Conclusion: Concept: Flesh out the franchise’s multiplayer and offer a few concessions to the new F1 season
Graphics: The game looks pretty sharp, particularly in the rain
Sound: You get a decent amount of info about your car and the race from your crew
Playability: The game provides a good range of driving assists, damage, weather, and other options to let you experience the game how you want
Entertainment: Last year Codemasters built a good foundation, and this improves upon it...
Excerpt: I'm in a Lotus and running tenth at Valencia in a 20% distance race, with 'hard' opponent AI. Tenth is crap - I know this. But it also represents an opportunity to bag my first world championship point. However, due to a killer lack of KERS in my Lotus, I'm flagging and doing everything possible to keep the guy behind me at bay. I move right to block and suddenly a hell of a noise starts up in my right ear. What's happening? My engineer comes on over the radio.
Pros: Way better handling than last year, As deep or arcadey as you want it, Superb split-screen mode
Cons: Racing a car that doesn't have KERS, Needless waiting to race online, It's hard to find the perfect difficulty
Excerpt: You're screaming towards a rather terrifying-looking chicane at 180mph. The car shakes, the V8 engine roars, and the trees, barriers and spectator stands either side of you form a messy grey blur. You've played F1 2010 to death, though, so you'll be fine; coming out the other side and nailing pole position is second nature to a seasoned driver such as yourself.
Excerpt: When was the last time you were in a nightclub chemically altered to within an inch of complete comprehension thinking: You know what would make the roar and stink of this ritualised thrashing better? Giant red lasers that could chase me around and melt my face off. If it was recently, you’ve probably been playing Cellar Door’s Bullet Audyssey .
Conclusion: F1 2011 is very much a Codemasters racer, technically brilliant but tonally just a bit off. Their games tend to be either po-faced and bland or in-your-face and kitsch. F1 2011 errs perhaps too far on the side of the former, though ironically the game really shines when the raindrops fall. I’m not saying I want it to be all shouty and American like the incredibly annoying DiRT 2 , heaven forbid. But it needs more bustle in the career mode, more life to the tracks.
Conclusion: Building on the success of last year's title, Codemasters have brought to the table a title that improves on the stellar offering we received in nearly every way. F1 2011 is a perfect addition to any racing fan's collection, with the abundance of game modes and tracks meaning there is plenty to do, enjoy and burn rubber on.
Pros: A whole host of new modes, aesthetic changes and updates.
Cons: Graphical problems outside of the cars and tracks. Some irritating framerate drops. The presence of a VIP pass required to access online multiplayer. Split-screen support for only two players.
Excerpt: “We’ve had lots of Tweets from your fans,” claims F1 2011′s interviewer as you start up the main career mode. It’s a little cringeworthy, for sure, but it’s as good a method of getting the player to enter their name and nationality as any other, as the carefully chosen questions tempt out the required data to populate your save game.
Pros: Improvements all around to the handling and AI, Better online lobbies, KERS and DRS are nice for hardcore fans
Cons: The off-track stuff looks and feels a little basic, Visually roughly the same, frame rate isn’t perfect