As always with our racing, communication before, during and after races is paramount. You're going to have to get yourself a PC compatible microphone and headset. Before a race a Steam multi-user chat will be set up where you can use voice communications. If you don't have a headset, you won't be able to race. The Xbox360 headset and wired controller work fine with a PC, Steam voice chat, and this game. A wireless Xbox360 controller will need a Microsoft wireless receiver. Failing that, buy a dedicated headset. I bought one in Sainsbury's for a tenner. It's USB and works on both PS3 (for GT) and PC. You can even separate the game sounds from the voice chat, like on the consoles. I'm sure they'll be a cheap option in the January sales too
For the first time we will probably have half (or possibly even more than) the players using wheels and pedals rather than using a controller. For anyone using a wheel and pedals it is highly likely they will be using a cockpit or nose camera view for the best realism and feedback. These views have very limited side and rear visibility. The game allows for sideways and reward glances with a button push, but please be wary when racing in close quarters. You should always assume that the other drivers around you are in cockpit view and will not always be able to see where you are. Use headsets for communication and keep conversation race-related.
I've not played the game using a controller, but I hear it plays perfectly well, with the Xbox360 pad at least. As for any view other than cockpit, I'm not sure. I've never used anything other than helmet cam so I'm unsure how well any chase cam or rollbar cam works for racing.
As this is a PC game, and we'll all be racing on different hardware, you can customise the options to suit your setup. Please make sure you know what all your buttons do and how to access certain options in the game. Write them down and have them close by if necessary. Options such as changing camera and looking behind and to the sides are essential. As are the buttons for announcing your intention to pit and toggling the pit lane speed limiter. Make sure you know how to use the pit lane options menu and which buttons you've set to navigate it, because you'll need that if you're coming in to fix damage, refuel or change tyres.
If you're using a wheel, make sure you've calibrated it to your liking, including dead zones, full lock and force feedback options.
If you're experiencing a low frame rate, you can reduce the graphics options. You can also adjust the cockpit camera field of view to see more to the left and right of you, although doing this distorts your view in the middle of the screen.
As with the Xbox and Forza's love of open NAT and forwarded ports, please make sure you've done the same for Steam and Race 07