Rockstar reveals tips for GTA V online race creator

Saqib Shah
February 24, 2014

Rockstar has released the newest edition of its online game tips designed to help players get the most out of the RaceCreator mode.

According to the company’s newswire, this edition includes  Race game design pro tips including some do’s and don’ts specifically suggested by the Rockstar developer teams.

The best designs may even be picked up by the company, who are always on the lookout for new developers to join their ranks.

Here are some of the best selections from the extended list of tips:

Getting Started

  • Your first decision is to settle on which kind of Race you would like to build (land, sea or air). In the Race Details Menu, you can set a range of parameters, including available vehicles, time of day, number of laps and weather.  All of these details can be adjusted later on should you change your mind.

Location, Location, Location

  • Your first step in creating a Race is placing a Trigger. This is where players will need to go in Freemode to start your Race and also the approximate area where the Starting Grid will be.
  • If you’re currently far away from where you’d like to start creating, just hit the Start button and select where you’d like to be on the map to head there instantly.
  • The next step is to lay those all-important Checkpoints that will mark out your Race route. You can navigate around the game world using the left stick to move the camera, the right stick to pan and the L2/LT and R2/RT buttons to zoom.
  • If you want to insert a new Checkpoint between two already existing ones, make sure the new Checkpoint is touching the blue line that appears on screen between the two previous ones, otherwise it will be placed at the end of the Race.  The blue line will be highlighted yellow to indicate that you’re going to insert a checkpoint between two already existing ones.
  • Note that all Races must be at least 0.62 miles and you must have completed at least one full Test (although we highly recommend doing more than just one Test of course for proper due diligence) before you can Publish.

Perfect Placement

  • Creative placement of Props, Weapons and Boosts is your opportunity to add to the existing layout of the game world and come up with something truly unique, so play around with it!
  • If you choose to play it as a GTA Race, you can place Weapons, Health and Boosts along your Race route. These can all be found in the Placement > Weapons Menu, while Props can be found at Placement > Props.
  • You can also place a Stunt Jump so that the camera will cut to a special angle when going over a specific ramp. To do this you will need to place two markers – one at the end of the ramp, where players will take off from, and one to set the position of the Stunt Jump camera. The camera’s height can be adjusted by pressing the analog sticks.

Land, Sea or Air?

  • Creating Land Races and Sea Races follow a similar process other than the obvious distinction that Land Race Checkpoints can only be placed on solid terrain and Sea Race Checkpoints can only be placed on water.
  • When creating Air Races you also have to consider the height of each of your Checkpoints – you can raise each Checkpoint by clicking in the left stick and lower them by clicking in the right stick.

Testing 1, 2, 3

  • Rigorous testing and refinement is the best way to come up with something truly special. When testing Races, it’s important to make sure each of the respawn points works properly, especially if they happen to be close to an obstacle or large structure.
  • You can select the Test option at any point to play the Race for yourself without losing any of your progress.
  • If you discover something you’re not happy with, return to the Creator by hitting down on the d-pad and you’ll shoot right to that point for a quick tweak or a major overhaul.
  • You can also switch to in-game camera by pressing the Select/Back button to place Checkpoints and Props from the comfort of your vehicle. Not only does this allow you to place Race Checkpoints on the fly, it also gets you into areas that the Creator cursor can’t reach, such as underground tunnels.

Back to the Drawing Board

  • If you mess things up beyond repair and want to go back to a blank canvas, you can delete all Checkpoints or everything entirely in Placement > Delete Options (you can also delete All Weapons, All Props, All Dynamic Props, and All Stunt Jumps).

Design Tips

Some words of advice to ensure that your Race stands out from the crowd:

  • Always make sure the next Checkpoint is easily visible. You want your Races to be settled by skill, not confusion.
  • For tight turns, place your Checkpoint slightly before the apex of the corner. This will give the player ample notice to brake and allow them to focus on maintaining a good racing line.
  • Use the description to let your players know how best to play your Race. If you’re using lots of Props to create roadblocks, for example, and you find in testing that the Race plays better with traffic disabled, let people know that.
  • Make sure Weapon and Health pickups are placed far enough apart so that a single player can’t grab them both at the same time. This will keep your GTA Race competitive by not giving the leader too great an advantage.
  • Weapon pickups, specifically Rockets, should be used sparingly. Consider placing them where they might be most tactically effective, like at the beginning of a long straight section.
  • Remember that all created Races can be played as GTA Races but only if you take the time to place weapon pickups.
  • Jumps should also be used sparingly. Too many jumps, or badly placed ones, can harm the flow and make your Race memorable for the wrong reasons.
  • Boost pickups should be placed on straight sections and key overtaking positions where they can be most effective.
  • Don’t place Stunt Jump cameras before turns as the player may lose sight of their vehicle.
  • Vehicle selection should always be carefully considered according to the layout and terrain of your course. If you’d like to experiment with different combinations of vehicle class, such as Sports Cars and Off-Road, then you’ll want to mix up the terrain and course so that neither has an inherent advantage. You can even select parts of the game world that provide split routes, such as tight, risky shortcuts for bikes on mountain trails. Try out your Race using various vehicles until you’re consistently setting similar times across the board.
  • Air Races should test pilots with a mixture of vertical and lateral, side-to-side movement, in order to break the routine of straight flying for long periods of time. Extremely tight turns might make your Race too difficult or even unplayable. You may find it useful to switch to  the in-game camera to get a feel for the turning capabilities of each aircraft when fine tuning Checkpoint placement.
  • If you really want to test your players’ cockpit skills then think about how to combine Checkpoint placement and the game world itself to create challenging sections. For example, a series of Checkpoints weaving above and under bridges will test their altitude control, while placing one between neighbouring skyscrapers will force them into knife flying position.

Once you’re completely satisfied  hit Publish and your Race will be available for the Social Club community. Players in your Freemode session will be able to access it via the Social Club website and from there they can download, play, rate and share your Job at any time.

For the full list of tips, head over to the Rockstar website.

About the Author

Saqib Shah

Tech/gaming journalist for What Mobile magazine and website. Interests include film, digital media and foreign affairs.

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