Unless you've been living under a rock for the past 8 months, you'd know the talk of the racing community has been centered around Kunos Simulazinoni's racing sim Assetto Corsa (or 'Racing Setup' in Italian if you need to know). Unique in the fact that it was released via steams early access program back in November last year, the team over at Kunos have been slowly adding content, functionality and features to their much anticipated game.
Last night brought us version 0.9 and with it the much desired multiplayer update which not only giving us our first taste of racing alongside real drivers, but also a glimpse into the dedicated server functionality that many people (especially the league community) have been keen to see.
Setting up a Assetto Corsa server can be a little tricky, and unfortunately documentation at this time is a little light. Over time this will be resolved, but for now we've put together the following 'work in progress' guide on how to get your multi-player AC experience off the ground. As features and bugs are implemented/resolved we'll update this article, but in the meantime the below guide will put you in good shape to get you going.
As always post your questions or queries in the comments section and let us know your experience and thoughts!
The first thing I'll start of with is a bit of a recommendation. If your planning on running your own server it's advised that you use a separate PC to the one you'll run the AC client on. The reason for this is that AC does not currently support direct IP connecting. In other-words you might run into trouble running the server console and trying to connect to it via AC on the same PC. Don't worry tho, you don't need steam to be running to get this to work.
It appears some people have found a work around. More information can be found here: link
Kunos have mentioned it is a future feature, which you can read a little here. Some people with a little router tweaking might be able to get it to work, however I was not one of those people and I myself resorted to using another PC to run it from.
To start off with make sure you've updated your
AC to 0.9. Navigate within your steam saved location to the AC directory. It will generally be under something like:
UPDATE 25/5/2014: AC has been updated to 0.9. With this update also brings steam tools support so you can now find the Assetto Corsa Dedicated Server list seen here on my steam list:
AC has now gone 1.0! With it brings a bunch of server updates which I'll update below.
It's important to note that you'll still need to use the acServerLauncher.ext to create custom presets.
From this directory you should see 'acServerLauncher.exe'. This is the GUI executable that makes it easy to create custom preset AC configurations that once saved you can load quickly to get your AC Server up and running. Open this app and you should see something like this:
As you can see I've already loaded and saved a preset called 'Atomic F1' and set a number of variables, but you can of course choose the settings you desire. I'll go over the process of setting up a new preset.
Go ahead and click 'New Preset' and give it any name you wish. This name is just the preset name, it is not the server name. Once done your preset should should reflect your new name.
First and foremost lets set your sessions.
One thing to take note of is that at the moment the 'Booking' session is mandatory. You cannot create a 'click and join' server. You must have a booking session.
Booking sessions are no longer mandatory, you can setup servers in 'pickup' mode, allowing you to join servers without a booking requirement.
A booking session is essentially a lobby. When you see your server and click 'Booking' it will mean that a place has been saved for you and once the booking session is over, you will then be asked to join the next session (which could be practice, qualifying, race etc).
Tick the booking session and make sure it's highlighted. The 'Settings Booking' will now become visible and from here you can change the name of the session but most importantly change the time the session is open for. The slider represents minutes so if you want people to have a 10 minute window in which to join the game, then set it to 10. If your creating this for your own use, it makes no sense to set it to a figure that high, so set it to something low like 1 or 2 minutes.
If you want to have a practice session tick the 'Practice' box and make sure it's highlighted. The settings for practice will come up. Time of the session is once again in minutes, the wait time is in seconds.
Again you can change the name, the time the practice will go for and finally the wait time after practice before the next session. If this is for your own personal use, set the wait time to something low.
The steps of this are the same as above. Set the total qualifying session time you want, and the wait time between the next session.
Once again click and highlight race to select it as a session. From the settings you can change the name of the race, the number of laps the race will go and the wait time after the race ends before everything goes back to the beginning.
One important additional note to make is that a new setting will appear called 'Race Over Time'. This setting is essentially how much time after the winner crosses the line that the race will continue for. Default is 20 seconds however you can make this shorter, or longer depending on your wishes.
Underneath the customise sessions menu you will see a tick box that says 'Loop Session'. Essentially it loops the server back to the beginning (tho at this time it looks like it does this anyway whether this is ticked or not.)
Cars & Track
From the cars selection menu it's just a case of selecting the cars you wish to be made available to players in the game. This option is wide open and you can have some pretty interesting combinations if you so choose to.
Selecting a track is straight forward to. Simply highlight the track you wish to race on and it will appear next to 'Track'.
At this time unfortunately there is no 'track rotation'.
You can now have track rotations on your server, however it can only be done by modifying the server_cfg.ini directly. Go to your 'server' directory, then 'presets', select your preset you wish to modify and open the 'server_cfg.ini' file. Navigate to 'TRACK=' and add the tracks you wish to have in your rotation. An example could be:
Make sure that LOOP_MODE is set to 1 (either in the .ini file or via the launcher tick box) if you wish the server to rotate back to the first circuit once it completes all tracks.
Goes without saying, set this number to the number of clients you wish to have maximum. Be cautious tho that at this time, this field has no ceiling. Don't set this to more than the grid limit as it can/will cause issues or worse your game/server to crash.
Set the name of which your game will appear on the AC server game list. Name it something unique so you can find it easier using the search tool. At this time connecting via IP is not supported but is apparently on the cards.
This is perhaps the most important setting you need to take special note of as it will most probably involve some router/firewall modifcation. While incoming connections to your server don't need to pay attention to the ports, your server certainly does. Make sure if you have a software firewall that AC is granted access to the web. If you don't then no one will see your server!
Additionally you'll likely need to go into your router and setup some port forwarding rules to allow AC to accept incoming connections on your selected ports to the LAN IP of the PC you're running your server from. If that sounded complicated then it's because it can be if your not familiar with how port forwarding works.
If you find when you launch your sever and you got a bunch of error message saying it cannot connect, it's likely it's because your router does not know where on your network to send the incoming/outgoing port traffic.
Unfortunately every router is different and how to setup port forwarding differs from model to model. If your not sure get a friend in the know how to do it for you, or consult your manufacturers manual.
The ports themselves can be different, there is no 'default' port. Specifying different ports can mean you should be able to run multiple servers simultaneously on one PC. However you would still need to make sure you forward all the correct ports. In my example I use UDP 9600 and HTTP 8075. You are free to choose ones within the valid range for your setup. Here's what it looks like from my router:
Copying the files to your server
Once you have completed your server config, and if you plan to run this from a different PC, you'll need to copy over the following files and directory:
The folder labeled "server"
Inside the 'server' folder you'll find the preset/s you save under the 'preset' folder. You can if you so desired make manual changes to the 'server_cfg.ini' file. Tho it's recommended at this time to simply let the launcher do the work.
If you've successfully modified your firewall settings, entered your presets for your server, you can now go ahead and click 'Launch'. If your running this from your server and copied the files over after using the launcher, simply run the 'acServer.exe'. If everything went ok you will see something like this:
Now launch up AC, go to the online option and search for your server. If your in luck you'll see:
Here is an example of my server config_cfg.ini:
NAME=ASR AC Championship
So there you have it. Rather condensed I know and there are more features I've not touched on but the above will get you at least going. Feel free to drop by the forum or post questions below! Hope to see you on the track!