Asphalt Wiki
Asphalt Wiki

Around early/mid-2017, the Porsche Update was released. Simultaneously, four tuned Porsches were removed from the Garage indefinitely, though they were not removed from the game for people who already owned them. This was due to licensing issues with Porsche AG (Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG).

This would be the start of a series of licensing issues involving Porsche AG, Toyota, Aprilia, Hot Wheels, Ducati and Automobili Pininfarina. Currently, the issues with Porsche AG, Toyota, Aprilia and Ducati seem to be resolved, with the Toyota road cars being not licensed to any non-Japanese game developer.

The following page covers licensing issues surrounding Asphalt 8: Airborne.

Porsche and Electronic Arts

In late 2016, Porsche AG's exclusive licensing agreement with EA (Electronic Arts), where only EA was allowed to recreate Porsche cars in video games, expired.

Before this, several gaming companies, such as Gameloft, had been allowed to use tuned Porsches instead of "real" Porsches in their video games, due to a loophole in the licensing agreement with EA. Certain car-manufacturing companies, including RUF, 9FF and Rinspeed, had created their own unique real-world cars by using the shells of Porsche cars, along with other design elements of their own. Thus, these cars greatly resembled Porsches, and would likely be indistinguishable from real Porsche cars in video games.

When the licensing agreement with EA expired, many gaming companies had to remove all tuned Porsches in order to be allowed to introduce real Porsches into their games. However, in the 2018 open-world driving games The Crew 2 and Gear.Club Unlimited 2, both RUF and Porsche cars were seen in the car list; the 2019 mobile game Rebel Racing would introduce Porsche models in a March 2021 update with its RUF models still being visible. Thus, in Asphalt 8: Airborne, four "tuned Porsche" cars were indeed removed from the game, but only for people who hadn't purchased them yet.

Note: Needs elaboration

Relevant information from the Porsche Wiki Article:

  • Prior to the Porsche Update for Asphalt 8: Airborne, only Porsche-based cars like the RUFs, 9FF GT9 VMAX, and Rinspeed zaZen were allowed to be in the Asphalt games, as Electronic Arts had an exclusive licensing deal with the company that started back in 2000.
    • Electronic Arts' exclusive contract with Porsche expired in December 2016, allowing their cars to be used in games other than the Need for Speed games and Real Racing 3.
      • Microsoft Studios and Turn 10 Studios have regularly made deals with EA in the past to include Porsche cars in the Forza series.
    • W Motors uses Porsche-sourced parts, including Porsche's seven-speed PDK (dual-clutch) automatic transmission as well as the RUF CTR 3's engine for their Lykan and Fenyr hypercars.

Asphalt 8: Airborne (Gameloft) and Porsche

During the Porsche Update, five brand-new real Porsches, including the Porsche 959, Porsche 718 Boxster S, Porsche Cayman GT4, Porsche 911 GT3 RS, and Porsche 918 Spyder with Weissach Package, were introduced to the game. Together, the Special Events for unlocking the cars were officially known as the Porsche Motor Series. The Special Events included three Championships, one Research & Development, and one Enduro Double Down.

When the five Porsches were added to Asphalt 8: Airborne, the four tuned Porsches (the Rinspeed zaZen, RUF RT 12 S, RUF CTR 3, and 9FF GT9 VMAX) were removed from the Garage for players who didn't own them yet. These cars have never returned to the game and are likely to be unavailable for purchase indefinitely. However, before the Porsche Update arrived in June 2017, they were all given away during four corresponding multi-stage Time-Limited Events during April-May 2017.

After the four cars were given away in masses and then made unavailable for purchase, the Season 9 races of the RUF RT 12 S, RUF CTR 3, and 9FF GT9 VMAX were all removed entirely. Curiously, though, the Rinspeed zaZen's race was not removed. Collections which required these cars were changed to not include them, both for owners and non-owners of those vehicles. Meanwhile, a new collection was created for the real Porsches. Mastery races for those vehicles were also removed, but only for non-owners. The events of the RUF cars were later replaced by the Mazzanti Evantra (for the RT 12 S), and the McLaren F1 XP-5 (for the CTR 3), and the RUF-manufacturer events were replaced with McLaren.

Toyota Anti-Video-Game Campaign

Later, the Scion FR-S and Toyota Supra RZ (Mark IV) were both removed in the Motorcycles Update due to licensing issues with Toyota, which had removed most of its production cars from video games that are not developed by Japanese developers on the grounds that its cars were becoming "less popular" due to people preferring to drive the simulated versions rather than the real versions (which would cost money). Again, players who had the cars in their possession before their removal were not affected. Unlike the tuned Porsche cars, no giveaway cups were held. In addition, the Scion brand has been defunct since 2016, having been absorbed into Toyota. Toyota would later reveal that they do not support illegal street racing in non-Japanese video games that involve their cars.

With the removal of these two cars, the collection requiring the Toyota Supra (Old School) was not originally corrected to not include the car, however as of the Halloween Update, the Supra was replaced by the Acura NSX 2005. Additionally, the Mastery races of both the Scion and Supra were removed for non-owners. Similarly to the Rinspeed zaZen, the Supra's Season 9 race wasn't removed. However, the Scion's Season 9 race was altered to have the Porsche 718 Boxster S as the required vehicle. With that change, there were two Season 9 races for the Boxster; this was almost certainly not intentional. The additional race was removed in the Asphalt Moments Update.

The previous phenomenon may be explained by changes made to the rest of Career Mode. Six races for the RUF RT 12 S and RUF CTR 3 (including two races in Versus Mode) were replaced with similar races for the Mazzanti Evantra and McLaren F1 XP-5 (x2 for the Evantra, x2 for the F1 XP-5, and x2 for McLaren). Additionally, after the Toyota Anti-Video-Game Campaign that affects non-Japanese developers, the Scion FR-S' only Career Mode race was replaced with a similar race for the Boxster. It is likely that Gameloft accidentally coded the Boxster to replace the Scion in both its Season 4 and Season 9 races, instead of just its Season 4 race. The Season 9 race of the Scion FR-S was most likely supposed to be removed.

Currently, it seems unlikely that the Scion FR-S and Toyota Supra will ever be available for purchase again in Asphalt 8: Airborne. Currently, their only owners are those who had already purchased the cars before their removal. However, the Scion FR-S may return either in the game or in later games in a different form as the Subaru BRZ, which is currently a very popular car among community polls (for adding cars to the game).

In 2016, the Asphalt 8 Most Wanted Cars list also included the Lexus LFA. Due to Toyota's refusal to appear in video games not made by Japanese developers, the LFA will not be added to any non-Japanese developed game. However, Toyota granted licenses to Electronic Arts, Universal and a few non-Japanese companies with their own Japanese studios.

However, in December 2019, Forza Horizon 4 added the Supra RZ (JZA80), which was followed up by the Sprinter Trueno GT-Apex (AE86) in January 2020, the Lexus LFA in February 2020, the 2000GT (MF10) in March 2020, the Supra 2.0 GT Twin Turbo (JZA70) in April 2020, the Celica GT-Four (ST185 and ST205) in May 2020, MR2 SC (AW11) and MR2 GT (SW20) in June 2020, Celica GT and Corolla SR5 in July 2020, and the Lexus RC-F and IS-F in October 2020. CSR2 added the GR Supra RZ (A90) in April 2020 and the Lexus LFA in January 2021. Assoluto Racing added the GR Supra RZ (A90) and the GR Supra Racing Concept in April 2020.

Aprilia Issues (Tuono Delays)

During the Munich Update, Gameloft planned to add a second S-class bike, the Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 RR my2017. It was revealed to be a blueprint R&D-unlockable motorcycle, whose R&D event was supposed to start on November 20, 2017.

However, it was not released at that time. All the players received notifications for its R&D event and even a promo ad in the game, but instead of the Aprilia's R&D, Gameloft released the Arash AF10's R&D for the third time.

The bike was postponed to the Hot Wheels Update, but it was not released during that update. At the beginning of January 2018, Gameloft released the R&D for the BMW S 1000 RR, a bike introduced in said update. After the conclusion of the S 1000 RR's R&D, players were not able to play its own season as well as its Mastery in Moto Blitz, as the Tuono's season was not unlockable because of its unavailability. The Aprilia's R&D event was replaced again, this time with the second revival of the BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage's R&D on January 19, 2018. In the same month, an Asphalt YouTuber (feuerrmFilms), in a video on his channel where he tested the BMW S 1000 RR's performance in Multiplayer, said that "Gameloft is having some licensing issues with this bike", referring to the Aprilia.

In the Fall Out Boy Update, the BMW S 1000 RR's season, which was the twelfth season of Moto Blitz during the Hot Wheels Update swapped its place with the Tuono's season, which was the eleventh. Now, the Aprilia's season is Season 12 instead of 11.

Many players received blueprints for the Tuono, even though it was never made available in the garage. Its Legendary-rarity Blueprints were available in Pro Boxes and Exclusive Deals. Players that obtained the blueprints from Pro Boxes or bought them from Exclusive Deals received 50 Tokens from Gameloft with the promise that they will fuse the blueprint(s) from their inventories.

The Tuono has never been played in the update-revealing livestreams on Gameloft's official YouTube channel to the players. However, the streamers accidentally showed it in the livestreams, but never raced with it.

The Aprilia Tuono's R&D was finally released on September 29, 2018, during the Fifth Anniversary Update, this time without being a blueprint vehicle. However, the bike was only available in countries where Aprilia is licensed.

Ducati issues (XDiavel S Delays)

During the 2018 Spring Update, Gameloft intended to introduce a third B-class bike, the Ducati XDiavel S, which was supposed to be R&D-unlockable. Strangely, unlike the other vehicles on the update, this bike was not announced by Gameloft, nor was it present in any promotional material prior to the release of the update (a first for A8). The bike's existence was only discovered because of the presence of its Moto Blitz season, Season 6.2: Techno Cruise (which was locked then), and a bug present in the Lamborghini Aventador LP 750-4 SV's revived EDD, which allowed to see and upgrade every vehicle in the game, whether they were released or not; the XDiavel S included. The R&D event for this bike was never announced at all.

The bike eventually went on sale for certain players in the Holiday Update between January 22-23, 2019 for a price of Tokens 3,200. The R&D was finally launched on January 24th, 2019.

Automobili Pininfarina issues (Battista Delays)

During the 2019 Holiday Update, Gameloft intended to introduce the Pininfarina Battista, which would have been unlockable through a Festival. Strangely, this car was not present in any promotional material prior to the release of the update. The car was only announced in the patch notes for this update. Kit Cards of the Battista were seen in the Wild Cards tutorial from the Wild Cards Update onwards, with them being in Superb rarity.

By the time near the end of 2020, the car was still not added and no game files around this car could be found.

It turned out that Gameloft is having some licensing issues with the Automobili Pininfarina company, referring to the Battista supercar.

This issue carried to Asphalt 9: Legends as well, thus it is the reason why there are no offers around this car. The Special Event of this car was cancelled, or delayed until further notice, on the Nintendo Switch version of the game.

Hot Wheels Issues

During the last update of the year 2017, three Hot Wheels Cars were released: the Rip Rod, the Bone Shaker, and the Twin Mill. All of these 3 vehicles were released through exclusive Hot Wheels-themed Championships. These cars could be bought with tokens outside of their Championships, or through a Hot Wheels Car Pack when available for a limited time.

Many players were disappointed with these cars lacking Mastery Challenges or Season 9 Races. These two things, combined with their expensive prices and the high number of very rare Hot Wheels Engine cards required for Pro Kits, make the three cars nothing more than collector's items.

Players suggested to Gameloft that they add Masteries and Season 9 Races to the Hot Wheels cars. In early 2018, one of Gameloft Forum's community managers said that "we can't add Masteries and Season 9 races to Hot Wheels cars for some reasons that are above us",[citation needed] hinting that there are licensing restrictions with the three cars.

Furthermore, in late November 2018, the same Gameloft community manager confirmed,[citation needed] in a post which answered many suggestions from the players, that Hot Wheels Championships wouldn't come back, confirming the licensing issues surrounding the brand.

As of the 2019 Spring Update, the Hot Wheels Engine cards are also unobtainable.

Fall Out Boy Music

With the conclusion of the Fall Out Boy Update, Fall Out Boy's music is no longer available in-game. During the update, the music was only available within the BMW M2 Special Edition's World Tour (Story Mode), which may suggest that a contract between Gameloft and Fall Out Boy had restricted the music to only that event. Additionally, only three songs were ever used in the event, out of the 10 songs in the "Mania" album.

Use of Asphalt 8: Airborne music on YouTube

It should also be noted that it is against Gameloft's Terms of Use to use any of Asphalt 8's in-game music in YouTube videos demonstrating Asphalt 8 gameplay, as Gameloft will claim a copyright on the video(s) if this music is used. The exception to this is if the uploader is part of the YouTube program. It is unknown if the use of the game's music on any YouTube video that doesn't demonstrate gameplay of the game will result in a copyright claim.