F1 2018 Review
With each year Codemasters seems to build on their F1 winning formula and F1 2018 is no exception. While there hasn’t been much in vast improvements over last year’s title, is there enough of a change for you to commit to this year’s game?
F1 2018 has everything you would expect from a racing simulation game. While the driving does take some getting used to, once you have got to grips with it, it feels solid and responsive as you race around each track, you feel every bump and undulation as you try to grab that win! The cars react as you would expect from these monstrous beasts, with every turn you do, can lead to a collision with another car or the track itself, if you push too hard into an apex, thus effecting your lap time. It’s all a matter of getting your timing right, as what or when is the right time to hit the brakes and when to put your foot hard down on the accelerator to speed up.
As well as trying to get used to the cars, you also need to memorise the layouts of the tracks, as this will also help you shave off those vital seconds off your lap time to grab pole position and to know which corners/straights are best for overtaking the rest of the grid. Even with the knowledge behind you of knowing all the tracks and how the cars handle, there are other factors to think about as you are out there on the track. Every race you partake in will obviously take a toll on your car and it will make the car react differently as the race progresses. Parts of the car will start to wear and tear as you race them. So, while racing around the worlds famous tracks keep in mind that, car maintenance is just as important as maintaining a good grid position. If you neglect your car then you run into the chance of a crucial part of the car failing, especially if you are looking for those all-important championship points.
As you participate in each race weekend you earn resource points and these points will allow you to upgrade and purchase new parts for your car. It works in much the same way as some RPG games, with an earn and reward system. So, with every test, practise and Championship race you compete in, you will earn these valuable points. Plus, finishing up the grid higher gives you higher rewards, but not only that, complete bonus objectives for the team, that will also give you the much-needed points to help you improve your car and in turn helping you grab more points for your team to win the Championship at the end of the season.
With the car upgrades it can feel a bit of a muddle at times, especially on deciding what you should be upgrading first. Upgrades are spilt in to four main categories: Chassis, Powertrain, aerodynamics, and durability. Each of these main categories has their own sub-category and you can upgrade these gradually. With upgrading your car, it’s not just a simple matter of picking a part and then placing it on your car. You must order in the new parts and then wait for a certain amount of time to pass before you get to use them. This is a novel idea on how the process would work in the real world, but it can be a bit of a nuisance when you are waiting on that all-important part that you need for your car. What really gets annoying is that if you order a new part for your car, there is a chance of it getting damaged during its shipment. Which makes you order it again and use up those important resource points that should have been spent on something else.
When all the racing is done, and you have helped your team grab those important points, you are then tasked with chatting to the press about how your weekend has gone. Not only do you have to contend with chatting to them after each race, but also after each practise/qualifying session too. Be careful though, as your responses do influence how your team and fellow drivers feel about you. So be mindful of what you say as you need to maintain a good reputation in the paddock as well as trying to be the best racer out there. It’s also crucial in getting the best out of your negations to get a better contract for the upcoming season. It’s an interesting part of the game that makes the RPG element of the game stand out a bit more.
In F1 2018, the team at Codemasters have really gone all out with the amount of detail they have added to the cars and the 21 tracks. Each car is replicated with pristine accuracy that you will find it hard to faulter. The real-world tracks have been given the same amount of detail, with each one matching their real-life counterpart. They are all highly detailed right down to the rumble strips on the corners and apex’s and Spa-Francorchamps is still my favourite track to race on. When you are flying down the long straight behind the pits and tear up the hill, everything just looks amazing, especially if you to race in the rain. It feels as though you are watching the real deal live on your TV!
There are quite a few other racers out there that have some amazing graphics and environments, but F1 2018 they have pulled out all the stops regarding the tracks mimicking their real-life counterparts. Monaco is a track that is instantly recognisable to nearly all who know about Formula 1 racing with its city-based track and high-rise buildings that surround it. The engines of the cars roar ferociously as you fly through it’s streets and past the buildings. Even when you drive through the tunnel in Monaco, the sounds of the cars are almost deafening as you hear them scream through it.
On the topic of the sound of the cars, it’s here again that Codemasters has put a lot of time and effort into making these cars sound like the turbocharged monsters they are portraying. From the screaming engines firing down the home straight to the engine winding down as it reaches a tight corner or chicane. It really does add to the overall presentation and feel of the game as you play.
When playing F1 2018 you really get a sense of what Codemasters are doing and how hard they have worked on bring the most realistic simulation of the world’s greatest racing sport to your living room. It’s a true F1 fans dream and they won’t be disappointed at what’s on offer for them. While it may be too overwhelming to some, it is aimed more at the hardcore racer out there. Casual racers may find it infuriating at how it plays or may find themselves doing some hair pulling as they try to figure out what does what or go where.
F1 2018 is definitely a game for the more hardcore racers among you, if you like ultra-realistic racing then this is right up your street. From a technical standpoint, it has everything you would need to keep you glued to your seat for hours on end. For the casual racing fans among you however, I would suggest trying out Forza Horizon 3 or ONRUSH to fulfil your racing needs.
GoG Rating: 8/10