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Thunder Alley» Forums » General

Subject: Inside Lane vs. Outside Lane, no advantage? rss

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Chris W
United States
Illinois
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I'm digging this game. But I'm wondering why the lanes around the corners are the same length regardless on whether you are on the far inside lane or far outside lane?

I know there is an advantage to be in the inside lane closest to the apron for tie-breaker reasons, but other than that it does not appear to be that there is any other advantage.

I'm just curious as to why on the corners the designers did not make it so on a three space wide corner, that the very outside lane wouldn't have to go a space or 2 further to make the corner, this would give some more incentive to be in the inside lane kind of like in real life where the inside lane is the shortest distance. I've seen this in other racing games, which I think helps drive some strategy and add realism.

Overall I really like the game just wondering if anyone else thought the same thing.

Also I never thought twice about racing or Nascar until this game, now I'm following some blogs on-line about it, and planning on maybe going to the Nascar race in September in Joliet, IL just to check it out.

Thanks
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Cassill
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I initially thought the inside should garner some bonus due to what I know about other forms of racing.

Then I worked out two things. The first being it kind of does give you an advantage in the way that when coming out of a corner you can only be shoved by other people to the inside or the middle lane. This sets you up for the next corner to get the inside again if you wish. You want to be on the inside as it is used for tie breakers and because it's generally easier to get into a train of cars - small advantage I know.

Secondly,I realised that unlike most other racing, Stock Car/NASCAR racing doesn't really have a traditional racing line. Maybe on the brickyard or smaller tracks the inside could be advantageous in terms of being the fastest way through a corner but on medium to large circuits it seems you can't make that generalisation. You see cars near the wall or midway up the track going as fast/faster through corners than cars at the apron at certain races for a variety of reasons.

I suppose NASCAR tries to model this. Just some thoughts.
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Scotland
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Oxon
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I think this was a conscious decision. Advantage in TA comes from piggy-backing on others' fortune. The hard decisions are in guessing how you can best place your cars to take advantage of what you think others will do and, when it's your turn to activate, do so with minimal benefit to your opponents.

If everybody saw an advantage in the inside line, then the cars would line up inside rather than running in a pack like the real thing. My guess is this would limit the decisions and decrease the agony.

I think it was genius to remove track advantage (number of lanes notwithstanding) and put all the tactical play into positioning.
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Cassill
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Microver99 wrote:
I think this was a conscious decision. Advantage in TA comes from piggy-backing on others' fortune. The hard decisions are in guessing how you can best place your cars to take advantage of what you think others will do and, when it's your turn to activate, do so with minimal benefit to your opponents.

If everybody saw an advantage in the inside line, then the cars would line up inside rather than running in a pack like the real thing. My guess is this would limit the decisions and decrease the agony.

I think it was genius to remove track advantage (number of lanes notwithstanding) and put all the tactical play into positioning.


True, particularly as one turn in game represents multiple laps there would be no reason for that much detail
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Chris W
United States
Illinois
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Thanks for the replies fellas. I think that makes more sense about if the inside was such a large advantage it would pretty much push people to just want to stay in that inside lane and the game would probably be one large train of cars being pushed as opposed to possible multiples. And then there would be the occasional attempt to move to the head of the pack or get close to the front and get back in.

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Chris Laudermilk
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Orange County
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I think there are two aspect to this. 1) Abstracting a bit for game play. You have the inside wins ties, and a lot of your strategy is based on the drafting piggybacking mechanism (a genius game mechanism IMHO). 2) On ovals like what NASCAR run on a lot there truly isn't a big advantage in the typical racing line as you see on road courses. Yes, the inside line is shorter, but you have to slow more to hold the turn; the outside line is longer, but you maintain more speed. In the end, often it's a wash.

Overall, IMHO it's a good game design decision. It does a good job of representing how the racing actually works, yet abstracts it and keeps a fast-flowing, simple game design.
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Jeff Horger
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Columbus
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I think Chris answered it the best. Inside is shorter but slower. Outside is longer but faster. And also at the scale of the game (and Grand Prix) the positioning aspect is more important to us than the line aspect.
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