F1 2016 (Codemasters)
What would we take?
The F1 License
One of the strongest things this game has to offer is sitting right there in the title: F1.
We’d definitely want that Formula One license, as it would be hard to call ours the ultimate racer without the ultimate open-wheeled racing formula to use as an option in-game.
The Business Model
Another great thing going for F1 2016 is its monetisation, which is becoming more and more old school: a one-off spend with no micro-transactions. Buy the game, and that’s it, you’ve got everything it has to offer. No grinding for coins to unlock anything, no cool-down timers, no weird lottery draws or any of the free-to-play bullshit that reigns supreme in the mobile kingdom.
Thankfully, premium games seem to be releasing in encouraging numbers on Apple TV. Some recent titles off the top of my head include Space Marshals 2, Xenoraid, Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire, Oceanhorn, Transistor, Red’s Kingdom, just to name a few. Don’t get me wrong, while the above parargraph may sound like it, I’m no free-to-play hater. But some of the free-to-play implementations get it very wrong, hurting it for the ones that get it right. To be fair, the system seems to be settling on some good, benevolent free-to-play monetisation models nowadays, and I’m confident this trend will continue to the point where we will see some of each option released – free-to-play and premium – with the determining factor being whatever suits that game the best.
But having said all that, for ATVG’s ultimate racer we’re going for a one-time spend, get-everything type of deal.
Gear.Club (Eden Games)
What would we take?
The Performance Shop
I love Gear.Club’s Performance Shop! (But I hate typing Gear.Club)
In between races you can return to your shop in which various modules can be unlocked, and each of them individually upgraded. Your shop starts out as an empty floor plan on which you can set out the modules as you see fit by placing tiles on a grid. You’ll then hire staff who can be seen wondering around the workshop getting busy. The more staff you hire, the more efficient your shop.
Viewing the shop from an elevated isometric angle, players can even zoom in and out to follow individual staff members about their business. The Performance Shop gives Gear.Club a nice simulation aspect to it, and this whole management section gives players a wonderful sense of customisation and ownership over your progress. It works both functionally and visually – like having your own racing themed ant farm.
I wish more racing games had this sort of very visual, manageable workshop environment in between races. The video embedded below gives you a great sense of Gear.Club’s best feature.
Real Racing 3 (Firemonkeys)
What would we take?
I’ve been playing Real Racing 3 on and off (but mostly on) since its day one release in 2013, and for Grab It Magazine’s app episodes and site I’ve written more words about it than probably any other game.
Real Racing 3 on mobile and iPad looks great, but I’ve always felt it had the potential to fill the shoes of a console racer, and on Apple TV it shines.
The car modelling, lighting and real-world tracks look the part and we definitely want this level of quality for our ultimate racer.
Boasting a roster of more than 140 cars, Real Racing 3 brings the sort of diversity we want. From Ford, all the way to Ferrari and back again, there are some very rare dream vehicles to be unlocked. We need this list of licenses.
The current version of Firemonkeys’s racer brings 39 officially licensed tracks to the table, with no doubt more to come. Daytona was added not long ago, bringing the iconic location and NASCAR racing to its fold.
More than 4000 events are on offer at the moment, ranging across racing styles, cups and challenges. Simply put, Real Racing 3 has a lot to offer.
Our Ultimate Racer
So after cherrypicking these individual goodies, it goes without saying that we also need great racing gameplay, AI, and ideally, damage modelling to add that element of realism. This might be too much to ask for given the hardware we are working with – Apple TV – but this is a dream scenario afterall.
My pick of the bunch at this stage would have to be Real Racing 3, thanks to its visuals, loads of contents, and its decent racing gameplay. But with the additional elements from F1 2016 and Gear.Club added, just try and tear me away.