Here we go, the next instalment in Codemasters’ F1 games has arrived. With two familiar faces on the cover and a Legends edition, this game certainly looks the part. 2 months earlier than the previous title but with what differences from 2018?
First thing first, this game looks fantastic that watching races back looks like I am watching a real race unfold in front of me, accept James SPEED is in 1stplace. The team have put a lot of extra attention into the lighting, making this game look great during night races. Cars, drivers and tracks all come together perfectly through the racing calendar.
You start off at the back end of the F2 season facing a few challenges at the end of the race to complete. Here you meet Weber and Butler in some little cutscenes post-race that set up a rivalry that follows you into F1. After these few races, you get offered contracts with a range of F1 teams, each with their own challenges to complete throughout.
From here you continue your career with the team you select with Weber and Butler joining you in rival teams. You take your car through practice, qualifying and the race as well as dealing with the media afterwards. I was rather impressed with the challenges set out in the practice session as well as the team specific tasks.
Now I am not a pro-racer by any means but F1 2019 offers plenty of driver assists to make anyone feel like a real sim driver. I played the game with a number of them on and yes it took away the challenge, but it meant I could take in the tracks and race. However, take these off and here is where the challenge is.
You have access to plenty of data while racing to really make you feel like an F1 driver as well. You can adjust how the car uses fuel, the brake balance or request an extra pit stop if those softs aren’t holding up. It really adds to the F1 driver feel you want from this game.
I really enjoyed the rivalry element to the career mode. You gain points for outperforming your teammate in qualifying and the race which gives you more respect. After a few races, you can select another racer to form a 2ndrivalry to really keep you busy.
Dealing with media questions post-race offer a good little sub-plot to the game as well as challenging you to pick your personality. Will you thank the team for their efforts or put that race win down to you amazing skills? Certain teams prefer a particular approach, but you pick the answers to go with it.
The best way to describe the research and development options in this game is to compare it with an RPG player skill tree. There are 4 main streams that are broken down into smaller technological advancements. You then have the options to improve reliability and production. Put this all together and you have plenty of places to speed resource points.
Outside of career mode you still have plenty of content to keep you busy. A theatre mode offers the chance for some better screenshots and to watch back your race highlights. Multiplayer I never really had the chance to experience considering the game isn’t out yet but if the race physics from the game are anything to go by, this will be great.
A big addition to the game is the opportunity to race in the F2 championship. Not just a few races like the career mode but full on select a team and driver and off you go in the F2 cars. Great for all the racing fans out there to get behind the wheel of some more cars.
Add in championship mode and time trials and you have plenty to throw yourself at. The menu is quick and easy to navigate so you can get where you want quickly. Navigating the game when in career mode is pretty easy as well. Access to information about engine and gearbox wear is pretty well presented, even for an F1 novice.
You get an esports menu option to showcase the F1 esports growth and to perhaps interest you in watching a few races. Great to see it in there and hope it helps build a bigger community around this genre of esports.
The game is great. It offers a great balance between F1 realism which still being friendly to newcomers. There is plenty of racing content in the game along with some really nice attention to detail for the F1 lover. The game looks fantastic and the cars drive fantastically. The only thing that is missing is the ability to manage your own team in the fast paced F1 world, but perhaps that is for a different game.
*Code kindly provided by the publisher for review*