Monday, June 22, 2009

Real Racing Online Leagues

Leagues are probably the trickiest to understand, yet possibly the most exciting and rewarding component of Real Racing. They serve as a kind of massively multiplayer racing career meta game (or MMRCM!! ;) that we hope will add immensely to Real Racing's replay value.

So, what are Leagues?

Leagues are like playing out a real racing career against real people. You can join leagues on the Cloudcell site, and you can play in many leagues at once (see http://realracing.cloudcell.com/League.php) Each league can contain all the people playing Real Racing worldwide. If you sync with Cloudcell you will automatically be entered into the default league, but the other leagues will have varying size populations. Drivers compete in groups of 20 at a time.

Leagues are limited in time, with a season consisting of a group of races that must be completed by a set date or time. Once all races have been completed the season is over, and the next one begins after a brief rest period. You get points in a race if you place well, and at the end of a season the driver with the most points wins (points also determine who moves up and down between divisions - more about that later!)

You can complete each race in the season whenever you like (within the allowed timeframe) and you can continue to retry for a good result until the deadline is reached and the best time you have synced is automatically locked in. At the end of the race when you sync your result, you will see your own time as well as all other drivers in your group. You can also watch a TV footage-style replay from anyone else in your group right on your device.


Real Time vs Asynchronous Leagues


Our leagues are designed to support different modes of play and evolved out of the ways we have been playing the game in the studio.

- Real time leagues are fast paced, with perhaps 10 minutes to submit your best lap time for each track. These leagues are the most exciting when the submission time is ticking down and you frantically start another lap, hoping to finish and submit it before the round ends. See the Eldhert League for an example: http://realracing.cloudcell.com/League.php?nId=7 These leagues lead to intense 10 minute ranking competitions, as you can see what your opponents are doing. It feels a lot like real time multiplayer, except that you're racing against 20 people at once.

- Asynchronous leagues consist of multiple lap races and give you much longer to submit your best time. You can race in these leagues when you are not connected and submit your results next time you have a data connection. See the Brennstoff League for an example: http://realracing.cloudcell.com/League.php?nId=6


Divisions


To allow for potentially large numbers of competitors, leagues have a tree structure. Within a division, drivers are initially randomly assigned to a group of 20 people from around the world. Each group has a "parent" group in the next division up, and two "child" groups in the next division down (so there is 1 group in the first division, 2 in the second, 4 in the third, 8 in the fourth and so on). At the end of each season, the top 4 drivers in each group move up into the parent group, and the bottom 8 move down into the two child groups (4 into each). People in higher divisions have earnt their position, so the competition toughens up the higher you get, with Division 1 being the toughest. The groups within each division (AA, AB, AC etc) do not indicate any rank - that is, AA is not better than AB - they are simply different groups at the same level.

League position earns a driver CR, Real Racing's "ranking currency" - the more CR you have, the higher you are in the global driver ranking. The more leagues you play in and the higher you finish in them the more CR you earn. A 10 minute league can see you play a championship in 40 minutes, and you could work your way up to worldwide number 1 within a few hours. However when you leave it for a while, you will slowly lose your league position and your global ranking. This way the competitions will stay fresh. The longer leagues are more ongoing and you can maintain your position with just a small time commitment. Use these to build up your Rank.

Hopefully this has been a good introduction to leagues, look out for a post with more details on CR coming soon!

7 comments:

  1. Very useful information! Thanks a lot. Btw, I'm officially addicted to this game :)

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  2. This is very helpfull.
    I really hope you guys at firemint are looking into implementing push notifications for challenges. Then, I could challenge a friend and play them in an online race.

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  3. It's still not clear to me how to join a new league. The game says a new league has been added to my calendar but I don't see anything in the league section, even after syncing. On the cloudcell site, I don't see anything on the league page about joining, only results and ranking. I do see my division and so on changing in the two default leagues. Am I missing something?

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  4. Is there something that you can do (in future) against cheaters? As a racer that pushes to get a fastest lap time 'within fair boundaries', it's annoying to see people who 'achieve' unrealistic fast laptimes...
    For example:
    http://realracing.cloudcell.com/League.php?nId=2&nSeason=8&nDivision=2&nTrack=1

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  5. Like the use of the word "earnt" in the sentence "higher divisions have earnt their position". Speaks to how busy you all are getting the word out to your user community. Nice and clear description of something that was totally confusing to me - leagues and divisions.

    It's especially cool to see my world-wide ranking in the low 100's, making me think I'm accomplished at something finally - now that I understand leagues, it is still cool, just easier to get.

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