What Assetto Corsa Mobile is trying to do that no other racing game manage is to bring that full-fledged simulation experience that only PC and console games can offer. It would be the first of its kind since many of the popular racing games on mobile lean towards a more arcade experience rather than trying to go for a simulation formula.
I’ve been itching to take Assetto Corsa Mobile for a spin and see what a driving simulation experience looks like on mobile. Even though it has 60 cars included, Assetto Corsa Mobile will let you choose between two at the start of the game, the Alfa Romeo MiTo QV, and the Abarth 500 EsseEsse, each featuring slightly different stats.
Neither is particularly good, but that just makes me more anxious to perform well and unlock better cars. At first glance, Assetto Corsa Mobile has a lot of content with no less than 63 challenges in Career mode, but I soon learned that these are meant to be completed after many hours of painful grind.
The progression system is surely not revolutionary for a mobile racing game. Each challenge that you successfully complete rewards you with XP and money. If you’re actually good a racing games, you can even win gold, silver, or bronze cups that will go towards unlocking further challengers. The more XP you get, the faster your driver will level up and the more content you’ll be able to unlock.
Assetto Corsa Mobile does not feature in-game ads or micro-transactions, so the only way to purchase new cars is to complete challenges to gain enough money to expand your garage. You can also use the money to upgrade the cars you own, but the improvements are minimal are probably not worth it unless you plan to drive a car for a longer time.
Moving on to the actual driving experience, Assetto Corsa Mobile is far from being what it claims to be: a sim racing game. It does offer some sim racing moments, but they are far too few to consider this a full-fledged sim racer.
The cars feel nice under throttle, and braking can make the difference between getting that golden cup and missing all the trophies. However, if you want to benefit from all these sim racing features, you’ll have to turn most of the assists off. The first thing I noticed when playing with assists enabled is that the AI tends to brake much earlier before taking on a deep curve, whereas if you would brake slightly later you could easily gain a few seconds.
The main issue with Assetto Corsa Mobile is that it doesn’t have the controls required for a full-fledged racing sim experience. Yes, the game lets you choose from eight different control schemes, but anything other than an external controller won’t be accurate enough. It’s also important to mention that there’s no manual shifting, so what you’ll get in the end is a pretty bare-bones version of Assetto Corsa Competizione.
Assetto Corsa Mobile sets out to do something that few other games have done before but fails to achieve greatness. The visuals are well behind much older titles such as Real Racing 3 and GRID Autosport, and even the driving experience and physics are questionable if you’re looking for a realistic driving experience.
Unlike Assetto Corsa Competizione that leans more towards a sandbox experience and lets you drive any of its cars right from the start, the mobile version will have you work hard to unlock all those Ferrari Lamborghini, Maserati, and Porsche cars that are included in the game.
The game features nine tracks – Barcelona, Brands Hatch, Imola, Laguna Seca, Mugello, Red Bull Ring, Silverstone, Vallelunga, and Zandvoort, which you’ll learn very well if you plan to unlock some of the best cars in the game. I do like the fact that each car drives differently and that accurately braking and tilting matters, but I still think Assetto Corsa Mobile needs a lot of polishing to be considered a good entry point into the simulation world.