Ever since Codemasters gained the F1 license in 2008 they've been releasing games based on it annually across a whole raft of formats from the previous generation. Namely PSP, Wii, PS3, Xbox 360, PS Vita and iOS, with only the Windows PC version showing off the full visual splendour of the cars that hurtle around the track.
Now, in 2015, Codemasters has entered the current generation of consoles with F1 2015
, which finds itself of the PS4, Xbox One and Windows PC. With this change an enormous and very much self-evident sense of freedom is apparent, as the power of current generation of machines affords the developer the chance to explore and exploit things it could only wistfully dream of previously.
The first thing that impressed me about F1 2015
was the visuals. The Singapore track that was being demonstrated had torrential rain beating down on tarmac littered with puddles that rippled and splashed as cars drove over them. The water effects were extremely convincing and while many would regard this as superficial, it did hint at what promised to be quite an experience when playing F1 2015
. Thankfully I was right to be encouraged by this visual splendour as I found F1 2015
an absolute delight to play.
I experienced the Xbox One version that used the vibrating triggers on the controller to great effect. There was a definite sense of the tires biting into the track as each corner was approached and exited at great speed. The responsiveness was also as pleasing as it was rapid, something any racing game needs if it is to be halfway playable.
Another aspect of F1 2015
was the way in which the player can interact with the pit-crew. By uttering voice commands into a headset-mounted microphone it is possible to get updates on fuel consumption, tire wear and weather conditions, all of which are explained via the headset. This makes for a very immersive environment as the player gets that extra insight into how drivers talk to the pit-crew during races.
Another visual highlight includes custom steering wheels for each driver, something the developer wanted to include in previous versions but, due to limitations of the platforms, was unable to. This adds yet more realism to the experience and is something the developers are emphasising in F1 2015
. Replays have also been revamped with wide-angle shots allowing for many cars to be rendered on-screen without any slowdown, again something Codemasters has always wanted to do but up until now was unable to.
As you may have gathered from this preview F1 2015
appears to be the F1 game Codemasters has always wanted to make, but would never dare admit it. I certainly came away impressed and look forward to its release on 12th June this year.