F1 2015 shaping up to be pretty good, too bad the source material isn’t

F1_2015_Shot_03_1429109952

I’m not a fan of regurgitating articles if I don’t have much to add to them, so you should probably just head over to Team VVV and read the article about them getting to try F1 2015, because apparently it’s pretty good.

To summarize:

  • To put the handling improvements in perspective, we need to look at the journey of the series so far. Over the past five years we’ve had one  fundamental model which has seen various tweaks in terms of suspension and tyres to varying degrees of success. On a personal note, I enjoyed F1 2013 a great deal but in many respects F1 2014 was under-appreciated. Indeed, I stopped playing it quickly due to the wheel users being handicapped in comparison to the controller assisted players. I was also finding my tyres wearing out far sooner, and with almost uncontrollable wheel spin it all felt a bit rushed, even if the concept was there. Move onto F1 2015 and I’m happy to say all of that appears to have fixed and improved. My right foot/finger was feeling the power and traction intuitively and this year there will be parity between controllers and wheels, so we can look forward to fair races, leagues and lap times again.
  • The AI has also been improved: the drivers are now much faster through turn one and generally more competitive and unpredictable. It’s too early to say how dynamic they will be when defending, but certainly improvements are being made. This also tied in well with the different abilities of core attributes featured within. Driving the 2014 Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo, the car handled well and featured great traction, but was limited along high speed straights which made overtaking very difficult. I later raced with the Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes which had solid all round handling, but I found improved response as the turbo kicked in giving me greater top speed. Indeed the subtlety of this wasn’t apparent until I was racing wheel to wheel with a Williams: it matched me for over half the straight, but then I had just a bit more grunt to get ahead into the braking zone. It wasn’t easy and required some timely late braking, but it’s testament to the developers to see that these subtleties are in there and working.
  • This year will feature the full selection of TV replay camera angles all backed up with commentary from David Croft and Anthony Davidson who have been reading thousands of lines for inclusion into what could be an epic and much sought after addition to the series.

What I will say is that Team VVV is often spot-on when it comes to reporting on the improvements (or sometimes, regressions) of different racing games, so count me in as hyped.

However…

The 2014 F1 season was incredibly boring, and already in 2015 teams are complaining about Mercedes’ dominance. Adding to this, the 2015 German GP will not occur due to rising event costs and low ticket sales50,000 fans showed up to Hockenheim in 2014, whereas Red Bull Crashed Ice in Edmonton drew 70,000.

This could be the best F1 game ever made, but unfortunately it’s modeled after possibly the worst era in the history of the sport. A reverse Grand Prix Legends, if you will.

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