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GRID 2: ‘No cockpit view because less than 5% of gamers use it’ – Codies respond

Monday, 13 August 2012 11:36 GMT By Dave Cook

GRID 2 doesn’t have an in-car cockpit view, much to the dismay and anger of many gamers. Developer Codemasters has responded to fan backlash by explaining why the viewpoint won’t appear in the game.

Speaking with PCGamesN, GRID 2 executive producer Clive Moody explained the cut, “There seems to be some confusion about where we get our data from to help us make these decisions. While we do use research and focus groups, the most important data source for us is the enormous amount of telemetry data we can obtain from our servers that tells us exactly how and what our players are doing across all our games.”

“So it’s not a case of just a sample of people we’ve spoken to in research,” Moody continued, “It’s a fact that only 5% of Codemasters Racing game players ever used the in-car view. By making this educated call, we can use the extra available memory to make the on-track racing a truly mind-blowingly immersive experience.”

“We can author and run higher resolution vehicle models with more detailed geometry. We can feature higher resolution external vehicle textures and work further detail into our environment textures. We can dedicate more processing power to our improved physics systems, integral to the GRID 2 experience, and push other systems to the next level, such as particles and real-time lighting.”

Did you use cockpit view in GRID, would you like to see it return?

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52 Comments

  1. Fin

    Makes sense. It was nice to have, but you can’t argue with statistics.

    People don’t like having something taken away, even if they never use it, as the telemetry says.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. almostnot

    EDIT: For anyone who cares, 5% of 1,000,000 is 50,000. That’s fifty thousand people who Codemasters are telling they don’t care…Charming…

    These stats sound like utter bollocks to me.

    What were the metrics actually used?

    Were they checking for people who never used the view or people who used the view for a minority of the time?

    Was this across all platforms or does it break down in a different way across 360, PS3 and PC?

    In the day and age where anyone can access google analytics, the difference between data and insight is interpretation, reorganisation, understanding and restructuring of data.

    This story sounds like a classic case of someone at the top saying “not enough money for the cockpit” and someone else having to find figures to match this story.

    Lazy game making for people who are ‘focusing on racing’. Moreover, if this in your primary creative function and you have identified an unpopular area; how about innovating, improving and developing, as opposed to dropping and running?

    Here’s hoping they have a great demo that changes my mind but for now, I’ll stick with Gran Turismo 5 and a great steering wheel. Lack of cockpit view makes steering wheel integration completely pointless.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Fin

    @2

    “This story sounds like a classic case of someone at the top saying “not enough money for the cockpit” and someone else having to find figures to match this story.”

    What’re you smoking bro?
    This story sounds like a classic case of a game developer actually being able to back up design decisions they’ve made with concrete, verifiable information about the players.

    “how about innovating, improving and developing, as opposed to dropping and running?”

    Errr…you then say:

    “I’ll stick with Gran Turismo 5 and a great steering wheel. Lack of cockpit view makes steering wheel integration completely pointless.”

    You realise that Gran Turismo hasn’t had any innovation since it was released (GT1) right? You also know that a tiny (it was under 10% if I recall) proportion of GT5′s cars have a cockpit view, right?

    Your comment sounds like a classic case of someone being cross about something but not having a clue wtf they’re talking about.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Maximum Payne

    @2 PMS alert :)
    INB4 ”I USED COCKPIT AND GRID 2 SUCKS!!”

    #4 2 years ago
  5. almostnot

    @3 Show me the “concrete, verifiable information about the players” and I’ll believe it.

    Until then it’s just marketing spin.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Keivz

    Make sense to me. By losing cockpit view we gain on other assets. Had I known I would have advocated ditching it from the get go. I only rarely used it and only the NFS Shift series have done it right as far as I’m concerned. The minority speaks the loudest but I say good riddance.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. almostnot

    @4 Think you’ve forgotten Wheaton’s law…

    #7 2 years ago
  8. deathm00n

    They killed one of things that were good in GRID, the cockpit view is awesome in this game

    #8 2 years ago
  9. SlayerGT

    Wasn’t TOCA one of the first games to incorporate the cockpit cam? This bums me out.. :/

    #9 2 years ago
  10. K-V-C

    cockpit view made grid look far better and bit more terrifying lol

    #10 2 years ago
  11. DrDamn

    Cockpit view I always find a nice idea but prefer bonnet cam in practice.

    If they genuinely are making improvements in other areas by dropping cockpit view then good for them. It’s not like Grid is a sim is it? So in reality for anyone who cares, 5% of 1,000,000 is 50,000. That’s nine hundred and fifty thousand people who Codemasters are telling they do care.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Fin

    @5

    Cool np:

    “So it’s not a case of just a sample of people we’ve spoken to in research,” Moody continued, “It’s a fact that only 5% of Codemasters Racing game players ever used the in-car view.”

    There you go.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Stavrosmct

    Its was nice to look at,but impossible to use – same as in the F1 games. Looking forward to the new game though! @stavrosmct

    #13 2 years ago
  14. OlderGamer

    I never used it. I didn’t like the way it cut down on my view. I like the cam on the hood of the car best myelf. Gives me the best feel.

    #14 2 years ago
  15. DSB

    That’s really messed up. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t use cockpit view whenever possible. It’s the only way to get a real feel for the car instead of looking at a toy from the outside, like it’s controlled by wires.

    Never thought I wouldn’t be getting GRiD 2, but Codemasters need to casualize everything and cut corners has to find a limit somewhere.

    @11 He says it’s a fact that only 5% use cockpit view, but it’s not one that I’m familiar with. Everyone I know use cockpit view in racers, so is it based on a survey? Internal testing? Blind guessing?

    Codemasters have rarely justified their shortcuts with anything worthwhile. I’m thinking they just don’t have the money to make full games anymore.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. OlderGamer

    DSB, I never use cockpit in racers. Like I said it cuts down on your view or the track. The next time your sitting in your car, look around. Look at the road, do you ever actualy see/focus on the dash? Or inside frame of the car?

    Not likly, your field of vision is focus beyond the physical car itself. Unless your checking your speed or switching music, your not even likly to toss a glance inside the car. I don’t see it as a big deal at all.

    Most gamers I see playing racers are either behind the car or on the hood/bumper when it comes to cam. But different strokes for different folks and all of that.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Fin

    @15

    As the man says, telemetry data gave them the 5% figure.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. roadkill

    I loved the cockpit view! Only in the cockpit view (if done right like the last time) will your mind be blown. So yes I would like to see it return. Though I understand if the GRID team decides not to bring it back. After all only 5 percent of the users used it. Only the true skilled and hardcore players. Newbies could not access this feature anyway.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. DSB

    @16 But it does provide you with the visual reference of the wheel itself, and even if you don’t use that, the fact that the car has a cockpit, and a wheel, and that you appear to be sitting in it is crucial for immersion.

    If you look at the average “hood” view, you have the exact same problem. Even if you’re focused on the road more than your surroundings, I still don’t know anyone who drives with their head physically past the wheel, as that point of view would suggest.

    Not to mention the fact that cockpit view has been a staple of the TOCA series since the very first game. Very few games were doing it back then. Not that nostalgia is a very strong argument, but to me it’s taking the series to a new low.

    @17 Thanks, I skipped past it :P He does mention focus groups as well though. That’s about as much use as asking your pet hamster.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. bpcgos

    I’m one of those 5% although I never played it online at all (except for activation I guess) .
    /sarcasm.
    How the hell they knew it???
    I loved driving from inside my car in GRID,. It’s gave more immersion (and I’m trully admire the attention to detail Codemaster gave from each car cockpit view in DIRT or GRID series), since I never had any of those expensive steering wheel to watch while driving from fly cam or bonnet cam (using standard usb controller with x360ce to emulate it as x360 controller only , its pretty great solution that spend me less than $5).
    I even download one of those GTA IV mod that gave me behind the wheel camera view just because I love it so much.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. OlderGamer

    I guess it just goes to show that of the 100% they polled only people from the 5% come to sites like this. Maybe it is a feature the super hardcore like, unfortuantly it would seem, that you folks are greatly outnumbered.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. DSB

    Yeah, and we all know that Codemasters always have their priorities in order, and always make the best design decisions.

    Have you played any of their games recently? :P

    Overlord 2 was a halfassed piece of junk, Red River was a halfassed piece of junk, Bodycount was just plain awful, and Dirt 3 apparently had the majority of the development resources go to the menus and improving the replay visuals.

    Codemasters are a shadow of themselves. This just proves their dedication to mediocrity.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. OlderGamer

    Who, me? I own Grid and F1 for xb360. At some point when the price gets reasonable, I will prolly buy a copy of Showdown for PC on Steam.

    I don’t own any of the other games, not really my bag. I really couldn’t get into their Dirt games at all. ‘Cept showdown I think is fun, but a entirely different animal next to the other dirt games.

    #23 2 years ago
  24. DSB

    @23 Right, I almost forgot about F1:

    http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2010/09/28/wheel-life-f1-2010-ai-faked/

    Like I said, Codemasters only care about sparing a buck, while putting in as little effort as they possibly can.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. DrDamn

    @DSB
    “I still don’t know anyone who drives with their head physically past the wheel, as that point of view would suggest.”

    Bonnet cam in a lot of games is essentially in car view with all the in car bits removed. Try it in a few games and switch between in-car and bonnet. The view and perspective stays the same but the periphery is removed. It’s why I like it. Bumper cam, now that’s madness ;)

    #25 2 years ago
  26. OlderGamer

    Ok, but at the risk of another Console of Doom thread, don’t you think that perhaps the Consoles limitations are what held this back? Esp where AI is concerned.

    AI is one of those things I really hope moves forward next gen. Not because I want a harder game experience, just more of a fair one.

    Interestingly enough, I forgot about how I drive in F1. I use my xb360 wheel and drive inside the car. I think it has multi views inside the car, not too sure what one I used it was awhile ago for me. I didn’t buy the new F1 game. But with wheel it felt great to be in cockpit view. But that is way different then when your in an openwheel cart vs an enclosed car imo.

    #26 2 years ago
  27. DSB

    @25 How does that help the immersion though? I think car bits are a pretty integral part of a car.

    @26 That’s such a cop out, OG.

    You should really know better than that. No other racer on the 360 does this. Not Gotham, not Forza, not Sonic and Sega Allstars, not the Need for Speeds.

    The problem is either Codemasters EGO engine, or Codemasters lacking ability to make games.

    I’ve used the EGO engine making missions for Operation Flashpoint 2, and it was frighteningly similar.

    It only supported something like 200 units on the map at any one time, so to make a longer mission that had them spread out across the map, relied on spawning and removing the troops as-needed. Which seems to be exactly what they did with F1 2010.

    Spawning the cars as-needed, even though it completely took away any legitimacy of an actual race.

    #27 2 years ago
  28. OlderGamer

    What immersion? The moment the phone rings, the dog barks, someone walks into the room, a noise floats in from outside, your hand cramps, or anything, your sucked out of the game man. Just a game. And as such, i just wanna be able to see as good as I can.

    its like playing WoW, do you zoom in to FPS cam or do you zoom out more? I personaly zoom out a long ways when rading or PVP so I can get the best visual perspective and see as much as possible. I want the same type of thing in my racers. And unless all of the other players are forced to use cockpit view, your giving up an advantage.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. OlderGamer

    It isn’t a cop out, not at all. We don’t often see racers with good, let alone great AI. Mostly what we get are zombie drivers that hold their lines regaurdless of what your doing on the track. Its like racing time trials but with other cars to get in the way.

    Not all games are that bad, but not all games are that good either. AI in most games react rather then actualy think.

    As for F1, sure that was cheap. Just saying there isn’t exactly a pool of awesomeness out there. As for spawning limitations, perhaps that is why most racers have 6-12 cars? Again, wouldn’t that be a limitation? How does a Nasscar game work? They have 42 cars on track at once. I bet they give up something somewhere.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. viralshag

    @26, Seriously? Consoles held back the AI of racing games now? I hate to bite at this but some of these comments are getting a little ridiculous.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. DSB

    @28 Really OG?

    “There’s real world all around you, so the illusion of immersion is irrelevant”?

    Is that seriously your argument here? I don’t think you really believe that yourself. If so, reading books, playing games and watching movies would be terribly irrelevant.

    It’s fair enough that you prefer a different POV, but it has no bearing on my own preference, or Codemasters increasingly dubious development practices.

    #31 2 years ago
  32. AnklaX

    They should have asked why so few percentage used the in car view. It was because the interior view was not well made. Its mainly down to how oddly the steering moved in relation to controller input. So one would think that instead of ditching the feature, they should have decided to improve it.

    Then again it is not that simple. The decision should also be based on how the physics system is. I liked GRID but I will admit that the handling was not great. There was no sense of predictability to the cars handling but later I found out turning the ABS off improved the game a lot.

    So all of these made the in car view unstable. But for GRID 2 I read that they are going to make the physics and car performances more realistic. I understand it is still going to be an arcade game but if they are improving the physics and realism, I think they should provide the cockpit view.

    When I was playing GRID, I played in the third person view but I have converted to playing from in car view recently and if a game has cockpit view I use it. But I still admit I still find GRIDs cockpit view unusable.

    So if codemasters think that the game is more realistic, then they should add cockpit view and improve it from what it was in the previous game. And if they are not going to do it then they should not waste time and resources working on wheel support since that is pointless without cockpit view.

    Additionally I’d like to mention my personal assertion about racing games after playing a lot of games for 15 years. The better the car simulation and physics, the better an arcade racer it is possible to make – a point that Forza Horizon is going to prove – I hope.

    #32 2 years ago
  33. OlderGamer

    Its one of my agruements, but that quote wasn’t what I said.

    What I am saying is that a lot of folks would prolly snicker at what you said. Imerssion in a video game? I will give you different cams create a different feel and gameplay experience. Sure.

    But next your gonna be yelling for Mom to bring ya Hotpockets(not a slant just a joke, South Park is funny as hell). Look man, they have pause buttons. Your wielding a 16button piece of plastic. What part of that screams anything but playing a game? Playing Grid makes you a gamer, not a racer car driver. Cockpit view doesn’t change that.

    That is prolly how the 95% of the people polled felt when asked. Just a game. What view lets you see the best, not what view makes you feel like a real driver. Esp in a game like Grid. Its sorta staggers the line between Arcade and Simlikness, but a driving simulater it isn’t.

    For the record, game immersion is an important part of the experience. Just cockpit view, in this game, as surveied wasn’t deemed important. THAT was my argument. Your twisting a bit.

    #33 2 years ago
  34. OlderGamer

    I think it comes down to being uber hardcore elite gamer(you, and other posters here) vs the average everyday, pick it up and enjoy gamer. Your prolly just in that 5% is all. I am not. I am prolly closer to the 5% on the other end of the spectrum.

    #34 2 years ago
  35. DSB

    @33 You just contradicted yourself two times over four paragraphs.

    First immersion is relevant, then it isn’t, then it is.

    I don’t consider myself especially hardcore. I just enjoy games, and like all other things I enjoy, I’m very critical of them. The details matter.

    #35 2 years ago
  36. OlderGamer

    Your not distinquishing between different games. For a game like GRID a Cockpit view isn’t a big deal. For a game like GT or Forza it would be a bigger deal. the games are trying to achieve different things. That is why it prolly seems like that.

    That being said, if your one of those 5% that liked it, you will prolly miss not having it. So in that regaurd that stinks.

    #36 2 years ago
  37. DSB

    You don’t find that slightly subjective?

    #37 2 years ago
  38. TheBlackHole

    “No other racer on the 360 does this. Not Gotham, not Forza, not Sonic and Sega Allstars, not the Need for Speeds.”

    And WHY do you think that is? Oh, perhaps it’s because ONLY 5% of PLAYERS HAVE EVEN USED IT! And that’s not to say that they use it every time either, so that’s 5% MAXIMUM.

    That really is the end of the discussion – that’s all the justification CM needs. 5% of users does not justify the effort involved to create that portion of the game, especially when weighed up against the other features the game will now have.

    Also, OG, the 5% was from actual game data, not a straw poll.

    Oh, and @32,

    “They should have asked why so few percentage used the in car view. It was because the interior view was not well made”

    Perhaps they should have just asked you then, since you speak for everyone involved.

    #38 2 years ago
  39. OlderGamer

    Not when 95% of people polled don’t use cockpit mode. I mean would cockpit mode help out Mario Kart? Or would a top down view help out Forza? I think different games have different things they are focused on achieving.

    If Codies spent their time and rescources in doing something that so few poeple actualy use in their game, then they are prolly wasting said rescourses. That is all this headline says. And that isn’t at all subjective.

    I think your prolly a bit more hardcore then you realize.

    #39 2 years ago
  40. OlderGamer

    @Blackhole, yep yep I see that now thanks.

    #40 2 years ago
  41. Da Man

    Never used, don’t care.

    #41 2 years ago
  42. DSB

    @38 We were actually talking about how Codemasters made games that contained races that weren’t actually happening within the game itself.

    The only reasons the cars were one the map, was for visual stimulation. The races were being calculated using numbers, rather than tracking models on the circuit.

    It was just to establish how lazy and careless Codemasters have become with their games in general.

    I see the lack of a cockpit view as just another casualty of that.

    Dirt 3 had a similar problem, even if it was far less disappointing. When you were in cockpit view, the car was flying all over the place, but when you looked at the actual car from the outside, the suspension didn’t even move a bit.

    They just take any shortcut they can find. They can try to defend that by using unverifiable data, but people who have been playing their games might see a different motivation. Who wouldn’t want a little siesta instead of modelling a cockpit?

    #42 2 years ago
  43. OlderGamer

    No, DSB we were actualy talking about removel of said cockpit view from Grid2. Your brought in a link about Codies lack of AI, two different things. As for the cockpit view, most people won’t care. As for your link, I bet they aren’t the only one using smoke and mirrors when it comes to AI.

    I don’t think either is an indication that codies have lost their mojo.

    #43 2 years ago
  44. DSB

    Oy vey, OG. You’re all over the place.

    “No other racer on the 360 does this. Not Gotham, not Forza, not Sonic and Sega Allstars, not the Need for Speeds.”

    That’s what I wrote, in reply to your notion that the reason why Codemasters weren’t able to include actual racing in their racing game, was down to console limitations when it comes to AI. Which is a bullshit notion.

    To be specific, what was meant was quite obviously:

    “No other racer on the 360 [ever fakes a race and takes the cars off the map]. Not Gotham, not Forza, not Sonic or Sega Allstars, not the Need for Speeds”.

    I’m just gonna leave it at that. I don’t see any reason to keep repeating myself. Cockpit view is the most immersive POV in a racer. Leaving it out is retarded, and mostly likely down to Codemasters trying to cut another corner. I hope that’s clear enough.

    #44 2 years ago
  45. TheBlackHole

    If anything, Codies’ success with their F1 franchise (their biggest selling franchise EVER), one would suggest their mojo is very much intact.

    #45 2 years ago
  46. DSB

    @45 But that also has cockpit view.

    Dun dun duuuuunnn.

    Fair enough if Codemasters are able to sell that crap. Personally I just think it’s kinda sad.

    #46 2 years ago
  47. TheBlackHole

    “But that also has cockpit view.”

    Which only 5% use, as has been established.

    “Fair enough if Codemasters are able to sell that crap”

    Metascores for F1 2011 (PC and home console) 82-84. Hardly crap.

    #47 2 years ago
  48. OlderGamer

    DSB, I might just be. I am trying to give up Soda. Going from close to a six pack a day to nothing. Tuff climb let me tell you.

    #48 2 years ago
  49. BULArmy

    For me the original GRiD and then followed by the first SHIFT was the only racing games in which I liked to play in cockpit view. I am sad about this and definitely I am now reconsidering me buying the game.

    #49 2 years ago
  50. DSB

    @47 It was a joke, but that’s obviously still Codemasters own data. Clearly other developers seem to feel that it’s worth including, and some still might argue that games developers should spend more time designing games, than polling people.

    Metacritic is just an incredibly poor way to show how the press generally feel about games, and worse yet, it’s an incredibly poor way to hold reviewers accountable for their criticism.

    Rotten Tomatoes tallies reviews according to whether they’re positive or negative, and as such all reviewers get to have equal say, as opposed to being able to skew a statistic by simply giving an unusually high or low score, on whatever scale you like.

    This also means that if all the critics out there were somehow thrilled by something like 75% of the games they play (like an awful lot of games reviewers out there) then their inability to actually critisize the games they play, would be perfectly apparent to anyone, based on the average tally results.

    Which isn’t to say that Metacritic isn’t suggestive of a general attitude, but it’s so flawed that it barely matters.

    @48 You should find a sponsor, man :P

    #50 2 years ago
  51. OlderGamer

    @DSB or a vending machine.

    #51 2 years ago
  52. majicship

    I don’t use it and as such am not bothered about it. I much prefer ‘bonnet cam’ view. I just hate all that drifting business and hope there is less of it this time around.

    #52 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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