These Aren't Photos Of Cars. They Are, Believe It Or Not, Screenshots.

Below, you will find six images. As eyeballs on the internet, you may not believe it at first, but these are indeed screenshots from upcoming racer Project Cars.

I've been playing the game for a week or so, with an in-construction build (the game is constantly being added to and refined by the developers, with fan support and input), and can attest that once you play around with the graphics for a while, it looks amazing. It handles pretty well, too, but until I can try it out with a wheel (I've only been using a 360 pad on my PC), take that with a grain of salt.

Remember: this is a game that's not even finished yet.

Project Cars [Manchild, via Polycount]


    Crossing the Uncanny Valley...closer...but not there yet.

    Nice work there. It'll be interesting to see the finished product.

      Yeah easy to spot. Forza 4's booklet had more deceiving images.

      I don't know dude, that last one is crazy. Even the drops on the car look real. Also that last Porsche image is pretty damn real looking. Normally you can tell because of the background, but the Porsche one looks outstanding.

        Pro tip:

        Look at the lighting in nooks and crannies to figure out if it's a real time render, cinematic shot or photo. You'll notice in that last shot that the tops of the tires are lit poorly (and the rubber overall is shaded badly). This is because self shadowing is risky business for optimisation. You'll often see large Z-depth problems* or no self shadowing at all, and with separate assets (like tires) which are exported at different times, no shared ambient occlusion maps.

        * Z-depth problems; this is where the minimum distance along a shadow or camera cast is too long to determine which object to render first. If a light projection casts onto a bonnet, the tire is quite close, so it might not get 'shadowed' by the bonnet, while the bottom rim of the hub cap and asphalt might.

          I'm not saying if you take a fine tooth comb to it you won't find faults. But at first glance, the two I mentioned are pretty damn good. The lighting underneath the BMW is off, but if you look at the whole image it's bloody good.

      Definitely on the incline though. At least for cars...

    It's certainly impressive, but I could still have told you they're CG. There's just something about the edges and the surfaces that doesn't look right. Hard to say what exactly, but it's there.

      Technical problems on car in image number 1 for the renderer to overcome:

      No refraction (bending) of light through the windshield (Difficult to implement, major framerate cost, due to delayed and duplicated rendering)

      Front grill shadowing / ambient occlusion of insuffecient quality (better artists or finished assets?)

      Head lamps are flat painted textures rather than layered constructions utilising translucency and refraction (only possible with slow, animation renders)

      Fresnel reflections on blue corner near headlamp clearly not self reflecting (major framerate / GPU concern)

      Gold wheel interior not motion blurred (motion blur not working in circular fashion)

      Lighting model contrast not sharp enough / capable enough of darkening interior (better shader programming)

      Self lighting / per object lighting not occuring, as seen on the edges of the tires. (framerate / RAM speed concern)

      I'm not listing this to be cynical or to criticise the studio responsible for these screenshots. They're fantastic. Sometimes it's just nice to have a reference for how close we're actually getting and the above is a list of issues that we can resolve in the next few years that would take those shots from fantastic to perfect.

    These screenshots look great. Sure they're not hyper realistic, but great nonetheless. I'm eagerly anticipating this game.

    Wow, if anyone told me as a kid that this is what a racer would look like in the future, I'd tell them they're dreaming. Hopefully the finished product keeps this going on.

    4 Yeah, 6 to some extent but the wheels give it away.

    Car models are incredible.
    Rain effects & the ground textures give it away a bit :p

    That 3rd from last (Porsche) looks great. The rest are meh

    RUF RGT-8, not Porsche. And only the fourth picture looks convincingly realistic.

    I have Project Cars and I swear it doesn't look this good...

    Maybe I should take a look at the new build.

    Wow. Impressive. Come a long way since Gran Turismo 2 - and that game was so real.

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