Top-down vehicle movement?

In designing vehicles for my game engine I’ve come across a question that I’d like to ask, which method of controlling a vehicle in a top-down situation is best?
The two ways I can think of are this:

  • w is up, s is down, etc… or
  • w is ‘forward’, s is ‘reverse’ and a and d are used to steer
    I’m just not sure which method would be better to use.

by “w is up, s is down” do you mean, w will always make the car go up the screen, s will always go down even if the car is turned around?

If the above, it may work in certain genres, e.g. the games where you typically play as a plane / space ship, dodging or killing things coming from the right, as you don’t really want an over complicated movement system for a fast paced game like that.

If your game is more like a 2D racing game, or a game where vehicles can help you move around the world, having a more accurate controlling for a car will feel better. (w is forward, s is reverse, a and d steer).

If you still want help deciding, tell us what the game is, and we can say what we feel would be the best.

Hey, remember I did VSim3D? I can help you with vehicle physics and such and I had also made a 2D version of the game before I switched to 3D so I’ll show you that code as well! Just add me on skype!