In the world of F1, 2014 have seen some major changes to both the rules and the cars. One of these is changes to the engine, or the power unit as they are called now. Thankfully for us Codemasters have taken the changes made by FIA and added them to their new F1 2014 game. I have always loved the F1 titles that have been released by Codies and F1 2013 was great, especially with the classic mode that featured all the old cars. So let us take our place on the start line to see what we can expect.
Release Date: 17 October 2014
Thanks to the developers for the review copy
Gentlemen…start your engines. F1 2014 is here and with all the new rules and changes that are part of this sport. Now we have 1.6 Turbocharged power units and new aerodynamic regulations to the cars that effect things dramatically. Codemasters have took all this and added to their latest in the series. Those who played F1 2013 might be a little disappointed as there has been nothing new added to note. This is not surprising as Codies are working on a next-gen version for release next year, so understandably all resources are going on that project. But the game is still great fun to play.
You have a few modes that you can choose from depending what you feel like. There is the obvious career mode: in which you join one of the teams and with this team you must try to achieve the aims that are set out for you. Grand Prix mode is where you can enter one off events and races so that you can race all the tracks and have fun without committing to a season. There are multiplayer modes that you can race other drivers online and you got the proving grounds section that you must take part in certain scenarios. Unfortunately this year the classic mode was removed so that you cannot drive the older cars, which is a little disappointing as this was quite fun.
Last year’s incarnation had the young driver mode, which kind of served as a tutorial and challenges before you entered into career mode. This time around you are given one lap of Monza to race around before you get to the title screen and it is from here that you begin your career. Also a change from F1 2013 is that you can now drive for any team you fancy, whereas before you had to work your way up to the big boys like Red Bull or Mercedes. This is both good and bad, as while it might be fun racing at the top you miss out learning all essential skills and no sense of achievement as you are already top of the tree.
The realism that Codemasters have created is good. The cars now sound as poorly as they do in real life since they no longer have the traditional engines. And another thing fans will notice is how underpowered they feel compared to last year’s offering, thanks to the new Turbocharged Power Units. The mechanics works really well as the developers have not messed with the tried and tested system of the last few F1 titles. This means that everyone can get to grips with the game as it feels good enough for regular people, just not for die hard race fans as it feels too forgiving.
We have the season challenges and scenario modes and these works like F1 2013, so there is not much to report on these. And unfortunately whereas last year it was part of a package, this year it represents a fair chunk of the game’s playability. Graphically it looks good and the detail for the PS3 is quite remarkable. Sounds and atmosphere is great and feel like you are taking part in a F1 weekend.
F1 2014 is a solid racing game. It is nice to have all the new rules and car changes for this season and the attention to detail is great as you would expect from Codemasters. But this does feel like something that could have been released as an expansion for F1 2013. Seeing that it don’t bring a lot of features to the table. That being said, F1 fans and racing fans will love it and to be honest I really enjoyed it myself and if this is the last F1 title we see on the current-gen, then Codies have given it a good send off.