Formula E’s ‘ghost’ racing game offers real-time challenge

Posted at 1:57 PM, Jul 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-04 13:57:41-04

A screenshot of the live ghost racing game showing Formula E cars in action.

If you’ve ever thought you could thrash the lap times of a racing driver, now is your chance to prove it.

Formula E has partnered with entertainment company Virtually Live to create a racing game that allows players to compete against drivers in real time inside a “ghost car.”

The game, which will be released in time for the start of season five of Formula E in December, uses cutting-edge technology to replicate race tracks, drivers and their cars, right down to the bumps.

“It is impressive how much detail has gone in to the finer aspects of the game,” Oliver Weingarten, Director of Content Development of Virtually Live, told CNN Sport. “Someone can be sitting in the stands, the race can take place down below and they can be racing alongside Formula E drivers on the actual track.”

The game will be released on all mobile platforms and desktop PCs, with a view to making it available on consoles in the future.

Whilst it can be played offline, it encourages online activity by allowing users to connect with their friends and share clips on social media.

“Players can capture their best moments or timings during a race and can share it with their friends online,” Ben Padley, marketing director at Formula E, told CNN Sport. “The driver can also create a meme by snipping parts of their race up, they can add emojis and share it around. It makes it more fun.”

Padley hopes the game can “democratize” the sport, allowing up-and-coming drivers to test themselves against professional racers.

“Simulated racing is the closest representation you can get to in driving: though it comes with limitations, it can level out the playing field. It is accessible for people who were taking it seriously and wanted to practice against real racer’s times as anyone can download and play it.”

And Padley sees a future for the technology beyond the race track.

“We are incredibly excited about its potential,” he added. “In the future it could be applied to a concert or a match – from a concept perspective it has the ability to change the way virtual reality is heading.

“The content will evolve as will the technology – we are not going to stand still.”