Project CARS plays very well with a wheel, but the default force feedback settings aren't the best for the Thrustmaster T248. The wheel feels heavy and too disconnected from the road. I couldn't feel what the car was doing very well at all.
When I went into the force feedback options, I was completely overwhelmed by all of the options available. Even as someone who likes to tinker with settings, this was just too much. On top of that, each individual car has its own customization options. I honestly didn't even know where to begin.
As you would expect, the incredible community around this game has done all of this work already. All I had to do was put some pieces together and try it out. I am very happy to say that the community efforts work beautifully, providing excellent force feedback even on these wheels, making the cars drive very naturally.
In this guide, I will show you what you need to download, how to install it and the settings to use in-game.
Custom Force Feedback
Unfortunately, the Project CARS website is now defunct and, with it, the original download location for these files has disappeared. I haven't seen them get officially uploaded to another website and I don't know how to contact the original author, so I'm going to host the files locally for the time being. If they ever get uploaded somewhere, please contact me and I will happily link to the new location.
Download Jack Spade's Tweaker Files. These are a set of customized FFB settings for each individual car in the game. This is an incredible resource. They were hosted on the, now defunct, Project CARS Forum (Web Archive link to original thread).
Unpack the Jack Spade Tweaker Files V3.1.1.zip file that you downloaded. You will see several numbered folders, each containing a variant of the same set of customized force feedback settings for each car in the game.
In the folder "7. Kerbs Minus - Classic", rename the subfolder "FFB -kerbs classic" to "FFB" and copy this to your "Documents\Project CARS" folder. If a folder named "FFB" exists in this location, Project CARS will use those settings, overriding anything in the in-game UI. In fact, it won't even display these values in the in-game UI at all.
You can use this same technique to try out any of the variants as well, but I found the standard with reduced kerb effects worked the best. You can even do this while the game is still running (just exit out of the current race), so it's easy to switch between them.
Project CARS automatically sets the steering angle for each car and has a proper Soft Lock, so it is best to leave the rotation set to the maximum on the wheel.
FORCE at 4 bars with FFB at 1 creates a perfectly linear force feedback response with no clipping, which is the ideal for any racing game.
|TM Control Panel Setting||Value|
|Overall Strength of all forces||65%|
|Auto-Center||by the game|
Rotation and Overall Strength are identical to the ROT and FORCE wheel settings, respectively. Changing it in one place overwrites the other. I recommend changing these on the wheel and ignoring the values in the Thrustmaster Control Panel.
Spring controls the weight of the wheel when the car is stopped.
Damper is not used by Project CARS, so its value actually doesn't matter.
BOOST should always be turned off. For an in-depth look as to why, see my BOOST Force Feedback Analysis.
Project CARS Settings
In Options & Help > Controls > Control Scheme:
The game doesn't have a preset for the T248, so I just used the T300 RS Separate Pedals instead. It works fine this way. Make sure to Calibrate the wheel and pedals. If you don't do this, the game won't set the steering angle automatically for each car.
In Options & Help > Controls > Configuration:
|Controller Filtering Sensitivity||0|
These are mostly the default settings, except that the Force Feedback needs to be raised to 100, as that is what the Jack Spade Tweaker Files are calibrated on.
In Options & Help > Controls > Control Scheme > Calibrate Force Feedback:
|Per Wheel Movement||0.00|
|Per Wheel Movement Squared||0.00|
|Wheel Position Smoothing||0.04|
|Deadzone Removal Range||0.02|
|Deadzone Removal Falloff||0.01|
|Relative Adjust Gain||1.50|
|Relative Adjust Bleed||0.10|
|Relative Adjust Clamp||1.00|
|Soft Clipping (Half Input)||0.80|
|Soft Clipping (Full Output)||1.39|
|Menu Spring Strength||0.40|
|Low Speed Spring Coefficient||0.92|
|Low Speed Spring Saturation||1.00|
These values, again, are all calibrated for use by the Jack Spade Tweaker Files and don't need to be adjusted any further, except for Steering Gain.
Steering Gain controls the overall strength of the force feedback. You can adjust this if you want a stronger or lighter wheel.
Getting the force feedback to work to its very best makes a big difference to the enjoyment of a game like this. It is much easier to drive on the limit when you feel more connected to what the car is doing. Part of that is simply learning how the physics of the game work, but another is how much information you are getting through the wheel. If the wheel doesn't feel right, you won't have the confidence to push the limits of the car. With these settings applied, I find driving with the wheel feels very natural, which is exactly what I want.
Let me know if you have any questions or comments.