For those unaware, Italian-based developer Kunos-Simulazioni has released the next-gen upgrade to Assetto Corsa Competizione. Back in September of 2018, the original game was released on PC, Xbox One, and PS4. In my review, I talked about my love for the title, but unlike the PC version, the last-gen graphics were slightly disappointing.
Kunos and 505 Games are now looking to rectify the issue with a next-gen upgrade release, hoping to match the quality seen and felt on the track with the overall look of the game. Even better news is that current owners of the last-gen version of ACC get the upgrade for free, and all statistics and DLC transfer as well. Since its release last week, I have spent some time reacquainting myself with the title in hopes that new hardware could bring the console version closer to its PC counterpart.
Next-Gen Assetto Corsa Competizione
What I Like
As soon as I hit the track, the new graphical enhancements were noticeable. The car details, whether it be my own vehicle or my opponents, certainly had been improved. The details were so rich that even the stitching in the seat harness popped out like it was truly a 3-D texture.
The car models look fantastic and come very close to what I witnessed in the PC version of the game. The colors and chrome jumped off the screen at me, and this instant visual appreciation took place without having to look specifically for it. If you remove the cars from the conversation, the textural upgrades with the tracks, track-side components, and surroundings were just as impressive.
Pit crews look much improved, and the crowds were given a jump in detail and depth as well. Flags were swaying in the stands, emergency crews looked alive and ready to go, and the tarmac upgrade was noticeable. Beyond those elements, there are improvements to the sand and dirt particles that are kicked up from vehicles.
Even better is the fact that the racing and AI are every bit as good as I remembered. When I combine that with the graphical punch, I do think it’s worth stating that racing fans should consider revisiting this game or giving it a go for the first time.
What I Don’t Like
As beautiful as the car models and track-side components look now in ACC, it made the low-grade mirror option in the game stick out even more in a bad way. Whether you are utilizing the in-car mirror or the virtual mirror, the results still look the same.
In this view, both the tracks and opponents’ cars look strikingly close to PS2-era graphics, and that may be a bit too generous. Looking back in either mirror is a big disappointment, and while I thought I might get used to it, I never did.
What makes it worse is the graphical improvements everywhere else are done so well, and yet the mirror reflection now sticks out even more than before. I am not sure if mirror reflection improvements were passed over on purpose out of necessity due to frame-rate issues, or if the developers felt it was something that didn’t need attention. Either way, be prepared to be underwhelmed in this area, which is a sizable oversight.
Also, while the tracks themselves and the immediate surroundings are a very nice improvement, once you stray a bit further away the details look a bit less impressive. The number of objects tend to thin out, and these things are especially noticeable during replays.
The Italian-based developer Kunos has delivered a solid improvement in the graphics department. While there are a few blemishes and reminders of last gen, for the most part the next-gen Assetto Corsa Competizione update looks beautiful, both in-game and during replays.
As I mentioned before, if you own the previous-gen version then the upgrade is free and you should scope it out. If you haven’t had a chance to play the most recent AC title in the franchise, take a look at my original review and see if there is room in your rotation for it. The game offers an excellent driving model, career mode, season mode, and a deep online suite of options.