Secrets of GTR2

Welcome to Secrets of GTR2 where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I get into GTR2.

Secrets of GTR2

Welcome to Secrets of GTR2 where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I get into GTR2.

Secrets of X is a series of blog posts I started with Secrets of iRacing and which has grown to include Secrets of GTR2, Secrets of Automobilista, and Secrets of rFactor 2. The “secrets” part is a little dramatic but there are quite a few tips and tricks I think new users will find very valuable and interesting.

Update 2018-06-13: Fixed PLR link for FFB settings for Original Cars under Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files.

2018-06-08 – 3: Updated Mod Spotlight > EEC GT3 V3 with some potentially helpful notes on how to get started installing it.

Update 2018-06-08 – 2: Added my NVIDIA Inspector customization notes for improved graphics under Getting Started > Modernizing > NVIDIA Inspector Settings.

Update 2018-06-08: I’ve now certified my new FFB settings for DTM Classics cars which are now rebased on the benchmark 2005 FiaGT Mod FFB settings. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-06-04: There’s an update over on my NoGripRacing.com Is Down post. Check it out for the latest on what happened to NoGripRacing.com and details on how we might be able to help recover the site! PS. There are full backups! Catch? Sounds like unpaid bills to pay before they’re released :(

Update 2018-06-03: I’ve now certified my new FFB settings for HQ Cars which are now rebased on the benchmark 2005 FiaGT Mod FFB settings. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-05-30: NoGripRacing.com has been down for most of today. Anyone have any news? It would be a crying shame if it were permanently lost – there were so many downloads there and lots of good people. I would be happy to provide some kind of mirror hosting if anybody knows how to get in contact with the owner.

Update 2018-05-25: I’ve now certified my FFB settings for Original Cars. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-05-21 – 2: I have now certified my FFB PLR for the FiaGT 2005 Mod. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download. In my opinion, FiaGT 2005 is currently the best mod available. It doesn’t try to do too much, just provide the FIA GT 2005 season, and that’s how it keeps everything tight and polished and feeling high quality. Give it a try if you haven’t already, it’s well worth it!

Update 2018-05-21: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for FiaGT 2005 Mod. This is now my best feeling FFB + Mod set.

Update 2018-05-13: Added David Littman’s mod bounty to the GTR2 Mod Bounty Program.

Update 2018-03-25: Introducing the GTR2 Mod Bounty Program: A system to match pledgers with modders to improve the game we all love, GTR2. Take a look at the available bounties and consider pledging to see if we can gather some interest in keeping GTR2 alive and kicking!

Update 2018-03-24: Updated Force Feedback > The GTR2 Force Feedback Engineer with advice for FFB adjustments when your wheel goes numb, like it’s clipping, even though you’re not at max FFB strength.

Update 2018-03-23: Correction on Troubleshooting > Graphics driver crash and black screen freeze while driving: This problem seems to have been due to bad files in my GTR2 folder. I started again with a clean, brand new GTR2 installation, and tested with crash-prone cars and tracks and haven’t had a black screen freeze crash again, yet *fingerscrossed*.

Update 2018-03-05: Updated Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod to (1) recommend NOT raising Max Vehicles on tracks to avoid some pit issues, and (2) provided a ‘plain’ championship that allows for custom race durations (in minutes) and avoids repeating tracks. Added Troubleshooting > Graphics driver crash and black screen freeze while driving.

Update 2018-02-16 – 3: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for WSGT Mod cars but unfortunately, due to consistency issues with the cars physics and handling in the mod, FFB could be tuned for one car but not for all. You’d have to tune each car separately which I’m not willing to put the effort into. There are also tire heating/cooling problems with the mod. Sadly, will have to avoid this mod for now.

Update 2018-02-16 – 2: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for EEC GT3 cars bringing it to a Candidate quality level.

Update 2018-02-16: Added Force Feedback > The GTR2 Force Feedback Engineer, inspired by the Project Cars 2 Race Engineer, which is an in-game question and answer car setup tweaking interface, to help narrow down how to tune force feedback in GTR2.

Update 2018-02-15: Added All Cars (Baseline) FFB settings under Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for those people who just one one, simple FFB setup and don’t want to find the perfect one or who don’t want to change them in and out. Note, the All Cars (Baseline) FFB settings are simply the Certified HQ Cars FFB settings that I use as a baseline when starting to test any other car set. They just so happen to provide an acceptable FFB experience with most cars. I wouldn’t use it for everything but I can understand if some people prefer to just have one set of FFB settings.

Update 2018-02-11: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Original Cars bringing it to a Candidate quality level. Also added some methodology info for how I got about tuning FFB.

Update 2018-02-10: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Japan SGT300 Mod after some further work to get it to above average standard. Some of those Porsches feel really good, especially when you throw out the backend and feel it catch itself :)

Update 2018-02-10: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod and Japan SGT300 Mod after getting these to acceptable standards, although they still need work. Also added grades here to indicate how good the FFB for these cars feel. For example, HQ Cars have Grade A, or very good, FFB feel, EEC3 GT3 have Grade B, or acceptable/still needs work, FFB feel, and DTM Classics Mod has Grade C, or not really acceptable/needs work, FFB feel. I’ve added grades for each car set.

Update 2018-02-09: Noted my latest Field of View parameter, now 40.

Updated 2018-02-07: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod. I really enjoy seeing the FFB come into its own as you narrow in on the tuning. Feeling these cars come to life is an amazing experience. Sight and sound these cars are great and reviving the FFB brings the whole package together in a great experience.

Update 2018-02-30 – 2: Updated Mod Spotlight > EEC GT3 with some WIP thoughts. Added Getting Started > Community link and encourage taking advantage of the websites involved in the GTR2 community.

Update 2018-02-03: Added Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files including a table of FFB settings organized by Car Sets. Removed Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Settings and Tweaking Notes as it was a little redundant after adding the Shovas Custom FFB Files section.

Update 2018-01-28: Added Mod Spotlight > Japan SGT300 Mod – Super GT GT300 Class Cars, Mod Spotlight > WSGT – World Super GT Mod (I’m impressed!).

Update 2018-01-27 -2: Added Troubleshooting > Crashes Loading Game, Mod Spotlight > Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod, Mod Spotlight > Subaru Impreza Mod, Mod Spotlight > FiaGT 2005 Mod, and minor edits to Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod.

Update 2018-01-27: Added Peripherals > SimXperience AccuForce Direct Drive Wheel and TrackIR Head Tracking sections.

Update 2018-01-25: I’m a fan of Simracing Youtuber Jimmy Broadbent and he recently noticed my RaceDepartment post How much FFB can you feel in GTR2? 1/1000 of a percent (also a blog post of mine) and posted a video about his direct drive experience on GTR2 using the force feedback settings I recommended in that post: GTR 2 – How Does It Feel With A Direct Drive Wheel? Check it out, he seems to like it! I’m really happy to help some people get more enjoyment out of this oldie-but-goodie game.

Update 2018-01-25 – 2: Organized and cleaned up a lot of stuff in Getting Started, Mods and Force Feedback sections. There was a lot of clutter that I tried to weed out to make things more readable.

Update 2018-01-25 – 3: Posted my latest HQ Cars and Tracks “certified” UserData PLR and FFB tuning notes under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes.

Update 2017-12-29: Added Known Issues > The Leader’s Advantage AI Bug.

Update 2017-12-08: CORRECTION: Time Acceleration is OKAY. Skipping qualifying sessions is a problem! Relevant notes about Time Acceleration updated.

Update 2017-12-03: Added Racing > How to Manage AI Difficulty in Championships. Added Known Issues > Time Acceleration Results in Unrealistically Fast AI Lap Times and Skipping Qualifying Results in Unrealistically Fast AI Lap Times.

Update 2017-12-02: Updated my latest personal UserData PLR file and my force feedback tuning notes under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes. I’ve been experimenting going back to baseline ffb values and trying to reach a more iR/AMS/RF2 feel. I definitely prefer this in terms of drivability and reliability on the road.

Update 2017-11-10: Added Force Feedback > Guidelines for Tuning GTR2 Force Feedback. Updated Force Feedback > Rumble Strips Pushing/Pulling the Wrong Way to clarify wrong interpretation and now using default FFB parameter value.

Update 2017-11-09: Clarified Racing > Custom Daylight Acceleration works for regular race sessions but not 24 Hour races – they automatically time scale to race length setup when first starting the 24 Hour race.

Update 2017-11-08: Added Racing > Custom Daylight Acceleration. Added Resources > GTR Engineers Handbook and GTR2 Car-Owner’s Manual links. The GTR Engineers Handbook is particularly excellent for describe car setups better and more informatively than any in-game descriptions I’ve encountered before and the Q&A with real-life experts is also incredibly helpful.

Update 2017-10-31: Added Racing > How to Set AI Difficulty Level and Tips for Practicing and Qualifying for a Race sections. Also emphasized tip to avoid Time Acceleration as it causes a bug which results in overly quick AI lap times no matter what your AI difficulty level is set to.

Update 2017-10-29: Cleaned up and clarified Getting Started > Field of View. It’s now easy to understand and has an example. Fleshed out Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes with latest tuning adjustments.

Update 2017-10-12: Now using AI to AI Collision Rate=”40″ (max) as there’s no FPS loss for me so why not. Added Tips and Tricks > Avoid Time Acceleration to AVOID AI Bug Actually, skipping qualifying is the bug, Time Acceleration is fine.

Update 2017-09-22: Now using AI to AI Collision Rate=”32″ as I’m no longer experiencing FPS loss, maybe only stock tracks are affected and not HQ tracks. Try running HQ tracks if you have this problem. Added 5. Adding Friction and Damper under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes. Added Force Feedback Settings under Getting Started > Modernizing as, while it may seem obvious, I wanted to highlight the need to do more than is available in-game to get closer to modern standards for FFB feeling. Added note about preferring HQ Cars and Tracks due to improved handling and grip adjustments in Getting Started > Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection.

Update 2017-09-21: Added 4. Improving Corner Feeling under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes.

Update 2017-09-17 – 2: HQ Cars & Tracks is working for me again after a fix. See comments under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection. Added Troubleshooting > Enable Tracing.

Update 2017-09-17: Added Troubleshooting section. Noted HQ Cars & Tracks was crashing for me. This works now, see comments under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection.

Update 2017-09-16: Added Tips & Tricks regarding turning up tire scrub and tire skid volumes and regarding refreshing old mod files if you’re experiencing instability.

Update 2017-09-15: Added Modernizing > 4GB Patch notes. Added GTR2 HQ CARS & TRACKS – 10th Anniversary and GTR2 HQ AI under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection. Added note that I’ve stopped using the Changing Weather Patch due to suspected instability.

Update 2017-09-14: Added Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod with details for getting it running in 2017.

Update 2017-09-11: Detailed my FFB tuning in the section “My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes”. Important! After a few rounds of FFB tuning I finally feel like I have a simple FFB setup that achieves car stability, quick response, and road feel. Added “GTR2 Crashes – It might Be Other Accelerated Graphics Apps” to the Tips and Tricks section.

Update 2017-09-08: Added “Disable Auto-pit and ai control” under the “Tips and Tricks” section. Noted tweaks in the “Make GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance” section under Performance. Added “My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes” under the Force Feedback section.

Update 2017-09-06: Noted I’ve started over again from Julien Regnard’s FFB guide tuning FFB from baseline values instead of PLR defaults values under the “Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking” heading. Highly recommended. Don’t skip it like I did.

Update 2017-09-01 – 2: Added main section Performance and sub-section Make GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance to describe GTR2’s single-core use and how to get it to use more than a single core for better performance.

Update 2017-09-01: Added a Table of Contents for more convenient organization and to make it easier to find what you want.

Update 2017-08-30: Updated Force Feedback section to include more details on finding my optimal “FFB steer force average weight”, “FFB steer force exponent”, and “FFB rumble strip pull factor”. Also added “Force Feedback Tweaking Guide for Simbin Games by Julien Regnard” in Force Feedback section.

Update 2017-08-25: Added Changing Weather Patch mod under Modernizing section and added to Mod Spotlight. Updated my latest FFB settings in the Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking section.

Update 2017-08-20: Further FFB tweaking of “FFB steer force grip weight” which gives a feel of losing and gaining grip while cornering. Added Tips and Tricks section Use Auto-Clutch With Paddle Shifters. Added main section Mod Spotlight.

Update 2017-08-19 – 2: Added Getting Started sections: Mod: Track update for GTR2 Original Tracks, Mod: New GFX Mod, Field of View, Wheel Rotation and Wheel Lock, iRacing-like Brake Sensitivity for Potentiometer Pedals (eg. G27). Added Adding Game Cars, Tracks, Mods and More main section. Added Force Feedback main section with sub-section Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking.

Update 2017-08-19: Welcome to the initial posting of Secrets of GTR2! Check back from time to time as I add things and note the updates in this update box.

Contents

What is GTR2?

From the Wikipedia entry,

GTR 2 – FIA GT Racing Game is a sports car racing simulator developed by Blimey! Games and SimBin Studios (later Sector3 Studios) for the x86 PC and is a sequel to GTR. Since its release in September 2006, it has received widespread acclaim. The game simulates the 2003 and 2004 FIA GT Championship racing series.

And here’s the official game trailer,

Why a game from 2006?

GTR2 was/is one of those rare occasions when a game developer is given the opportunity to produce a game as it was meant to be. All the features you see in one game or another but never all in one game these days was actually included in one game: GTR2. And it’s still being updated by modders 11 years on!

Here’s some links that may give you a better understanding of why a game from 2006 still holds its own in this day and age:

Getting Started

Getting the Game

Steam is probably your best bet. Head over to the GTR2 store page and pick up the game. It’s pretty inexpensive but still offers good bang for the buck.

Initial Game Setup

Go ahead, setup your graphics, controls, and force feedback as you like. I don’t have any particular recommendations for the obvious in-game settings just yet. I will assume you’re like me and will play with all this stuff. This post will concern itself with stuff that isn’t immediately obvious.

Skip Intro Videos

These are always annoying, here’s how to stop them (from PC Gaming Wiki.com GTR2 article):

  1. Open Windows Explorer and find your Steam Library folder for the game: steamapps\common\GTR 2 – FIA GT Racing Game\MovieFiles
  2. Rename (or delete) these files: Intro.bik, GameIntro.bik, SimBin.bik

Fixing Missing Original Content

Certain original content has been removed since the game was released, so head over here for a fix.

Hint: Install US/EU (as applicable) patch and then install No CD patch from files over at NoGripRacing.com. There’s a Digital Distribution patch but that didn’t work for my Steam installation. Just try the US/EU patch first.

Modernizing

GTR2 holds up remarkably well in the features department but shows its age in the level of quality we now expect of those features. Some things can be improved like textures, visual effects, sounds, even AI and new and improved cars and tracks, themselves.

4GB Patch

You can allow GTR2 to use up to 4GB of memory (it was developed with a 2GB limit). You may find this necessary as you add more and more mods with new assets that take up more and more memory. So you might as well just do it now.

Simply download the 4GB Patch tool, run it, find your GTR2.exe file, and press OK. You’re done!

The 4GB patch appears to have successfully applied on the GTR2 NO CD patch GTR2.exe file I discussed above under the “Fixing Missing Original Content” heading.

NVIDIA Inspector Settings

Download NVIDIA Inspector (always virus scan downloads at virustotal.com), run nvidiaInspector.exe, click the Start Profile Inspector button (right-middle), find GTR 2 in the Profiles drop-down, and then set and apply these settings:

  • Antialiasing – Mode: Enhance
    • (Spatial) Anti-aliasing improves visuals by reducing “jagged” edges on objects in-game, smoothing them out
  • Antialiasing – Setting: 8xS [Combined: 1×2 SS +4x MS]
  • Antialiasing – Transparency Multisampling: Enabled
  • Antialiasing – Transparency Supersampling: 8x Sparse Grid Supersampling
  • Anisotropic Filtering mode: Application Controlled, User-defined / Off
  • Anisotropic Filtering setting: Off [Linear], 16x

Caution: Antialiasing can decrease performance. Reduce the setting if it slows down GTR2 too much for you.

HQ Mods Collection

Note: I prefer GTR2 Essentials (see below) but this may be easier for beginners.

I feel the absolute minimum to modernize GTR2 is the HQ Mods Collection over at NoGripRacing.com. This is a large collection of mods that does a lot: Improves textures for cars, tracks, skies, cockpits and more; improves tracks and cars, themselves; improves sounds, visual special effects, AI quality, and more. Absolute must-have for GTR2 fans, I feel.

Don’t worry, it looks intimidating at first but it really boils down to copy&pasting GameData/UserData folders to your GTR2 installation folder and overwriting files when requested. Each mod is separately packaged and only contains a few files that it will override so it’s easier than it first appears.

I found these appealing to start:

  • HDR Skies
  • HQ AI
  • HQ Cars and Tracks
  • HQ Car Sounds
  • HQ Lens Flare
  • HQ Marbles
  • HQ Rain
  • HQ Screen Dirt
  • HQ Ambient Shadow
  • HQ Backfire
  • HQ FOV DEFVIEWS
  • HQ Moon
  • HQ Smokes
  • HQ Sparks
  • HQ CARS & TRACKS – 10th Anniversary
    • Good! Much improved handling in wet conditions as compared to stock cars and tracks. I find stock cars and tracks unmanageable in the wet. Realistic or not I think it’s a change for the better otherwise you could get very, very frustrated with the game.
  • GTR2 HQ AI
    • Good! This definitely reduces AI running into the back of you.
    • Tip: Turn up “AI to AI Collision Rate” parameter in the UserData PLR  to 40 (the maximum) if your frame rate is okay. The more AI-to-AI collisions calculations per second the better the AI racing will be.

And I’ll probably put in most of the others because…why not?

Mod Package Manager: GTR2 Essentials

GTR2 Essentials provides an app interface to safely and easily managing your installed mods and it is now my preferred way to install mods when possible. It uses JSGME: “JSGME is a Generic Mod Enabler allows for seamless activation, backup and restore of any Mod packed for JSGME.”

Installation can seem daunting but I feel it’s worth it in the end. I’ll write a little something here about my steps to install it when I have a moment.

For now, give it a try, I’m sure you’ll like it for managing your mods.

Personal notes on how I use GTR2 Essentials:

  • I don’t make use of GTR2 Essentials for PLAYER NEW/SAVED or TALENT.
    • Personally, I find this tedious to make and manage over time. So, instead, I just make backups and install and overwrite the old way for these.
    • I use GTR2 Essentials for everything else, though, it’s really great for that, don’t get me wrong.

Field of View

GTR2’s default FOV (field of view) shows you a large amount of your cockpit but it’s not realistic and can be a disadvantage in terms of judging speed, distance, and general timing. You will almost certainly be faster with correct FOV because you’ll be better able to judge speed, distance and timing.

Use the HQ FOV DEFVIEWS mod, mentioned in the HQ Mods Collection above, and tweak the field of view somewhat lower than the mod’s default so that you can see your driver-side mirror and about half of your dash.

The Project Immersion.com FOV calculator is a handy site to calculate your correct FOV from the size of your monitors and how far away you sit. The “vFOV” value it calculates a factor which should applied against the default vFOV value in the UserData\defviews.cam file:

For example, ProjectImmersion.com says my vFOV factor is 0.5x so that means I should change 62.0 to 31.0. This results in what is likely a realistic field of view but it felt a little too tight so I went with 45 40 (Update 2018-02-09). I’ll probably adjust a little more as I get used to it. You’ll probably want to adjust your value, too.

Wheel Rotation and Wheel Lock

You’re probably on 900degree+ wheel, like a G27, T300, ClubSport, or modern Direct Drive wheel, so when you get into the GTR2 GT-style cars it will feel like you’re driving a bus: You’ll feel like you need to turn the wheel more than should be needed to get the car to turn the right amount – This is a wheel rotation and wheel lock setting issue.

It’s probably best to set a 540degree wheel rotation in your wheel profiles for GTR2. Then, in-game, the default 15degree wheel lock will feel better, but if it doesn’t try 18-22 degree wheel lock, give or take a few degrees. Somewhere in that range will be a 540degree sweet spot.

Force Feedback Settings

This is a little bit obvious, we all go pretty quickly for setting up force feedback, but I felt the need to emphasize this because the default force feedback options are, I feel, not enough to bring GTR2’s force feedback closer to modern standards.

You will most likely have to edit your UserData PLR file to get the right feel of your force feedback.

You may be interested in the GTR2 FFB Menu Mod which gives you access to more FFB tuning parameters in GTR2, itself. I haven’t tried this, myself, as it doesn’t expose the two key FFB parameters, Grip Weight and Grip Factor. The only other method is, unfortunately, to edit the PLR file, start up GTR2 to test, exit GTR2, and edit the PLR file again, and repeat.

To get started, see the Force Feedback section and especially the Table of Mods and Custom FFB Files.

Community

Get involved and meet the community! There’s some great people to meet and opportunities to join leagues and to find special mods which are not always available to the general public.

Adding Game Cars, Tracks, Mods and More

Pro Tip: Use VirusTotal.com when downloading files from the Internet to quickly and automatically scan a file with all (0r at least most) of the anti-virus and anti-malware solutions out there.

Check out NoGripRacing.com, they have a lot of GTR2 downloads, and I think it’s well worth paying to upgrade to premium to get unlimited downloads. Another good place is the European Endurance Center which is free but requires a signup and ‘real name’ verification process – it’s honestly simple and easy but they do require it. eSport-Racing.de is the source for some mods which can’t be found elsewhere – warning – there seems to be half-and-half English and non-English content but I’ve usually not had a problem figuring out what is what. And there’s Race Department.com which is great for community but doesn’t carry a lot of files.

Generally, the process involves simply downloading an archive, extracting it, and copying over a few folders into your GTR2 folders. It’s pretty straight-forward typically.

GTR2 Mod Bounty Program

The GTR2 Mod Bounty Program is fan crowd-sourcing to improve our favourite game, GTR2. The idea is to pledge money, any amount of your choice, towards one or more bounties, and then match bounties with interested modders who are willing to implement the requested features.  In return for successfully implementing the mod, modders will be rewarded with the pledged amount.

Here’s a few examples of wishlist items I’d like to see implemented in GTR2:

  • Pedal meters
  • Relative bar that shows live split +/-
  • Stats meters for lag, connection quality, force feedback strength, IO, etc.
  • Relative box that shows your relative position vs the drivers in front of and behind you

How It works

Pledgers will be on the honour system and are expected to pay the modders by email address (ie. PayPal, etc.), wallet address for cryptocurrencies, or other means acceptable to the modders

Modders must contact myself before-hand and work out a way to verify delivery and completion of the mod (ex. pre-agreed contact email address, and sending the mod for review with a private download link).

I will administrate the tracking of bounties and pledges on this page. No money will go through me although I will be pledging for bounties, myself.

Completion and payment

Bounties will be considered complete when they are operating as expected per the bounty requirements. Partial payouts may be considered if the mod is in working order but missing some requirements. Payouts will be deducted a certain percentage per missing requirement.

Available GTR2 Mod Bounties

Bounty Requirements Pledges Modder
Pedal Meters

Clean, minimal, iRacing-like pedal meters for clutch, brake, gas, and steering wheel, and gear and speed indicators.

– Clean, minimal, iRacing-like appearance and operation

– Meters for clutch, brake, gas, and steering wheel.

– Gear and speed indicators

– Usable with stock HUD disabled (like the XD mod)

– Automatic and manual on-screen positioning. Eg. Relative like Top-Right + Margin, or manual like x,y screen coordinates.

– Total Pledge: USD $4.88 (approx.)
– CAD $5 by PayPal (@Shovas)
No one yet.
Relative Bar

Clean, minimal, iRacing-like relative bar showing split +/-

– Clean, minimal, iRacing-like appearance and operation

– Usable with stock HUD disabled (like the XD mod)

– Automatic and manual on-screen positioning. Eg. Relative like Top-Right + Margin, or manual like x,y screen coordinates.

– Total Pledge: USD $4.88 (approx.)

– CAD $5 by PayPal (@Shovas)

No one yet.
Relative Box

Clean, minimal, iRacing-like relative box showing relative time to driver in front and behind

– Clean, minimal, iRacing-like appearance and operation

– Shows relative time to drivers in front of and behind you

– Usable with stock HUD disabled (like the XD mod)

– Automatic and manual on-screen positioning. Eg. Relative like Top-Right + Margin, or manual like x,y screen coordinates.

– Total Pledge: USD $4.88 (approx.)

– CAD $5 by PayPal (@Shovas)

No one yet.
Remember Wheel Lock

Remember wheel lock when starting new sessions.

– Game must remember last set wheel lock when starting any new driving session.

 

– Total Pledge: USD $4.88 (approx.)

– CAD $5 by PayPal (@Shovas)

No one yet.
Controller/Wheel Input Smooth

Improve smooth rise and fall of steering input.

Details in this comment – Total Pledge: USD $50 (approx.)

– USD $50 by [unspecified](David Littman)

No on yet.

Mod Spotlight

Got a mod you want me to spotlight? Add a comment, tell me why you think it’s worth it, and I’ll try it out and write it up here!

I wanted to dedicate an area to all the fantastic and fantastically dedicated modders out there who keep updating a game from 2006. We appreciate you!

These mods are roughly ordered by their quality, completeness, polish, and appeal. I didn’t want to get too nitty gritty with ratings so I just ordered them best-first, based on my experience with them, and put in a few personal thoughts for each as a sort of mini review.

EEC GT3 V3

Coming soon… Download it at the European Endurance Center.

WIP Thoughts: Most cars FFB very good, some poor / BOP (Balance of Power) issues on some cars.

WIP Install Notes:

  • Correct download links due to EEC site messing up links:
  • Installing:
    • Start at the first post in the EEC GT3 V3 Base Mod Release thread
      • Get the files listed (or use the links I provided above)
    • Then, go to the bottom of the same first post, you’ll notice a number of update downloads. Get these and install them.
      • Note: Read the RED text! It’s important as some things have to be done in the right order.
    • Just follow the order of the updates and you should be fine.
  • EEC GT3 V3 does not have car skins / liveries by default. All your cars will be white. Find skins here:
    • EEC GTR2 > Skins
    • EEC GTR2 > Open Section > Skins
    • EEC GT3 V3.0 Car Pack
      • For the life of me, I can’t remember or find where I originally came across this. See notes below about installing skins.
      • Warning! You must install the the SRT_VIPERGT3R_WHEELS.gtr file from the EEC GT3 Viper SRT Continential Tires.rar or Viper Continental Tires.zip archives to avoid a crash when loading the Viper cars.
    • Browse this thread on Trackaholics and download 50+ skins
    • Install Skins:
      • Find the team folder, usually named after a team or car, that should contain *.car, *.GTR, possibly *.DDS files, and maybe other file types, and copy the team folder to your GTR2 GameData\Teams\EEC GT3\<CAR>\ folder. For example, from the EEC GT3 V3.0 Car Pack (link above), it has a \Ford Racing\ folder that I copied to GameData\Teams\EEC GT3\Ford GT\ folder.
        • How did I know the \Ford Racing\ folder was for the Ford GT car?
          • I looked inside \Ford Racing\ folder and saw files like 15027G_FORD_GT.car. Then I looked in the GTR2 Teams\Ford GT\ folder and saw files with the same pattern FORD_GT. Every \Teams\ car folder will have patterns like this that you’ll need to match up. If you don’t have a matching pattern like that, it means you don’t have a team/car that matches. You can try to find one or just discard it.
      • Remove GTR2 GameData\Teams\EEC GT3\<CAR>\Test Car\ folders once you have real skins for the car otherwise GTR2 will still grid some cars without skins.

F1 2008

Coming soon… Download it at eSport-Racing.de.

WIP Install Notes:

  • Edit UserData\User\User.PLR and set wheels visible in cockpit=”1″ otherwise you won’t see your wheels when you’re in the car

Super Touring World 2.0

Coming soon… Download it at the European Endurance Center.

FIA GT 2000-2009 Collection Mod

Coming soon… Download it at the European Endurance Center.

WIP Thoughts: Hit and miss cars and tracks / Hit and miss sounds / Conflicts with other mods by instructions to delete GameData\Teams\{24H,GT,NGT}; Seems like there should be a better way to do this / Feels simply like a bunch of things collected over time rather than a an actual custom modification, unfortunately.

*Uninstalled for now due to conflicts noted above :(

WSGT – World Super GT Mod

The World Super GT Mod adds Super GT cars and sounds. Download it on NoGripRacing.com and don’t forget Part 2.

I’m impressed! This seems like a very polished effort. Cars seem well modeled, physics/handling come through well, force feedback feels good, cockpits look nice, sounds are very well done.

Worth it? Yes, check out the features (see description), and they all seem to be well done:

Mod Features:

  • Mod Features:
    • 7 new car models with detailed cockpits and textures.
    • highly developed physics with suspension geometries modeled with references of photos
    • Realistic Engine sounds
    • New special effects sounds
    • Fully detailed drivers suits
    • Fully compatable with GTR2
    • Optimized LODs
    • New showroom and showroom menu
    • and more.
  • Cars Included:
    • Aston Martin DBR9
    • Aston Martin DBRS9
    • Ferrari F50 GT
    • Ferrari FXX
    • Maserati Trofeo Light
    • McLaren F1 GTR Longtail
    • Ultima GTR

Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod

The Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod includes, as you would expect, the cars from the Japanese Super GT500 for the 2005-2013 seasons. Download it on NoGripRacing.com here. My installation notes are below.

First, here’s a trailer:

The mod was last updated in 2015 and, on first impressions, the cars force feedback feels behind what you can achieve with HQ Cars. The cars themselves seem well modeled, sound great, and are probably great to race.

Here’s what I had to do to install it successfully:

  1. Download WinRAR from RarLab.com if you need it (I found 7Zip wouldn’t work).
    1. Always virus scan downloads at VirusTotal.com
  2. Download the mod
    1. Be sure to get part 2 and part 3, as well.
  3. Extract with WinRAR
    1. WinRar should prompt you to extract extract more volumes (ie. part 2 and 3). Browse to the part 2 and part 3 files when requested.
  4. Copy&Paste the GameData folder into your GTR2 folder. It will prompt you to merge folders.
    1. The only file it asked to actually overwrite was SPARK.DDS. I said no because I use the HQ Sparks mod. Seemed to operate fine.

That’s it. The mod seems to be fine. Enjoy!

My thoughts on the mod: Delivers what it says it would – good, car look and feel are good, physics/handling seem decent (possibly too much grip?), force feedback feels dated – could be updated to HQ Cars standards, championships included – good.

Worth it? Yes, it’s a well done mod. I think it’s especially worth it if you’re a fan of Super GT.

Japan SGT300 Mod – Super GT GT300 Class Cars

The Japan SGT300 Mod includes Super GT GT300 class cars. Download it on NoGripRacing.com and check out Japan SGT300 PlusCarPack, as well. Car modeling appears to lack the polish of the Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod (see above) but it’s very playable. One thing this mod facilitates is Super GT multi-class racing. No idea if that’s a thing in real Super GT but I like the idea of a bigger, more varied field. Sounds are decent.

Worth it? Yes, I think so, if you like Super GT and you want some more cars.

FiaGT 2005 Mod

The FiaGT 2005 Mod brings the FIA GT 2005 season to GTR to add to the existing 2003 and 2004 seasons. Download it at NoGripRacing.com and don’t forget the second part that includes some tracks.

Worth it? Yes, comes with a new championship, and the Aston Martin DBR9 which sounds beautiful.

*Maintainer GTR233 at NoGripRacing.com fixed my stability issues as of v2.62.

DTM Classics Mod

The DTM Classics Mod adds championships that simulate the DTM 1990-91-92 seasons and it includes three cars – the Mercedes Benz 190E Evolution II, BMW E30 M3 Sportevolution, and Audi V8 DTM. Download at NoGripRacing.com. My installation notes are below.

First, here’s a trailer:

There is some steps to do by hand before you can use it, though, so here’s the steps I took:

  1. Get the mod at nogripracing.com
  2. Extract the archive
    1. I recommend the free and open-source 7zip if you don’t already have an archive tool
  3. You need to download some tracks per the DTM Classic Tracks.doc file inside the archive. Extract the archives and find the folder with the .gdb files and copy this folder into your GTR2 GameData\Locations folder.
    1. Zolder 2005
    2. Nurburgring 2001
    3. Avus 1993
      1. The DOC’s link for this track was broken when I tried it so the closest I could find was Avus 1993 on nogripracing.com
    4. GPCHockenheim79
      1. Again, the link was broken so I substituted this one.
      2. Note: This is the 1979 version of the track.
      3. Alternative: Hockenheim 99
    5. Nordschleife
    6. Norisring 2005 
      1. Yes, 2005, unfortunately but maybe it hasn’t changed much.
      2. Alternative: Norisring but not sure this is any more period correct, either
    7. Nurburgring 2001
      1. The DOC is repeating itself here.
    8. GPCHockenheim79
      1. Here the DOC’s link is working so we’re repeating the same track.
    9. Sachsenring
      1. This is not mentioned in the DOC but it is in the DTM92 championship file so I had to google to find it. If this link goes down add a comment I’ll see about uploading to nogripracing.com or hosting it myself.
  4. The DTM Classic Championship use.txt file recommends you edit some track .gdb files and set Max Vehicles = 42. Don’t do this as it causes problems with the pits on the tracks I’ve substituted. If you want to anyway, here’s the GDB files to edit:
    1. Old: Zolder_05.gdb, New: 2005ZOLDER.GDB
    2. Good: GPCHockenheim.gdb
    3. Good: SHHockenheim.gdb
    4. Old: Avus.gdb, New: 93Avus.gdb
    5. Good: 5Norisring.gdb
    6. Good: ASNational.gdb
    7. Old: A1Nurburg.gdb, New: 01Nurburg.gdb
    8. Old: SPNurburgring.gdb, New: 01Nurburg.gdb
    9. Good: Sachsenring.gdb
  5. Next, find and edit the GameData\Championships\DTM92.gdb file, or whichever DTM*.gdb championship file you would like to use, and substitute in the new track names we use. Just look for things like TrackName { … } – it’s the TrackName you’ll want to change. For example, the first track in my DTM92.gdb file is Zolder_05 and I had to change that to 2005ZOLDER.
    1. From Zolder_05 to 2005ZOLDER
    2. From A1Nurburgring to 01Nurburg
    3. From Avus to 93Avus
    4. From SPNurburgring to 01Nurburg
    5. From SPNurburgring to 01Nurburg
  6. Optional plain championship: I find the DTM92 stock championship to be tedious as they repeat tracks and don’t allow you to specify timed races. You’re forced into a certain number of laps based on track. Maybe that was realistic but I created a ‘plain’ championship to avoid track repeats and enable racing for custom amounts of time.
    1. Download the DTM92 Plain championship GDB here, rename _gdb.txt to .gdb, and download the  championship TXT here, and put them in GameData\Championships\Official\
  7. That’s it! You’re ready to race.
    1. Remember! Use maximum 40 cars, otherwise it will crash, or you can adjust the Max Vehicles in the track files as noted above.
  8. Enjoy!

My thoughts on the mod: Relatively complete package – good, would like more DTM cars variety, physics/handling feel early 90s – good, force feedback feels dated – could be updated to HQ Cars standards, championships prepackaged – good.

Worth it? Ya, I think it is fun to drive around those old early 90s cars.

Changing Weather Patch Mod

GTR2 lost (or never had) changing weather during race sessions. Apparently it works in other session types but not race sessions. The Changing Weather Patch, by “jtsn” (thank you, jtsn!), re-enables changing weather during race sessions. This brings back an amazing immersion factor only now in 2017 being re-implemented in racing games like Project Cars 2 and F1 2016/2017.

Hint: Just extract the archive into your GTR2 folder. It won’t overwrite anything. You will need to launch GTR2 by hand by running gtr2wx.exe directly to get changing weather (ie. can’t launch through Steam). Otherwise, for the original, run gtr2.exe or launch via Steam.

I’m not personally running this anymore but it seems like it did its job.

AccuForce owners: You will need to modify the GTR2 “Game Plugin” and “Game Exe” under the Control Center > Settings > Games > GTR2 (add it if it’s not there). You need to set “Game Plugin” to “Unsupported Game” and “Game Exe” to the path and filename of the gtr2wx.exe file. Don’t worry about the “Unsupported Game” – force feedback seems to operate fine.

Subaru Impreza Mod

The Subaru Impreza mod adds the Impreza car to GTR2.  Download it at NoGripRacing.com. Despite being last updated in 2007 it feels like a very well modeled car. Driving feels like you’d expect an Impreza to feel. Sounds are very lacking but there seems to be some mods that address the sounds issue, although I haven’t tried them yet.

Worth it? Yes, if you’re a fan of the car, otherwise maybe not, although it does present an interesting change of scenery from the usual GTR cars.

Track update for GTR2 Original Tracks

Check out the Track update for GTR2 Original Tracks for track scenery updates that really add to the immersion in game-play. The author has added in things like real-life signs that span over tracks and grandstands with people in them.

Note! This only updates the original tracks. If you’re using the HQ Mods Collection HQ Tracks it won’t help.

New GFX Mod

The New GFX Mod does seem to provide nicer graphics than stock graphics.

But, I’ve had issues with blurry textures so I don’t use it. Give it a try and see if it works for you.

Graphics

At the time I was testing these settings, I was running an i7 2600K @ 4.8Ghz and an NVIDIA GTX 980 TI.

 

 

Enhancing Anti-Aliasing Using NVIDIA Inspector

My settings so far:

  • Antialiasing – Mode: Enhance the application setting
  • Antialiasing – Setting: 16xS [Combined: 2×2 SS + 4x MS]
    • I tried higher settings but they were visually blurry and I tend to prefer sharper images.
  • Toggle FXAA on or off: On

Force Feedback

Important! At the time I initially tested these settings, I was running a SimXperience AccuForce Pro direct-drive steering wheel.

Guidelines for Tuning GTR2 Force Feedback

  • Tune one FFB parameter at a time
  • Use Vsync or Frame rate capping
    • Frame rate matters to GTR2 FFB. The FFB update loop is tied to the frame rate so a 50fps FFB experience will feel differently than a 100fps FFB experience.
    • Use Vsync or frame rate capping to achieve stable FPS.
  • Change as little as possible to avoid variables throwing off your tuning
    • Save a race session and keep using it every time you exit and enter GTR2 after changing FFB parameters
    • Use the same track
    • Use the same car
    • Use the same setup – including things like tire types, pressures, etc.
  • Use HQ Cars and Tracks
    • I wasted a lot of time trying to tune original cars to original tracks in wet weather and it was impossible to tune in a non-suicidal ride.
    • I found the HQ Mods cars are much friendlier in the rain so now I just use them.
  • Certain effects play off each other:
    • Grip Weight vs Grip Factor
      • Reducing/Increasing Grip Weight can Reduce/Increase the Grip Factor effect so you may need to make an opposite adjustment to Grip Factor. The opposite can also happen: Changing Grip Factor might require a need to adjust Grip Weight.
  • Use bi-section searching to tune FFB parameters to reliably dial in your settings and  help avoid bias and false leads.

Shovas Custom FFB Files

I go by the handle Shovas on RaceDepartment.com where I initially wrote a post talking about one aspect of my FFB tuning progress. People seem to like the idea so I thought I’d lay it all here in a structured way and give it the name people already know.

Methodology

Firstly, my FFB settings go through many rounds of testing. Ideally, I go through an entire championship and keep improving the FFB during practice sessions of every round. Once a championship is complete, I label my FFB settings certified.

Since that’s a lot of work, I’m now doing this:

  1. Check a sample of cars in the set to  ensure they exhibit similar FFB feel so that I’m confident my tuning on one car will help the others
  2. Select a representative car from the set
  3. Pick a quality track, start a race session, and save it so that variables like weather, wet/dry, etc. stay the same so I can enter and exit the game and pick up testing where I left off.
  4. Test chosen car until I’m satisfieid
  5. Try out all other cars in the set to be sure they all have similar improvements to FFB
  6. Try out chosen car on an HQ track–as I’m confident on the quality of these–to ensure the FFB improvements are still there on a different track
  7. Grade the FFB feel from A (best), B (average), C (poor).

FFB settings are organized by car sets due to modders each implementing physics/handling and FFB in distinct ways.

Usage: My personal UserData PLR files are provided for download in the table below. You only need to copy&paste any line starting with “FFB”, excluding “FFB Joy…” lines, into your own PLR file to get the full FFB settings. To be completely honest, most of the FFB tuning impact comes from only a few parameters: Steer Force Output Max, Force Exponent, Grip Weight, Grip Factor, Friction Coefficient, and Damper Coefficient. Your settings for other FFB parameters are probably fine and can be customized to suit your preferences. It’s probably best if you do try all the settings, at least initially, so you get a feel for the car the way these FFB settings were meant to be felt.

Table of Mods and Custom FFB Files

Important! For the best FFB experience, disable Vsync, make sure your frame rate is unlocked, and try to achieve 60fps+, the higher the better, as GTR2’s FFB Loop is tied to framerate. 120fps+ begins to feel like Automobilista or rFactor 1 – it makes that much of a difference. Use Bill’s Process Manager to speed up GTR2 by enabling it to use all available cores.

Note! Some PLR files have enabled Brake Vibe and Steer Vibe. Simply set FFB Effects = 2 to disable these extra effects if you wish.

CAR SET

STATUS

GRADE

NOTES

PLR

All Cars
(Baseline)
N/A Looking for one simple FFB setup? This one is for you. It’s simply the Certified Original Cars FFB settings which are a decent starting point.. Most cars are acceptable to drive with these settings. Download tuning notes. DOWNLOAD
Original Cars CERTIFIED

GRADE A-

WET TESTED
A breakthrough while tuning 2005 FiaGT Mod convinced me to revisit this and it turned out very well. One tweak and it worked out well. Difficult wet tuning but it’s coming along. Download tuning notes.
DOWNLOAD
HQ Cars (HQ Mods Collection)
CERTIFIED

GRADE A

WET TESTED
HQ Cars have some of the best FFB, once tuned, that I have felt in GTR2. Kudos to GTR233 for his great work on HQ Cars and the HQ Mods Collection. Download tuning notes. DOWNLOAD
FiaGT 2005 Mod
CERTIFIED

GRADE A+

WET TESTED
This is now my benchmark for FFB as of May 2018. Originally based on HQ Cars FFB, it’s progressed beyond and feels the best of any of my FFB profiles. Download tuning notes.

DOWNLOAD

EEC GT3 Mod CANDIDATE

GRADE B+

NOT WET TESTED

Actually had a difficult time with this one. Out of the box, with HQ Cars settings, it feels okay, it’s acceptable, but could be better. I’ve tried to improve the settings but it’s not exactly where I want it to be yet. Download tuning notes.

DOWNLOAD

WSGT Mod WORK IN PROGRESS

GRADE B-

NOT WET TESTED
This did not go well. Changes to representative car did not transfer positive results to other cars in the set. Inconsistencies in car physics/handling means FFB can’t be tuned together, you’d have to tune each car, which is not something I want to do. Try out the PLR if you like, who knows you might like it. Download tuning notes.

DOWNLOAD

Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod CANDIDATE

GRADE B+

NOT WET TESTED
Download tuning notes.

DOWNLOAD

Japan SGT300 Mod CANDIDATE

GRADE B+

NOT WET TESTED
Extremely high centering spring force that I had to tune out using Force Exponent. Download tuning notes.

DOWNLOAD

DTM Classics Mod CERTIFIED

GRADE B+

NOT WET TESTED
Download tuning notes. DOWNLOAD

Grades: A – Very good FFB, B – Acceptable FFB, C – Not really acceptable, needs work

Force Feedback Tweaking Guide for Simbin Games  by Julien Regnard

A helpful guide (plain text backup link) with a little bit better descriptions of FFB parameters in your PLR file.

Of special note in this file is the section at the end titled “3. Tweaking FFB parameters”. His baseline FFB PLR values are really educational and informative to experience and especially to use as a baseline to experiment with values one by one.

Please note, while I find the guide incredibly helpful, I find some of Julien’s advice counter-intuitive, at the least:

  • Friction vs Damper:
    • Julien recommends a negative Friction “to be sure that the wheel moves fast when required by the car movements” but the point of friction to simulate some of the drag on the steering column. Negative friction defeats that purpose, so I’m left confused. Maybe this makes sense on older/lesser wheels but I just can’t see how this makes sense on modern wheels. I ended up at zero or small positive values for friction.

Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking

Check out this guide, Force Feedback Tweaking Guide for Simbin Games, for helpful descriptions and tips for advanced force feedback tweaking using the UserData PLR files.

Pro Tip: What do the FFB Effects Levels mean?
Low: Steering+Grip
Medium: Adds Friction+Damper+Rumble strips
High: Adds Brake vibration
Full: Adds Throttle vibration+Steering vibration

Rumble Strips Pushing/Pulling the Wrong Way

I noticed rumble strips were pulling me off track instead of tending to push me back on track. Luckily, I noticed an FFB setting:

Update 2017-11-10: I believe I was wrong about the feel of this. I now feel there’s some legitimate drag to larger, more raised kerbs (eg. at Spa) and some kerbs lift your rear tire enough to lose grip on the backend thus acting like sliding on the backend and feeling like being “pulled” off the track. Consider reducing Spring and/or Fast Bump/Rebound to deal with this. My Pull Factor FFB setting is now the default 1.5.

  • FFB rumble strip pull factor=”-0.890625″ // How strongly wheel pulls right/left when running over a rumble strip. Suggested range: -1.5 to 1.5.
    • Looks like this should be negative: -1.50000
      • My bisection search: -1.5, -0.75, -1.125, -0.9375, -0.84375, -0.890625
    • Positive vs negative could be wheel dependent. So you’ll have to test to make sure.
    • You may want to tweak this value. It’s a little strong feeling for me.

The GTR2 Force Feedback Engineer

Inspired by the Project Cars 2 Race Engineer, which provides an in-game question and answer interface to solving car setup issues, I thought I’d document the same kind of thing for GTR2 from a Force Feedback perspective.

In GTR2, and probably most early SimBin titles, the most important Force Feedback tuning parameters are not exposed by in-game settings. These settings include Force Exponent, Grip Weight, Grip Factor, Friction Coefficient, and Damper Coefficient. You’ll need to edit your UserData\USER\ PLR file to change these settings.

Engineer: What’s the problem?

Driver: Well,

  • I can’t tell when I’m losing grip. The wheel doesn’t go light enough when I’m losing grip.
    • Increase Grip Weight
      • Increases Grip forces, which decreases Steering forces at the same time, which increases wheel weight loss due to grip loss and can help you identify when grip has been lost because the wheel feels lighter.
  • The wheel goes too light when I’m losing grip.
    • Decrease Grip Weight
      • Decreases Grip forces, which increases Steering forces at the same time, which reduces wheel weight loss due to grip loss and helps keep the wheel forces stronger.
  • The wheel feels loose or force feedback is weak on straights, in corners, everywhere in general.
    • Decrease Force Exponent
      • Compresses forces over a narrower range, so more total force, so that forces are compressed around center causing the wheel to feel tighter or forces to feel stronger.
  • The wheel feels tight/jittery around center on straights.
    • Increase Force Exponent
      • Evens out forces over a wider range, so less total force, so that forces are not all compressed around center causing high forces or spikes which you feel as tightness or jitteriness.
  • There’s too much centering spring feeling in the wheel.
    • Increase Force Exponent
      • Evens out forces over a wider ranger, so less total force, so that all combined forces do not cause too much force towards the center.
  • The wheel force feedback goes ‘numb’ during hard or high speed cornering. I can’t feel anything.
    • Increase Force Exponent
      • Evens out forces over a wider ranger, so less total force, so that all combined forces do not overwhelm the wheel and cause ‘clipping’ (ie. max force reached so can’t feel any more forces, it just feels dead) and this should allow forces, while somewhat weaker, to still be felt.
  • I can’t feel the road, such as bumps, lines, or contours.
    • Increase Grip Weight
      • Increases Grip forces which are affected by road bumps, lines, and contours, so your wheel will emphasize greater and lesser weight feel that help identify road feel through force feedback.
  • I can’t catch the car when the backend loses grip and slides out.
    • Increase Grip Weight
      • Increases Grip forces, which lowers Steering forces at the same time,  which provides emphasized grip information through force feedback that should help you catch backend slides more easily.
    • Decrease Grip Factor
      • Decreases Grip forces from the front tires, which increases Grip forces from the rear tires at the same time, which provides emphasized rear grip information through force feedback that should help you catch backend slides more easily.
  • There’s not enough resistance when I turn the wheel, in general.
    • Increase Friction Coefficient
      • Increases constant friction forces so the wheel feels heavier to turn. Real steering columns have inherent friction so tuning friction can make it feel more realistic.
  • There’s too much resistance when I turn the wheel, in general.
    • Decrease Friction Coefficient
      • Decreases constant friction forces so that the wheel feels lighter to turn. Real steering columns have inherent friction so tuning friction can make it feel more realistic.
  • The wheel rotates too quickly during some forces, like there’s not enough resistance. It doesn’t behave like a real wheel.
    • Increase Damper Coefficient
      • Increases the fluid dampening applied to forces so it will spin up more slowly
  • The wheel rotates too slowly during some forces, like there’s too much resistance. It doesn’t behave like a real wheel.
    • Decrease Damper Coefficient
      • Decreases the fluid dampening applied to forces so the wheel will spin up more quickly.
  • Wheel forces feel like they’re clipping in high ffb strength scenarios but I’m not even at max FFB strength on the wheel.
    • Decrease Steer Force Output Max
      • Reduces the amount of strength applied to steering forces  and frees up FFB strength headroom for road bumps preventing force clipping in high ffb strength scenarios like high speed corners.
      • This is known as ‘soft clipping’ where your wheel FFB strength has sufficient strength but the in-game calculations are overwhelming their own maximum FFB strength output. This results in numb steering forces taking up 100% of the in-game FFB output and providing no room for road bump forces which provide feeling on the road.
      • Caution: Damper and Friction will become increasingly apparent as you decrease Steer Force Output Max and you will want to adjust them accordingly.

Peripherals

SimXperience AccuForce Direct Drive Wheel

My SimXperience AccuForce direct drive wheel works flawlessly with GTR2. It will feel better if you tune FFB properly like I have (see Force Feedback section).

My SimXperience AccuForce setup is tweaked only slightly from the default GTR2 setup. Here’s the settings. Also, personally, in SimCommander I always reset my AccuForce to defaults, set Wheel Mode High, enable Force Boost, and disable Engine RPMs:

TrackIR Head Tracking

TrackIR is a great step if you’re not yet willing to go to VR, like myself, and the good news is GTR2 supports it out of the box!

I find it works extremely well to achieve the ability to look around the cockpit, at your mirrors, and out your side-windows on a single screen. You should find slides easier to notice and correct as your head stays looking in the direction you want and your car rotates around you – as you would expect in real life. The added head movement also gives you a slight depth-perception improvement due to subtle angle-of-view changes as your car moves, your head moves, and bumps affect your cockpit movement.

You can click the image to the right to see the settings I’ve used. The settings mainly try for 1:1 head movement while looking at your cockpit and mirrors, and then accelerates so that you can look out your side-windows without straining your neck too much.

Performance

Make GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance

Use Process Lasso to make GTR2 use more than a single core to help increase your frame rate. There are other applications that do the same thing. Try a google for “window cpu affinity tool” if you’re looking for a different one.

How to use Process Lasso with GTR2:

  1. Start Process Lasso
  2. Click Options menu > “Configure default CPU affinities …”
    1. Process name: GTR2.exe
    2. CPUs: All
    3. Click “Add to list” button
    4. Click OK
  3. Click Options menu > “Configure default CPU priorities”
    1. Name match: GTR2.exe
    2. Select “High” from the priority drop-down
    3. Click “Add to list” button
    4. Click OK
  4. Start GTR2 and enjoy better performance!

Remember! Process Lasso must be running before you launch GTR2!

Note: Some have said more than two cores assigned to GTR2.exe doesn’t seem to make a difference. I’ve seen GTR2 use 4 cores, myself, but it certainly gets the biggest boost from 2, then less of an improvement as you add cores. I just enable them all for convenience.

Update 2017-09-08: Due to some instability investigation, I ended up setting GTR2 to use 2 cores and I stopped doing the High CPU priority thing.

Tips and Tricks

This section will contain miscellaneous tips and tricks that don’t neatly fit into other sections.

iRacing-like Brake Sensitivity for Potentiometer Pedals (eg. G27)

If you’re used to iRacing and have potentiometer based pedals, like G27 pedals, you’re probably used to an iRacing default Brake Force Factor of 1.80x. In GTR2, and many other sims, brake sensitivity is linear and won’t feel like iRacing braking. You can achieve iRacing-like braking sensitivity by adjusting Brake Sensitivity in the in-game control options and lowering the value. Personally, based on my measurements, somewhere between 0-25% brake sensitivity is similar to iRacing braking progression judging by the in-game brake meter. Give it a try and use what you like best.

Note: I’m still testing, myself. It’s somewhere less than 50%, though, as 50% is linear in SimBin games.

If you don’t have potentiometer pedals, you may or may not want to adjust the brake sensitivity. I’ll assume you’re an advanced user, if you have these higher-end pedals, and you know what you want from them.

Use Auto-Clutch With Paddle Shifters

Use auto-clutch, available in the Realism settings, when making use of paddle shifters, otherwise shifts will be abrupt and cause wheel spin on up-shifting or lock-up on down-shifting.

Disable Auto-pit and ai control

By default, your car will enter “auto pit” mode when you enter and exit the pits meaning AI controls your car until you exit the pits. Being used to driving the cars in pits, myself, I disable this:

  1. Edit your UserData PLR file
  2. Under “[ DRIVING AIDS ]” set:
    1. Autopit=”0″
    2. No AI Control=”1″ // AI never has control over car (except autopit)

GTR2 Crashes – It might Be Other Accelerated Graphics Apps

Try closing as many other applications as possible when running GTR2.

I was experiencing frequent crashes until one time I noticed Firefox was suspiciously graphically crashing at the same time – Firefox was still running but the Window Minimize/Maximize/Close buttons were all messed up – like Aero had crashed. My hunch is that, as Firefox uses accelerated graphics, there might be a conflict with a game that is also running it. I’ve so far found much greater stability running GTR2 with Firefox closed.

Refresh old mod files again for stability

I found I was getting crashes from HQ Cars and HQ Tracks combinations. I determined it was the HQ Cars that were causing the problems. I didn’t know if it was a permanent problem or not. I had been installing a lot of mods since installing HQ Cars and Tracks so I decided to install those again and, guess what, I can use HQ Cars and HQ Tracks together again. So maybe something I installed messed with those files and they just needed to be reset.

Update 2017-09-22: I did find out later that one file in the HQ Mods Collection v7.0 was causing a lot of my crashes. Once I got that solved it was smooth sailing.

Improve your driving by Turning up Tire Scrub and Tire Skid volume

Go ahead, turn up tire scrub and tire skin in the audio options and I think you’ll find it’s one more piece of information you can use to aid your driving around the track. I always find it helpful to match up the audio of slips and slides with the visuals and the force feedback.

Don’t skip sessions (causes AI bug). Use Time Acceleration, instead.

Don’t skip sessions. Use Time Acceleration, instead. Skipping qualifying sessions results in unrealistically quick lap times by AI opponents.

Note: See Known Issue about skipping qualifying resulting in overly fast AI lap times. Hint: Race them anyway, even though you’re further back on the grid, as they’re the appropriate AI level and you can make up positions quickly.

Racing

How to Set AI Difficulty Level

Pro Tip: Don’t skip sessions. Use Time Acceleration, instead. Skipping qualifying sessions causes an AI bug which results in overly quick AI lap times.

Finding an AI difficulty level appropriate for you can be a tedious task in GTR2 as it is with most sims, to be honest.

You will need to create a series of race sessions, setting a given AI level each time, setup your car baseline, soft slicks, and enough fuel for 3 laps, and skip to the qualifying sessions BUT DO NOT SKIP qualifying sessions (causes AI timing bug)! Put in your best times, and then wait for the AI to set their times, the fastest times should only take a few minutes, then use Time Acceleration and wait for all cars to come in before continuing to next session.

  • If you’re in 1st and the next fastest AI is more than 3 tenths of a second behind you, you may want to increase the AI level to get a competitive race.
  • If you’re in 1st and the next fastest AI is within 3 tenths of a second behind you, then consider leaving the AI level as-is, you may just get good, competitive racing.
  • If you’re near the top and within 2-3 tenths of a second, you may want to leave the AI level where it is. You may find some good tight racing here, sometimes winning, sometimes just finishing near the top.
  • If you’re anything more than 3 tenths of a second behind the leader, and you’re racing to win races, you probably want to lower the AI level.
  • If you’re more than a second behind the leader, even if you don’t race to win races, you probably want to lower the AI level to achieve good, clean, fun racing.

Personally, I started off at 89, bumped up to 90 and 91, and now I’m at 92 which currently puts me to my limits to achieve poll position in qualifying. For me, that’s where I want to be for good, hard races, at least for now. I’m sure I’ll maybe want to bump it up a notch if it becomes too easy to win races.

Note: See Known Issue about skipping qualifying resulting in overly fast AI lap times. Hint: Race them anyway, even though you’re further back on the grid, as they’re the appropriate AI level and you can make up positions quickly.

How to Manage AI Difficulty in Championships

A common problem with championships is that you set your AI difficulty at the beginning but AI may respond much faster or slower depending on the track – even though the AI difficulty level is not changing. You can change the AI level, however, before each round. You can change the AI level when starting a championship or just after continuing a championship but before entering the actual race session. So, you can take advantage of this to do some practice in Race Sessions before your next Championship round.

At the beginning of each round, start a Race Weekend session with the same car and track, and others parameters, including AI levels, as the the Championship round. Run a few fast qualifying laps and if you’re not within the top 5 or 6 then consider lowering the AI level to allow for a competitive  race. Repeat as needed until you feel competitive with the AI. Then, you can start your Championship round and adjust the AI level before the race.

Note: There is an issue where skipping the rest of your qualifying session will result in the AI having faster lap times than they should have. This can, for example, result in you being put further back on the grid because the AI put in faster lap times when you skipped. Race them anyway, the AI level is still appropriate, so you’ll be able to make up your spots.

Tips for Practicing and Qualifying for a Race

For practice, I usually start out with a pretty baseline setup–medium slicks, if good weather, and full fuel–and run some laps until I’m confident enough to reach a position somewhere in half-up in my class. I don’t worry about being 1st at this point as that will only come with soft slicks (ie. qualifying tires) and as little fuel as possible: Save this for qualifying.

In qualifying, I again start out with the same near baseline setup as practice and I run some good laps and then check where the AI are placed. Then, I put on soft slicks and run more laps and see how many positions I gain. Finally, I put in enough fuel for about 3 laps, run more laps, and see where I end up in the positions.

If I’ve previously determined a decent AI difficulty level (one at which I have a possibility of winning) then I can usually end up very near the top of the positions, if not 1st if I try hard enough. So far, this gives very satisfactory race results for. I can usually win or at least be near the top.

Custom Daylight Acceleration

Edit your UserData PLR file and change the Time Scale Factor parameter to any value between 1 and 600 where 1 is real-time and >1 accelerates time.

For example, I chose Time Scale Factor=”24″ to experience a full day-night cycle in a 1 hour race.

More recently, I’ve been using Time Scale Factor=”12″ to experience half a day-night cycle in a 1 hour race. I chose this to have some daylight transition but not too much in my usual 20min races.

Note! 24 Hour races do not use Time Scale Factor. You can set a race length when setting up a 24 Hour race and GTR2 will automatically set the time scale. For example, you can setup a 24 Hour race with a 1 hour race length and you will still experience a 24 hour day-night cycle.

Hint: Find your GTR2 folder and you’ll see your UserData\Player\Player.PLR file. Edit this file. Mine is “G:\SteamLibrary\steamapps\common\GTR 2 – FIA GT Racing Game\UserData\Shovas\Shovas.PLR” but your location and PLR folder and file name will be different.

Resources

  • GTR Engineers Handbook – The official GTR Setup Guide (Backup; HTML)
    • “The official GTR Engineer’s Handbook, which is hard to find on the internet (and not included with the game). It was made for the first GTR game title by Simbin in 2004, but it also applies to the sequel.”
    • “Combined with the GTR2 Car-Owner’s Manual, it’s a must have for those who use GTR2’s original cars. A great source of knowledge for GTR2 users, as it provides important information as a setup guide.”
  • GTR2 Car-Owner’s Manual – Extensive details on the car specs, tyre character, power graphs, etc (Backup);
    • “Along with the GTR Engineers Handbook, this manual is a must have for those who use GTR2’s original cars. It has all extensive data on every single car specs, such as tyre characteristics, ideal temps and pressures, power graphs, transmission, aerodynamics, weight balance, etc, etc.”

Known Issues

 

Skipping Qualifying Results in Unrealistically Fast AI Lap Times

There is an issue where skipping the rest of your qualifying session will result in the AI having faster lap times than they should have. This can, for example, result in you being put further back on the grid because the AI put in faster lap times when you skipped. Race them anyway, the AI level is still appropriate, so you’ll be able to make up your spots.

Use both Qualifying 1 and 2 or just Qualifying 2 to avoid incorrect gridding order.

Make sure you have Qualifying 1 and 2 sessions enabled or only Qualifying 2 enabled. Do not only use Qualifying 1. Using only Qualifying 1 will result in a random gridding order when the race starts.

The Leader’s Advantage AI Bug

When the player is ahead of the AI, the AI have tendency to go slower than if they were ahead of the player. This can happen even when qualifying suggests competitive timings: Even if you start further back in the grid, if you can manage to get out in front then the AI have a tendency to slow down.

Also, if you start further back in the grid, try to make up as much ground as possible or else the AIs ahead of you, especially top 3 or so, will tend to be uncatchable for the rest of the race.

I guess the ‘solution’ here is to find out where qualifying place results in a competitive race for you. For example, I try to qualifying top 3-6, at least, and make sure I stay up with the faster cars off the start.

Troubleshooting

Enable Tracing

  1. Launch GTR2 with -trace=1000
    1. For Steam, right-click your game in your Library
    2. Click Set Launch Options button
    3. Added -trace=1000 in the text box
  2. If a crash happens then check UserData\Log\trace.txt
    1. Errors are likely near the end of the file. Google for the error message and you’ll likely find some tips to help fix it.

Crashes Loading Game

If you’ve modified your GTR2.exe file and after a while GTR2 crashes on startup then check the file Properties > Compatibility and choose Privilege Level > “Run this program as an administrator”.

I suspect that I lost my settings when I recovered from a ZIP archive which probably doesn’t include that kind of meta detail.

Crashes Loading Tracks

Try uninstalling previously installed mods and see if the problem happens.

To make this a little easier, make a backup of your GTR2 folder before you install new mods so you can rollback easier just by renaming folders.

Graphics driver crash and black screen freeze while driving

Update 2018-03-23: Correction: This problem seems to have been due to bad files in my GTR2 folder. I started again with a clean, brand new GTR2 installation, and tested with crash-prone cars and tracks and haven’t had a black screen freeze crash again, yet *fingerscrossed*.

If you experience black screen freezes, and then the game comes back, it might be some options on your GTR2.exe properties:

  1. Go to your GTR2 folder
  2. Right-click GTR2.exe and select Properties
  3. Click Compatibility tab
  4. Check “Run this program in compatibility mode for: [Windows XP (Service Pack 3)]” This is probably already done for you by Steam.
  5. Check “Disable visual themes”
  6. Check “Disable desktop composition”
  7. Check “Disable display scaling on high DPI settings”

I thought my graphics card was defective or maybe I had bad drivers or some kind of graphic acceleration by other apps was causing problems but these settings seem to have solved it.

About This Post

I’ll be updating this post with more and more details as I play around with GTR2. Check back and look for the updates box at the top of the post I’ll add update notes there as I add things.

Credits

22 thoughts on “Secrets of GTR2”

      1. Dear Matt,

        God bless you for your desire to help others with your insights, it’s so very nice to see someone helping others in these so often greedy and selfish times :D

        Your guide is so well written and helpful for newbies like me, that I decided to flag it for other users on the nogripracing.com forum, GTR2 section, so other newbies could benefit from proper indications!

        Since there’s interest in adding your guide as a PDF file to their archive, I’m kindly asking if that could be possible, feel free to contact me on my email if you so prefer :)

        Have a nice day and God Bless,

        KalidhoS

        1. Welcome to the site, KalidhoS! I’m glad you like the post and that it’s helpful to you and others! I replied at NoGrip about the PDF. Thanks, take care!

  1. Hey Selah, excellent guide. I decided to try getting into GTR2 and with this guide it feels great. Now I can finally start learning how to drive properly – the tutorials are just as nice as I’ve heard.

    1. Hey, welcome! Really happy you found this useful! GTR2 is a blast and there’s so much mod content you’re probably not going to get bored any time soon. Enjoy!

  2. Bounty for a steering input smoothing MOD

    I would like a mod that smooths out the steering input (I use a Rumblepad 2 but it would be applicable to wheels as well) to make GTR2 steering response like LFS response. I have spent years twiddling parameters but at the end of the day it is not possible to replicate the smooth rise and fall of LFS steering input.

    What LFS does (I believe) is collect start and end points of an input then “gently” (small number of points between start and finish position per unit time at first then more per unit time as finish point is approached) send them to the SW that changes the car’s front wheels direction.

    With GTR2 the first (stick or wheel) movement causes a “twitch” which can be reduced by increasing slow bump/rebound, lock, steering linearity, etc. and other parameters but LFS smoothness cannot be achieved.

    This mod could be implemented as a piece of SW like the Logitech game SW that sits between the device and the game.

    I would also like to see a smooth return-to-center (as in LFS) so the car does not “snap” back and overshoot center, another problem with GTR2. (Same approach but from finish position to star position.)

    I know GTR2 will never have the feeling of being connected to the road that LFS has but the steering input smoother (which by the way does not have to be specific to GTR2 if it sits between the device and the game) would be a big help. It should also work for GTR Evo,

    I will pay $50 on completion and believe (hope) there are scores of people out there who would like this and would contribute, to judge from the comments on e.g., NoGrip overt the years.

    1. Interesting idea, that sounds like something they could work on. Question, have you tried a wheel? Do you prefer a controller? I find wheels have effectively perfect 1:1 response no matter the degrees turned or how fast you’re moving the wheel. I’ll definitely add your idea to the list!

      1. I have tried a wheel as well.

        The main issue is that the initial input – whether stick or wheel – makes an instantaneous change in the direction so it’s a game of tradeoffs between controllability and smoothness e.g., low steering lock; low steering response (I set mine at 0); higher values for steering speed sensitivity; high values for slow bump/rebound; high rear wing value; etc. all of which reduce performance and make the car’s handling somewhat mushy and nonlinear.

        Just a couple of minutes with LFS shows how bad the GTR2/EVO/SimBin steering input algorithms are.

        The LFS steering is smooth, progressive, and returns to center smoothly as well with none of the SimBin jerkiness that can lead to overcorrection and flip flopping. I’ve driven many real miles in many real cars and LFS feels like a real car’s steering.

        (The LFS physics are much more realistic/smooth as well but that’s not the issue here though an LFS physics mod for GTR2/SimBin would be fantastic and I’d pay $50 for that as well.)

        Thanks for including it in the Bounty list.

        1. Ah, this sounds like the exagerated “FFB steer force output max” PLR that default cars and even mods seem to stick to. Have you tried tuning that? What it does is give stronger wheel weight to the steering forces so it can feel like the wheel is pushing against you or pulling back to center faster than it should be. It also overwhelms road feel, causing soft-clipping in-game so you can’t feel the road bumps as much as you should. I’d recommend tuning that lower and seeing how it feels for you.

          1. I have tried modding various .PLR tuning parameters with both a wheel and the Rumblepad 2 (I rarely use FFB with the RP2 and when I do I use it only to give a little “push back” to reduce the initial input “twitch”.) I also lengthened the RP2 steering stick so it gives longer linear distance for each change of degree/minute of arc. This helps but does not eliminate the initial twitch.

            As I indicated what I am looking for in GTR2/Evo is the smooth, progressive feel of the LFS steering (again, setting aside the much better LFS “real feel” physics even with my RP2) which, right out of the box without any controller tuning, is twitchless and like steering an actual car with good algorithms for feeding in initial and subsequent input on direction changes.

            Thanks for adding this to the Bounty list.

            1. Hmph, it’s funny, I’m really trying to ‘feel’ what you’re saying about the twitch but I just don’t experience it in GTR2. I compare with iRacing or Automobilista and GTR2 feels quite the same… Think you could take a video? I might be able to help if I understood the symptoms better. There’s a lot of PLR parameters to look at from my experience and I’m sure one of them must be able to help.

              1. Thanks for the note.

                Please try comparing it to LFS.

                As I indicated, I have tried many (many many many) mods of parameters and combos of them in the game and in the PLR.

                It is possible to eliminate much of the initial “twitch” with in-game settings of controller params and car params e.g., slow bump/rebound but always at the sacrifice of directness of control.

                In LFS, right out of the box with no controller or car param mods, there is a smooth, progressive, quite forgiving feed-in of direction change – and return to center.

                That’s what most cars I have driven in real life are like and that’s what I am looking for.

                Of course I can control the car well in GTR2 after so much practice but unless the steering response is numbed down to prevent inadvertent “twitches”, too much of my attention is used controlling the “Now” as opposed to being devoted to “Where I Am Going”.and “Who’s Nearby”.

                Not so in LFS.

                Thanks again.

                PS An idea: crank the Lock WAY up in both GTR2 and LFS and compare what happens…

                1. I think I get it when you describe it like “In LFS, right out of the box with no controller or car param mods, there is a smooth, progressive, quite forgiving feed-in of direction change – and return to center.” In GTR2 the default ‘feed in/out’ is quite abrupt. Like, when you lose grip, by default the wheel weight decreases way too sharply to be realistic and when you gain grip it increases the wheel weight way too quickly. Is that the same thing you’re experiencing? Because I’ve definitely experienced that.

                  I will try out LFS one day when I get some spare time :)

                  1. Thanks for the comments.

                    Yes, it is the GTR2 “abruptness” which is, in my experience with real cars (and LFS), unrealistic and disconcerting and what fiddling with e.g., slow bump/rebound and steering response etc. can offset but – as I noted – at the cost of control and realism.

                    LFS’s smooth feed in/out (a good way to put it by the way) is a big part of the feel I am looking for. My understanding is that the LFS tire model is also different and probably helps give me a feeling of being connected to the road even with my USB RP2 and FFB off, which I don’t get with GTR2 even with a wheel and FFB;

                    As I said in my first comment, it would also be great to have the LFS handling dynamics but it would be unrealistic to try to do a mod with the GTR2/Evo game engine.

                    But smoothing out the steering feed in/out seems achievable by e.g., intercepting the controller inputs (like the Logitech Gaming SW does) and then doing some smoothing out of, say, the first 15% or 20% of the range the controller was moved both on direction change and return to center.

                    Thanks again.

      1. Doh!
        Then I ask tyou, as a gentleman and a scholar, do any of the Race 07 games have joypad rumble?
        If not, what game would you recommend for joypad play?
        Automobilista is a bit twitchy, as is Assetto Corsa. Project Cars 2 works pretty well, but I can’t get high enough Anti Aliasing settings for my liking – the same story with F1 2017.
        Dirt 4 and Need for speed shift are great with controller.
        Shift 2 unleashed would be good but unfortunately the physics are odd, and with the ptmu mod installed, I get massive under-steer with a controller.
        In short, do you recommend any controller friendly but not too arcadey racing games? Thanks

        Great Blogs by the way. I will check out your Automobilista one !

  3. Hi, fantastic blog, thanks for putting in so much effort and sharing in such a great informative way.

    Just one note though, the link to download the .PLR file for the “All Cars (baseline)” in the FFB section is pointing to the notes file, not the PLR file. I could still get to the PLR file by modifying the URL, but just thought I’d let you know so you can fix the link.

    Cheers.

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