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The penalty system has to be reimagined

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I was just watching the F1 Virtual GP with some of the best sim racers and some F1 drivers, top level, and guess what. From the 17 drivers completing the 50% race on Áustria, 16 had a time penalty because of cutting corners, with Nicolas Latifi getting more than 20 seconds on penalties alone. This is ridiculous, it's almost like track position doesn't matter anymore, just the sum of your penalties.

I always found strict rules to be far too punishing, but I thought it was me, and the best drivers would be able to deal with it. Well, clearly not.

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They seem to have it so 'relaxed' or whatever they call it is probably realistic, but it doesn't punish big offences, cutting corners, chicanes enough so they have to use strict for online to prevent that instead of tweaking it. 

I feel like it's been the same since 2012 tbh. 

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So no option is good. It's a problem then.

Why not relax the strict option a bit?

I'm not sure of what could be a perfect fix, but it's clear the current system for online is just bad. It shouldn't be kept like that.

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Guest Bicarda

The penalty system needs redoing AND we need to be able to determine WHICH THINGS the game can penalize. 

For example. If race stewards are in charge of penalizing contact between drivers then it makes no sense to have the game give stupid 5 second time penalties to the wrong person that we can't even revoke at the end of the race because it got served in the pitstop. 

So i think 
-false starts
-driver contact
-Corner cuts
-Pitstop speed limit
-Illegal overtakes (Under sc or off track)
-Safety car speed limit
-driving the wrong way
-Blocking another driver in quali
-Ignoring blue flags


Should all be able to be turned off and on independently and at will depending on a drivers(sp)/leagues(mp) wishes. And maybe even options to set the penalties for certain offenses. 

In addition, I would say that the corner cutting system as is is near perfect, but a very simple change can make it work a lot better.
I'm very happy a big cut in this game usually results in an immediate penalty. (i'd say stick with the 3 seconds where the game sometimes does 5 tho) and a smaller cut results in a warning. I think this is fair and needs no change. 

The thing that grinds a lot of peoples gears though is the way the game deals with going wide on exits. Often this has you lose time (although maybe a bit later down the straight due to a bad exit) And  the game still gives you a warning in the way that actual f1 drivers would NEVER be penalized for such. 

I think a good fix would be to change it so the warnings count for a specific corner only. So no longer will you get a penalty for going a tiny bit wide on 3 separate corners 8 laps apart from each other. But only if you make the same offense in the same corner 3 times. I think in the actual f1 they give you the 'last warning' AFTER you've done it 3 times so it's still a tiny bit more strict. But there as well it only goes for repeated offenses at the same corner. Maybe corner cuts can count across the whole track (3 cuts in whatever corner is a penalty) but going wide should be penalized way less than is the case now, and in my opinion, only repeat offenses at the same corner should be penalized.

This, together with the possibility to turn those silly (and usually wrongly handed out) contact penalties and blocking penalties off,  would make the penalty system a lot less frustrating for whoever tries to play this game online.  And it's frankly long overdue that some work gets put into it. 
 

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You should only receive a penalty or warning from the game if all 4 wheels cross the visible white line.

You can have laps deleted on this game for running 1 tyre on certain curbs in quali, whilst all 4 wheels are still well within bounds of the white line.

In f1 they cut corners massively and use the run offs to their advantage, the game restricts you from exploring the full width of the track. 

Regular is too lenient, strict is too strict. There should be a "Realistic" setting that allows you to drive the tracks the same way real F1 drivers do.

  • Agree 1

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Guest Bicarda
1 hour ago, zZ A M P Aa said:

You should only receive a penalty or warning from the game if all 4 wheels cross the visible white line.

You can have laps deleted on this game for running 1 tyre on certain curbs in quali, whilst all 4 wheels are still well within bounds of the white line.

In f1 they cut corners massively and use the run offs to their advantage, the game restricts you from exploring the full width of the track. 

Regular is too lenient, strict is too strict. There should be a "Realistic" setting that allows you to drive the tracks the same way real F1 drivers do.

Strict is fine in my opinion. At a certain point you just have to color within the lines. And anything else will be very easy to game or abuse.
Corner cuts should also always be penalized because even when it's a mistake it's just cheating. shortening the track. 

In my experience the game is very fair with invalitating laptimes and 99,99% of the time when you get the warning you were off track. 
It's just the fact that you get warnings for going wide on exit, even when you lose time in the end, and it's on 3 different corners. 

A part of the problem seems to be that the game only checks if you gained time while being off track. And while that might be true (You were a bit too fast to make the corner) it doesn't have to be true in the long run and you might still lose time before the straight is done. So a solution could be to give the game more time to determine if a track extension actually gained you time. 

In addition to letting those going wide warnings only count for a specific corner and not add up with way worse things like actually cutting the track short.

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Strict is fine once you learn the tracks and what you can and cant do, but there are some tracks where one wheel on the curb will inval your lap.

Sector 2 spain, first/last corner Austria, Sector 3 Australia, Sector 1 Russia/Bahrain etc.

It should be 4 wheels over the white line, I think the limits on 19 were a bit fairer.

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Guest Bicarda

If the kerb is behind the line then you cant get on the kerb with your inside tires.. 

Must say i think this game is extremely fair usually. always when i think i was still on track the replay proves me wrong. it's sometimes very hard to see from cockpit or even t-cam

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Everyone has the same track limits. Learn/practice where they are and don't exceed them.

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I just think increasing warning to pen ratio would be ideal unless its an obvious cut to gain advantage. Alot of the time in the game you lose time and still get a pen. I think to simply increase the warning limit to 5 is a good compromise

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As for the "corner cutting" aka track limits - i really think the 2 available options strict and easy are not the best solution. Example given, you are driving a race in the rain, nearly loose your car and going slow suddenly during a corner section, you actually run a high risk the "good" AI will be bumping into your car. Suddenly you'll find yourself exceeding a track limit, and in addition to your time lost, you will also receive the penalty. This is a) not fun (we are still talking about a game that is supposed to be fun, are we not) and b) not really realistic in terms of what would happen in a real grand prix. To improve on this, I have two suggestions which at least one of these should be very easy to implement into the current version of the game:

  • there is a point in a wet race / changing conditions, when stewards disable DRS for safety reasons. Why not couple the enforcement of time penalties for track limit violations to DRS disabling? By the time it is wet enough to have your DRS disabled, you have no chance to gain any time running over curbs or through grass. But it will still happen occasionally because you loose it, and if only so because other cars are bumping into you, or you are trying to avoid them
  • there are points in a dry race, where you are running outside the track because you make a mistake, most of the time you will not gain lap time, but loose some. Why not judge a penalty on the fact if you lost / gained time? When you are braking too late in Austria's turn 3 running too far straight, just catching your car and returning to the track, you have probably lost half a second or more already, there is no need to also enforce a penalty in these situations. Why not wait how your sector time looks in comparison to your previous ones, and enforce a penalty only if you gained time?

That said, one thing that has to be fixed in contest is AI cars bumping into you, because they are going faster than you through certain track passages (Monaco, penultimate corner, anyone?). In RL bumping into someone who is on his ideal line just because you are going faster is dangerous driving and will result in a penalty. However, I have never ever seen the AI receiving penalties for driving this way. On the contrary, if I had spun in practice and yellow flags are out as a result, AI cars will fly along crashing into my car while it is hardly moving, resulting in me receiving a penalty. It should be vice versa - is that so hard / impossible to fix, Codies? Hmm? What I lack here is the absolute will of F1 drivers to avoid contact with other cars at all costs (other than wheel to wheel bumping, maybe). The AI seems rather eager to hit your car, whenever there is a chance - times I have the impression, that this AI has been copied from some old Nascar type of game...

Edited by Schneehase

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On 1/31/2021 at 8:13 PM, Gonira said:

So no option is good. It's a problem then.

Why not relax the strict option a bit?

Because then, by definition, it wouldn't be the strict option.

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On 2/2/2021 at 10:46 AM, Spivey-CJ said:

Everyone has the same track limits. Learn/practice where they are and don't exceed them.

Poor excuse. Just because it's the same for everyone, it doesn't mean this couldn't be improved.

 

On 2/7/2021 at 1:16 PM, scottishwildcat said:

Because then, by definition, it wouldn't be the strict option.

Call it "banana option" then, whatever. It's just a name.

 

On 2/2/2021 at 5:03 PM, Schneehase said:

As for the "corner cutting" aka track limits - i really think the 2 available options strict and easy are not the best solution. Example given, you are driving a race in the rain, nearly loose your car and going slow suddenly during a corner section, you actually run a high risk the "good" AI will be bumping into your car. Suddenly you'll find yourself exceeding a track limit, and in addition to your time lost, you will also receive the penalty. This is a) not fun (we are still talking about a game that is supposed to be fun, are we not) and b) not really realistic in terms of what would happen in a real grand prix. To improve on this, I have two suggestions which at least one of these should be very easy to implement into the current version of the game:

  • there is a point in a wet race / changing conditions, when stewards disable DRS for safety reasons. Why not couple the enforcement of time penalties for track limit violations to DRS disabling? By the time it is wet enough to have your DRS disabled, you have no chance to gain any time running over curbs or through grass. But it will still happen occasionally because you loose it, and if only so because other cars are bumping into you, or you are trying to avoid them
  • there are points in a dry race, where you are running outside the track because you make a mistake, most of the time you will not gain lap time, but loose some. Why not judge a penalty on the fact if you lost / gained time? When you are braking too late in Austria's turn 3 running too far straight, just catching your car and returning to the track, you have probably lost half a second or more already, there is no need to also enforce a penalty in these situations. Why not wait how your sector time looks in comparison to your previous ones, and enforce a penalty only if you gained time?

That said, one thing that has to be fixed in contest is AI cars bumping into you, because they are going faster than you through certain track passages (Monaco, penultimate corner, anyone?). In RL bumping into someone who is on his ideal line just because you are going faster is dangerous driving and will result in a penalty. However, I have never ever seen the AI receiving penalties for driving this way. On the contrary, if I had spun in practice and yellow flags are out as a result, AI cars will fly along crashing into my car while it is hardly moving, resulting in me receiving a penalty. It should be vice versa - is that so hard / impossible to fix, Codies? Hmm? What I lack here is the absolute will of F1 drivers to avoid contact with other cars at all costs (other than wheel to wheel bumping, maybe). The AI seems rather eager to hit your car, whenever there is a chance - times I have the impression, that this AI has been copied from some old Nascar type of game...

You nailed it. Great post, totally agree.

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