Intellectual Property Rights

As a general rule, you can depict and simulate military equipment without obtain­ing permission from their manufacturers. Because such machines are not sold to the general public or generally exploited in the marketplace in any other way, you may safely use their images in your games without worrying about who owns the rights.

Automobiles are another story, however. If you are going to simulate an existing car and use its real name and logo, you must have a license from the manufacturer.

The manufacturer might not be willing to let you show the car crumpled and burn­ing by the side of the road either. This accounts for the large number of vehicle simulations in which the cars can flip over in an accident but never get damaged— they flip back upright a second or two later, as in Beetle Adventure Racing! Or, you can do as Interstate '76 did and use cars that look rather like existing vehicles and have similar names but don't actually show the manufacturer's indicia.

The Presentation Layer

The presentation layer of a vehicle simulator is chiefly concerned with creating the visual and auditory appearance of being in the vehicle itself, so management activi­ties are kept to a minimum. When there are different gameplay modes at all, they usually offer the player a new perspective rather than a different set of challenges. The major exception is serious racing games, which generally provide a variety of camera angles while driving, but also a number of customization and tuning modes for modifying the car in the workshop.

Interaction Model

The interaction model in a vehicle simulator is quite straightforward: The player's vehicle is his avatar. The machine's controls are mapped onto the computer's input
devices, and the player's view is normally that of the pilot or driver, forward through the cockpit windows.

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