Course Maker/Track Path Editor: A "badly-executed good idea"?

Would you agree?

  • !! YES, TO HELL WITH IT !!

  • Not really. I can manage.

  • No, it's great!!


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Skygrasper550

I have returned to gaming, it's good to be back
Premium
3,077
Philippines
Philippines
skygrasper_550--
I think it's safe to say that a lot of the buzz surrounding the much-awaited-God-knows-why-it-took-centuries Course Maker suddenly went up in smoke when they revealed that they made the feature into an app thatwas only available for Android and iOS tablets (not even smartphones). There's no in-game editor; the only thing that GT6 can do is import the custom tracks you created with the app into the game. A shame that the much-advertised feature of the game would give players such a big hassle (it's clear not everyone owns a tablet or has access to one), but that won't stop the hardcore fans from trying everything they can just so they could utilize the feature. But, because fans scrambled to do whatever they can to make the Track Path Editor work on their end (resorting to manually installing the .apk files or using emulators), this gave a sort of bad image on how PD implemented the feature. So, my question now is: Is the Course Maker/Track Path Editor a classic case of a "badly-executed good idea"? Or not at all?

For me, aside from them making the Course Maker into an app and not a full in-game feature, the other thing I find problematic with this is that, for you to be able to transfer your custom courses onto your PS3, you need to be signed in to PSN on both the PS3 and the tablet which has the app. This, of course, requires you to be online, to have an Internet connection. What bewilders me is that, why does the custom track have to pass through to the PSN's servers first before it gets to your PS3? Why did they not make use of the PS3 and the tablet's Bluetooth or Wi-Fi features as well when transferring custom tracks? Players should have been given the option to transfer custom tracks either online OR offline, because while not everyone has a tablet to be able to use the app, not everyone has a constant Internet connection as well. Limiting the transfer to online-only ruins the accessibility of the feature even more.

I have set up a poll on this thread, but I'm not going to vote yet as I have not personally used the feature. It would take me until over the weekend to do so, because quite a lot needs to be done if someone wanted to run the app without a compatible tablet (like me).

What are your thoughts about the Course Maker/Track Path Editor?
 
840
United States
Indiana
DSkywalker01
3 problems.

1.) Can't use tracks offline (This NEEDS to be fixed... somebody in the know @Jordan or others please get in PD's ear about this)

2.) App is a pain in the butt to use if you don't have a tablet (AKA downloading all the extra software to use it)

3.) 30 track limit. Kind of a bummer, which it were higher.


Everything else either exceeded or met my expectations. Good job PD... worth the wait... now back to hotlapping Reims in my GT-40. :D
 
237
United States
United States
bluedragoon98
The Course Maker wasn't worth the wait,but is it a nice feature? Yes,but very limited/restrictice access is so bad. I have to use my mom's phone to even make a course and my phone and PS Vita don't support the APP. I can manage,but still irritating.
 
542
France
France
This app seems to be a really great idea, but have some problems :
1) The limited access : A simple website would have been so much better :(
2) No dirt or snow locations
3) Track limit (even though 30 is decent)
4) Only 4 locations
5) No elevations changes

Anyway, the app allow some freedom to the player, and so much fun
 

RACECAR

Owner/Promoter/Organizer/Driver/ETC
Premium
32,757
United States
Dallas,Texas
GTP_RACECAR
I would say its a great idea but shoddy execution (From limiting the hardware to a very messy rollout).

If it were open to more platforms from the start, I think it would not be the headache and mess to everyone that its launch ended up being.
 
647
Croatia
Zagreb
johnwalter1044
I hope this Course Maker is just a temporary feature.
I will not believe that PD would make such, an obvious, bad idea.

We need the Course Maker in the game, for online and offline use.

And the "scan a track feature by image"?
It's you drawing the track over a silhouette of the track you want.
I was excpecting a tool that draws on it's own.
 
1,546
Portugal
Porto
JPSILVA1893
The app works not only on tablets , but on phones too and with the touch screen you have a lot of creative freedom . i love it. And the fact you can make point to point races is great.
 

MatskiMonk

Inebriated member
Premium
13,509
United Kingdom
Not so Great Britain
Overall, I think it's a moderately well executed great idea with frustrating limitations.

Despite the fact that I don't have a tablet and am having to put up with doing it on an emulator, I do see some plus points of having it tablet based.

We have to accept that some of the shortcomings of the course maker are based on creative decisions by PD, but also some are because of technical limitations with the system.

My biggest gripe is the lack of track side decoration, the tracks you can create lack character and feeling. They don't feel like venues, they just feel like country roads with signs next to them.
 
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SlipZtrEm

GTP Admin
Staff Emeritus
27,384
Canada
Toronto
NewAesthetic
SlipZtrEm
I'm less bothered by the 30 track limit knowing that it's nearly impossible to replicate any track that has elevation changes at all. Flat tracks don't interest me very much, so while I'm sure there'll be some good Sebring recreations, and British airfield tracks (I see you, @daan!), the space will be for genuine stand-out fictional tracks. If it's like GT5, I won't even need all the slots, since a lot of tracks tend to blur together, IMO.

The bizarre accessibility is what I find shocking, especially given the two year wait. I've finally got it working, but the fact I need to construct workarounds for a feature that was promised so long ago is disappointing. I also don't find it particularly open-ended: there's a lot of limitations on the shape of tracks you can build, since the game forces you to keep quite a distance around the entire track. Of course, it still allows for a lot more creativity than GT5's ever did. There's also the issue of the track width only being adjustable for the entire track, which is bizarrely a step back from GT5.

I was really excited for Death Valley, thinking it'd be similar to Willow Springs. It is, visually, but the silly invisible walls make it very hard to turn it into a convincing back-road test spot, since you can't risk putting a wheel off even once. It should still prove useful for Photomode, though.

We have to accept that some of the shortcomings of the course maker are based on creative decisions by PD, but also some are because of technical limitations with the system.

Other than the ability to import an image/GPS data, I don't see any technical reason there wouldn't be some sort of editor in-game. The app is a vector program that sends the instructions to the game to then build the track, so all the heavy lifting is being done on there anyway.

It should be noted that the GPS feature only gives you a line to trace over, too.

By biggest gripe is the lack of track side decoration, the tracks you can create lack character and feeling. They don't feel like venues, they just feel like country roads with signs next to them.

Quite. Though I sort of like that aspect, it provided some good times with GT5's Mt. Aso.
 
10,973
United Kingdom
West Yorkshire
Tired_Tyres
I don't think the track editor, as we have it, is finished yet. I remember Kaz talking about a "more sophisticated algorithm" for track creation. I took that as meaning random tracks like GT5 on the PS3 with the GPS app for actual designed tracks on your smart device. I think there is at least one more update for this heading our way.
 
11,920
Australia
Melbourne
Neomone/GTP_Imari
Pretty perfect description, IMO.

The fact that they could make the feature immensely better simply by removing the tag that restricts it to tablets in the store is a sign of just how badly executed it is. Works fine on my old phone, a bit fiddly but that could have been designed around had they chosen. Or not, it's usable as is.

Or they could just have made it a PS3 app, standalone from GT6 if necessary. The one piece of hardware that you can absolutely guarantee that any GT6 owner has access to. Or if they don't, then they weren't going to be driving any of their tracks anyway. ;)
 

Skygrasper550

I have returned to gaming, it's good to be back
Premium
3,077
Philippines
Philippines
skygrasper_550--
And the "scan a track feature by image"?
It's you drawing the track over a silhouette of the track you want.
I was excpecting a tool that draws on it's own.

Whoa now, that's asking too much. It's either the technology of tablets today are not up to par yet to make such a feature possible, or it would take a lot more time and effort coding the feature. "Easier said than done" is a mere understatement to describe that. Being able to embed an image over the Eifel Flat template is already good enough for now. I really do hope PD develops the feature much further in preparation for GT7.

Maybe to avoid copyright issues? Might be.

Nah, I think they didn't have enough time to program Eifel to be able to have adjustable elevation on certain parts of the track. And the 30 track limit, that's justified because the tracks are stored in GT6's servers. If they didn't impose a limit on the number of tracks you created, the servers can overload.
 

MatskiMonk

Inebriated member
Premium
13,509
United Kingdom
Not so Great Britain
The bizarre accessibility is what I find shocking, especially given the two year wait. I've finally got it working, but the fact I need to construct workarounds for a feature that was promised so long ago is disappointing.

I don't think the course creator that Kaz said was borderline for day 1, is what we got this week. I think, for some unknown technical or commercial reason, they went back to the drawing board and started over with a stand-alone app - hence the two year delay, and the questionable decision to base it on tablets only.

Other than the ability to import an image/GPS data, I don't see any technical reason there wouldn't be some sort of editor in-game. The app is a vector program that sends the instructions to the game to then build the track, so all the heavy lifting is being done on there anyway.

Perhaps not, but the decision to not put it in the game isn't the only shortcoming I was referring to. Also for what it's worth, being able to tweak the track on the pad as you are doing test runs is pretty useful. I'm finding that by the time I've gone back to my PC to tweak something (equivalent of quitting back to an editor), I've forgotten where exactly all the little tweaks and adjustments I wanted to do are.

I might buy a tablet just for this, the only thing that's holding me back is that even with full function and ease of a pad, the tracks aren't quite interesting enough.
 
2,427
England
England
Lewis_Hamilton_
Maybe to avoid copyright issues? Might be.

Surely you wouldn't be allowed to insert and draw over real existing tracks if that were the case.

Also sure when everyone was speculating over the delay about there being legal or technical issues, Famine said it was neither of these.

I agree with everyone here though, restricting to very few tablets only was a total WTF decision, but I shouldn't have expected anything else from PD. They usually bring up cool ideas/features and always find a way of royally botching it up.
 

eran0004

Premium
9,690
Sweden
Sweden
eran0004
It's not very good for replicating real tracks, but it's great for generating amazing roads! :D

1) fixed 600 meter straight.
2) fixed width, come on, this feature was on GT5!
3) Because of 2=>No tight turnes!

To get tight turns you need to decrease the corner radius. Tap and hold the line until a menu appears, then select "Decrease corner radius" from the menu.

 
1,546
Portugal
Porto
JPSILVA1893
Surely you wouldn't be allowed to insert and draw over real existing tracks if that were the case.

Even if you do the exact layout of let's say Laguna Seca , it still would never be the same as the real deal , even if you can draw over an image.

Also sure when everyone was speculating over the delay about there being legal or technical issues, and Famine said it was neither

I'm talking about copyright issues in the sense that a company that owns a certain race track might not want it in GT6 and if someone creates it in the CM , PD might get sued or something similar.
 
2,427
England
England
Lewis_Hamilton_
Even if you do the exact layout of let's say Laguna Seca , it still would never be the same as the real deal , even if you can draw over an image.

True that it would be a little different, but there are numerous circuits out there that are completely or almost completely flat, thus these could be replicated very closely.
 
1,675
England
England
MaxPower211983
Some drag buddies are doing some testing with this course maker to see if they could make a useful 1/4M drag strip. I think all the course maker needs besides restricted width on the whole track and no custom elevation is more placeable items. From what I'm hearing from my friends there needs to be some more placeable so that markers can be set. If you could draw or mark the road surely that isn't so difficult to implement, but then what do I know!

Like in Indianapolis yellow strip, you have the white boxes with distance markers. Surely they could add these and allow you to add a yellow strip. I don't know but something to mark and layout a 1/4 mile. If I am going to try this app, then I will probably be downloading an android emulator, because no way am I buying a tablet if you have to do all the track creation on a tablet then download to the PS3. If it's not full feature built into the PS3, then forget it, course maker is almost useless to me.
 
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MatskiMonk

Inebriated member
Premium
13,509
United Kingdom
Not so Great Britain
If it's not full feature built into the PS3, then forget it, course maker is almost useless to me.

It isn't built in to the PS3, whether you emulate it, or do it on a tablet.

The transfer process is easy. You just press transfer on the pad, then click the import tab in the game and it's there. It's faster than joining an online lobby.
 
158
Portugal
Évora,Portugal
xlsound
Good idea but badly done, the course maker should be in game for everyone to use, the app for tablets should be a extra feature to the main course maker that should be on ps3 and it isn't, PD should be ashamed of what they done, all this time waiting for the course maker and then its not for everyone.

i say:
!! YES, TO HELL WITH IT !!
 
422
France
Sideways on GTPlanet
Anyone had "transfer failed" error message and knows how to fix this?
you need to be online in both your PS3 in the game in the new track importer section in the game and transfer your track once you're in the importer.
 
6,785
South Africa
South Africa
...Haven't tried this yet (as I don't own a tablet nor latest smartphone) but from what I've read elsewhere - yep it's being covered in other gaming sites - the whole thing feels bizarrely like a beta version, with the "finished" one coming in GT7/PS4.

The fact that I can't directly tranfer the created tracks to and fro between PS3 and the device is a huge minus. I somewhat get the reason why it's an app for touch-based devices; since DS4 has trackpad this path editor can appear unchanged on the next GT, methinks.

There's a definite diamond here, albeit it might need a tad more polishing.

Edit: oh right, I'm getting an emulator for this. Bluestacks right? Hope it's not too cumbersome...
 
302
United States
West Virginia
The app works not only on tablets , but on phones too and with the touch screen you have a lot of creative freedom . i love it. And the fact you can make point to point races is great.
That is a great feature, but it's not for everyone. If they've spent all this time working on it, why not make it a feature on the Gran Turismo website as well for those with computers? Or make it an in-game feature?

I can't wrap my head around the decision to release it just for mobile devices. It's bizarre.