According to professional pilots, Gran Turismo 7 is not a real simulation

At a time when racing games pride themselves on being real simulators, we interviewed some real racers, fans of virtual circuits. Training, learning, driving fun, they enjoy spending time behind a screen to practice their profession, but are not necessarily drawn to the same titles as the general public and don’t necessarily have sweet words for Gran Turismo 7, F1 or Forza Motorsport.

Racing games for Xbox and PlayStation consoles

The real driving simulator! Since the PS1 era, the Gran Turismo series has prided itself on being the true racing simulator. With the power of PlayStation consoles, both the physics engine and controls have greatly improved over the years, incorporating many parameters of reality and offering more advanced driving compatibility than ever before. And all this while retaining a driver assistance system in order not to lose its main target group: the general public.

Therefore, titles like Gran Turismo 7, Forza Motorsport 7 or even F1 22 today have to make the big difference between an audience of beginners playing with the controller, sometimes young players discovering practice, and more experienced amateurs playing with a pedal and are equipped with a steering wheel. And from This needs to attract a wider range of playersLetting them play together in a multiplayer game inevitably leads to some compromises both in the rules of the race and in the very demands of the training, which is control of one’s vehicle.

Simulators for real pilots with Assetto Corsa Competizione

At the same time, however, more advanced simulations, more rigorous in terms of physical models, have been able to develop and find an audience of connoisseurs. We can name Assetto Corsa, its Competizione version, but also iRacing, Raceroom, RFactor 2 or even AutoMobilista. Virtual racing enthusiasts, real Sunday drivers and even pros use these titles to learn real circuits, work on their corners and brakes, often behind the wheel of the car they own in reality. The approach is different, the requirements are on a different leveland without having achieved the slightest equivalence between reality and virtual reality, today these games are considered real tools to improve driving in reality.

So we drove to the Circuit Paul Ricard du Castellet on the occasion of the passage of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Ask real professional car drivers in GT3 and GT4 category, about their use of these racing games that allow them to make a difference on the real circuit for once. A good opportunity to see their journey, the bridges between simulation and reality, the titles they have used and are using today and finally the equipment they hold in their hands to play or train.

QuickGabi: GT4 driver and streamer on Twitch

According to professional pilots, Gran Turismo 7 is not a real simulation

Gabriela Jilkova is Driver of the ZVO stable Drago Racing Team since the beginning of the year, after a year with Team Zakspeed. She is also a streamer on Twitch under the name QuickGabi. At 26, the true racing pro races a series of circuits across Europe, on routes she often discovers for the first time at the start of the competition weekend. So we asked her how she trains.

We don’t have much time for practice at the weekend, with at best two or three free practice sessions before qualifying. That’s why I train at home on a simulator most of the time before I come. It’s very useful when we need to go to a circuit that we’ve never been to before. Here at Le Castellet, for example, I was able to do hundreds of laps to learn the different corners. And it’s even something I do before a track that I know because it’s still a good workout for sure.

Of course, we wanted to know what games or simulation software she uses:

It depends on the circuits as not all are available everywhere. So I switch from iRacing to Raceroom or Assetto Corsa. I’m always looking for the most realistic game in terms of the track as well as the behavior of the vehicle. Gran Turismo, I used to play it on PS1 when I was in Kindergarten. But no, it’s not a simulator per se. It’s not something that helps you ride better on the track. I sometimes play it with friends using a controller, but I really don’t see it as a prep aid.

Gabriela Jílková plays on a VRS DirectForce base with a Cube Controls wheel and Heusinkveld crankset. You can find it directly
on his Twitch channel
where she regularly broadcasts her races and training sessions in the game, even if she says she is not yet as fast virtually as on the real track. For everyone who is interested in English and not afraid of English, The full-length interview can be found here.

Arthur Rougier: eSports and real racing in GT3

Driver of the Emil Frey Racing team on Lamborghini Huracan GT3 EVO, Arthur Rougier has been mixing virtual and real races since his early days. At this weekend’s Fanatec eSport GT Pro Series event in Le Castellet, Arthur placed 3rd in the Pro class and received 3 bonus points that count towards the GT3 Championship. A specialist in virtual simulations who shares his journey, his relationship with simulators, the sims he uses and the related equipment in this video in French.

First I played Formula 1, so it was more of a game than a simulator, on an entry-level simulator. I started like this when I was 12 years old. And at the same time, I started my athletic career in real life and quickly realized that there was a way to combine the two in a way that was positive in both directions.

So we asked him what he used his simulator for today:

The simulator is already being used to learn new circuits. Today it is a key element for every pilot. It saves a lot of time and even at a track I don’t know I can be three or four laps three tenths of what I’m best at later in the weekend. And that saves the teams a lot of time when the driver is ready quickly and thus optimizes the weekend in the best possible way.

What simulations are used for race preparation?

Depending on the circuit and request. I also do the races in simulation, so I adapt to the championship I’m racing in, like Assetto Corsa Competizione for the GT World Challenge eSport. My favorite game in terms of sensations is maybe iRacing, with the community system to play online, it’s really great. I also drove with RFactor 2 at the Virtual 24 Hours of Le Mans. These are the 3 softwares I use depending on the tracks available.

More accessible games like Gran Turismo, Forza, F1, do you still play these games?

Not at all. I’ve always played F1, a series I like when it wasn’t “serious” to me, when it was fun. I also had Gran Turismo 5 on PS3. And since then I haven’t played it at all. For me it will be more games. In terms of realism, it loses a bit compared to the three platforms I mentioned.

Arthur Rougier trains on an aluminum profile simulator with a large curved screen, Heusinkveld pedal set, Simucube base and Cube Controls steering wheel. If his computer and hardware setup was set up and adjusted quickly with the help of the community, Arthur spends a lot of time adjusting his virtual vehicle. For him, this is one of the essential keys to good times in the race.

Raffaele Marciello: The fastest in eSports like in GT3

According to professional pilots, Gran Turismo 7 is not a real simulation

Raffaele Marciello is the flagship driver of the Akkodis ASP team, current leader of the Fanatec GT World Challenge championship with his Mercedes-AMG GT3. He also won the eSports competition that day by taking first place in the Pro category, earning his team 5 points on top of the 24 points he won in the real race. This simulator specialist started karting in real life at the age of 3 and progressed through F1 teams Ferrari, Sauber as tester and 3rd driver respectively. A quantity that explains its relationship to simulation here.

I started Gran Turismo 1 when I was 3-4 years old. I consider myself a nerd, I love technology, I build my own PCs and although I’m short on time because you need practice to be fast, I’m generally into video games.

When asked about the role simulation plays in his current job, Raffaele speaks much the same as our previous two pilots, except that he doesn’t necessarily need it:

The simulation is now a pleasure because I have the opportunity to drive very often. But it’s a great tool for young drivers not to feel the car but to use the brakes properly and things like that. It’s not a real car, it doesn’t feel like speed, but it’s a good tool to understand the behavior of a car as a whole.

And for the simulations he uses or appreciates, the same references are cited but with a rather different opinion:

In GT3, Assetto Corsa Competizione. I don’t really like the behavior of iRacing in GT3. My pleasure is Assetto Corsa Competizione. I also have a Gran Turismo 7 platform, a Fanatec Podium steering wheel. GT7 is great, it’s a good game to start with, a childhood memory for me that I use for the pleasure of collecting cars. It shouldn’t be taken seriously, but it’s also a very good game with impressive graphics.

For his PC setup Raffaele uses an aluminum cockpit with 4 screens, a PC around the RTX 3090 and a setup based on Simucube. He also has a PS5 setup with Fanatec’s Racing Wheel F1.
You can find his full interview on Youtube
but we warn you, it’s entirely in English with no subtitles.

Assetto Corsa, iRacing, Raceroom, the new simracing champions

Finally, what emerges from these interviews is this specialized vehicle behavior simulation platforms are more useful for professional drivers or amateurs as more open titles like Gran Turismo 7 or Forza Motorsport 7. These, and even the F1 series, are more considered games for those pilots looking for pure realism, found in titles like Assetto Corsa Competizione, iRacing or similar Raceroom , a good tool to work on your knowledge of the track, your braking and even your settings to a lesser extent.

but Each of them admitted to holding bestsellers like Gran Turismo 1 or Formula 1 in their hands because when they were children or still today and enjoyed running or still do. What justifies the compromises these games make for the general public? Can be for beginners, fast racing enthusiasts, car collectors. Certainly less for simracers equipped with a steering wheel and a cockpit, touching the new frontiers offered by with the arrival of Assetto Corsa Competizione on consoles of the latest generation and the many developments of iRacing or Raceroom the most advanced car simulators available for everyone to play now.

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