Is rFactor 2 user friendly yet?

I’ll likely set up a proper clod blog for these posts at some point, but for now, I’m going to keep posting these here.

As autumn starts to grip the UK, so I begin to eye my sim rig again. It may be a terrible day outside (and it really is, dear reader) but once I squeeze my enormous skull inside a VR headset – which BTW sells the illusion of a racing helmet really rather well – or even just settle for pancake vision on my 49” telly… well… it can be a glorious day for going for a drive.

So I decided to mix things up a bit from my current Assetto Corsa Competizione habit – I’m training for an endurance race coming up next month, stay tuned for the diary video – and revisit rFactor 2.

Now rFactor 2, in my experience is an amazing sim, it’s just that it requires IT qualifications to get running. After WRC 9 hooked me into sim racing in March 2020, the beginning of lockdown, it was rFactor 2 that kept me there. It was rFactor 2 that started the rapid onset of gear envy and purchases of fake driving gear that cost me well in excess of the price of my first car, an old Mini.

The feedback you get though a force feedback wheel, the physics, and the AI all blew my mind at the time. I know people get tribal about this stuff and have a loyalty to certain sims and I have no interest in that if I’m honest. I think we’re closing in on a universal experience across sims as they get closer and closer to reality. The things that people get irate about with other people’s chosen sims are relatively minor compared to the days of GTR 2 and LFS. All I know is that I feel like I’m in a car with rFactor 2 racing real drivers. At that point I’d never experienced anything close, although now, I’ve driven most of the big ones, and honestly, really like them all.

BUT, getting set up, understanding the interface and navigating your way into an actual race was maddening. It was obtuse, not user friendly and required a ton of research to get working.

In this video, I wanted to see if the recent updates including a much vaunted new UI had improved things much. If you want to see the answer, it’s right up there. Just click on it. Go on…

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