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How DRIVECLUB Aims to Make Rage-quitting Extinct

Fred Dutton's Avatar + Posted by Fred Dutton on Jun 02, 2014 // SCEE Blog Manager

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We’ve all been there. You’re tearing round the last lap in, say, Gran Turismo or Need For Speed, defending a narrow lead over the chasing pack, when your concentration slips for a second and you find your car buried in a hedge. With the race all but lost and any rewards snatched away, it’s understandable that throwing a quick tantrum and furiously jabbing Options > Quit Race can be an instinctive reaction.

The racing game rage-quit is a real conundrum for designers – not only does it rip you out of the game and compromise your enjoyment, but it also inhibits the integrity of the online multiplayer experience. Duly, it’s an obstacle that Evolution Studios is tackling head on in DRIVECLUB on PS4.

“I like the idea that that you don’t have to be in first place,” explained Game Director Paul Rustchynsky when we stopped by the studio last week. “I want everybody to enjoy the thrill of racing.”

“I play a lot of racing games and I’m a pretty good driver, but I’m not always the guy who’s in first place. I like to have fun and take risks, rather than obsess about perfecting every single corner. The problem for drivers like me, and I think we’re in the majority, is that racing becomes too intense and intimidating when it’s all about winning.

“It’s demoralising when you make a mistake and it costs you the race. With DRIVECLUB we challenged ourselves to design a better game that deals with this aspect of racing. What we’ve come up with is a racer that constantly gives you new goals to aim for, whether you’re way out in front of the pack or find yourself spinning out of control because you pushed your car a little too far.”

As explained in our recent video (see above), finishing first isn’t the be-all-and-end-all in DRIVECLUB. As you race, you’ll be given the option of taking part in smaller challenges on certain sections of the track – maintaining a high average speed, holding a racing line, or pulling off an impressive drift. Put in a good performance and you’ll accrue points for your club and set new markers for friends to try and match.

“In so many racing games there’s that ‘all or nothing’ mentality. One moment you’re in first place, and then suddenly you crash and you’ve lost everything. The preceding few minutes of superb driving count for nothing,” says Rustchynsky.

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“With DRIVECLUB, if you’re racing online and you make a mistake it’s not game over. You don’t lose everything and you’ve still got dynamic Face-offs to keep playing for.

In short, it doesn’t pay to quit from a race in DRIVECLUB. Not only will you lose everything that you’ve already earned, but you’ll also stop contributing to your club as well. It’s always worth finishing the race – you still might record a good run which you can then set as a challenge – and there are then additional rewards tied in to that too.

This core competitive loop might be familiar to anyone who played Evolution’s last title, MotorStorm RC. That game came packed with bite-sized challenges which you could share with friends for bragging rights. And with DRIVECLUB, Evo has taken this idea and run with it.

“We tested an early version of our challenge system in RC,” he states. “It was a lot of fun and we got some great back-and-forth rivalries going between players, but we always found that after a while one of the players would reach their physical limit and the competition would dry up.

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“Even so, we saw players repeat the same challenge hundreds of times in a single day. That surprised us. We didn’t think people would get that hooked. And with DRIVECLUB we’re taking it further and making it easier to compete and have fun.

“In RC there were no rewards off the back of it, other than ‘Ha, I beat you!’ and that was great, but we wanted to make sure we evolved that so there’s a reason to keep jumping into challenges over and above the bragging rights.

“As you improve, there’ll always be someone else out there to chase. This idea that it’s not over when one player puts the pad down, it just works so much better in DRIVECLUB.”

Believe me, he’s not wrong. Even for a gamer like myself who isn’t a dyed-in-the-wool petrolhead, Evo’s PS4 debut is seriously hard to put down. But there’s no need to take my word on face value. If you’ve been staying abreast of recent press of the latest playable build, you’ll know that DRIVECLUB is shaping up rather nicely. We can’t wait for you to check it out for yourself a little later this year.

//Add Your Own

38 Comments

1

+ Zezzler on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:20 am said:

I realize the game isn’t out yet, so this might already be a feature, but you guys should have a photo mode similar to the one found in inFamous Second Son! Looking at these gorgeous screenshots, it makes me want to make my own screenshots, and see what the community can create.

Other than that, I’m insanely excited for Driveclub! I cant wait to get my grubby hands on it.


2

+ Amnalehu on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:31 am said:

I would also love to see a photo mode in DC. Motorstorm is one of my all time favorite games and I am truly looking forward to getting my hands on your next master piece! Keep making it special!


3

+ Bicepsul on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:31 am said:

I subscribe to what Zezzler said.


4

+ Skater_Ricky on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:36 am said:

@Zezzler Agreed, I hope there’s a photo mode in DriveClub. Looking forward to playing this game. Keep up the great work Devs that are working on DriveClub. Your hard work will pay off. The game looks great and the sounds are awesome as well.

Question: Did you make a sound setting for the Headset companion app? I want to rock out with my playstation gold wireless headset and feel the road and hear the roar of the engine in my ears like I’m seating behind the wheel of a car I’ll never sittin in my lifetime because I’ll never own such a great expensive car.


5

+ gutioliveira on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:41 am said:

This game looks awesome, but I would like to know if I will be able to use my g27 on the ps4, it’s pointless playing a great driving game on the controller , it’s no funny at all after you tried playing with a racing wheel.


6

+ AirMaxPenny on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:50 am said:

The more I see on this game, the less I find myself wanting it. I as well have a G27 and would love for Sony to just release a driving game that supports racing fans. This seems to arcade like and with the random challenges getting in the way of racing, not sure this is for me.

Hopefully project cars is realistic and supports a wheel, although I wish a game dev would step up and only allow in car cockpit views to force racers to race. I know making a wheel mandatory won’t happen on console, but supporting one is a must.

Maybe iRacing will come to PS4, that would be great.


7

+ Breaker_Ki on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:55 am said:

In games like Call of Duty, the primary reason for people rage quitting is for them to protect their stats; primarily kill/death ratio. In fact, the one online shooter I had the most fun with was Brink, as it did not track kill/death, and I noticed a lot less RQ. In the case of a racing game, win loss ratio is that stat. Problem is, even if you remove that stat, you still need something to show how good people are at the game. So a win/loss stat is inevitable; however, you can probably do it in a better way. Perhaps Driveclub already does this, but instead of this stat, provide players with a histogram of their placing, and have it filterable by track and car.


8

+ SynthR on June 2nd, 2014 at 7:25 am said:

There are quite a few issues surrounding multiplayer in racing games that I hope are addressed this generation, but none are more prevalent, in my opinion, than the issues surrounding collisions. Since most people A) can’t drive or B) purposely slam opponents into walls or off the track, an entire race can be decide within the first 30 seconds as everyone flies full speed into the first corner, smashing everyone in their path. I set myself up to take the corner and all of a sudden I’m fishtailing out of control into last place from a nudge.

Almost every racing game suffers from this issue. I like a clean race with mutual paint trading, but when someone places first simply because they escaped the opening pile up, that’s not racing – that’s a roll of the die. Codemasters has tried to curb this behaviour, but the matchmaking system didn’t work quite like it should have. I race with an online gaming community (http://www.gametalkalliance.com/GTA/index.php), so we have the opportunity to fill out a private match lobby with self-imposed rules, but we need fresh faces.


9

+ ossiecastro5 on June 2nd, 2014 at 7:37 am said:

Will there be anything against those that ragequit? Some people may consider winning to be more of priority than challenges. Other than that question, I look forward to Driveclub. :)


10

+ Harerazer on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:27 am said:

“We’ve all been there. …” No, we haven’t. That’s the move of a punk ass loser and just because you are one don’t presume that the majority of game players have no integrity like you. You disgust me, honestly.


11

+ V8_R3L3NTL3SS_1 on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:31 am said:

Gotta remember people this is the same company that bombed the motorstorm franchise with appocolypse . I don’t have high hopes with evolution anymore, I will try the p!us version 1st and if I like go for the full version but with there delay they have 2 more racers to deal with within a month of release. The Crew 9/30 and projectCARS slated for November.


12

+ smoothboarder540 on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:31 am said:

Man, I hate it when games start catering to unskilled players. This mentality that a person can settle for second or third is ridiculous and soft. Without that pressure to win a race, a person’s ability to improve is diminished greatly. Not to mention that the fun is taken out of the game when there is hardly any risk. Obviously, this is an attempt to attract casual gamers and will probably sell more copies, but skilled players don’t like it. Just make sure that the rewards for winning races are significant enough to offset this garbage attempting to make people feel better for losing.


13

+ smoothboarder540 on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:34 am said:

I do appreciate the effort to combat ragequiting and I hope the game sells well. There isn’t really any chance of selling well at launch, but if people like it they’ll buy it in time.


14

+ ChaseHammerJ on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:38 am said:

I would say to stop “rage quit” would be to provide points/rewards for say leading most laps, lap times, most overtakes/passes, best progression (position changes). Or if you quit during an online race that the AI would take over and drive you to the finish line (not aggressive enough to overtake someone obviously) to make it so the other people get the race completion. Wait there you go have points for race completion and point loss for not finishing a race where lets so you get so many disconnection/non finishes to not allow you to play online for an amount of time.

Im sure there will be whiners about this but there will be no matter what is put in place, have to just do what is the most fair for every player. Cant wait for Driveclub to finally be released.


15

+ cool_trainer on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:51 am said:

I love your videos.


16

+ crossrds on June 2nd, 2014 at 9:25 am said:

I have alway strived to never quit during a race, pushing hard is racing. Sometimes you get passed I always try to use that as a learning experience. Follow the guys line and braking points. If you like racing games you should watch Racing on tv. A lot of the road courses are used in games. DC is making this a social game. Meaning you will have friends that will help you through a struggle and you help them. This game is going to change the way racers race. If you don’t need to keep track of stats, or just don’t care. You will enjoy your gaming experience.


17

+ Thwip on June 2nd, 2014 at 9:42 am said:

Even the flattest pancake has two sides. I get where @10 smoothboarder540 is coming from with his comment about “catering to unskilled players”. I get it, even though I am likely one of those unskilled players, who always finds a way to crash on the final lap.

I’m not a rage quitter, but I personally like the incentives you’ve developed to help prevent rage quitting. They will hopefully maintain the fun of the race, even after I’ve managed to find a way to blow the win. But I worry that rage quitting will still happen. Perhaps an opposite effect could happen for those who rage quit? Maybe all of the points you’ve accrued during the race are subtracted from your score/club, if you quit?


18

+ SeanStrange on June 2nd, 2014 at 9:55 am said:

My most anticipated game for the PS3 can’t sound any better than this! Really excited to get my hands on it upon release.


19

+ yowzagabowza on June 2nd, 2014 at 11:09 am said:

Just give the quitter a loss, take him out of the game, and let the rest finish. How is that hard?


20

+ Thunder-Pegasus- on June 2nd, 2014 at 11:57 am said:

Nice…


21

+ Dionysus-Jones on June 2nd, 2014 at 12:03 pm said:

@8:

Uh-Oh… Someone needs a snuggle and a hug!


22

+ AizawaYuuichi on June 2nd, 2014 at 12:33 pm said:

@ smoothboarder540: You do realize that rage-quitters are usually the most competitive, and possibly even some of the “more skilled” players of a game, not the “unskilled” players, right? Unskilled players aren’t going to be in first place to begin with, let alone having the chance to lose the race because of one crash. They’re going to be the ones in last place, just having fun driving around a track in a beautiful game. The rage-quitters are the skilled players who take s**t too seriously and instantly jump out of a losing situation, in an attempt to keep it from affecting their W/L ratio. This move isn’t for the unskilled players. It’s for the players with no manners and a lack of sportsmanship. It’s an excellent idea, but still a flawed one. As long as they leave in the ability to quit during an online race, rage-quitters will rage-quit. The only way to prevent it is to remove the option, like Watch_Dogs does when you’re being invaded. They literally removed the option to “Quit to Menu” when someone has invaded your game, so you have to see it through to completion and can’t screw over the other player. THAT’S how you deal with rage-quitting.


23

+ tusunami on June 2nd, 2014 at 12:51 pm said:

This is a good idea that with these next gen games for multiplayer developers need to improve upon because rage quitting damages the community and people that quit need to have a significant penalty against them for there actions.


24

+ MarinoBrea on June 2nd, 2014 at 1:01 pm said:

Wouldn’t it be best to have CLUB PENALTIES? If you quit you hurt your team and they kick you out. Also each mid-race quit should earn people “bad fame” or whatever the system has in place for negative points, that way everyone knows you’re a raging sore loser quitter.


25

+ impidoo on June 2nd, 2014 at 1:31 pm said:

Question, what happens if you don’t have a camera to take that photo thing of yourself? Can you use your FB or Display Pic you currently use on your PS4?


26

+ nick102789 on June 2nd, 2014 at 2:12 pm said:

I really hope sony keeps its word when they announced that they are giveing driveclub game free on launch day for ps plus members. This is one of the reasons i picked up ps4 on launch. Come on every body lets let this be known every body comment and write if you remember sony saying this promise and i relly hope sony keeps its word……..


27

+ Lynwood420 on June 2nd, 2014 at 2:39 pm said:

MarinoBrea idea sounds nice


28

+ SourDiesel187 on June 2nd, 2014 at 2:41 pm said:

@20 ragequitters are usually the guys who think they are good but are literally afraid of good or better competition. In online games people that ragequit are usually just their for stats. Ragequiting should come with a consequence, like lose xp for next hour. The punishment should fit the action, you dont care about xp fine no xp for an hour. The funniest ragequitters are in fps because when they are winning with shoddy startegy like camping. Then they run into people that flank and arent campers, suddenly everyone is a cheater or the perfectly fine lobby is unplayable due to lag. Lol . Ragequiting is sadly not going anywhere


29

+ SynthR on June 2nd, 2014 at 3:30 pm said:

There are quite a few issues surrounding multiplayer in racing games that I hope are addressed this generation, but none are more prevalent, in my opinion, than the issues surrounding collisions. Since most people A) can’t drive or B) purposely slam opponents into walls or off the track, an entire race can be decide within the first 30 seconds as everyone flies full speed into the first corner, smashing everyone in their path. I set myself up to take the corner and all of a sudden I’m fishtailing out of control into last place from a nudge.

Almost every racing game suffers from this issue. I like a clean race with mutual paint trading, but when someone places first simply because they escaped the opening pile up, that’s not racing – that’s a roll of the die. Codemasters has tried to curb this behaviour, but the matchmaking system didn’t work quite like it should have. I race with an online gaming community, so we have the opportunity to fill out a private match lobby with self-imposed rules, but we need fresh faces.


30

+ yowzagabowza on June 2nd, 2014 at 3:57 pm said:

@27 i totally agree. I would like all other cars to just be ghosts.


31

+ Left4DeadJojo on June 2nd, 2014 at 4:23 pm said:

What happens if your game freezes up during a race?


32

+ Elvick_ on June 2nd, 2014 at 5:13 pm said:

Photo Mode please!

@27: I would love not being hit by other players. I have a tough enough time taking corners in racing games without being sideswiped and rammed from the rear all the time.


33

+ SDkngsht on June 2nd, 2014 at 5:42 pm said:

this is awesome! now they could only find an answer for people with horrible internet connections that lag online and then share it with 2k and EA so we can fix rage quitting and lag in NBA 2k and Madden.

THEN this world would be almost perfect.


34

+ AizawaYuuichi on June 3rd, 2014 at 12:57 am said:

@ SourDiesel187: I will totally agree with you when it comes to any kind of shooter, be it first- or third-… but racing games are an entirely different matter, a racing game is the specific subject of this article, and rage-quitting from racing games was the specific subject of my post. You can’t camp for stats in a racing game. If you don’t drive, you don’t win, you get only loss stats. So my point still stands, though I admit, ONLY for racing games. But… that’s the entire reason for the existence of this blog post.

However, removing the option to even quit when actively online would be a start. Obviously someone could shut off their system or yank out their ethernet cable, but that’s a bit more involved. And one of the main reasons that it’s hard to penalize someone for “rage-quitting” is because the online game servers can’t tell when someone is rage-quitting versus their internet cutting out. Unless they actually select the “quit race” option or something, which should definitely carry a penalty of some sort.
But it’s a fine line between penalizing cheaters/rage-quitters, and penalizing those players AND having players with unreliable internet getting caught in the crossfire.


35

+ CommandingTiger on June 3rd, 2014 at 6:16 am said:

Can we get the option to have the game at an unlocked frame rate?
I prefer playing a game that way.


36

+ Naberios on June 3rd, 2014 at 8:07 am said:

@20 Most of what you said is dead-on, but the part about just removing the “quit to menu” option would barely slow down the bad sports who drop out of online matches. They can still press the PS button and close the game out, then start the game back up.


37

+ Briarios on June 3rd, 2014 at 8:30 am said:

@10 you’re looking at this the wrong way. The individual challenges in a race help people become more skilled without realizing it. As they learn to corner, drift, and break better trying to improve on challenges, they’ll become more skilled at the entirety of races. It’s not about dumbing down games for the less skilled — it’s about giving a path to improvement while keeping everyone involved.

Furthermore, the game is about contributing to your club. Being part if a club, should be about having fun – not simply winning, so allowing everyone of all skill levels to contribute via skill improvement opens clubs up to everyone – I think it’s a great way to get more involvement.


38

+ Malfury on June 3rd, 2014 at 12:13 pm said:

I guess it’s Assetto Corsa and iRacing for me until Gran Turismo get’s their act together. Give us driving/racing enthusiasts what we want already! They already know, and there’s so many hardcore and good racing sims out today that the likes of Forza and Gran Turismo devs can barely hold a candle to right now.


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