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"[GAME] F1 2010"

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Wed 29/12/10 at 21:59
Regular
"How Ironic"
Posts: 4,312
About 12 years ago, I was obsessed with cardboard boxes and the amount you could create with them. You would of course have to rely on your imagination to create something out of nothing. One of the many ideas I would fabricate was to pretend that the box was a Formula One car, and that I was Mika Hškkinen racing for McLaren. Over the years of course, this imagination has been eradicated from fun, and now we donít have use for our minds. Instead, we rely on the likes of Codemasters to generate our worlds for us.

Who needs imagination anyway, when the worlds that are produced by companies are becoming so authentic? With 19 sublimely recreated, real-life circuits used in the game, imagination is merely a word. The amount of detail involved is no less than gob smacking. Every corner is crafted with unique bumps and surfaces that you would find in no other game. The tracks alone are beautiful, and thatís saying a great deal considering most racing games have tracks that donít even give the impression of being real tarmac. A track is nothing without an environment to contain it though, and Codemasters have made certain that you feel like youíre in that particular country.

Added to the sublime tracks is a natural factor that makes racing so unpredictable, that is of course a weather system. Throughout races, you will be given a weather forecast that includes temperature and wind, and of course the most important bit of information a race driver could need, how likely it is that it will rain during that session. There are 4 different tyre types that can be used to adjust to the new conditions, use the wrong tyres (dry tyres on a wet track) and, well, letís just say you wonít be finishing in pole position.

Most games would leave it at that, as it already sounds complicated enough. Well thereís more about the weather system. Not only does the weather change, thatís far too simple, weíve had games were the weather changes before. Different parts of the track will be affected in different ways. For example, a part of the track that dips downwards will gather a puddle of water, and if driven in to, well weíll just say that traction control is laughable in that scenario. On the other hand, parts of the track that are sheltered, say by a bridge or a tree, will stay moderately dry during the downpour. Thatís all there is about the track changing right? Wrong. Thereís another factor in changing the track. At the start of the weekend, the track will be Ďgreení; in other words, will have a normal amount of grip as expected of the track. Later on in the weekend though, the track will have been raced upon so much that rubber will have placed itself on the track, so the grip on the track will actually increase as the weekend goes on. Iíd love to see what these guys could do with a cardboard box, because the amount of thought that has gone into creating these features makes you lost for words.

So what else can you expect from F1 thatís makes it a class above any other racing simulation? Well realism is taken further than just plain graphics and physics. In career mode (which will either be 3, 5 or 7 years, the choice is yours), your team will research new parts, so that throughout the season, your car will see notable improvements. This research involves you beating a particular lap time in the practice session of that weekend. Sadly, if youíre the teamís second driver, you will receive the upgrades to your car slightly later than the first team driver. Youíll have to work yourself up to get the goods first. In career mode, you will have a choice of teams to drive for. Starting off, you will find yourself being offered contracts at the likes of Lotus and Toro Rosso. You can work your reputation up through the season by completing objectives set by the team. Obviously, the higher your reputation gets, the more offers off of better teams you will receive. Youíll be racing for Red Bull in no time! The answers you give to media questions will also affect how other teams portray you. Will you be a team player looking to take a lower team to success, or are you out for personal success and want to race for the best? Your answers will reflect to the F1 world what your desires are, so be careful when you reply.

This game really is a simulator. If youíre looking for a fast-flowing, arcade style game, do not purchase this, because you will be greatly disappointed. It really does require study of each track, and true skill to navigate around the tracks alone, never mind setting fast times or beating other cars. Most people will find it best to begin on the easy settings, with the likes of brake assist on, because braking in an F1 car is completely different from a standard car. You cannot brake whilst turning at all. You must reduce your speed before the corner, turn in and accelerate simultaneously to get around the corner quick enough. It doesnít sound much written down, but if youíve played the game, you really will understand the level of difficulty.

One of my few gripes with the game is the pit crew. The pit crew can be helpful in some respects, recommending setups for the car before races, and giving you useful information whilst on the track. The problem with them lies in the warnings they give you. If there is a crash ahead of you on the track, the pit crew seem to wait until the last second to warn you of the collision. Again, this doesnít sound like much, but if the accident takes place on a blind corner, you could find yourself with bits of F1 car surrounding you. The crew also seem to have a habit of giving you useless bits of information. There have been many occasions weíre Iíve been in first place by a narrow margin, so Iíve needed to concentrate quite a lot to keep and extend the gap between me and the car behind me. So the last thing you want to hear is your pit crew telling you that the car in 8th place is fitting prime tyres. Crashing into the tyre wall at 200 mph seconds later and your race is over, all because of the threat of prime tyres. Thanks a bunch pit crew.

Considering this is my first F1 game, I have to say that Iím impressed, and have been encapsulated into the world itself. I might not have the opportunity to race as Mika Hškkinen, but itís the closest simulation available to me, and despite the lack of personal imagination involved, itís miles better than the cardboard box.
Sat 08/01/11 at 21:15
Regular
Posts: 1
killing exlent review man i loved it
Thu 30/12/10 at 17:25
Regular
"How Ironic"
Posts: 4,312
pete_21 wrote:
Really good review there Chris.I liked this game as well and I'm no F1 fan.I reckon anyone into the sport would love it.

Thanks pete. Think you have to be aware of the difference between F1 cars and 'normal' cars though. Can imagine a few people buying this expecting it to be similar to Need for Speed and the likes, when it's actually at the complete opposite end of the spectrum. Fantastic game though. Possibly game of the year for me.
Thu 30/12/10 at 17:07
Regular
"I like turtles"
Posts: 5,368
Really good review there Chris.I liked this game as well and I'm no F1 fan.I reckon anyone into the sport would love it.
Thu 30/12/10 at 15:19
Regular
"How Ironic"
Posts: 4,312
Cheers Torino.

Yeh, it's definitely one of the best simulators of any kind around. A truly difficult game, with great rewards!
Thu 30/12/10 at 12:49
Regular
"Zebra Three 537-ONN"
Posts: 195
Great review Chris. It's a fantastic game but it does require patience, and like you say you really have to learn how to DRIVE the cars in this one, you can't just hold a button and rely on 'autopilot' like in most othe racers. It's a lot of work but it's very rewarding too.
Wed 29/12/10 at 21:59
Regular
"How Ironic"
Posts: 4,312
About 12 years ago, I was obsessed with cardboard boxes and the amount you could create with them. You would of course have to rely on your imagination to create something out of nothing. One of the many ideas I would fabricate was to pretend that the box was a Formula One car, and that I was Mika Hškkinen racing for McLaren. Over the years of course, this imagination has been eradicated from fun, and now we donít have use for our minds. Instead, we rely on the likes of Codemasters to generate our worlds for us.

Who needs imagination anyway, when the worlds that are produced by companies are becoming so authentic? With 19 sublimely recreated, real-life circuits used in the game, imagination is merely a word. The amount of detail involved is no less than gob smacking. Every corner is crafted with unique bumps and surfaces that you would find in no other game. The tracks alone are beautiful, and thatís saying a great deal considering most racing games have tracks that donít even give the impression of being real tarmac. A track is nothing without an environment to contain it though, and Codemasters have made certain that you feel like youíre in that particular country.

Added to the sublime tracks is a natural factor that makes racing so unpredictable, that is of course a weather system. Throughout races, you will be given a weather forecast that includes temperature and wind, and of course the most important bit of information a race driver could need, how likely it is that it will rain during that session. There are 4 different tyre types that can be used to adjust to the new conditions, use the wrong tyres (dry tyres on a wet track) and, well, letís just say you wonít be finishing in pole position.

Most games would leave it at that, as it already sounds complicated enough. Well thereís more about the weather system. Not only does the weather change, thatís far too simple, weíve had games were the weather changes before. Different parts of the track will be affected in different ways. For example, a part of the track that dips downwards will gather a puddle of water, and if driven in to, well weíll just say that traction control is laughable in that scenario. On the other hand, parts of the track that are sheltered, say by a bridge or a tree, will stay moderately dry during the downpour. Thatís all there is about the track changing right? Wrong. Thereís another factor in changing the track. At the start of the weekend, the track will be Ďgreení; in other words, will have a normal amount of grip as expected of the track. Later on in the weekend though, the track will have been raced upon so much that rubber will have placed itself on the track, so the grip on the track will actually increase as the weekend goes on. Iíd love to see what these guys could do with a cardboard box, because the amount of thought that has gone into creating these features makes you lost for words.

So what else can you expect from F1 thatís makes it a class above any other racing simulation? Well realism is taken further than just plain graphics and physics. In career mode (which will either be 3, 5 or 7 years, the choice is yours), your team will research new parts, so that throughout the season, your car will see notable improvements. This research involves you beating a particular lap time in the practice session of that weekend. Sadly, if youíre the teamís second driver, you will receive the upgrades to your car slightly later than the first team driver. Youíll have to work yourself up to get the goods first. In career mode, you will have a choice of teams to drive for. Starting off, you will find yourself being offered contracts at the likes of Lotus and Toro Rosso. You can work your reputation up through the season by completing objectives set by the team. Obviously, the higher your reputation gets, the more offers off of better teams you will receive. Youíll be racing for Red Bull in no time! The answers you give to media questions will also affect how other teams portray you. Will you be a team player looking to take a lower team to success, or are you out for personal success and want to race for the best? Your answers will reflect to the F1 world what your desires are, so be careful when you reply.

This game really is a simulator. If youíre looking for a fast-flowing, arcade style game, do not purchase this, because you will be greatly disappointed. It really does require study of each track, and true skill to navigate around the tracks alone, never mind setting fast times or beating other cars. Most people will find it best to begin on the easy settings, with the likes of brake assist on, because braking in an F1 car is completely different from a standard car. You cannot brake whilst turning at all. You must reduce your speed before the corner, turn in and accelerate simultaneously to get around the corner quick enough. It doesnít sound much written down, but if youíve played the game, you really will understand the level of difficulty.

One of my few gripes with the game is the pit crew. The pit crew can be helpful in some respects, recommending setups for the car before races, and giving you useful information whilst on the track. The problem with them lies in the warnings they give you. If there is a crash ahead of you on the track, the pit crew seem to wait until the last second to warn you of the collision. Again, this doesnít sound like much, but if the accident takes place on a blind corner, you could find yourself with bits of F1 car surrounding you. The crew also seem to have a habit of giving you useless bits of information. There have been many occasions weíre Iíve been in first place by a narrow margin, so Iíve needed to concentrate quite a lot to keep and extend the gap between me and the car behind me. So the last thing you want to hear is your pit crew telling you that the car in 8th place is fitting prime tyres. Crashing into the tyre wall at 200 mph seconds later and your race is over, all because of the threat of prime tyres. Thanks a bunch pit crew.

Considering this is my first F1 game, I have to say that Iím impressed, and have been encapsulated into the world itself. I might not have the opportunity to race as Mika Hškkinen, but itís the closest simulation available to me, and despite the lack of personal imagination involved, itís miles better than the cardboard box.

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