I’D be lying if I said I hadn’t been swept up in worldwide resurgence and love for Formula 1 racing, so I was absolutely elated to be given my chance for the first time in my two-year hiatus of the franchise, to dive back into the drivers set of F1 22.
With a new physics-based system for tires, photo-realistic gameplay and what I can only assume is a 1 to 1 replica of the adrenaline real F1 drivers feel day-to-day, F1 22 offers aspiring racing enthusiasts an incredibly enjoyable gameplay experience for all skill-levels.
F1 22 has also enabled my partner to pursue her life-long dream of being a racing-car driver in the safety and confines of our living room (and from what I’ve seen so far, the safety of every other driver on the grid).
This review was based on my gameplay experience from the Playstation 5 version of the game (unfortunately without the use of a steering wheel peripheral or VR headset), so keep this in mind before you read on.
Upsettingly, the story mode introduced in F1 2022 has been excluded from this years edition, and instead replaced with a rather unnecessary inclusion in the form of ‘F1 Life’, a slightly gimmicky garage for your avatar to showcase all of your trophies, lush collectable cars (that you never get to drive), and abundance of exuberant wealth that comes with being an F1 driver.
I personally don’t see the need or benefit for this inclusion in the latest F1 instalment, and EA confusingly introduced micro transactions with this, so you can spend your hand-earned cash on purely cosmetic clothing, cars or furniture (because of course they did).
In the grand scheme of things, there’s only thing that actually matters in any good racing game; and that is how well it feels to drive, which Codemasters have nailed to a tee. You won’t find a much more genuine racing experience out there, that handles (from a controller perspective) as responsively as F1 22 and looks true-to-life. Despite the exclusion of a story mode, F1 22 still has abundance to do, with quick-play race options, a ‘My Career’ and ‘My Team’ experience, alongside some driving skill challenges thrown in as well.
An unexpected aspect of the game I truly found remarkable was in regards to how accomodating the game is to a wide spectrum of driving skills. From skill level settings, AI settings, optional driver aids and vastly customisable simulation settings, you can really fine-tune the driving experience into whatever specific comfort level suits your skillset. There’s a slight barrier to entry when it comes to enabling some of these options however, as I I found it rather difficult to actually find tutorial content to get me up to speed with some of the more advanced gameplay mechanics I wanted to trial and learn, but after some time-investment I got the hang of things.
F1 22 is technically and visually stunning, so combining that with the opportunity to drive this year’s cars on this year’s tracks tracks with your favourite drivers (it’s always Carlos for me) makes it a must-buy for Formula One fans. F1 2022 is available now on all major platforms, and you can view the gameplay features trailer below for an overview of how everything looks and plays.