NASRAC FAQ - FREE NASCAR GAME, ONLINE NASCAR GAME
What is the game about?
NASRAC is strictly a stock car racing manager game. The idea is 7 laps of practice to fine tune 11 components on the race car between 0-99. Each lap the system tells you more or less for each component as you try to zero in on the setup. Once practice is done you make your run for pole in Qualifying. After that you can make your final tweaks to race strategy, pit strategy etc. Then nightly I will run a batch process that runs the race simulation lap by lap based on all the drivers settings. Then the driver/user can either look at how they did lap by lap or go check out the final results of the race, where they are assigned the points and bonus points. You will also see how you stand in the chase for the cup, the overall standings with gains and losses like the standard NASCAR standings.
The great thing about my game is most games in this genre only allow you to race or prepare for one race at a time but with mine I'm allowing the flexibility for the driver to prepare for up to 6 races in the future, so you don't have the burden of coming back everyday. I think the normally player would setup for maybe a couple races and come back the next day and see how they did. Practice, Qualifying and Race Strategy only takes about 5 minutes per race, so it's a nice amount time to see real results. I've played lots on online driving games and they are great and Nasrac will not replace them. However, I will provide a way to have some fun and complete a whole 36 race season in 6 weeks.
How does the race strategy adjustment setting work?
The idea behind the race strategy adjustment within your race strategy screen is this. You have your setup at the beginning of the race and that will carry you thru the first 1/4 of the race. Then the car condition or track conditions start to change and your car gets loose so you start losing time - then you and your crew chief start making modifications to correct the changing conditions. So what the strategy setting does is change the performance of the car from 1/4, 1/2 and 3/4 race lengths.
So lets have an example.
behind the scenes in the database I have a code for each race which is the perfect 'target' strategy setting. It's ONE number, lets say 37.
Now you go and select your strategy setting (say):
1/4 - 1/2 Race - 32
1/2 - 3/4 Race - 55
3/4 - Finish - 73
Now what happens is this, your lap time and performance 'rating' for the first quarter of the race is tied to your qualifying session.
Now at the 1/4 mark you performance can change based upon how close you are to the 'target number'. In this case you picked 32 which is very close to 37 and chances are your performance 'rating' would improve for the next quarter of the race. Just like you and your crew chief found the magic bullet.
At the 1/2 way mark I do another check - your 55 against the target of 37 - a bigger gap and lap times may start to drop. Just like the sun has dropped and the car is loose in the corners again.
At the 3/4 mark your number is 73 vs the target of 37 - quite a big gap and performance should drop even more.
The key is if you have a perfect setup it doesn't mean you will have a perfect race and this isn't F1 where quali is so critical and gives you the needed track position. The car will change as the race goes on and I want the users to think about a good strategy to increase their performance. Should you stick with 50-50-50 and run a pretty safe race, but wait maybe the target is 25 and you are actually hurting yourself for 3/4 of the race. Maybe you could use a strategy like 25-50-75 and know at least one of the quarters is going to be locked in and fast. It's just another variable that plays out race and helps change your rating during the race.
Explanation of Race Adjustments (8/27/08)
Let me explain. There is one main target adjustment value per race. Tonight the value was 62. Basically if you are within 15 points 47-77 (a 30 point range) your car will improve at that part of the race. Yes it's that dramatic at lap 50, 100, 150 you become a hair faster - consider it the sun went behind the cloud :) But this opens up a ton of new ideas for pitting. Like when pitting you can make adjustments to improve your car but slow you down a bit...interesting decisions, I'll work those out later.
Now if you were outside the range of 47-77 your race rating drops a little. Everything is linear right now except if you nail the setting exactly and you get a bonus for that part of the race. Also I have a cap on how crappy or great it can make the car - if you selected 62-62-62 I'm not moving your rating from 100 to 99 to 98 to 97 where you are 3% faster than everyone else. Rather I have caps and floors...
Practice Session - How to use the new Good and Almost (9/28/08)
1st - You will go into Practice, say you pick 50 and Run Lap - what happens?- well now random targets are generated for your driving profile for all 11 components. No more cheating and allows mulitple accounts if you want more than one account.
2nd - lets say the target is 75, the feedback will say more - and target is 50-99 - it will never say ??
3rd - you select 68, the feedback may come back with Good - this means you are within 25 points and the range used to be 50-99 but no more it is now 54-80!!! Since you got close it narrowed your range down. If it doesn't return Good it will give you the standard more or less.
4th - you select 77, the feedback should (high probability) come back as Almost - this means you are very close to the target and the new range is 73-80!!!
Now here is the catch - you may have a nice range to choose from but you have to realize a small chance of any good feedback like more or less in this area is very hard. So you will need to be patient look at the numbers selected and if you get it Perfect I will always tell you.
Summary - the closer you get to the target the sooner the driver will tell you and the harder it will be to tune those last few numbers. Within 12 you are Good, Within about 5 you are Almost. these may be tweaked...NOTE - I have also narrowed the lap times down to account for the 'Fine Tuning' of the car. So now you first lap with all 50s may only be 1-2 seconds off the lap target, instead of 15 or more seconds. This accounts for the everyone is coming in with a solid setup and you are just tweaking the car to your driving style.
Random Settings (3/28/09)
Every racer comes to the track knowing the general setup of the car. The practice session just helps you fine tune the race car. It is not intended to be a high engine setting for all superspeedways. Let's just say Season 1 started that way and ended with a ton of cheating and sharing settings. NASRAC is a thinking mans game, If I go aggressive on my tires, say 80, and everyone else stays at 50, I get a chance to go faster but stay out for a shorter run. If everyone used 80 as their setting then I lost my advantage of faster lap times. The same holds true for fuel and risk settings. The strategy screen is where all the thinking needs to happen.