This is really happening. Porsche is returning to sim racing! For real!
This is a big deal because for the last decade or so, Porsche has been locked in a licensing deal with EA Games granting them near exclusive use of the legendary brand in racing games. The now infamous deal is the reason why you needed to pay extra to drive Porsches in Forza Motorsport and why Gran Turismo has never featured them. For a long time, you could only drive a digital Porsche through a Need for Speed game or one of the million mobile phone games EA dumps into the app store, neither of which are really designed to be simulators with detailed driving models and physics.
Porsche fans lost out on a chance to experience the brand in other well-established (and often better) racing titles, Porsche themselves lost out on plenty of exposure to younger fans, and really only EA Games – once voted as the worst company in the world – benefited from it. This IGN article does a good job of explaining the deal, if you’re interested.
That’s all about to change. Today, Kunos Simulazioni and 505 Games made the announcement which many gamers didn’t think would be seen in our lifetime. Two DLC packs headed to PC and console releases of Assetto Corsa will contain various Porsche road and race cars and should drop this autumn. While no car list is confirmed yet, the video trailer they released hints at a lot of wonderful machinery. Using manufacturer b-rolls, we can guess that everything from the Boxster GTS to the 918 and the 935 to the 919 will be included. Should these all be confirmed somewhere down the line, it’s sure to be one of the best additions yet to an already wonderful racing title.
Even if you don’t play Assetto Corsa, this should still great news for fans of other titles. Rumors around that licensing deal suggested it would expire this year. With Kunos and 505 Games, devs and publishers with nowhere near the kind of budget dedicated to Gran Turismo or Forza, being able to secure this license, it could mean other franchises will have an easier time adding one of the most requested car brands to their games as well. Everyone wins. Except Ruf.