In the past two weeks iRacing has made two huge announcements.
Orontes Games is a German developer in simulation racing, currently working with their Early Access game DRAG that runs off their in-house Orontes Engine, a proprietary game that features “high fidelity next generation graphics” as well as “advanced vehicle physics” for off-road racing.
Monster Games has a long history of race game development, including the NASCAR Heat franchise and more recently Tony Stewart’s Sprint Car Racing game and the SRX Game.
These two acquisitions are standalone development studios and projects. The iRacing development team will remain 100% focused on continuing to develop the core product, iRacing.
Why would iRacing want to acquire Orontes Games and Monster Games?
Well, the answer for this one is easy – to grow their business. Not only does iRacing now have additional games in their portfolio, they have added additional TALENT to the team as well.
NASCAR Heat has been a longstanding franchise in the NASCAR console (and some PC) gaming world, however it has previously had a lackluster gaming experience. NASCAR Heat does have incredible graphics and a strong name overall in the community.
iRacing already has a strong relationship with NASCAR, Indycar, IMSA and more. They also already have great relationships with the car manufacturers, race teams, and tons of race tracks (that are laser scanned). iRacing has a ton of data to use that could make these current console platforms much, much better.
Is the acquisition of Orontes Games and Monster Games and effort to make the iRacing product even better? OR – Does iRacing want to expand into console gaming?
My bet is on BOTH.
Why not take this crazy good talent that has experience in fantastic graphics, physics, and more to increase the current product? There is no doubt that the iRacing platform the main product and the goal is to make it better.
BUT – Why not expand into console gaming? A huge portion of current iRacing subscribers have played (and currently play) console games. Most play console games for “fun” as iRacing is much more “serious”, much in fact due to the lack of realism in console gaming.
Releasing a yearly $60 Playstation/XBOX game would not only let iRacing grab another $60 (plus don’t forget add-ons) from their iRacing subscribers, they would gain a whole new audience of console only gamers, with a good enough product may convince many of them to invest in PC gaming to subscribe for iRacing.
It seems like a win-win for iRacing and all sim-racers/gamers everywhere.