A couple of months ago I was so persuaded by a trailer video of Battlefield 2: Bad Company that I simply had to go out and buy the game – it was video a coworker forwarded to me following a discussion about running a video contest here at iRacing. I hadn’t played a FPS game in years but I had always enjoyed them so I figured why not? Besides, I was always pretty good at these types of games back in the day so the online multi-player versions should be a piece of cake. . . .
Off to Best Buy I went and, after picking up the game and a new mouse, I was ready to kick some a$$. I moved my driving chassis out of the way and sat down to dive into my new game. I immediately jumped into a multi-player session and was summarily killed. After respawning I was killed again. Wow, this is a little different than what I expected. After about 30 minutes of this lather, rinse repeat process I decided I should maybe try the offline version. This way I could learn the basics, get familiar with the controls and most importantly, get a few kills under my belt. This turned out to be the wise choice.
I was always pretty good at these types of games back in the day so the online multi-player versions should be a piece of cake. . . .
I played through several levels of the offline, single player version before I decided I was ready to jump back into the multi-player arena again. I was by no means an expert at this point, but at least I could reload without having to pick up the manual each time.
My second foray into the multi-player format went much better. I was still getting killed an awful lot, but at least I was having fun. I was even scoring an occasional kill myself. The hardest part was actually identifying who was on my team. In the beginning I couldn’t tell who was who, so I would either shoot and ask questions later (this no doubt lead to some annoyed teammates) or look at another player through my gun sites, try to figure out if they were friend or foe and then usually end up dead. Does this experience sound at all familiar to any iRacers out there (not the getting shot part, but the tough introduction to the title)?
The other thing I did to get up to speed was talk to friends and co-workers about my experience. Many offered advice, some even sent links to some great videos including my favorite – “How not to be a noob.”
WARNING: FOUL LANGUAGE
So I am still no expert at Battlefield 2, but I am getting better and having fun doing so (actually I am really pretty bad compared to the top guys).The fun factor is what keeps me interested in the game. What is my next unlock? When will I get promoted? Can I learn the four different player modes? There doesn’t seem to be a way to ever “win” this game but that doesn’t bother me. I am still committed to it because it is fun.
So what does any of this have to do with iRacing? While iRacing and Battlefield 2 have virtually nothing in common on the face of it, the two titles have some underlying similarities. First and foremost, they are designed for players (or drivers) to have fun. They both can be difficult at first and they don’t have a way to beat the game. There is no way to win iRacing. You can win a race, a division, a World Cup championship of even the NASCAR Pro Series title, but there is still more to be done after that because there is always another race or championship to be contended.
At iRacing.com we are always working to make the title better. Obviously we are known for amazing driving physics and incredibly detailed and accurate tracks and we don’t plan to stop working on this stuff, but there is so much more to iRacing. We are always looking for ways to make the experience more fun. Later this season we will be releasing the online driving school – our version of “How not to be a noob.” While we won’t use the same colorful language as in the aforementioned video, we will give you the basics of what it takes to drive faster on iRacing and therefore hopefully have more fun and rack up some race wins along the way. Expect to see the full driving school available later this month. Other projects that are part of iRacing for the pure fun of it include The World Tour Special Events, 1st Win awards, the club championship and we have more on the way. I can’t get into specifics of upcoming enhancements but trust me, we are always thinking about ways to make iRacing even more fun than it already is. Feel free to share your ideas to make iRacing more fun in the comment section.
One other thing worth mentioning is Ray Bryden’s new book, iRacing Paddock: A Beginners Guide to Road Racing on iRacing.com. It is what it says it is, a great guide to starting your road racing career on iRacing.com, filled with tips and info you would eventually figure out on your own, but a great way to get up to speed much quicker. It’s like having your own personal iRacing tutor. You can find it at Amazon.com if you are interested.
So for all you noobs to iRacing, welcome. Take your time and whatever you do, make sure to have fun along the way.
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About Kevin Bobbitt
Kevin Bobbitt is the Director of Marketing at iRacing.com. He has been with iRacing since 2007 and is a long time marketing professional bringing more than 16 years of experience in both online and offline consumer marketing to the job. Kevin's commitment to iRacing starts with his passion for motorsports. He is a fan of anything powered by an engine. When not racing on iRacing or watching a race on TV he can likely be found at the track or an autocross site in his Porsche 944S2. Kevin is also the commissioner, punisher and all around rule maker for the Rennsport Racing League run on iRacing. Kevin resides in New Hampshire with his wife and two boys.