Balancing Brakes Balance/Progression

Another game balance/tweak suggestion thread. This one will be focused on brakes.

  1. The game appears to strongly favor the car locking the “rear” brakes first, even if balancing the brakes to have equal force relative to grip. This is true from the beginning of the game until you start unlocking multiple piston disc brakes. I noticed while testing this that the stopping distance calculations also strongly favor the rear brake over the front brake. That probably needs to be retuned/rebalanced.

  2. Drum brakes are cheaper to service than disc brakes. As someone who has paid to replace a rear drum with an actual disc, for the reason of labor, drums should at least have equal servicing costs to discs at the least in my opinion, if not cost more.

  3. Later game, brake service costs get weird. It appears that the cost of the brake is dictated by the brake rotor size, then pad size, and lastly the actual brake type (drum, solid, vent). It appears that the cheapest to service brakes (for grip) are 160mm 6 pistons with full race pads, versus full 420mm single piston rotors with full comfort pads. I’m of the opinion that the rotors should have significantly less impact to brake servicing, and the brake pads should have more impact.

  4. Early game, people don’t seem to care if their cars can actually stop. They want comfortable brakes over actually stopping their car within the distance of a football field. The only markets that actually care to stop are sporty markets, which doesn’t make sense.

  5. Braking distance doesn’t appear to be factored in as a part of the safety calculations. I’m of the opinion that it would make sense if it did, as well as potentially adding drivers aids into the safety calcs.

  6. I have no qualms with the familiarity progression of brakes here. However, most markets on the surface at least seems to dislike higher quality brakes until the 80s.

  7. On the topic of quality, it seems to tie into the brakes making servicing more expensive, as well as generally improving them. This seems to scale along with point 3.

Once again, I’m out of things I can remember at the moment, but looking for weigh in on this one too.


Number four is VERY frustrating, I want people to be safe, but they’re like:

1 Like

In the early days, a bathtub on roller skates would feel more safe than most cars so nobody’s driving with enough vigour to notice the brake strength.

My biggest gripe is that more pistons lower braking distance without improving brake fade despite the increased surface area. Arguably it should be reversed as bigger brakes don’t necessarily improve braking force, they just distribute the load across the pad allowing the existing pad to spread fiction and heat.

Brake force on the pedal needs to be increased to get quicker braking as that same brake force across a larger area has less traction. This translates to tyres too where a wider tyre doesn’t have more grip, it just has more resistance to overheating and room for deflection.

I find myself using 2 piston front 1 piston back almost exclusively as going higher gives either excessive brake fade or excessive brake force.


It is true that disc brakes pads can be changed a few minutes, it is plug and play.
It is a completely different story with drums brakes. First, there was a time drums brakes were not automatically adjusting so they required to maintainance of sorts. Then anyone that changed a few drums brakes pads, especially on > 10 year old vehicules knows that some parts of often jammed, the springs are a nuisance to put back. And that’s the best scenario, when the drum is even. Because, talk about brake fads, obviously drums by design can overheat. Not to mention that a leak in a disc brake scenario is easily noticed, not with a drum brake.

However, drums pads tends to last longer. While it is true that servicing drums brakes is a completely different adventure than servicing disc brakes, it drums brakes were in use for so long (very common still in the 80’s, still in the 90’s for the rear), it was probably noticeably cheaper (especially since that manpower was maybe cheaper than hardware).

Aside from that, I think only natural that in early games, people dont have too strong expectations about car stopping power. Cars from that era had stopping capabilities completely different than what we are used to now.

1 Like