WRC 8 was a big step up for the WRC series. The physics are believable and the courses are intricate and detailed, making this a very strong competitor to DiRT Rally 2.0. Rally games play incredibly well with a force feedback wheel.
For the Thrustmaster T248, the default force feedback is functional, but the wheel is often too heavy and resistant to turning. There are too many vibration forces that cover up the detail of the road. Thankfully, the game provides a great deal of customization when it comes to the force feedback settings. I was able to find settings that make the wheel noticeably lighter and more detailed in its feedback as well as remove many of the annoying vibration effects.
In this guide, I will show how to correct these issues by setting the proper values in-game, on the wheel and in the Thrustmaster Control Panel, when playing on PC.
WRC 8 automatically sets the wheel rotation based on the value you set in-game, 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 is used by WRC 8 to control the Self Centre setting.
Damper is used by WRC 8 to control the Tyre Load setting.
BOOST should always be turned off. For an in-depth look as to why, see my BOOST Force Feedback Analysis.
WRC 8 Settings
In Options > Controls > Key Bindings > Steering:
These are just the default values. No changes were necessary. You could raise the sensitivity a little bit if you would like the car to turn a little faster when the wheel is centered.
In Options > Controls > Settings:
|Max wheel angle||540|
|Self aligning torque||115|
I like how the WRC games separate the force feedback from vibrations and have separate overall levels for each type. It makes it easy to keep the same proportions of forces, while raising or lowering the overall strength of each type.
Self Aligning Torque is the main force that tells you what the car is doing. Effectively, this is trying to keep the wheels straight, and is what causes the wheel to snap around as the tires straighten out of a corner.
Tyre Load is a damper effect based on the load on the tires. This lets you feel how much grip the tires have. Setting this too high will make the wheel unnecessarily heavy in many instances. Setting it too low will make the wheel feel erratic as the other forces will feel too strong by comparison.
Self Centre is the spring force, which artificially pulls the wheel back to the center. I find the Self Aligning Torque does this more naturally, so I turn this off. If you want a more aggressive pull back to the center, you can raise this.
Recentre Force is only used when you reset the car after going off the track. It just puts the wheel back to the center. It has no impact while you are driving.
The vibration forces tell more about the surface of the track, though they are largely canned effects.
Overall Vibration is lowered to make it easier to balance the individual vibration effects.
Tyre Slip vibrates the wheel whenever the car loses traction. If this is too high, it can be very jarring every time you slide the car around a corner. I don't care for this, so I turn it off.
Engine vibrates the wheel whenever the engine hits the red line. I don't particularly like this, so I have turned it down very low. You could turn this higher if you like the effect.
Suspension creates a low frequency rumble based on the suspension. It's not a totally realistic feeling, but it does a fairly good job making you feel the bumps in the road.
Ground Surface vibrates the wheel when on different surfaces, though it doesn't feel very realistic. Setting this too high can be very annoying.
Collision vibrates the wheel when you hit things on the side of the road.
Especially in a rally game, simply being able to control the car is half the fun. Your wheel needs to give you the right information to be able to do this. Once you get the force feedback working correctly, you can really start enjoying the game without being distracted by the feeling of the wheel.
Let me know if you have any comments or questions.