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(PC gaming) Well. Today I discovered that this exists:

Car Mechanic Simulator 2014

I played the demo and found it frustrating. Mechanical problems are oversimplified; You unbolt the fuel filter to replace it. No removing fuel lines, no removing the gas cap to help depressurize the system, etc. Removing the oil filter results in no oil spilling anywhere, and you don’t even change the oil when you do it. And the mechanic’s test drive is conducted on an amazingly well-laid out autocross course complete with cones, bumps, and corner markers rather than just driving it around the block. It’s also just a formality that you do because the checklist tells you to do it - it doesn’t return any information for you to use, because there’s no diagnostic work required of the player – the game tells you what’s busted by highlighting it in red, and then you remove it and put a green-highlighted part in its place.

It also fails to actually show how the parts go together - I did a brake job, and to do it, the game required me to remove the caliper. The pads stayed behind on the rotor, and I then had to remove them with a wrench.

There’s also no way to screw up. You cannot send the car out until you have repaired it correctly. They should allow you to send the car out without having replaced the brake pads - killing the customer should cost you points! :wink:

I think it’s a neat idea, and if the developers actually worked on their own cars it might have gotten fleshed out into something interesting and educational, but as it stands it’s just a “click whatever’s highlighted until it stops being highlighted” game that dispenses wrong information about how cars work. I certainly wouldn’t spend any money on it.

Something like that might make for a good training aid for new auto mechanics. The idea wouldn’t be so much to show how to do an actual brake job for example, but to point out certain tasks that must be done otherwise the job would be considered incomplete.

It sounds to me that it’s geared to four year olds watching The Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. I have had to endure it while sitting my Grandson. For those not familiar (I envy you). Obvious choices for the correct answer are highlighted just in case you are a complete idiot.

Pretty pointless to me but I’m not a gamer anyway. I prefer to read a good book.

I could be wrong, but the thought of coming up with a realistic game involving humor and based on real life situations in the shop might be something I’d shell out money for and play.

Maybe mechanics high-fiving each other over selling some 80 year old woman 3 grand worth of work on her 5k miles car, a service writer going off into the turbo encabulator bit with a customer, or some customer going ballistic at the service desk while accusing the shop of ruining everthing on his car because they touched it.
Maybe dumping a car off the rack or shoving it through the roof would generate a few chuckles…

At a dealer where I worked we had 3 incidents involving damaged customer cars that happened in the span of a week and converted to a game would be pretty funny.

I’m not a gamer either, but this sounds boring.

When my dad was alive, whenever he was working with cars one of my nephews would be under his Little Tykes coupe with a big wrench and hammer.
He’d copy his grandpa working on cars, good thing dad didn’t swear much!!!

I always thought that they should make those Little Tykes Coupes to be taken apart into about 6 pieces. With plastic bolts that would be retained in the part so they couldn’t get lost. Include a couple of wrenches and a plastic hammer. Make the bolts in three sizes along with the wrenches.

What a good learning tool for little kids that want to copy dad.


The first time I attempted to play a video game it was Pong. It was 1973. It was in the only place it could be found which was a bar. I was there legally. I really sucked. Over 10 years later I tried my 2 boy’s Atari. I sucked worse. 10 years later I tried a computer flight simulator. I sucked even worse. I know my limitations. I don’t do video games

I find most video games boring and not a good use of my time. I was hooked for a while on Playstations and the Gran Turismo series of games. The last one was Gran Turismo 6 and I gave it to my great nephew after about a month. All the tracks were basically the same as all the other versions and they took away some of the fastest cars or detuned them drastically. The most surprising vehicle was the Suzuki ESCUDO Dirt Trial Car. It was AWD and could beat any car on any course.

@Yosemite They have something kind of like your idea:

@sgtrock21 that wouldn’t have been Andy Capp’s Tavern, would it?

@missileman for a game that bills itself as “the real driving simulator,” it sure isn’t very realistic. I gave up on it when my cat knocked my wheel’s plug out of the wall and I crashed my Veyron into the wall at 250mph. I plugged the wheel back in and the car kept driving perfectly. No damage. So realistic…

The most high tech, and expensive, game that I’ve ever played was the jet simulator at the local Air Force base. Having been at the controls of several small private planes I was hopeful that I wouldn’t embarass myself too much in the simulator with an AF F-15 Captain riding shotgun…

Unfortunately, I did… :frowning:


A friend used to work for a major airline in the simulator programming department. She used to (pre- 9/11) get me into the full motion simulators to “test” her code changes. She liked to get me to where I was just starting to relax and enjoy flying, and then blow up 2 or 3 of my engines and maybe fail all 3 hydraulic systems and make me descend through a thunderstorm to a dead stick landing that I invariably killed everyone on.

It did make Microsoft Flight Simulator seem drab by comparison, though.

To be honest, I was worried so much about looking bad that I was sweating profusely even while entering the simulator. The instructor set me off on 3 flights. I crashed on the first two and almost did on the third one.

On the first he had me fly from Vance AFB to Tinker AFB. I made it to Tinker without killing us but during the landing he threw in severe crosswinds and major thunderstorms; all at night. I got it on the runway and ground looped it. Judging from the shaking and noise I assume we both died.

The second one to Key West, FL went well until he told me to make a low level high speed pass with a barrel roll by the control tower; a la Top Gun. I made the roll and went straight into the ocean at about 350 knots. Dead before I even had a clue it was coming…

The third one was to Vegas with a high speed pass down The Strip and came within a heartbeat of plowing into a casino due to a 250 knot, 90 degree bank in city traffic… :slight_smile:

The instructor asked if I had any questions when it was all over and I only had one; “How many aircraft do they allow you to crack up before the Air Force decides you’re not pilot material…”. :slight_smile:

@shadowfax …I know what you mean. I learned early in the game with Gran Turismo that you didn’t need brakes to race around many of the tracks. I did release the throttle but I never used brakes. Not very realistic but I had very fast times and improved the times with practice. BTW…there was a mode, I think, that allowed you to race that caused damage and would disable your car in a crash. I hated that mode. The only realistic races that I run heated your tires to red (caused steering problems) on a banked track or let you run out of fuel. That was realistic enough for me because it’s only a game.

OK4450, he threw in severe crosswinds and major thunderstorms under IFR conditions to a rookie? That must have been a riot! {:smiley:

Mountainbike, yes he threw me for a loop so to speak. We took off from Vance in the daylight and the instructor had me doing some rolls and loops before saying we were going to go to Tinker.
He then created pitch black night conditions and as I could see the runway lights way off during the approach he then said oh by the way, thunderstorms are coming.
At that point it was non-stop thunder and rain, lightning flashes, and getting bounced around all over the place.

I did manage to land (wrestle is a better word) the T-37 onto the tarmac but a few seconds later groundlooped it due to crosswinds and killed us both.

When I got out of the simulator I was half soaked in perspiration, eyes like saucers from concentrating so hard, rubber kneed, and I don’t think I ever breathed during three flights.

I was so focused on wanting to do well (and not succeeding…) that the simulator actually wasn’t even that much fun while in it. A memorable experience more than anything from an ultimate video game.
Probably just as well he didn’t put me into the T-38 simulator… :frowning:

Mostly what I learned from a flight simulator was that motion sickness has absolutely nothing to do with actual motion. .

LOL, interesting factoid!

The first time I was in a sim that went on full motion was in a DC-9 rig (which should tell you how long ago this was if you’re a plane nerd). For those that haven’t seen one before, a FMS sim is a big box that has a completely accurate mockup of an airplane cockpit inside. The box sits on a bunch of hydraulic pistons that can tilt, rock, twist, etc to make the box move around. Because you can’t see anything outside, the movement fools your brain into thinking you’re flying.

My friend and the flight instructor who came along for the fun stuck me on a runway and had me take off. DC-9’s are fast little planes when empty. They’re kind of the sports car of the commercial passenger jet world.The sense of acceleration was exactly like it is when you’re in a real jet.

I’m not a pilot, but I’ve been flight-simming since the early 80’s, so I was able to take off and fly it pretty smoothly… Only I didn’t. I kept pushing the throttle forward, then pulling it back, over and over. Finally the instructor asked me what the blue hell I was doing. “I can’t get over how real the acceleration feels!” It was like being a little kid again.

The best part is that now some people are making motion sims at home - including driving simulators that use FMS flight sim principles to make you feel like you’re really accelerating in that supercar. It’s the closest most people will ever get to driving any car they want at speed on a race track.

If I were a pilot my nickname would probably be “Smoldering Crater” because that’s what the likely and quick result would be… :slight_smile:

There’s been a number of the local Air Force pilots here at the base who have been injured or killed and while the AF remains close-mouthed on things like this some info does get out.
In most cases it’s sheer carelessness due to hot dogging so all of those simulator and flight lessons meant nothing. :frowning:

Some years back one of the T-38 Talons went in nose first about a 1/4 of a mile from the shop door of the Nissan dealer where I worked. This one was a mechanical malfunction and if that event had happened a second later it’s quite possible that plane could have come through the shop door due to the sharp banking turn they were in.
At least both pilots ejected and were picked up with no injuries to speak of.

I think the purpose of motion simulators in flight simulators is to prevent people from turning green with nausea while using a flight simulator.
If motion is what caused motion sickness, we would all turn green while jogging.
It’s really disorientation sickness caused by a conflict between what your eyes tell your brain and what your inner ear tells your brain.
The reason astronauts experience nausea during weightlessness is because when you are weightless, there is no such thing as up or down, and that is extremely disorienting.

I took some helmet cam videos of some of my skiing and when I tried to watch them on a big screen TV up close to be immersed in the action, I quickly found myself becoming nauseated.
I now know why they don’t show more first person view footage in I-Max theaters. They would have to have barf bags behind every seat. An I-Max roller coaster ride will make you sicker than the actual ride because of the disconnect between what the eyes see and what the inner ear senses.


Even normal video games can cause motion sickness. I had read that warning in a lot of instruction manuals before, but it took me from NES all the way up to the N64 to actually feel that way, and it was only with Doom 64 that I experienced motion sickness from playing it too long
As far as helmet cams go, I’ve seen the helmet cam where a guy climbs a radio tower to the top to repair something, and that gives a pucker factor just watching it