Steering and collisions

Watching Eric Schlange’s steering race video, there are two very obvious issues that need resolving. Scaling this up to larger fields of racers would really not be a nice experience.

1: Collision detection. How many riders are show in this screen grab?

The answer is 7. This just doesn’t work. It’s like you are a riding a TT and the other riders are ghosts that provide draft.

  1. Steering severity. The ability to swerve across the road should be relative to speed. The faster you travel, the more ground has to be covered to move from one position to another. Suddenly moving from one side of the road to other when travelling at 45km/h looks like a car racing game from the early 90s.

I’m probably missing something here, but as hard as I look, I see only six riders in the image. Does that make a difference to whatever you’re talking about?

No but maybe it reinforces my point! There’s 7, but they are coexisting in the same space. Quite the phenomenon.


I see the backside of one rider in the immediate foreground. That makes one. I see two riders to his right. That makes three. I see one rider to his left. That makes four. I see two riders in front of him. That makes six. Within which of these riders are you suggesting there is a seventh rider?

I really think you’re missing the point I am trying to make :joy:


Did the Crit club race last night, and it was very noticeable at certain times there was some form of collision detection as it wouldn’t let me ride through someone, but then other times it just let you plough straight through another rider.

It might be horizontally it is there, but coming from behind (vertically) is not enabled but id need to check it a few more times.

I assume that the server-side vs client-side positioning issues make this more tricky and more likely to do this sort of thing.

For sure, that is the root cause of many of Zwift’s problems. That said, local collision detection should still do the job… if they’re on your screen, you can’t go through them.

It looks from the video that steering players can steer directly through other steering players, but they can’t steer through non-steering players.

The collision detection does work…but (there is alway a but)

The detection aria is quite small. When I played with the collision it felt like it was only the bottom brackets of the bikes that could not pass thru each other going from the side.

There is no collision if you come from the back.

Collision detection takes a lot of processing power and it increase as the aria (volume) of the detection sfere increase.

I guess I must be missing your point. You neglecting to answer the question I asked doesn’t help me understand anything. Apparently there is a video available that is unavailable to me. Perhaps watching that would help. But where is it?

Otherwise, when steering is enabled I’ve experienced what I believe you termed a phenomenon where, for a moment, my avatar is merged with another rider’s avatar. It presented no issues for my riding experience so it didn’t seem noteworthy to me. But, again, I’m probably missing whatever point you’re trying to make.

see this post: Pack Dynamics 4.1 - Test Events - #191 by gloscherrybomb

If you don’t think there’s a problem with riders constantly riding through each other then that’s an interesting opinion and you’re welcome to it, but I created this thread because I think it’s jarring, removes tactics, feels wrong and is generally unenjoyable to watch let alone ride.

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By definition it doesn’t work, in the video you linked. Riders constantly riding through eachother for the whole race.

Thanks Gerrie for pointing to the video.

Maybe this image helps you


If a person is riding in a consequential competitive event I can definitely see where this would be an issue.

For the casual rider, like me, whose primary aim is to exercise on a trainer when cycling IRL isn’t an option, I don’t find this anomaly particularly disturbing. IRL an event like this would put you in the local ER. On Zwift you just keep going like nothing happened.

Just as an observation, my experience on Zwift with steering engaged is that more often than not I’m unable to steer through other avatars, but occasionally I can.

I see seven riders in this image.

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For sure. For casual riding who cares. Arguably lots of things don’t apply to casual riding:
Legitimacy of competitors
Realistic speeds
Pack dynamics

But for sure they matter for racing, which is what I’m pointing out here. The video is also of a race.

(note: I’m not sure what value steering or braking adds in freeriding either. I see those two things as being developed with racing in mind).

In free rides it’s just another thingy that provides some semblance of realism while what you’re really doing is sweating it out on a stationary trainer.

I do agree with you in the video it does seem not to be working. But if you take into account that the contact need to perpendicular you see it does work, but there are many times when the contact is not perpendicular.