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 Controller setup guide

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Car Number : 73
Home Town : Daytona Beach, FL
Join Date : 2013-06-12
Posts : 897

PostSubject: Controller setup guide   Mon 18 May 2015, 8:25 pm

Found on the Project Cars forum:

Quote :
So. You, like me, have had problems with the control setup in this game? As with any problem, we must first eliminate all other possibilities...

1. If using a wireless controller, plug it into the Xbox via USB and check if it requires an update. >settings >system >third box down in the left column will tell you what you need to know. Update controller if required.

2. >My games & apps >Games >Project Cars (Start Button) >Manage game. If your game file size is 18.5 GB, you're good. This means the launch day patch has been applied to the game. If not, I'll see you shortly.

3. This will not fix the counter steering lock bug. If it is a huge issue for you, set your 'Steering Deadzone' to 0. This will provide a temporary fix until the (imminent) patch is released, but be warned, this will hamper stability.

With that out of the way, let's get on to configuring your controller. There is no magic fix. We are all different, we all drive differently, we all use the stick differently. I never let go the stick, forever making micro adjustments, even on the straights. Yet I call my brother 'Clicky' because he constantly taps the stick. All the 'perfect' setups I see around the forums, may be perfect for that person, but hopeless to someone else.

What I aim to do here is narrow down the possible iterations for each person, and give you some advice on how I came about my perfect setup. So let's get cracking...

For the purpose of this guide, I suggest you set your assists to the following (oh yes, you are going to be doing some work yourself):

Steering Assist OFF
Braking Assist OFF
Anti-Lock Brakes ON
Stability Control ON
Traction Control ON

I also suggest you set the field of view (FOV) for your preferred camera. For what it's worth, I prefer the helmet cam with the actual helmet removed and a FOV of 72. This allows some peripheral vision, shows all the dials clearly yet doesn't feel like I'm driving from the back seat!

We'll be testing our changes in Free Practice, which is selectable from the main screen. The track we'll use for testing is Imola. Why? It has 3 chicanes with significantly different braking zones, entry/exit speeds. It has a long pit straight with a gentle curve to it. Uphill/ downhill sections. High kerb sections. Off camber short, it has everything we need to test our set ups. Be sure to set the weather to 'Fixed' and 'Clear'.

Now all we need is a car. We'll be using 3 in total, all untuned. 95% of the work will be done with the BMW 320 Turbo. Why? It's light 1895lbs, powerful 400HP/248ft-lbf, yet balanced 50/50. In short, if your controller works, this car works!

So take it a spin, and see how it goes for you. All 4 tyres should warm up after the first lap (turn from blue to green). Once this happens, the car should be a joy to behold! No? Then we have some more work to do. Once familiar with the car and the track, exit Free Practice and go to the Control Configuration menu.

For the purpose of this guide, first select 'Controller Input Mode 3'. These settings may work on Modes 1&2, but I have not tested this. Also, I shall be ignoring the clutch for now.

Ok, let's talk 'Deadzones'. A value of '0' gives you trigger response immediately, whereas a value of '100' will give little, if any response until the trigger is fully pressed.
Now, 'Sensitivity'. A value of '0' will make your input more gradual. Whereas a value of '100' will give everything all at once! Therefore...

I see no sense in setting Throttle to anything other than Deadzone 0, Sensitivity 0?! This gives you the full range of play available within the trigger, combined with the most gradual acceleration (if required). IE If a car requires 25% throttle to maintain grip, then you have the ability to apply 25% throttle. Or 50%. Or 100%. It's all available on the trigger.

Similarly, I see no reason for any Deadzone on the brake. You want immediate feel upon application. So again set the Deadzone to '0'.
Sensitivity is a different matter. Remember, a value of '0' will make your input more gradual. Whereas a value of '100' will give everything all at once! Therefore...

If you are completely missing the corner and driving straight ahead - Increase sensitivity by 10%
If you are missing the apex or running a little wide - Increase sensitivity by 5%
If you are hitting braking zones, but falling short of ideal apex - Decrease sensitivity by 5%
If you are locking up, or stopping well short of the corner - Decrease sensitivity by 10%

Continue to adjust Sensitivity settings, and continue testing until you are comfortably hitting most apexes around our track. My brake sensitivity is set at 80%. I come from Forza driving no assists, and am very used to braking late whilst feathering the brakes. Some prefer to really hammer the brakes, and so a much lower setting would be preferred.

Steering Deadzone - Now this works a little different. When driving an actual car, if you let go the wheel at speed, it settles back to centre. In order to replicate this in-game, we need to apply a little Steering Deadzone.

Far too little - the wheel will not settle easily and the car will be unstable. Particularly on corner exit.
Perfect - the car turns easily, with the wheel returning to centre on corner exit.
Far too much - the car will become difficult to turn and minor adjustments will become impossible.

My Steering Deadzone is set at 18, and found settings between 10 - 40 to be acceptable. Although 40 looked unusual?!

Steering Sensitivity - Really quite simple this. The current sensitivity is very high. I run this at '0' and would ideally run it at '-10' if I could. I found the car drivable up to a setting of '15', but it wasn't pleasant. Don't despair though, there's a couple more settings to get to which help greatly with steering response..

If you haven't already done so by this point, I suggest you apply these settings and go back to Free Practice to test them. You already know how the BMW handles around Imola (All settings will be as they were, just press 'Start'). You're not looking for a perfect drive...yet. You just want improvement...and here's some pointers:

The slightly curved pit straight is a perfect chance to test your steering deadzone. You should be able to make tiny adjustments, with the wheel always returning to centre when you release the stick.
The first corner (chicane 1) is an ideal spot for testing your hard braking response.
The next set of turns (chicane 2) provides a good spot for testing light braking, as it is a faster chicane, entered at lower speeds.
On exit of the next tight corner leading uphill, you have an ideal chance to test partial throttle response. As full throttle here will likely lead to oversteer (particularly on cold tyres).
Following another hard braking zone at the top of the hill, you're then faced with an off camber high speed turn (which, hopefully when we're done, you can 4 wheel drift around!)
Downhill, then back up again tests everything...including you're driving skills.
Another tight chicane with high kerbs will test your low speed steering response.
The downhill section is useful for testing the 'Speed Sensitivity' setting, which we'll discuss next...

So what is it? Basically, with this set to '0', and you come tearing down the final hill section of Imola, any minor adjustments you make to the steering will be exaggerated greatly by the time you reach the bottom. Alternatively, if you set it to '100' you're steering input will be so dulled, you'll struggle to change direction at speed.

Now this took a bit of tweaking, but by jumping in 20% increments, then 10%, then 5%, I knew exactly when it felt just right. Between 50-70% appears to be the sweet spot. I was at 65, then changed to 60 after using a faster car. Which we'll get to soon.

Sounds complicated doesn't it? I'm sure it was, but to you and me, it simply applies a filter to every tiny little input you make on the controller. In order to fully appreciate what this does, I suggest you set it to '0' and go for a couple of laps.
100% will not filter all input, but will become somewhat unresponsive. According to WMD Member Gooseone, "Settings up to 85 should still leave some fidelity". I personally found anything over 65% was too obtrusive. With everything else set, it was perfectly drivable at 0%, but it really does feel raw...hard to explain?! I finally settled on 55%, but I think this, more than any other setting is personal preference.

So back to testing. As stated earlier, the final downhill section is your best place to test the Speed Sensitivity.
Controller Filtering Sensitivity (CFS) is probably most noticeable on the pit straight. The minor adjustments required there are very twitchy when CFS is too low. Too high though and you lose feel in the handling.

So that pretty much covers it. Force Feedback really is your own preference. Mine is set at 90, for anyone whose following my own setup. The 'Advanced' settings, I have all switched on. I didn't notice a huge difference with them, once everything else was set, but they did appear to help when correcting a slide or countering oversteer. Basically...if I messed up, it was easier to save with the advanced settings on. Although, again thanks to Gooseone, if you tend to overcorrect, he advises that you turn 'Opposite Lock Help - Off.

If all has gone to plan, you're likely no longer reading this?! You are once again the master of the Tarmac, all that was wrong with the world is right again. I really hope so anyway. But there's a couple more things, to get everything just so...

It's time to discard our beloved Bee-M, and jump into a....cough! BMW Z4 GT3. So why we doing this? It's no good having just one car working with our controller setup, they all need to work. This car is heavier 2744 lbs, faster with more torque 484 HP/364 ft-lbf, yet still balanced 49/50. The tyres are heated right from the get-go. If the 320 turbo was driving beautifully, then this one likely will too, but you may need to tweak 5% here or there on brake balance, or speed sensitivity. Should take no more than a few minutes. When you're all done and setting purple sectors all over the place, I have a little challenge for you...

The Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth! Remember to let the tyres heat up...

...if this helps even one person enjoy the game like I am now, then, well...I'll be pretty annoyed to be fair cos I've spent ages putting this On a serious note though, this game is truly fantastic when it all comes together. To hear of people selling their copies because they can't get the controller to work for them best, bonkers?! At worst, it's just a shame because Project Cars has the potential to be incredible. The racing community helped shape the game, and it's now up to the rest of us to help shape a community that will keep the game relevant for the months and years ahead.
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