Codemasters has had the exclusive Formula 1 gaming license since 2009, and each year it has released a multi-platform game depicting that year’s F1 season.
The 2014 Formula 1 season sees the racing series go through a revolution in its technical regulations, highlighted by a return to turbocharged power units not seen since the end of the last Turbo Era in 1988. Appropriately, Codemasters’ game series will also see a bit of a revolution as well. As Stephen Hood, Creative Director for the F1 series at Codemasters, puts it, “This is the year it all changes – for the sport and for the game.”
First, though, F1 2014 will be released on PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on October 21, 2014. This year’s installment will, of course, depict the current F1 World Championship. All the teams, liveries, drivers, and cars will be depicted, as well as all nineteen of this year’s race tracks (including new-for-2014 Austria and Russia).
Codemasters promises F1 2014 “will make for an exciting and refreshingly different experience.” Through the use of a new driver evaluation system, the game should do a better job analysing each player’s skill level, therefore improving how it suggests game settings no matter what the player’s skill level is. A new Very Easy difficulty setting is even included to cater to novices to racing games. Consequently, F1 2014 should “deliver a thoroughly rewarding F1 experience for players of all abilities, from the novice to the seasoned pro.” (As an aside, the racing sim enthusiast within me just cheered, hoping Codemasters delivers on this promise.)
But that’s not all that Codemasters is up to.
F1 2015, or whatever it will be called, is going to be a bigger revolutionary leap. For one thing, it will be the first F1 series title to be offered on both the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One (don’t worry, PC gamers; we’ll still get F1 2015, as always). Previous generation consoles, however, will not see the game. Also, another change from previous practice is that Codemasters will release F1 2015 much earlier in the year (not long after the beginning of the 2015 Formula 1 season). Stephen Hood says, “Our title for the new generation formats will mark a huge step forward for the F1 series. We want to be out there earlier in the season and deliver new season content updates digitally as the 2015 season progresses; it’s very exciting for the series and our players.” In my opinion, this model is very interesting and promising as it reflects an essential truth about Formula 1: The sport is in a constant state of change and evolution. After all, F1 teams all evolve their cars throughout the season (for better or for worse), so it’s great to see an F1 game reflect this aspect of the sport.
For more details and information on the F1 series, Codemasters encourages you to follow its F1 Series blog, as well as to follow it on Facebook and on Twitter.