SHIFT 2 Takes Racing Realism To New Limits

SHIFT 2 Takes Racing Realism To New Limits

Despite realistic racers not really being my thing, I remember being very impressed by the original Need for Speed SHIFT. Now that the brand is working to create its own unique vision outside of Need for Speed, Slightly Mad Studios is really stretching the boundaries of realism within the racing-sim sub-genre with SHIFT 2 Unleashed.

This behind the scenes look goes in-depth on the production values of SHIFT 2 Unleashed, and discusses the methods the team have utilised in order to make sure the games is as realistic as possible.

Our favourite innovation is the helmet cam, which attempts to replicate the tension and immediacy of racing at top speeds. Sense of speed is a huge factor in any racing game, and we were really impressed at the lengths Slightly Mad Studios has gone to in an attempt to really push the envelope.

So far so good.


  • Shift is the best racer of this gen and I am damn happy it is getting another run. I loved the in car view (my default view in all racing games) and the sense of immersion it gave, plus the star system gave great incentive to race in ways I usually wouldn’t. Only gripe I had were the cheap rival battles. This looks even better.

  • I’m actually excited. I liked what they did with the previous release, but it wasn’t quite right, the helmet cam is really what I’ve been looking for, the view changing to where I do look when I race in real life.

    Looking forward to this, but which platform to get it on… There is even an OSX version!

  • That got me pumped. Adored the original Shift simply because it’s cockpit view was incredibly addictive and visceral. Sounding good!

    • The helmet cam in Forza 3 is a joke, as was the removal of link-play (MS Live moneygrab), the totally useless in-car animations (no gear changes FFS!?!) and the ultra lo-res textures on the V8 suoercars etc. I was so disappointed, it was a rushed and cynical release.

      Now did someone say Shift2 has Bathurst?? I’m in!!

  • ‘We have the most advanced physics system ever released in a racing game.’


    Shift is a racing sim for those with ADD.

    Look to apex is an annoying feature when it does it automatically. Proper headtracking like freetrack or trackir are far better.

    • I don’t understand headtracking, if the monitor is sitting static yet you’re moving your head then its useless since your eye isn’t looking forward, unless you get those monitor glasses but then the resolution is so bad its almost not worth it.

    • Except with headtracking, to actually look to the apex, you end up looking at the side wall, away from the TV/Monitor, this looks like a great compromise.

      • Put you mouse cursor in the centre of the screen, now move it to the edge of the screen while following it with your head, thats all the movement it takes once set up properly. It’s not 1:1 movement (though it can be) and it’s not for everyone, some feel motion sickness, but then again some feel motion sickness from look-to-apex (it’s been done). Don’t knock it ’til you try it.

        • I have tried it, many times. You end up looking at the edge of screen when what you want to see is in the middle of screen. It pulls oyu out of the game rather than immersing you in it.
          Far better is multiple screen/multiple projector setups, where when you look to the left, you see out the left window.

      • Might as well go straight for an arcade racer if you want fun.

        I don’t think people looking for a sim game will be in it for “fun” but rather how well the car handles, which quite frankly NFS: Shift fails in, you don’t even need to brake.

        • Try turning off the driving assistance and see how much you need to brake. If you’re too stupid to turn it off, and then continue to whine about it braking and steering for you, it’s your fault, not the game’s.

        • GT is a sim ‘on paper’ but it fails to actually feel like racing at all. I spent quite a few years actually racing, and neither Forza nor GT manage to capture the feeling, they come off sterile.
          Shift captured some of the feeling, but the physics was so off that it didn’t work either. I’m really hopeful that Shift2 will hit the compromise that will handle like a real car, and still capture the raw balls n all that is racing. We won’t know until we actually get to play it.

        • So are you insinuating then that GT5 is boring and has no enjoyment or fun?

          There still needs to be a level of fun and enjoyment to game that takes itself seriously. Why else would one play the video game anyway?

          To learn? Eh read a book. Or race a REAL car, legally and safely of corse. But although they are sims, they need to include that level of enjoyment cause afterall, its a game.

        • And I would. It’s the devs who market it as sim, I would never have called it one. But hey it’s their baby. Surely though there is a sliding scale between arcade and realism with room for a hybrid like Shift? It doesn’t have to be Ridge Racer or Forza.

  • Helmet Cam really looks the goods – have to wonder why they are banging on about the telemetry though, they are aware that it has been done many times before?
    Seems to be a staple amongst sim racers to tout the physics as the most realistic ever because race drivers say so… Forza, GT and now Shift are guilty of this.

  • While looking for shift 2 links, I discovered rFactor, don’t know how I missed it before, but it has Bathurst, Sandown, Eastern Creek, the 2006 V8 Supercars, amazing!

  • Meh. Didn’t bother with the first one because of reports of how buggy it was + a friend saying it bored him, doubt I’ll bother with this, at least not until it’s bargain bin…

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