In this blog post, we’ll be discussing key factors involved in running a sim racing event, whether it is an online event, or an in-person gathering. This is not an exhaustive list, but intends to guide you into thinking more effectively about the event you want to run.
When running an event for any kind of esport for the first time, it helps to have a list of key things to consider when setting things up. This blog post is intended to give a small overview on the things you’ll need to consider for sim racing specifically, as well as events in general. This post will be a more casual, beginner friendly look into running grass-roots events. For a deeper dive into events for a larger scale, I suggest you check out our other blog post here
Online, Offline and Games
First off, is deciding whether you are running an online event, or offline. Online events are generally simpler to start with, because you’ll not have to negotiate with a venue or equipment suppliers, or provide equipment yourself or via community sourcing, which you will have to do for an in-person event. Online events also open up your event to a wider audience because of convenience, as well as allowing international participation.
As well as the online or offline decision, you’ll want to consider the game or games you intend to run for. Most events within the sim racing sphere focus on a single game, which can affect how things run. Currently, the most popular games to run sim racing events are F1 2023, Assetto Corsa Competizione (ACC for short) or iRacing. Each game has its pros and cons when it comes to running events and lobbies, so be sure to take the time to get used to the way things are run in game, as well as if the publisher or developer has any requirements or licensing needed to run events.
Equipment and Venue
Equipment is also a huge concern for events. Online events can be run from home, with your standard sim racing setup, and possibly a second machine to track entries, tournament standings and such. The complication comes with moving to an offline event, where each person within a race would require their own rig to compete, which can be a costly and time consuming endeavour to organise and assemble, depending on the supplier.
Another point, as mentioned earlier, for offline events, is the venue. The space you use needs to have enough room to handle the volume of rigs you’ll need for each round of an event, as well as ample room for people to step away, leave personal belongings, and perhaps most importantly, enough ventilation to keep the setups from overheating and causing more faults.
If you have any images that encapsulate the above, feel free to drop the URL here
In the current climate for esports events of any game, not just sim racing, one of the most important things to consider for your event is whether you intend to broadcast or live stream it. This would get more eyes onto your event, and mean any subsequent events can be advertised alongside footage of the first.
Professional broadcasting solutions, such as those offered by Simstaff may be out of reach for your first event or two, but home streaming, with the one PC capturing gameplay and uploading it to Twitch as the event runs is just as viable, especially in the beginning. It is by no means a requirement to have a stream or broadcast for your event, but the benefits greatly outweigh the problems in putting one together.
Event Formats and Prizes
The format of your event is also important to consider. Running multiple 8-person (or more) races at once, for example, would be exciting competition but also require much more equipment for an offline event. Online events have much less issue when it comes to larger formats, as it is generally assumed competitors entering would have their own equipment, since they’ll be playing for home.
Prizes are also something to consider. For grass roots events run by someone as a hobby, something simple such as a special discord role, or entry to a follow up event will suffice, but more players are very often enticed and attracted by a cash reward or substantial prize, as proven by other esports such as Dota 2’s The International increasing in prize pool constantly for a good few years, as shown in this data by Statistica, and also in the image below.
There are other things to consider outside of the things listed in this blog post, but those are generally aimed more towards bigger events with substantial funding, lead time on organising, and a team of staff working on such an event, which can make good use of the blog post linked at the start of this one. If you cover the points listed here, and make sure to think them all through, you’ll have the foundations of a solid event. If you have any questions, ideas or tips we’ve missed, then be sure to drop us a line and let us know!