A little help getting started with rFactor2

Andrew NagyAndrew Nagy Member
edited January 2021 in rFactor


For those who have followed my posts on the General Discussions forum, I am VERY new to the sim world, and with a ton of help from this forum, I'm finally through all the steps of downloading the correct version of firmware, making sure I have the latest drivers for my components, calibrating the DD1 motor driver and performing the wheel center and manual pedal calibrations. So I'm ready to download my chosen game, which is rFactor2, because the track I'm going to physically race on in an arrive-and-drive series in Radical SR1's later this year (Atlanta Motorsports Park) is only available on rFactor2. So my immediate goal with my sim is not online racing, but driver training, starting with familiarizing myself with Atlanta Motorsports Park

So I've set the tuning parameters to the recommended values in the first thread of this forum, and am ready to download rFactor2 and start its setup procedure. But of course, right off the bat, I have several questions:

  1. Which version of rFactor2 do I need to download? I ask because there's a free version, and one that costs $31.99. I have no problem whatsoever paying for it, but I'm just wondering what the differences are between the versions.
  2. What the heck is this Steam thing? Do I have to download it in order to start using rFctor2?
  3. Could someone please provide me a link to a very beginner-oriented (I've never even played a video game in my entire life, so I'm as green as it's humanly possible to be with this stuff) video that walks you through all the steps of setting up the game, selecting the track and the car, the field of view for the monitors, etc. , how exactly to start driving on the track, etc.

Thanks in advance for the help, and for your patience. I can't wait to get started, as I think it will help me tremendously to spend a couple of months virtually driving AMP in (hopefully) a virtual SR1 before taking the three-day class I need to complete before I can start competing in the series.


  • You are very new indeed ;o) Right, here we go

    Steam is a service where you can buy and download games through the steamstore, like the Playstation or Xbox store but then for PC. It has a lot of games but not all so it depends on what you want to play. Just install it and take a look, it's pretty easy even for new PC players. Depending on your windows version you have the 32 or 64 option.

    Rfactor 2 is a payed game, think ther's a demo but that will be very limited. You have a base game with some content and payed DLC's that you can buy through steam that give you more tracks and cars. You can find it on the same poage as where you buy the game, just scroll down a bit. Besides official contect there are a lot of Mods, content made by the community. Just navigate to workshops, its located under the comunity tab, and search for Fractor2. All available content will be shown and you can subscribe to it. First time you load the game all the content you have bought or subscribed to will be installed.

    Next, setup your wheel, pedals within the option menu and assign keys to what you need. Think of traction control, abs, lights and wipers. There are a ton of good vids out there that can help you get strated. Here are a few but youtube can be your friend here.

    this one is a bit older but you can still use a lot the info.

  • Thanks for the reply, and sorry for my slow response – been a busy week at work. I have to admit to a mild sense of panic setting in, as I am completely lost, and I really need to get this sim up and running so I can have plenty of time to practice before attending the 3-day race school at Atlanta Motorsports Park in March. I watched the second video you cite, but the screens it walks through bear no resemblance to the ones in my copy of rFactor2. I can't emphasize enough how very, very basic, intro-level, never-done-anything-remotely-like-this, step-by-step set of instructions I need. I would gladly hire someone to come to my house and literally take me by the hand through each step from launching the game to running laps in a Radical SR1 at AMP, but with Covid, I don't think that's going to be an option.

    Right off the bat, I'm grappling with the fact that my copy of rFactor2 fills the whole screen, and I can't figure out how to get out of that mode. This makes it nearly impossible to toggle between the game, and any instructions in the form of a video or a pdf or any other form of step-by-step instructions. So this is my first question – how do I get out of this mode? None of the function buttons on the keyboard have any impact on the way the game is displayed.

    When I purchased the game, I went through the process of downloading which I assume must have been the basic package of tracks and cars. To be very blunt, the only track I care about is Atlanta Motorsports Park, as this is the track I will be racing on for real in a few months, in a Radical SR1, so I honestly don't care at this moment about any other tracks or cars. If an SR1 isn't available, I'll take whatever is closest. As the tracks and cars were downloading (a process which took nearly an hour), a I saw an SR3 pop up, so that's probably close enough. But I definitely need AMP, and I don't know how to determine whether I have it, or whether I need to purchase a separate package that contains it.

    To get a little more specific, when I click on the gear icon at the top right of the screen, a page opens up labeled “Settings”, which has nine tabs running along the bottom, labeled Calibrate, Assign, Graphics, Display, Sound, Difficulty, Replay, Plugins, and Network. Each of these items of course contains within it an often dizzying number of options. I literally need someone to walk me through each of these items one by one and explain what they do, and what I should set them to, which seems like a fairly daunting task, but this is something that every first-time sim user has to go through, so I can only assume that something exists that explains all this stuff, but I haven't found it.

    Again, I'm sorry to be such an imbecile newbie, but again, everybody playing a sim game today was once in my position, so surely there is help available. Thanks in advance.

  • I found a forum dedicated exclusively to rFactor2, where a guy was kind enough to walk me step by step through the start-up process for someone who has never used rFactor (or any other sim) before, including screen shots with the buttons I have to press circled in red. Now that's what a beginner like me needs! I'm really surprised how little information there is available for first-time sim users - like I keep saying, everybody has to start somewhere, so it really should be a lot easier to get off the ground with this stuff. Maybe once I get up to speed, I'll put something together so the next beginner has an easier time than I have.

  • Hi Sim Racing fans,

    first of all, happy new year and all stay healthy.

    I play rFactor long time now, rFactor 2 since beta and Studio 397 did a great job with this sim in my opinion.

    I'm new with fanatec, own hardware now for 3 days.

    Clubsport WB 2.5

    Porsche 918 rsr wheel

    Pedals V.3 (should I build in the brake damper add-on ?)

    I using fanalab, the last 399 driver, Updateted my Base 2.5 and the V3 Pedals.

    Is there a firmware update for the Porsche 918 wheel ? I don't update this.

    Is it possible to reduce the LED bar in the wheel? it is too bright.

    In fanalab I don't know to set the LED and DIsplay.

    Its always off in rFactor2, except I disable the fanalab LED and use the game control, then I see the gears and rpm on the LED stripe.

    I use the recommend settings from here for the Hardware and rFactor 2 now.

    by the way .. the driving and response, feedback while driving is awesome ! with the fanatec hardwae. too much fun to drive.

    best regards


  • If you haven't noticed yet, RF2 is currently 60% off in the Steam store, and some of the DLC (extra content) is also on sale. It would be a good time to purchase if you don't already own it.

  • Is there anyway you can link that forum page you found that had a walk through on set up. I'm new to rFactor 2. And I just can't get my DD1 feeling good like ACC and Iracing. I'm getting a crazy amount of grainy feeling and huge deadzones. I like a more heavier wheel feeling and I just can't find that. I tried the recommended setting for the game and they just feel like garbage.

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