When iRacing acquired rights to the NASCAR game licence from Motorsport Games last October, it announced that a new console game was in development and slated for a 2025 release.
While the new NASCAR console game hasn’t been announced yet, iRacing president Tony Gardner has revealed new details in a recent interview.
Monster Games working on NASCAR console game
Speaking with Insider Gaming, Gardner revealed that former NASCAR Heat studio Monster Games is working on the new NASCAR console game after the studio was acquired by iRacing back in 2022. Since then, the team at Monster Games has expanded from 20 to around 35 to work on the new NASCAR game, which will utilise tech from iRacing.
“They’re using our car models, our track models, a lot of our tech, [and] they’ve done a lot of integration on the back end,” Gardner told Insider Gaming. “So, when we update a track – we’re bringing all of our NASCAR tracks up to, the latest spec, get them all current — and they have developed a system where they can just import our tracks and things like that.”
A new engine under the bonnet
While past games like NASCAR 21: Ignition ran on Unity, iRacing’s new NASCAR console game will utilise Unreal Engine. While it’s unclear if it will run on Unreal Engine 4 or 5, switching to this new engine should bring a generational leap in graphics.
However, as EA Sports WRC’s well-publicised performance issues have shown, Unreal Engine is tricky to work with and requires a lot of optimisation work.
Alongside the new engine, Gardner hints at significant improvements for the driving model and career mode. With iRacing’s expertise, we can likely expect the new NASCAR game to have a bigger focus on simulation than Motorsport Games’ entries.
“We want a real focus on the driving, as iRacing as a brand,” Gardner said. “So there’s going to be a lot of focus on good driving; Career mode is really important with a console game.
Gardner continued: “And so there’s, obviously, a lot of effort in that. I don’t want to give away too much about the game. You know, we’ve got news coming, but, you know, the way the game works is with some fun new stuff in it, that I can’t talk about quite yet.”
Since iRacing’s NASCAR console game isn’t due to arrive sometime in 2025, we likely won’t get an official 2024 NASCAR game. With the licence now in iRacing’s capable hands, next year should mark a promising new era for NASCAR gaming after the disastrous release of NASCAR 21: Ignition.
Are you looking forward to getting a new NASCAR console game in 2025? Let us know in the comments below.
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