F1 2021 review: a championship gear racing game

Developer Codemasters has long been a go-to name for racing game fans. With franchises like Land, NET– and official Formula One games under their belt – it’s no surprise publishers like Take Two were interested in a purchase, and Electronic Arts ultimately won the bidding war. F1 2021 is the first game released by Codemasters since the acquisition, as the real-life sport is heating up.

F1 2021 covers this year’s Formula One championship, with players capable of racing through real life races or creating their own driver or team to take on the best racers in the world. It’s a grueling and highly technical sport, and this is something that Codemasters has been able to portray well by making the game accessible. However, with top leaders leaving the company, some fans have been tentative about the impact EA may have had on the game.

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Thankfully, F1 2021 it still looks a lot like the previous great games. However, that is not to say that Codemasters has not made any improvements, as F1 2021 includes some additional features that will be fun for veteran fans and others that can help newcomers acclimatize to the world of Formula One.

The most remarkable of these, and the one that moves F1 2021 Firmly in the camp of EA Sports, it is Braking Point’s narrative-based intro. Like similar stories in series like FIFA Y To get mad, Braking Point follows the story of fictional sportsmen, with veteran Casper Akkerman and talented rookie Aiden Jackson on one team. With F1 2019Timeless villain Devon Butler reintroduced, a Iago with really horrible hair, and even Lukas Weber making a cameo, there’s something for even fans of the series to enjoy as sparks fly between these two teammates.

Even so, Braking Point is essentially added as a good introductory point for those unfamiliar with Formula One, its complicated set of rules, and the way this manifests itself in video game form. It takes the player through overtaking, pit stops, fast laps and safety cars as a crash course through the sport. In a way, it’s the gaming equivalent of Netflix. Drive to survive and it fulfills this purpose well.

For seasoned players, it can be a bit jarring at times, such as receiving a “solid driving” grade for giving a bottom rung team a podium finish. As such, it should be remembered that this is something of a tutorial, and even those who are vaguely familiar with racing games should probably go for a higher difficulty than they would normally choose to get their story to really come home.

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F1 2021 Ricciardo Melbourne

Braking Point will help the player prepare for the place where they will likely spend most of their time: Career mode. Again, this can be done by selecting an existing team to claim to be the world’s number one driver, or instead through the full My Team mode, where the player creates their own team within the sport. The first option also gives the player a chance to start on the F2 feeder series, which is still good to see.

My team still feels fresh in its core game loop a year after its introduction, although Codemasters has made a few updates here and there. Team upgrades will sometimes lead to departmental events that require input, such as choosing where co-driver simulator time should be prioritized, and this makes the player feel more involved in running the team. Meanwhile, both Career mode options benefit from an update to simulated practice sessions, and users can focus on specific regimes rather than simply leaving it as a roll of the dice.

Codemasters included a co-op Career Mode option here, and this is a nice touch that will certainly get a lot of love as time goes on. However, it would have been nice to see local co-op in this mode via split screen, even with significant impacts on frame rate or graphic fidelity. Classics like NET Grandpa TOCA 2: Cars It allowed the seasons to be played on split screen and helped young players participate in the races, and such an option here could have helped give a boost to the F1 fan base.

Something to keep in mind is that F1 2021 It has pretty limited cosmetic customization options for the player and team at first. The game’s Podium Pass is expected to provide a boost through in-game unlocks at launch, but players may be disappointed when it comes to helmets, emotes, livery, and sponsor options. Given how much the PC modding community jumped onto My Computer with F1 2020It’s a shame that the base game hasn’t seen much expansion here.

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Elsewhere, however, customization is king in F1 2021. Support, simulation, and other gameplay options mean that the gamer can create a truly fantastic bespoke experience tailored to their needs. The career mode options even come down to how quickly the player will earn accolades and resource points, as well as creating their own racing roster, which is great to watch.

F1 2021 has seen some other quality of life updates. Minor details like being able to ask an engineer for fewer comments are useful for those who found them too chatty in previous games (particularly Kimi Raikkonen fans who want to tell the engineer “leave me alone, I know what I’m doing“). More circuits will also be added to F1 2021 over time, which is necessary given the impact COVID-19 has had on this year’s championship schedule.

F1 2021 Safety Car

F1 2021 on PS5 it also makes decent use of the available hardware. The game feels great to play, in part thanks to its solid use of the DualSense controller’s haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, meaning the player will feel closer than ever to unique circuits like Spa. The game also has fast loading times and is visually better than the last generation, especially in the rain, and while it may not be as big of a review as some may wish, it is not far behind.

The same goes for the gameplay, as F1 2021 feels very close to F1 2020. There’s a lot of variation that can go into an annual racing game, particularly with the rigidity of something like Formula One, and F1 2020 fans will get used to the way the new game is played. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing, since F1 2020 It is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the series.

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That doesn’t mean that F1 2021 However, it has not had any updates to its racing mechanics, and one notable element is that a clear emphasis has been placed on the importance of corner exits. Players will need to be much more careful about their acceleration than in previous years, particularly in the late maneuvers that were carried out without worrying about being caught a second later. On F1 2021 These moves get a lot more risky, which means players will have to think more tactically about their overtaking.

F1 2021 F2 Crash

That doesn’t mean that F1 2021 It’s perfect though, as alongside the aforementioned lack of out-of-the-box customization options, there are some minor glitches. As just one example, the use of the recoil option sometimes causes the engineer to continue to suggest a new strategy option for the remainder of the race, while crashes can also cause the car’s wheels to fail within the physics engine. . However, these are minor issues that will hopefully be addressed quickly and don’t detract from the overall experience for more than a few seconds at a time.

General, F1 2021 is an excellent entry in the series, with a number of additions and tweaks that make the game refreshing. With one of the most comprehensive career modes available in a sports game and enough options to make it accessible to everyone, F1 2021 it is enjoyable for both newcomers and veterans. Fans may want to keep an eye out for outside influences on Codemasters as time goes on, particularly with cosmetic options, but F1 2021 it still offers the incredible thrills and deep gameplay options that the series has become known for.

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F1 2021 Releases July 16, 2021 for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X / S. Screen Rant received a PS5 download code for the purposes of this review.

Our rating:

4.5 out of 5 (must play)

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