So, it's a well known fact that the current version of LFS requires you to enter corners sideways (like in a rally, yay) to get the maximum out of the car. I've never perfected this and I've always wondered how you do it.
I seem to get more understeer than oversteer when I try to do it, and if I try to brake a little harder the car just snaps at some point because of the brake bias.
So what's the idea of this technique? How do you properly arrive sideways at a corner without overdoing (or underdoing) it?
In theory (in real world racing) you want to be sliding just a bit all the way through a corner. I guess (but if anyone has a proper explanation, I'd like to hear it) the problem in LFS is that once you pass the optimum slip angle, the drop-off in grip isn't as big as it should be. So you can arrive pretty much sideways at a corner with the car pretty much already rotated without losing any momentum, and then get on the gas faster and harder than if you took the slow line.
The problem is how to turn in so that the car slides just the right amount at the right point on the track.
You probably want to add some replay footage to unequivocally make your point. i.e. just how much sliding you're talking about. In my experience (I usually peak around 1 second off WRs, though I've never played with anything but gamepads) the optimal amount of slip is minor, not enough to call it rally style (though this could just be your vernacular). What's tricky (and what might be unrealistic) is how slippery (although easy enough to recover; that too might be unrealistic (e.g. how softly tires hook back up)) things get in that optimum range of slip.
In my experience it's barely noticeable if you're watching all the cars do it from track side perspective. If you're focused (chase camera) on one player doing it as I do it (so again this is just my experience but I'm fairly sure it's accurate) you'll see a slight sideways angle.. Never enough to qualify as drifting. Excluding special case of very low speed corners.
No, I can't describe it by "I'm letting the rear go" at any point in the corner. The rear is only barely sliding more than the front. It's all very controlled.. I can't do it randomly.
In my experience the XRT and XRR in particular lend themselves to this pretty well. It's a very slight angle, very carefully modulated. I don't think you can really compare it to rallying slides.
The above video with Pearcy sliding around XFGs in his XRT is a special case: it's a low speed corner, his car is different from those he's passing, and on top of that there's no way to tell (unless you know that corner and the cars involved like the back of your hand) whether the XFGs were as fast as they could've been.
That angle of attack's more than the kind I described. Sorry I don't have any replays (nor any controller to go make some).
The next argument is whether this small slip is realistic in LFS.. Whether that little area just beyond grip and just before full slide, where grip is optimal, is the same in LFS as in reality. There's a few very detailed threads covering this. IIRC in this Gen.Disc. sub-forum.
The quickest answer to your questions is to go try it out yourself. The XRT with some good setups (keep in mind some WR setups are "special" though) is probably the best simplest test on street tires. The XRR is probably the best road car on race tires, and I don't know what to recommend for single seaters. And then there's new tire physics coming up, which pretty much everyone has agreed for a long time now that there's flaws in the tire model, IIRC including this slip behavior in particular.
I know that tires are supposed to be at their best when slightly sliding, and I know that you go fastest in LFS by sliding more than you would in reality, but I've never seen it shown that LFS' amount of excessive slip is so dramatically larger than reality as to look ridiculous.. IIRC LFS only gives you a slight amount of extra slip compared to reality.
I think it is, as you said, mostly apparent in low-speed corners. I remember trying to get turn one at Blackwood right in the BF1. An absolute menace because you had to brake just the right way or else you would lose several tenths as well as have a bad entry to the chicane.
In reality though, you never see Formula One cars entering a hairpin in that fashion, at least not on a quick lap.
I used low tire pressures to get a little more mechanical grip so I could use less wing. This got me the WR but I was eventually beaten by someone with higher pressures. IIRC, I was faster in the corners but he ended up being fast enough on the straights to make up for it.
Anyway, as a result of the low pressures, the optimal slip angle of the tires was rather high. I was often hitting as much as 2 degrees of lateral slip. That's why it looks like I'm "drifting."
Low pressures were not conducive to consistent grip on this track (too much heat) so I used higher pressures. The end result was a much lower optimal slip angle, such that the car always appears to be pointing exactly in the direction of travel.