Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era Rules

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Game, Entries and Narrative

Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era is a management-role-playing game on the GP Rejects forums (or any forum considered a successor or an alternative by the administration). Unofficially, Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era may also be referred to as Alternate Formula One - Current Era. Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era for the seasons 2010 to 2019 is to be referred to as Alternate Formula One - Two-Race Era.

The administration is defined as the GP Rejects forum user(s) (or any forum considered a successor or an alternative by the administration) running Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Running the game is defined as handling the administrative duties (controlling budgets, ensuring appliance with the rules, determining performance etc.) of Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era as well as simulating all Grand Prix weekends. The administration may only be assigned to a new user if the current administration is either permanently and irrevocably banned from the GP Rejects forums (or any forum considered a successor or an alternative by the administration), voluntarily surrenders the role of administrator, is agreed to be egregiously incompetent by all users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era or dies in real-life. The decision on the replacement user to be made the new administration is to be made by the users of the GP Rejects Discord in a democratic manner as quickly as possible.

Any change by the administration to these rules during the season must be announced unsolicited with a post on the GP Rejects forums (or any forum considered a successor or an alternative by the administration) with at least 3 Grand Prix weekends notice, unless force majeure prevents this. This announcement is not required if the wording of the rule is changed to help clarify the rule's intent or correct grammatical errors. Any rule change during the season is invalidated if 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to the rule changes. Users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era can request rule changes during the season once per season. The suggested rule change becomes part of the rules if all users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era agree to it. During the period between the final motor development phase of the previous season and the beginning of the driver market of the upcoming season, the administration can freely change rules as it sees fits with the exception of rule changes that were invalidated during the season. It is the responsibility of the users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era to educate themselves on any rule changes.

Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era is simulated using the video game Grand Prix 2. Changing the simulation method used to run Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era Grand Prix weekends must be announced by the administration with at least 3 Grand Prix weekends notice. Changing the simulation method used to run Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era Grand Prix weekends during the season is prohibited. The administration may entrust other people with simulating the Grand Prix weekends within the game, unless 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to the user chosen to simulate the races. If the responsibility of simulating the Grand Prix weekends is to be given to a third party by the administration, this must be announced by the administration with at least 3 Grand Prix weekends notice.

The narrative period of Alternate Formula One - Current Era includes all Alternate Formula One history from 1965 onwards. "Retcons" (changes to previously simulated or role-played events) can be undertaken by the administration whenever deemed necessary, though the administration has to inform any involved users of the decision and explain their reasoning unsolicited. A retcon is voided if all users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to it. Should no game displaying Alternate Formula One history until 1965 exist, the administration can extend the narrative period to include all of Alternate Formula One history from 1945.

For any gameplay element the administration has the exclusive right to invent an in-character reasoning should it be considered elemental to sustain the willing suspension of disbelief.

Any user of the GP Rejects forums (or any forum considered a successor or an alternative by the administration) and/or Grand Prix Rejects Discord may run one team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Any user running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era must have a Discord account for private messaging or must supply the administration with an option to contact them immediately should it prove necessary. A team is defined as the representation of the user in the game world, given a name, nationality, team principal and a backstory providing an in-character explanation of the source of its budget by the user at the time of entry. Should the administration consider any supplied name and/or backstory ill-fitted, it may deny the entry. If an entry is denied, the user may choose a different name and backstory until an acceptable entry is achieved. A team's name can be changed after the conclusion of an Alternate Formula One season. The administration is entitled to refuse a team the right to change their team's name as it sees fit.

All teams have, at all times, a budget representing their financial capabilities. The budgets, as well as all other financial matters in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, are measured in Euro. Any transfer of money from or towards teams may only be undertaken in increments of 0.5 million Euro. Teams can freely transfer their budget to other teams, but must justify their reasoning to the administration unsolicited. If the administration considers the reasoning insufficient, it can cancel the transfer as it sees fit. Any transfer between teams must be verified by both parties to the administration before it becomes valid.

The number of teams available for any season will be decided on by the administration before the 11th-to-last race of the previous season. At no point Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era must not have less than 8 teams or more than either 17 teams or the highest number of teams that can be supported by the simulation method without needing to reduce the number cars before the race, whichever number is lower. A user running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era agrees to fulfill deadlines for all actions necessary in the game announced by the administration unless external circumstances prevent this or the administration is informed beforehand that the user is not able to fulfill said deadline. If a user fails to meet any announced deadline, the administration may either freely make the actions necessary instead of the user or exclude the user from the game.

Any user not running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era may join a waiting list and will be given new teams in order of joining the waiting list whenever a user running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era is excluded from the game. The administration can decide to not give a works team or a replacement for said works team to any user on the waiting list who has been excluded from the game at any point during the last 3 seasons. Should there be less users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era and/or on the waiting list than there are teams available, the administration must first reduce the number of teams available. Should that lead to less than 8 teams on the grid or remove one or multiple works team(s), the administration is entitled to run as many team themselves for one season as is necessary (for all intents and purposes, the administration will be seen as equal to any other user running a team in Alternate Fomula One - Hydrogen Era within that role). Users on the waiting list can be requested to reaffirm their interest in being on the Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era waiting list at any point during the season if at least 12 real-life weeks have passed between the simulation of 2 Grand Prix weekends or the administration changes hands. The administration is entitled to re-order the waiting list in accordance to the order in which the requested reaffirmations are undertaken.

When a new user enters the game, he may, at the start of his first season, choose to continue using the identity of the team of the user that has been excluded to free up his entry. Should he do so, his team will be, in addition to the budget for new teams, be given a bonus €10,000,000. Furthermore, the team is entitled to all benefits that follow from last year's World Constructors Championship results of the identity, except for the prize money. Should the sume World Constructors Championship prize money plus the remaining budget be higher than the budget for a new team without the bonus, the user is instead given the prize money and the remaining budget instead. The administration is free to deny the option to continue the identity of the team should it be considered necessary. In case the team of the user that has been excluded from the game is a works team the new user taking entering the game is automatically treated as if he has made this decision unless the administration decides to abolish the works team.

Users are excluded from the series:

  • if they request to be excluded from the game
  • if their teams are considered bankrupt, i.e. do not have sufficient funding to pay for a motor contract worth €30,000,000, their active lead designer contract or the cheapest available lead designer if no active contract exists, 45 staffers for the aerodynamic department and 2 racing drivers with a combined wage of €5,000,000, even when accounting for sponsorship
  • if the base grip of their chassis is below 11,000
  • if they fail to meet deadlines
  • if they are irrevocably banned from the Grand Prix Rejects Discord, the Discord service as a whole or demonstrate other behaviour making them unsuitable to keep their team

The administration can decide to not exclude a user from the series if they fail the 3rd-to-last, 2nd-to-last or last point, unless all others users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era demand an exclusion.

If a user is excluded mid-season, the first member of the waiting list is installed as the caretaking user. He inherits all contracts and chassis of the current team. At the end of the season, they go through the same process as described above. If there are no users on the waiting list or the sole member of the waiting list either refuses entry into Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era or is not seen as suitable for running a works team, the administration will be installed as the caretaking user until a capable user joins the waiting list. If the administration is installed as caretaking user during the season, it is not entitled to spend money beyond terminating and hiring drivers as is necessary to allow fictional drivers by a user who does not yet have a driver with a DEC

Excluded users may join the waiting list unless the administration can provide evidence that doing so would be against the best interest of the GP Rejects forums (or any website considered a successor or an alternative by the administration). Any user that has voluntarily been excluded from the game on 2 separate occasion is only entitled to rejoin the waiting list with explicit permission from the administration. Should 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to the decision by the administration on whether to permit or forbid rejoining the waiting list, the decision is reversed.

Any user currently running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era can decide to take control of a team of a user that was excluded from the game and drop control of his current team, which will be treated as though the user running the former team was excluded from the game. Should multiple users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era want to take control of such a team, priority is given to the user whose team is ranked lower in the World Constructors Championship at the time the previously controlling user is excluded. A new user entering the game is awarded a new team. Any new team must give the administration a name, a nationality and a backstory to explain its entry into Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Should a user decline to enter Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era when an entry becomes available, he is entitled to return to the top of the waiting list. Should a user decline to enter Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era 2 times, he is automatically placed at the bottom of the waiting list should he choose to return to the waiting list.

The budget of the new teams is equal to the average budget of the 9 poorest teams on the grid after prize money for the previous season is applied, rounded up to the next full 10,000,000.

For the purposes of Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, valid nationalities are any member or observer state of the United Nations, the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, the Murrawarri Republic and the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic as well as any fictional state previously established in the series sharing a fictional universe with Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Teams can freely change their nationality after the conclusion of an Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era season.

Sponsorship

Every team that is not a works team may apply for a tier alpha sponsor at the start of every 4th season (beginning with 2022), which will pay out (per season) €50,000,000 for teams finishing in P10 to P13 in last year's World Constructors Championship, €35,000,000 for teams finishing in P5 to P9 in last year's World Constructors Championship as well as any new teams and €15,000,000 for teams finishing in P1 to P4 in last year's World Constructors Championship for hiring a driver from one out of 11 possible target regions assigned to each sponsor by the administration as it sees fit. as racing driver.

During all Grand Prix weekends of the 3 seasons, at least 1 driver from the target region must compete as a racing driver for the team. A driver from a target region condition can be released, as long as he is immediately replaced with a driver that is from the same region. Should a team fail to immediately replace the driver with a fitting one, they must return the entire sum of sponsorship earned through their tier alpha and tier beta sponsors. This does not free the team from the responsibility to fulfill the requirements of their tier beta sponsor. If injury or bans prevent a driver from the target region under contract to appear in a race, the team is not required to hire a replacement from the target region, but must return the driver from the target region to his seat at the first opportunity.

A target region driver is considered hired when a signed racing driver has the nationality of any nation within the determined target region. In case of the administration making a factual error regarding overseas territories or similar topics, the map proving unclear or in the case of dual nationalities and other fringe cases, the administration will decide in which region a specific driver belongs. Once during his career in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era any fictional driver may change their nationality if a sufficient in-character reasoning is provided. This change can only be made once, cannot be reversed and must be made after the end of the season before the change is to take place and before the end of the driver market of the season the change is to take place.

In addition, each team that is not a works team may apply for 1 tier beta sponsor each every 4th season which will pay out €10,000,000 per season. Tier beta sponsors have demands on the driver lineup, the team's last year's World Constructors Championship position or the motor contract. The demand of the last year's World Constructors Championship position is based solely on the World Constructors Championship position of the season before the application. The demands on the driver lineup and motor contract are treated the same way as the as for tier alpha sponsors. Should a driver become ineligible to fulfill the requirements of the tier beta sponsor, they may fulfill their contract without losing the sponsorship, but must be replaced with a driver fulfilling the criteria after their contract is up. A single driver is able to fulfill demands of both tier alpha and tier beta sponsors at the same time.

All teams may apply for 1 tier gamma sponsor each every 4th season which will pay out €5,000,000 per season.

For all sponsors, a RNG will determine whether they sign the contract. The RNG values will be determined by the administration based on last year's World Constructors Championship position, combined with the economical interests of the company behind the sponsor and drivers under contract with the team at the time of the RNG. Any RNG result is final, unless there is reasonable doubt about the quality of the RNG values and 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era request a reroll.

The actual companies behind all sponsors are chosen by the administration as it sees fit and can be changed by the administration or the user running the team if necessary. Any company may also sponsor works teams without affecting the team's sponsorship. The tier alpha sponsor is added to the team's name as the administration sees fits.

Works teams that finished 5th or lower in last year's World Constructors Championship may request manufacturer support. Manufacturer support is a one-time payment of €70,000,000 and can be requested every 2nd season. Should a works team use manufacturer support, the prize money for its World Constructors Championship position will be reduced by €30,000,000 in the season in which manufacturer support is requested and the season thereafter.

Chassis, Motors and Lead Designers

Every team must build a new car at the start of a new season. A car consists of 2 elements: the motor and the chassis.

At least 2 and at most 6 motor manufacturers are always available to sign motor contracts with. The in-character designation for the motors are decided by the administration. They are represented through so-called "works teams", which are responsible for agreeing on motor contracts with the so-called "customer teams". A works team is a team run by a user who has chosen to also manage the motor supply for other teams. Before the start of the motor development system, any team can apply to the administration to either become a works team or stop being a works team, depending on its current status. The administration is entitled to decide whether the application is accepted or not as it sees fit. If the application is accepted, another application may not be handed in for 4 seasons after the application is either approved or denied. After that period, the administration officially announces the works teams for the upcoming season.

The works teams provide a hydrogen fuel cell electric motor.

Each team that is not a works team must sign a motor contract with a works team. The motor contract must state the motor price, the duration of the contract in full seasons. The maximum motor price is €45,000,000. Motor contracts may also contain clauses that specify additional conditions and privileges. Financial clauses (e.g. bonus payments) are not permitted, except for changing the motor price for future seasons of the contract. If the administration considers a clause unclear, the administration will interpret the clause with the most works team-friendly interpretation possible.

Works teams have an infinite motor contract with themselves for an motor price of €0. There is no upper limit to the length of an motor contract. Modifying a motor contract during the season is forbidden, but the works team can extend the contract with approval of the customer team in question and the administration. Should a user fail to come to an agreement with any works team, the administration will look at all potential offers made to said team. Should it find any of those reasonable in relation to the prices other customer teams pay, it will order the user in question to accept an offer chosen by the administration. Should it find none of the offers reasonable, the works team with the lowest amount of customers will be ordered to sign a 2-year motor contract with the user at a yearly rate of €30,000,000.

Should a previously signed contract violate any rules or a new contract be found to violate these rules, the administration is entitled to unilaterally change the contract, but must inform the customer team unsolicited.

After the 8th-to-last Grand Prix weekend of the season, 10% of the motor price (rounded down to the next full half million) of each contract is added to the budget of the works team. If any of the customer teams has had a motor contract with the same works teams for 3 or 4 consecutive seasons, 25 % of the motor price (rounded down to the next full half million) of that customer team's contract is added to the budget of the works team instead. If any of the customer teams has had a motor contract with the same works teams for 5 or more consecutive seasons, 35 % of the motor price (rounded down to the next full half million) of that customer team's contract is added to the budget of the works team instead.

Every season, the performance of all motors are determined through a development system which begins with the 7th-to-last Grand Prix weekend of the season. During that time period, the works teams have their testing team run 2 testing days between Grand Prix weekends and 2 more after the conclusion of the final Grand Prix weekend and have them work on 1 of 4 programs:

  • motor power - the base BHP output of the motor
  • qualifying mode - how much quicker your motor can go if fuel consumption is raised to the maximum
  • car failure probability - how likely retirements are
  • motor mass - how the weight of the motor negatively affects cornering speed

During the season, the administration is entitled to increase the base BHP or decrease motor mass of one motor with 2 races notice once. After the conclusion of the season, all teams not using the altered motor that were ahead of one or multiple teams using the altered motor when the notice of the altered values was given and finished behind those teams will be compensated for the lost prize money.

If a user is excluded from Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, motor deals of the user's team are voided after the conclusion of the Driver Market of the following season. Should a new user decide to keep the identity of the team of the user excluded, the works team may unilaterally decide to continue the contract before the conclusion of the driver market. If a user running a works team is excluded from Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, any running motor deals are unaffected. If a works team is abolished, all running motor deals are voided and all customer teams are reimbursed the difference between the old motor price and the motor price of the contract signed as a replacement for the 1st season of the new contract.

Every team must build a chassis at the start of the year. The grip value of the chassis is determined by 3 separate factors: the base grip as decided by the aero department, the lead designer and the motor mass. A team must provide an in-character designation for the chassis; the user running the team can entrust the administration with that task. Any user may imply in-character that the chassis built by his team is reused from the previous seasons or based on the intellectual property of another team with the approval of the user running said team, unless the administration decides that rule changes in or out of character would make such a decision ill-fitting with the storyline of Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era.

Base grip is decided by the number of employees hired by a team's aerodynamics department. One employee increases the RNG floor of next season's chassis by 240 grip. Any new chassis must have at least 11,000 base grip and may have no more than either 15,000 or the highest qualifying grip of the previous season plus 200, whichever number is higher. The size of the aerodynamics department is capped at 61 Permanent Employees working on the current chassis and next season's chassis respectively (a total of 122 Permanent Employees). The method of running the RNG of the chassis is affected by the design philosophy. For the 2022 season, teams must also hire employees to build the current chassis. In addition to the employees assigned to designing next season's chassis, teams can hire temporary employees to increase their RNG floor for the current seasons. Temporary employees are not included in the cap mentioned above, but can only be added until the RNG floor is the highest possible base grip minus 180. Temporary employees cannot be used for the 2022 chassis.

No team can build a new car that is more than 3 places in a base grip ranking below their previous year's World Constructors Championship position (e.g. the winners of last year's World Constructors Championship cannot possibly build any worse than the 4th-best car). Should this occur, the car will have additional base grip added as needed to move the team by raw performance into the nearest eligible position. The base grip added that way will be subtracted from any future upgrades or the base grip of the chassis of the following season after the conclusion of that season's car market.

After the base grip of a car is decided, the grip factor of the lead designer is applied and the weight penalty of the motor is subtracted from the base grip to determine the final race grip and qualifying grip (rounded down to the next full 10).

Lead designers can only be hired during the lead designer market at the start of a season. Any unemployed lead designer can be signed by a team with the team chosen by the designer decided by a RNG with the odds determined by the following table (offer rank is determined by ranking the offers ascendingly according to the following formula: last year's World Constructors Championship position/years of the contract offer (tiebreakers are given to the team with the better World Constructors Championship position):

Rank 6+ offers 5 offers 4 offers 3 offers 2 offers
1 45 % 50 % 55 % 60 % 65 %
2 25 % 25 % 30 % 30 % 35 %
3 12 % 12 % 10 % 10 %
4 8 % 8 % 5 %
5 6 % 5 %
6+ 4 %

Lead designers can be signed for up to 10 years and cannot be sacked during an active contract. Every 2nd season, the performance of all lead designers is randomly modified by the administration. The contract price is not adjusted after the performance modification. If a user is excluded from Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, the lead designer contract is taken over by the new team, regardless of whether the new user decide to keep the identity of the team of the user excluded.

Drivers

Each team must employ 2 racing drivers and may employ either 1 sim driver or 1 driver coach; both real-life drivers and fictional drivers are permitted. The performance of a driver is determined by the administration on basis of previous achievements in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, any series sharing a fictional universe with Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era and real-life performance for real-life drivers. The 2 racing drivers are the drivers that actively compete during the Grand Prix weekend. Hiring a driver as sim tester gives your team a qualifying performance boost of 30 grip points and improves future RNG values for real-life drivers. Hiring a driver as a driver coach reduces the random grip range of the racing drivers by 30 points.

To be eligible to be signed as a racing driver in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, a driver must either

  • have competed in 80% of a full season or 8 races, whichever number is higher, in 1 one of the last 2 simulated seasons of Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, the ARWS or Africa Racing League
  • have won at least 8 Grand Prix in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era and be under the age of 45 at the start of the calendar year of the season the driver is set to compete in
  • have finished in the top 6 in 1 of the last 2 simulated seasons of the FIA Formula 2 World Championship or AutoReject 3.5
  • have achieved 4 pole positions and/or race victories in other series sharing a fictional universe with Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era during the previous 4 seasons
  • have achieved 8 pole positions and/or race victories in real-life series during the previous 3 years based on the start of the driver market of the season the driver is set to compete in (real-life drivers)
  • have been employed as a sim driver in the previous season or as a driver coach in each of the last 2 seasons
  • have an active contract with a Formula 1, Formula E or W Series team in real-life at the start of the driver market of the season the driver is set to compete in (real-life drivers)

To be eligible to be signed as a sim driver in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, a driver must either

  • be over the age of 16 and be under the age of 26 at the start of the calendar year of the season the driver is hired for
  • have competed in less than 6 Grand Prix in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era or less than 10 races in the ARWS

To be eligible to be signed as a driver coach in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, a driver must either

  • be over the age of 32 and under the age of 58 at the start of the calendar year of the season the driver is hired for
  • have competed in more than 20 Grand Prix in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era or more than 25 races in the ARWS or the GT Super Series
  • have achieved 12 pole positions and/or race victories in real-life series during the previous 3 years based on the start of the driver market of the season the driver is set to compete in (real-life drivers)

A fictional driver can be declared eligible at request despite not meeting any of these conditions if the driver market falls in a period where a series sharing a fictional universe with Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era has not concluded a season yet and it can be considered possible that the driver in question may have fulfilled the requirements by the time the season. If the driver is declared eligible using that method fails to achieve the requirements to be declared eligible, his eligibility is not revoked.

Any driver currently under contract that would not be eligible for his position will be permitted to remain in that position for the 2022 season, but their contract will be voided after the conclusion of the 2022 season.

Drivers can be signed at the start of the year as well as at any point during the season, except during a Grand Prix weekend. However, no driver can be hired while the position he is to be hired for is still occupied by another driver. A driver under contract as a sim driver or driver coach can be turned into a contract as a racing driver if a position as a racing driver is not occupied, if the driver is eligible to be hired as a racing driver. Each team is limited to 5 racing drivers throughout the season unless force majeure forces a team to hire more drivers. There is no limit to the amounts of offers a team can make to free agents. These contracts must specify the role of the driver, the driver's wage, the contract duration and state additional clauses. Teams may only offer a financial bonus as additional clause to a driver for WDC and/or WCC position.

Contract duration must be stated in a number of years. The minimum contract length is 1 year, the maximum contract length is 6 years (including any driver or team options). Contracts may not be prematurely extended. Teams may clarify through the use of an additional clause if they do not plan to use a driver for an entire season. Wages are separately agreed on for every year of a multi-year contract. Clauses specify additional conditions and privileges of the contract sides not covered in other parts of the contract. Teams may only offer a financial bonus to a driver for WDC and/or WCC position. Any bonus may not be staggered and can only be paid out a lump sum for any given achievement. If the administration considers a clause unclear, the administration will interpret the clause with the most driver-friendly interpretation possible.

For real-life drivers, a RNG will determine whether they sign the contract. The RNG values will be determined by the administration based on the real-life public persona if the driver. After posting their offers, any team looking to re-sign a driver that was under contract with the team in the previous season can request the administration to assess the offer from the point of view of the real-life driver and offer advice to improve their RNG odds. Any RNG result is final, unless there is reasonable doubt about the quality of the RNG values and 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era request a reroll.

For fictional drivers, the respective DEC holder determines whether a contract offer is accepted. Should a fictional driver that has either contemporary narrative importance to Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era or achieved exceptional results in other series have its DEC abandoned, the administration can accept a contract in place of the DEC holder. Drivers signed in that way may only sign 1-year contracts without any option years. Fictional drivers must over the age of 17 and must be under the age of 44 years at the start of the calendar year of the current Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era season. A fictional driver that turns 44 during a running contract is entitled to compete for the remaining seasons of his contract, but all potential team or driver options are automatically declined. Fictional drivers whose DEC is held by administration may only be signed if 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era agree to the signing.

Should a previously signed contract violate any rules or a new contract be found to violate these rules, the administration is entitled to unilaterally change the contract without informing the team owner or the DEC holder in case of fictional drivers. The administration can modify contracts and contract offers with fictional drivers if it considers the contract either unfairly advantageous to the team hiring the driver or egregiously inconsistent with the actions of the character in previous appearances. The team owner must be informed of those changes.

A driver can be terminated before the start of any Grand Prix weekend. Any driver terminated must be paid a compensation, which equals the lump sum of the wages a driver in future seasons (driver option years included) and all possible bonus payments. If a team temporarily replaces a driver before his contract is over, he is entitled to the same compensation, unless a clause justifies his replacement. Either compensation can be voided if the driver has scored less than 10% of the points of his teammate after 8 Grand Prix weekends after the start of his contract if said teammate has scored at least 25 points or if the DEC owner of a fictional driver has made in-character comments that can be interpreted as a desire to leave the team or excessive criticism of the team as defined by the administration. To return a driver to his role, no additional wage must be paid. During an unjustified temporary replacement, any other team may sign the driver as if they were a free agent. The original team is given €5,000,000 as compensation by the administration in case the driver is signed.

The rules regarding temporary replacement do not apply if the driver is unavailable to compete due to injury or bans. Any replacement driver signed to replace a driver that is unavailable to compete due to injury or bans will not be paid any wage. Driver contracts of bankrupt teams with real-life drivers can be terminated by the new user without paying compensation if he decides to keep the identity of the bankrupt team, driver contracts of bankrupt teams with fictional drivers can be terminated by both sides if the fictional driver is offered a contract by another team. If the user chooses to enter a new team, any existing contracts are void. Should a user fail to name a replacement driver, the team will use either their sim driver or driver coach if they are eligible to be signed as a racing driver or be assigned a replacement driver by the administration. The administration must choose the sim driver or driver coach of a different team if the user controlling said team requests that their sim driver or driver coach is used as a replacement on a loan basis unless the team in question would profit financially from such a decision.

A team that is in the minus during the season may additionally hire a free practice tester for 3 races. That driver will be assigned to the team by the administration and will provide a lump sum of €4,000,000. If one of the racing drivers of the team that hired the free practice tester is unavailable to compete due to injury or bans, the free practice tester must be used as replacement.

Active Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era drivers can freely participate in other series as well. It is the responsibility of the involved users to avoid schedule conflicts. Any time paradoxes resulting as a consequence of double-dutying will be punished by having said driver banned from Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era for 5 years and any other DECs (in case of fictional drivers) by said user being banned for the rest of the currently running season. In case of a real-life driver having an unresolved schedule conflict, the team-owning user in question will be excluded from the game, regardless of whether he owns the team in the other series causing the paradox unless the series owner of that series has caused the paradox by allowing the driver in question to sign in the series despite having known about the driver's Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era commitment, running the real-life driver in a race he was not supposed to and refusing to rerun the race or modifying their schedule to deal with the time paradox.

Any driver, at the start of their career in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era can pick freely any unused racing number from 2-99 to represent them for the entirety of their entire career. The number selection for real-life drivers is undertaken by the administration. Should the administration consider it necessary, it may take the racing number of a real driver and assign it to a real-life driver entering Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Fictional drivers have their number selected by the team owner of the team they begin their career with. Any driver's number is reserved for his use up to 3 years after the driver leaves Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. A new driver starting his career in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era may pick a reserved racing number. Should a driver for whom a racing number is reserved for return to Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era, the procedure depends on the status of the driver:

  • Real-life drivers will be returned their number if the driver with the racing number is a fictional driver
  • Fictional drivers will not be returned their number if the driver with the racing number is a real-life driver
  • Real-life drivers will not be returned their number if the driver with the racing number is a real-life driver unless the administration decides to execute a number swap
  • Fictional drivers will be returned their number if the driver with the racing number is a fictional driver unless both DEC owners agree to execute a number swap

The reigning World Drivers Champion will run racing number 1 for the entirety of the season after winning the World Drivers Championship. His standard racing number will not be available for use by any driver beginning their career in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era. Any replacement driver that is to replace the World Drivers Champion is treated as if he has signed his first contract or uses his reserved racing number, regardless of the length of the replacement.

Before the 5th-to-last race of the current Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era season, all real-life drivers over the age of 36 in the final year of their contract will be subject to a retirement RNG. The RNG values will be determined by the administration based on the real-life public persona of the driver as well as their current position in the World Drivers Championship. Any RNG result is final, unless there is reasonable doubt about the quality of the RNG values and 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era request a reroll. A real-life driver that is rolled to retire is not eligible to compete in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era for the next 2 Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era seasons.

Before the first Grand Prix weekend, drivers who were under contract with the same team in the previous season and who are determined by the administration to be discontent with their current contract based on either their real-life public persona or their payment based on the results in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era will be subject to a holdout RNG. Any RNG result is final, unless there is reasonable doubt about the quality of the RNG values and 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era request a reroll. If the RNG results in a holdout, the driver will refuse to perform the duties of his contract, i.e. racing drivers will not compete and sim drivers or driver coaches will not provide their bonus. Teams can choose to either fulfill the demands of their driver, wait the holdout out (the driver holding out will be treated as if he was injured for the purpose of all rules regarding a temporary replacement) or terminate him without paying compensation. If the team chooses to terminate the driver, his replacement must be given the same contract terms (or improved contract terms) to his replacement.

Season and Upgrades

Each Alternate Formula One season consists of at least 13 and at most 27 Grands Prix weekends. Each Grand Prix weekend represents a separate region or a nation; a region or nation may be represented by a venue outside of said region or nation, but only if the venue is in a country that already has a Grand Prix. Any nation may only have up to 3 venues on the calendar and only up to 2 nations may have more than one venue on the calendar at any time. The Grand Prix weekends of the upcoming season must be announced by the time of the 4th-to-last Grand Prix weekend of the previous season and may not be changed after that, with the exception of Grand Prix weekend order, which may be changed until the start of the first Grand Prix weekend of the season. Any Grand Prix weekend can be canceled by the administration for any reason at any point unless the cancelation would cause the number of Grand Prix weekends in a season to sink below 13. If 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to the announced Grand Prix weekends for the upcoming season or a cancelation of a Grand Prix weekend, the administration must change the Grand Prix weekends for the upcoming season at the first opportunity.

A Grand Prix weekend consists of 3 60-minute practice sessions on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (beginning in-character at 11:00 local time), 2 40-minute qualifying sessions on Friday and Saturday (beginning in-character at 14:10 local time), and a race on Sunday running over the nearest lap above 185 km (≈ 115 miles) or 120 minutes, whichever arrives first (beginning in-character at 14:10 local time). Practice sessions are not simulated, but fictional results can be supplied as the administration sees fit. The in-character times for any qualifying session and any race can be changed to 21:40 local time at venues with floodlights. If that change is made, the practice sessions begin at 15:30 local time. All qualifying sessions and races have climate conditions determined by the administration as it sees fit. Any session can be canceled in progress by the administration as it sees fit, either as a reaction to events within the simulation or for narrative purposes.

After any race, the administration runs a RNG for any crash regarding potential injuries as it sees fit. An injury is defined as a period of time (in Grand Prix weekends) in which a driver is incapable of competing. These periods can range from one Grand Prix weekend to the number of Grand Prix weekends equivalent to 3 calendar years. If the crash is considered severe enough the adminstration can forgo the RNG and declare the driver incapable of competing in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era anymore. This does not affect the driver's ability to compete in other series sharing a fictional universe. If at least 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to an injury or a driver being declared incapable of competing, the decision is reversed and the driver is able to compete again.

The administration will apply penalties for rule violations committed before, during or after the race. Penalties can be applied as either fines for the team of the offender, warnings, time penalties for this Grand Prix, exclusion from the Grand Prix result, grid penalties for the next Grand Prix weekend or exclusion from any number of Grand Prix weekends up to 4, depending on the severity of the infringement. Penalties are always assigned to a driver, regardless of whether the driver or his team committed the rule violation. If a driver is replaced, any penalties assigned to the driver will not be transmitted to the new driver, but the replaced driver must serve his penalty when they are returned to his seat or signed to a new team within the season. If a driver is considered to have committed an unacceptable number of rule violations by the administration, the driver in question will be excluded from the remainder of the current season as well as the next 2 seasons. If 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era object to the exclusion, it is reversed and the driver is entitled to rejoin Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era before the start of the next Grand Prix weekend.

Should the chosen simulation method not permit an accurate reflection of team-interested behaviour by drivers, the administration is entitled to manipulate the results accordingly to reflect a team order if the driver higher-placed in the World Drivers Championship that has still a mathematical chance of winning the championship is within less than 10 seconds of his teammate with no other cars between the drivers with 4 laps to go. This manipulation is permitted from the 6th-to-last weekend of the season.

Championship points are handed out to the ten best-placed classified drivers of the race after penalties and exclusions as well as any team orders have been applied. A driver is considered classified if he has completed at least 90 percent of the race distance. Should less than ten drivers have completed at least 90 percent of the race distance, that value is reduced until ten drivers can be considered classified. The points system is 15-12-10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1. If less than 75 percent of the scheduled race distance is completed before the race is canceled in progress, the championship points are halved. Sessions are only re-run if the administration has violated any rule during the running of the session. If 5 or more users running a team in Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era consider the rule violation too insignificant to require rerunning the session, the session will not be re-run.

The driver with the most points after all Grand Prix weekends have been completed is the Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era World Drivers Champions of that season. In case of a tie, the number of wins decide. If the number of wins is equal, the amount of 2nd places decides and so on. Should all positions be equally shared between the tying parties, the number of pole positions decide. Should those be equal as well, the position is given to the driver whose team has the lower World Constructors Championship position. The team with the most points after all Grand Prix weekends have been completed are the Alternate Formula One - Hydrogen Era World Constructors Champions of that season. All drivers entered by a team can score points for the team in the World Constructors Championship. In case of a tie, the same tie-breaking approach used for the World Drivers Championship is applied for with one exception: in case the number of pole positions does not break the tie, the position is given to the team that had the higher average position in qualifying.

Before the start of a Alternate Formula One season, the following pre-season phases are to be done in this order:
Sponsorship Choice (every 4th season)
Driver Market
Lead Designer Market
Motor Market
Car Development

To accelerate the process, the administration is entitled to handle multiple business stages at once.

At the conclusion of the driver market, sponsor income is added to the balance of all teams. After that step is completed, all budgets of the teams must always remain at or above €0. During the season, teams may only be in the minus as consequence of applying an upgrade, as a result of fines or failing to sign a new Target Region driver after releasing or temporarily replacing their previous Target Region driver. Drivers of teams that are in the minus during the season suffer a loss of performance reflected in a doubled random grip range.

Before 2 selected Grand Prix weekends within the season, mid-season tests are held. These 2 weekends must be announced by the administration before the 4th Grand Prix weekend of the season. During a mid-season test teams can work an upgrade in 3 separate sessions. A session in the mid-season costs €4,000,000. Each session needs to have a driver under contract to the team assigned to it. The choice of driver does not influence the outcome of the session. Following sessions are available:

  • Short Runs - improves pace. For every day invested into long runs, the base grip of a car will be raised by 0-50 points.
  • Long Runs - decreases random grip range. For every day invested into short runs, the random grip range of a driver will be reduced by 0-50 points.

Prize money will be applied to the budget of all teams both for individual race results as well as position in the World Constructors Championship. Prize money for the position in the World Constructors Championship is to be assigned as follows:

Position Prize money
1 €180,000,000
2 €170,000,000
3 €160,000,000
4 €150,000,000
5 €140,000,000
6 €130,000,000
7 €125,000,000
8 €115,000,000
9 €105,000,000
10 €95,000,000
11 €85,000,000
12 €75,000,000

Prize money for each Grand Prix weekend, based on the position of the best-positioned car of the team, is to be assigned as follows::

Position Prize money
1 €2,000,000
2-10 €1,500,000
11-17 €1,000,000
18-24 €500,000
DNF/NC/DNS €0
Pole position: €1,000,000

During the season, teams can apply upgrades at any point once their upgrade schedule is complete. An upgrade schedule can go from 2 to 8 Grand Prix weekends, with longer upgrade schedules resulting in higher rewards for success, but also higher costs. The upgrade is applied only at request. A value determined by an RNG within the determined grip range of each upgrade is added to the base grip of the team's current chassis. After the 8th weekend, a team can decide withhold the upgrade for 4 more Grand Prix weekends, but the grip range of and the price of the upgrade remain unchanged. A team can apply an upgrade even if such an action would send them into a minus.

An upgrade schule going longer than 8 Grand Prix weekends results in a new chassis being rolled. This new chassis will be rolled in the same manner as the original one and cannot have a lower base grip than the original one (including any previously applied upgrades). Should the new chassis have a lower base grip as result of RNG, as many points of base grip are added as is needed plus another 20 grip points.

Should a team use upgrades in a manner that improves their car performance to the point where it exceeds the performance levels possible with the game mechanics, the difference between the mathematical performance and the actual performance is added to the base grip of the chassis of the following season after the conclusion of that season's car market.