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F1 2017 game: New features explained

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F1 2017 launch date

The F1 2017 game will launch 25 August.

F1 2017 – New features and hands-on impressions

F1 2017 isn’t far away, so it’s about time we take a look at what’s new. I went hands-on with the game at E3 and got the lowdown from Codemasters’ Lee Mather, who walked me through some of the new features coming to the game.

Manangement: In F1 2016, you could earn points to unlock car upgrades to be developed by your team. It was basic, and it felt very shallow and didn’t really add much to the game in terms of realism. This time around, it’s going to be a lot more in-depth, according to Mather, with a whole skill tree-type system where you choose an overall direction for your team, not just individual parts upgrades.

f1 2017

This doesn’t just relate to individual components; one skill improves the reliability of upgrades. It’s possible in F1 2017 to receive a new car part that turns out to be unreliable – such as a new front wing – and upgrading particular skills can stop that from happening. Other skills include improving pit stop times and improving part lead times.

It's no Motorsport Manager, but it's in the right direction.

On-track improvements: 2017’s real-life F1 cars are very different beasts to last year. The drivers love them, and Codemasters has brought those handling changes to the game. The cars are much more challenging to drive and have a tendency to snap into oversteer. But playing the game with a wheel and all assists turned off, I had an absolute blast. The steering feels weighty and in touch with the road, and with a delicate touch you can recover from medium-speed slides, if you’re fast enough.

The AI has seen some small improvements as well. At lower difficulty settings your opponents will give you more space in wheel-to-wheel racing, but more difficult AI will run closer. Mather says they’re also less prone to collisions with the player than they were in 2016 because they’re able to better respond to your driving.

The race weekend will be formatted in a similar way to 2016, with track acclimatisation challenges giving you a purpose during Free Practice sessions. This year, however, you’ll be less compelled to complete all the challenges – something that took quite a long time in F1 2016 – and still get the development points you need to upgrade your car and team.

f1 2017

Classic cars: We already knew that you’d be able to race some of the classic cars that will feature in F1 2017, but it’s now more clear how that will fit into the career mode. A rich benefactor wants you to race his collection of classic F1 cars and, occasionally between career races, you’ll go off and do just that. They won’t just be races either, with time trials and overtaking challenges to boot. It sounds a bit arcadey, to be frank, and quite how this fits into a serious career mode remains to be seen.

Full car list:

  • All 2017 F1 cars
  • Williams FW14B
  • Ferrari F2002
  • Red Bull RB6
  • McLaren MP4/4 (day-one exclusive)
  • Ferrari 412 T2
  • Ferrari F2004
  • Ferrari F2007

Codemasters promised 12 classics at launch, so there are still five more to reveal.

Graphics: F1 2017 will be optimised for both PS4 Pro and Xbox One X running at 60fps in 4K. The dev team is currently adding some of the graphical eyecandy you’d see on Ultra settings on PC to the console versions, so this will be the prettiest F1 game yet.

F1 2017 is looking like another decent improvement on the formula. If it can keep the career mode feeling fresh and keep improving the online experience, as well as ironing out minor AI annoyances, it’ll surely be another smash hit.

F1 2017 trailers

Codemasters is yet to reveal any major gameplay, but we do have the announcement trailer to feast our eyes on:

Are you a big Formula One fan? Excited for F1 2017? Let us know in the comments.

RonRoyce

May 17, 2017, 4:31 pm

As much as I like Formula 1 I have never connected with any of the Codemasters F1 series. I find Project Cars to be a much better driving game. I wish Slightly Mad Studios were doing F1 2017.

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