Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Do fast reactions make for a fast driver?


  • Please log in to reply
72 replies to this topic

#51 Afterburner

Afterburner
  • In the running for best OP of 2014

  • 3,440 posts
  • Joined: January 11

Posted 04 May 2012 - 16:04

When you're driving a car, you're typically focused on what's called "visual range". That is, your brain is predicting (using visual cues) what will happen when your car reaches a certain point, two seconds from now. And it's the ability to accurately predict that, that makes a good racing driver. And this rang true for my simulation because, I could have the graphics update running at around 15Hz, looking absolutely terrible, but people were still able to play the game very well.

Why? Because the human brain is great at filling in gaps. Especially gaps that are a constant delta time...as long as the error in what they see remains constant, a person can make very good judgement on near-future events. Essentially...it showed that reactions weren't the key factor in being able to drive a car at speed.

Yep. This is why the best drivers could probably race parts of some tracks with their eyes closed. It's all muscle memory, really.

I still maintain that reaction time is handy when in combat with another racer, though.

Advertisement

#52 BinaryDad

BinaryDad
  • Member

  • 1,017 posts
  • Joined: December 09

Posted 06 May 2012 - 20:16

Yep. This is why the best drivers could probably race parts of some tracks with their eyes closed. It's all muscle memory, really.

I still maintain that reaction time is handy when in combat with another racer, though.


Umm....I might even disagree with that. Maybe if the car in front is making sudden, unpredictable movements, but clean defending and overtaking is mostly about predicting your opponents behaviour. To pass, you might aim to brake a little later than usual at the next corner, so at that instant, you start a pass. So you're still thinking two seconds or so ahead, you're just thinking about more than your racing line.

The problem arises, like was saw last year in the Massa v Hamilton tussles was that neither driver was able to deal with the other doing something within the others typical reaction time. i.e. Massa closing the door, or Hamilton suddenly appearing at the side of Massa.




#53 mkoscevic

mkoscevic
  • Member

  • 645 posts
  • Joined: June 10

Posted 15 May 2012 - 09:14

Do I need better reactions to be quicker? Or is it irrelevant?


To be a fast racing car driver you need nothing more then a normal human reflexes.

Fast drivers are fast not because they react faster, but because they anticipate level of grip better and thus they are prepared to explore ultimate limits more then an average driver would have been able to do.

#54 Requiem84

Requiem84
  • Member

  • 274 posts
  • Joined: September 10

Posted 17 May 2012 - 11:49

To be a fast racing car driver you need nothing more then a normal human reflexes.

Fast drivers are fast not because they react faster, but because they anticipate level of grip better and thus they are prepared to explore ultimate limits more then an average driver would have been able to do.


There's a lot more than anticipating grip. It's about understanding a lot too. Understanding how to give the inputs to your car to get it around a corner in the fastest way. If you drive a car that you can trailbrake into a corner, you have to understand that and use that. If you drive a car that is understeery, you have to understand to use less throttle input on entry etc.

Also, you have to understand the track, the lines you have to take. For some corners that's a lot harder than you can imagine on first sight. It helps massively if you have some sort of data trcking program. I noticed I got much faster in iRacing using iSpeed and the iRacing timing system. It showed me where I was losing time. It was mostly not due to a lack of car-control, but a lack of understanding how to approach a corner.

You have to be self-critical, creative, adaptive and understanding to be fast. Reactions matter only a little.

#55 mkoscevic

mkoscevic
  • Member

  • 645 posts
  • Joined: June 10

Posted 17 May 2012 - 21:45

There's a lot more than anticipating grip.


It includes knowledge and experience. End result. Sum of all.

#56 The Kanisteri

The Kanisteri
  • Member

  • 10,538 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 18 May 2012 - 12:36

Reactions only matters in Drag Racing

#57 adam1312

adam1312
  • Member

  • 31 posts
  • Joined: October 10

Posted 14 October 2012 - 20:00

no its picking up the feedback that comest hrough the seat and wheel

#58 Mauseri

Mauseri
  • Member

  • 7,531 posts
  • Joined: March 05

Posted 25 November 2012 - 23:49

I think in F1 there are drivers with very different relying on reactions. Some drivers look lazy with the wheel and others shark sharp all the time.

Edited by Mauseri, 25 November 2012 - 23:49.


#59 Peat

Peat
  • Member

  • 1,326 posts
  • Joined: November 09

Posted 03 December 2012 - 08:55

I think in F1 there are drivers with very different relying on reactions. Some drivers look lazy with the wheel and others shark sharp all the time.


That depends on the car though. If you put Vettel in an HRT, he'd be see-saw'ing the wheel constantly too, trying to ascertain just when the car was going to swap ends on him.

Advertisement

#60 Tenmantaylor

Tenmantaylor
  • Member

  • 8,335 posts
  • Joined: July 01

Posted 03 December 2012 - 10:53

One of the things I learned writing racing games was, reaction times really aren't key unless you design the game to require it (the Burnout series springs to mind).

For a while, I worked for a company that made free to play PC skill-games, usually physics based (racing etc.). In order for replays to work properly, the physics update and input code were completely decoupled from the rendering side of things. So while the simulation ran at 100Hz, the rendering could be as choppy and as low as you liked.

There's an implication in the latter, as it means that the time between the player seeing something happening and reacting, increases. In fact, it often increases beyond the typical sudden-event reaction time (half a second). And what I found was ( and I believe a few studies by the British MOD confirm this) the reaction time wasn't really key in a simulation and also real life.

When you're driving a car, you're typically focused on what's called "visual range". That is, your brain is predicting (using visual cues) what will happen when your car reaches a certain point, two seconds from now. And it's the ability to accurately predict that, that makes a good racing driver. And this rang true for my simulation because, I could have the graphics update running at around 15Hz, looking absolutely terrible, but people were still able to play the game very well.

Why? Because the human brain is great at filling in gaps. Especially gaps that are a constant delta time...as long as the error in what they see remains constant, a person can make very good judgement on near-future events. Essentially...it showed that reactions weren't the key factor in being able to drive a car at speed.


Great post :up:

As long as racing sims have been around there have been the FPS arguments;

Person A: "The human eye can't see more than 25fps"
Person B: "I can tell the difference between 30 and 60fps massively" (For the record I can tell the difference between 110and 130 as I have a 120hz screen which looks really choppy when the sync exceeds the FPS).
Person C: "I won the world championship playing at 12fps" (some of the fastest sim drivers rarely had the best kit).

You are right it's all about the prediction time and the picture your brain is building in your head about the future. Take braking points or corner turn in for example, you don't reach this point and then react to it, you predict it based on your current speed and make sure your turn in correlates exactly with your turn in point by compensating for your reaction time.

Edited by Tenmantaylor, 03 December 2012 - 10:54.


#61 noikeee

noikeee
  • Member

  • 9,744 posts
  • Joined: February 06

Posted 03 December 2012 - 16:55

Having an ability to predict the car behavior and understand how to take the corners correctly makes a huge difference, but I believe smoothness and precision at handling both pedals and wheels are very important too. Reaction times would come a long way after those skills.

I'm very bad at precision and smoothness, often requiring a very high level of effort and concentration to get regular quick-ish laptimes. For other people this comes obviously naturally with far less effort. I believe that's what explains why I was so far off the pace in my online racing attempts, even after learning the tracks and cars extensively and learning from other people's corner approach techniques (altho I would often look at someone's onboard and realize I was taking the wrong line, braking too much for a corner, or using a lower gear needlessly to win full seconds of laptime sometimes).

Edited by noikeee, 03 December 2012 - 16:57.


#62 Afterburner

Afterburner
  • In the running for best OP of 2014

  • 3,440 posts
  • Joined: January 11

Posted 04 December 2012 - 08:07

As long as racing sims have been around there have been the FPS arguments;

I'd say that's been around as long as racing games in general, to be honest. And I don't believe the difference between 30 and 60 FPS can have any tangible effect on someone's reaction time or overall gameplay performance, but it certainly has an effect on the player's sense of in-game speed, I think. Racing games with higher frame rates have always 'felt' smoother and quicker to me, even if they were no easier to drive.

For an example of the effect on sense of speed in an arcade racer, observe the change in frame rate on Mario Kart Wii between two-player split-screen (60 FPS) and three or more player split-screen (30 FPS). Even if the game is running at the same speed but just lacking frames, it certainly feels faster to me in two-player split-screen.

Also, check out the replays on Forza Motorsport 2/3/4 versus actual gameplay; the replays don't render the races at the same frame rate that the races are rendered at.

Perhaps this is a topic for another thread. :)

#63 Tenmantaylor

Tenmantaylor
  • Member

  • 8,335 posts
  • Joined: July 01

Posted 04 December 2012 - 09:38

Well, given this is in the Racing Simulators section and FPS has an effect on reactions it's probably a good place :) I find it definitely affects me quite a lot (for better or worse). For e.g if you are travelling at 180mph towards a corner and trying to spot the 100m marker on the track side for your braking. At 180mph you are travelling 80m/s, so, when you are 80m from your marker you have 1 second to get a good speed recognition on the marker to nail your braking. Now I agree that on the surface seeing that marker 30 times over a second isn't much worse than seeing it 120 times but the last 0.1 of a second of seeing that marker before it flies past your screen edge is absolutely crucial to your judgement as it is when the marker is most prominent (biggest) on the screen. This is when you will decide when to brake. The first 0.9s the marker barely changes due to the perspective of your screen. During this last critical 0.1s seeing the marker 8 times instead of 2, lap after lap, is a massively beneficial for consistency over a race distance. Over 14 laps of Spa this is 280 corners. If you can gain 0.04s in each corner you've bagged 10 seconds over the race distance.

#64 Afterburner

Afterburner
  • In the running for best OP of 2014

  • 3,440 posts
  • Joined: January 11

Posted 04 December 2012 - 15:03

Well, given this is in the Racing Simulators section and FPS has an effect on reactions it's probably a good place :) I find it definitely affects me quite a lot (for better or worse). For e.g if you are travelling at 180mph towards a corner and trying to spot the 100m marker on the track side for your braking. At 180mph you are travelling 80m/s, so, when you are 80m from your marker you have 1 second to get a good speed recognition on the marker to nail your braking. Now I agree that on the surface seeing that marker 30 times over a second isn't much worse than seeing it 120 times but the last 0.1 of a second of seeing that marker before it flies past your screen edge is absolutely crucial to your judgement as it is when the marker is most prominent (biggest) on the screen. This is when you will decide when to brake. The first 0.9s the marker barely changes due to the perspective of your screen. During this last critical 0.1s seeing the marker 8 times instead of 2, lap after lap, is a massively beneficial for consistency over a race distance. Over 14 laps of Spa this is 280 corners. If you can gain 0.04s in each corner you've bagged 10 seconds over the race distance.

Nice analysis. :up: Ten whole seconds is quite staggering indeed.

It's probably a small wonder, then, that I find it easier to perform well on racing games like Forza 4 and Gran Turismo 5 than I do on Codemasters' F1 games (the massive difference in physics engines left aside, lol). On consoles, they're limited to 30 FPS, which makes even GT cars on Forza/Gran Turismo feel quicker, in my opinion. Would love to take the F-2007 for a spin some time on Gran Turismo to see how it works out compared to the Codies F1 games, but don't have the patience to put the hours in to unlock it when all my racing-game friends are on Xbox. :p

And I would say the racing game I've played that best delivered a sense of speed was easily F-Zero GX. Ten years on, and I've never played a racing game that felt faster; they certainly did a great job giving you the illusion that you're traveling at fighter-jet speeds, lol. I'd link you to a video, but I can't find one that preserves the integrity of the game's graphics. :p

Edited by Afterburner, 04 December 2012 - 15:12.


#65 Tenmantaylor

Tenmantaylor
  • Member

  • 8,335 posts
  • Joined: July 01

Posted 04 December 2012 - 15:16

I loved F-Zero on the SNES :up: It's easy to make any sim with adjustable FOV (Field of view) feel insanely fast, just put it up to 120degrees, feels like you are in hyperspace at 50 mph :lol: Won't have a chance in hell doing a quick lap though as you can't spot your braking/turn in points in time :cat: With a single 16:9 monitor I find around 65deg has the best compromise of looking into the distance to spot markers and seeing someone alongside you. You can change this between 3 settings on Gran Turismo 5 IIRC (Wide, Med, Tight) but on the tight view the graphics are very shaky as the cars bounce around.

#66 Afterburner

Afterburner
  • In the running for best OP of 2014

  • 3,440 posts
  • Joined: January 11

Posted 04 December 2012 - 16:01

I loved F-Zero on the SNES :up: It's easy to make any sim with adjustable FOV (Field of view) feel insanely fast, just put it up to 120degrees, feels like you are in hyperspace at 50 mph :lol: Won't have a chance in hell doing a quick lap though as you can't spot your braking/turn in points in time :cat: With a single 16:9 monitor I find around 65deg has the best compromise of looking into the distance to spot markers and seeing someone alongside you. You can change this between 3 settings on Gran Turismo 5 IIRC (Wide, Med, Tight) but on the tight view the graphics are very shaky as the cars bounce around.

Don't know if there's a bit of confusion here or not, but I was talking about the F-Zero game from the Gamecube that came out in 2003--never played the one on the SNES, unfortunately. Traveling down the front of a skyscraper after traversing a vertical hairpin at twice the speed of sound never felt so realistic. :p Scary to think that the original F-Zero is almost 20 years old, haha. Wish they'd finally make a new one for the Wii-U, even if I don't plan on getting the console any time soon.

I haven't figured out how to get into the camera options on GT5 yet. From third person, the camera feels very much like Super Mario Kart; seems as if you're rotating the environment around you rather than steering the car, so I tend to stick to cockpit view, lol. Will have to dig it out and give it a go again when I'm not so busy. Purely as an aside, I love tweaking the settings on games to the extremes sometimes just to see how ridiculously difficult it can be to play. :p

Thanks for the suggestions. :up:

#67 PretentiousBread

PretentiousBread
  • Member

  • 2,905 posts
  • Joined: February 10

Posted 09 December 2012 - 15:10

Through racing at a highly competitive level on the PS3 online, I can vouch for those saying fast reactions do not make for a fast driver. I did several of those online reaction tests, and embarrassingly, I am consistently below average (below as in, slower) but I am still able to drive fast. Of course, having fast reactions cannot be a disadvantage, but it's certainly not a requirement. As someone said on this thread, if you're 'reacting' it's already too late.

#68 Dmitriy_Guller

Dmitriy_Guller
  • Member

  • 4,088 posts
  • Joined: July 01

Posted 14 December 2012 - 13:42

A lot of people in this thread seem to labor under a misconception that reaction time is just about reaction time is just about reacting when a car does something unexpected. All the talk about anticipation ignores the fact that anticipation is a function of reaction time.

#69 PedroBR

PedroBR
  • Member

  • 203 posts
  • Joined: February 10

Posted 08 February 2013 - 01:23

You see it especially in sports of older ages.. In the early 20's.. sportsmen/women rely on their physical gifts more. Some are also very good at anticipation and they might be the best of what they are doing, but physical gifts help alot and when they have them, they use them.

Then there is the transition period where they start to lose their physical gifts but have a maturity instead that can compensate for the decrease in athetiticism or "sharpness". Then they go past their peak and are slowing down alot but can still keep up with the young guys.. based on experience, knowledge and anticipation. It's like they have the mind of a master so their body doesn't need to be so good.

Then you have some guys going into their 30's or even 40's in some sports and they are still able to keep up. In sports where speed, quickness and reactions are important. Jason Kidd just won a championship in the NBA and he is 38 and at times he had to guard people like Kobe Bryant (Mavs swept the Lakers) and he wasn't doing it with speed. But with anticipation and smart game plans and understanding of the game. On paper, at 38 he should have been a liabilty that the other teams could exploit over and over again but it wasn't the case. He is a shell of his former self in alot of ways but also stronger then he has ever been in other ways.

Steve Nash is another one. Rubens in F1 is another one, winning races a few seasons ago. Mansell? I guess there is lots of cases in all sports.


Excellent post, that´s exactly how it works.


#70 PedroBR

PedroBR
  • Member

  • 203 posts
  • Joined: February 10

Posted 08 February 2013 - 01:32

You can't anticipate things perfectly, that would require a time machine. Therefore, there will always be some error or imprecision associated with anticipation. However, if your reaction time is instant, it is in theory possible to do everything perfectly.


No, top guys in their activities many times does anticipate precisely. Another thing that happens is the antecipation of many scenarios at the same time(in the big picture or in a given situation) and being ready for all them.



#71 Dmitriy_Guller

Dmitriy_Guller
  • Member

  • 4,088 posts
  • Joined: July 01

Posted 15 February 2013 - 02:12

No, top guys in their activities many times does anticipate precisely. Another thing that happens is the antecipation of many scenarios at the same time(in the big picture or in a given situation) and being ready for all them.

Sounds dubious, but also irrelevant. Even with perfect anticipation you can only match someone who has perfection reaction time.

#72 Sin

Sin
  • Member

  • 1,952 posts
  • Joined: December 12

Posted 15 February 2013 - 23:32



Schumacher says you need reaction time :p for real racing if you need it for game I dunno

#73 Wander

Wander
  • Member

  • 2,281 posts
  • Joined: March 12

Posted 16 February 2013 - 09:51

Sounds dubious, but also irrelevant. Even with perfect anticipation you can only match someone who has perfection reaction time.


But there is no such thing as "perfect reaction time". Even if your reactions are really good, there is still going to be about 150ms delay. Of course having good reaction time helps, but it is just one part of a pretty complex process when it comes to driving a racing car.

It would be interesting to get data on the reaction times of racing drivers, though, and see how they compare.

E: Oh, my reaction time happens to be very average, though, so I guess it would be useful to blame it on why I'm not the fastest simracer ever. I average at 240ms.

Edited by Wander, 16 February 2013 - 10:01.