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F1 2014 Review

With this year’s F1 season all about wrapped up it is about time for another offering from Codemasters, putting their heritage of digital racing to good use for F1 2014.

What is likely to be the last of this generation (PS3 version reviewed) this version of F1 expertly merges playability and slick presentation, giving the gamer an experience that many only dream of. Starting things off with an evaluation lap at Monza, the game quickly works out the best in game settings for you, removing and adding items like computer assisted breaking, automatic gears and the now standard racing line indicator, which with a little updating looks really cool when in use. 

Once the evaluation is out of the way you are unleashed into the game and its many modes, which are if course all variations of driving a very fast car around exotic parts of the world. Modes here include the Grand Prix where you choose a team and driver from the current roster and join in the season to become the best. The Career Mode allows you to choose from a few difficulties and carve out your own destiny on the track, starting from your choice of team you then set out to prove yourself, hoping to gain the attention of other teams whilst defeating your rivals on the track across a full season or more custom lengths, letting you dictate how long each race will be depending of time and of course your overall skill. The Proving Grounds offer a selection of sub modes including a Time Attack, Time Trails and a Scenario Mode which recreates highlights from previous seasons like outpacing Sebastian Vettel, winning with a Williams car in Spain, stealing podium positions and getting into a points position after damaging your car and whilst not as deep as last years extras these will still entertain and challenge for long enough. F1 2014 also has a pretty decent selection of multiplayer modes that are just as enjoyable, be it local split screen or online for a huge 16 player grand prix.

Though I have played many F1 games over the years across a lot of platforms this iteration really surprised me, especially the handling which is one of the best I have experienced on a gamepad, every chicane and long corner a dream to navigate, the powerful engines feeling more lifelike than I can remember. This is helped by fantastic sound effects, the scream of the engine as it shifts through the gears, the rumble of the track under your wheels, team orders and updates coming in through the headset and plenty of other ambient noises from the crowds and track really add to the experience. All this and the game looks beautiful, the game never struggling with the well-populated tracks, familiar landmarks in the distance and rival cars up close never give the game any issues and the weather system; well it was a real challenge the first time it rained in a close pack with water spraying everywhere and mist obscuring the view, becoming one of the most thrilling races I have had in a long time. This is all helped along by a great selection of car views, each offering the driver a preferred angle to race from, though for sheer thrills the first person view is a must. Even with all this praise the graphics are let down a little by ropey looking human models in between races but otherwise F1 2014 is a great showcase to what the last generation is still capable of.

The big question is much the same as with many of these titles, is F1 2014 worth it? For many F1 fans this is already a done deal and there will be no regrets thanks to updated rosters and the new tracks, even though there have been other changes and omissions from last year's release. For casual fans this may not be the best version to grab, but for newcomers you really cannot go wrong, thanks to the amazing handling and lush visual presentation and easy to navigate modes.

Words by Ash Buchanan.

(Version Tested: PS3)


+ Rewind feature
+ Handles like a dream
+ Amazing production


- Cut scenes are disappointing

Edited On 20 Oct, 2014

( 1 )
Anonymous user's avatar
DANIEL 10 months ago
I've played the vast majority of F1 games, saying back to the PS1 days, and this is the best one I've played by a margin.

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