along with rescaling, the tracks have also received a lot of visual improvements, as you can see from this screenshot of Singapore.
November and December - Gameplay Updates
Our focus has been shifting back to gameplay updates and it's been great to work on this again. The recent release of the new scouting and transfers system is a good start, but there is a lot more to come. The first version of league rules, perhaps the most hotly requested gameplay feature, is set to launch in November with some basic settings such as the two tyre rule. We will also be expanding the number of rules available over time and in future updates.
Equally important is the work we are doing on rebalancing racing at the level of the race simulation itself. This work is aimed at better balancing the impact of car design attributes, and also on restoring the kind of racing experience many had come to love from iGP Manager prior to 3D. I'm happy to report that we are making fantastic progress with these tests, which involve volunteers from the community to ensure we get the balance just right. The most significant improvements have come from revising dirty air, allowing cars to follow more closely. To quote two managers participating in these tests "it was the best race I've done in the last year" and after the most recent test one said "an amazing test with many many improvements in every gameplay area". These exciting balance changes will be available to the public at some point in November.
Before the end of the year we will also be adding 10 additional levels of gameplay and HQ options, opening a range of new challenges for managers that have reached level 20. As well as additional levels, this update will include revisions to the league system, making it easier for hosts to create and maintain well-populated leagues via more intelligent distribution of players coming from the league system itself, adding life to all areas of the community.
In December, we will also introduce more racing formats and better wheel-to-wheel racing in 3D, eliminating “ghosting” entirely, so that cars will never pass through each other. With these improvements, cars will also avoid putting wheels on grass or dirt in 3D, further increasing realism and immersion. This should be especially cool when combined with the TV Cameras update.
Ongoing - Visual excellence
Our pursuit of constant improvement does not end with these updates. In addition to gameplay improvements we are working on several visual updates that go much deeper than the changes to Singapore illustrated above. We are also developing new techniques that will take iGP Manager’s genre-leading 3D to a new level.
Improved terrain and the elimination of visible texture tiling (COMPLETE) - Not only have the textures been improved, but notice the visible tiling of textures has been totally eliminated via smart shader techniques. This will arrive with the next app update in November.
Detailed fringes on surfaces (WIP) - Areas such as gravel currently have hard edges. With these updates it will become possible for us to blend between surfaces and create organic looking environments. This screenshot is an example of an early prototype of this technique we are developing.
Better wet weather shaders (WIP) - I personally think the current rain puddles look kind of like spilled milk, and I was never that happy with them, so we're going to improve that. This is one example of the direction we're heading in, but is very much a WIP screenshot and a lot more progress will be made on this before it goes live.
We hope you’re as excited as we are by all of these updates and you won’t have long to wait, with updates arriving fast from now until the end of the year.