F1 2021 – Review
There is one genre of gaming that I love playing and that is driving games, From Gran Turismo to Forza to the F1 franchise. Each of which bringing its own uniqueness and style to racing from track-based skill driving of F1 to the crazy open world races of Forza Horizon, when it comes to driving games there is something for everyone, and the F1 games are one of my favorites.
I enjoy the sport so when the new game is announced it does get me excited as I like to see what the new features are. This year sees the addition of the breaking point mode, which is a narrative-driven racing experience where you play as Aiden Jackson who is trying to make his way to the top, starting in F2 you will play through to make it into F1 and be the next big thing. I have to admit that the story was very good, I thoroughly enjoyed it, yes it had the usual underdog points, the standard highs, and lows, but I liked it. The acting within the CG sections was very good as well and I like being able to put a story to the racing and not racing for what feels like the sake of it, and being able to get invested in the rivalry that comes from the story with Devon Butler is great. I think this is why I like the ‘My Team’ mode the best, I love being involved in sorting out the team, making those decisions, thinking, is it right for the team? I will admit that I am a very fair boss and most of the time I would side with my team to make sure it benefitted the staff, but sometimes it is all about the greater good and those hard decisions have to be made as well.
For those who don’t know, the My Team mode allows you to take control of your own F1 team from scratch and build them up to be the best in the business. You get to pick sponsors, which areas you want to develop on the car, and which areas to invest in for the team. You also get to pick who your driving partner is going to be, and at first, you will get a low-level driver who you can develop and try to improve, but when you start getting money into the team when its time to renew your driving there are better drivers who you can try and entice over…. For the right price. You also get a selection of Classic Drivers to pick from which I believe came from the deluxe edition, but you get to pick from people like Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher, Nico Rosberg, and more. So there are some excellent drivers you can look at when it comes to picking a partner from the second season onwards.
Now, in terms of how the game looks, I honestly thought that the game couldn’t get better than 2020, but F1 2021 has stepped up its game and on both Xbox and PC it looks absolutely stunning. The details that have gone into the game are immense, the use of lighting, water effects with the puddles on the floor, it’s the little things in the game that stand out and the attention to detail is fantastic. You can’t get away from the sound within the game, from the roaring of the engines at the start of each race, the sounds from the garages during practice sessions, I just love how this can get you invested in what you’re doing and make the race weekend a more immersive experience. I would honestly love to try F1 2021 with a surround sound system to see how much better the experience would be. One day!
The practice sessions have been simplified as well, you can do the normal taking to the track and practice driving around the track and get used to it, or you can simplify it by picking areas that will take time off your session, these will give you bonuses such as a development bonus or development points to use on the R&D skill tree. For me, this was a much friendlier and easier way to introduce new players to the experience, giving the choice of whether to do the session fully or the shortened version if you want to get to the qualifying and race quicker. For me, it depended on the track, there are a lot of tracks I know like the back of my hand, such as Bahrain, Brazil, and Francorchamps, so sometimes practice didn’t really take to the forefront for me.
There are a mass of options available within F1 2021 to tweak and change the game and play it how you want. Don’t want to do a full season? That’s cool, you can change the number of races and whether you do a full practice and qualifying session.
I will admit that I haven’t tried the online aspect of the game, but given how the previous years have gone and how other people have tended to drive I don’t really intend to try it and will be sticking with the single-player modes.
I have to admit that there is a lot of content to play through and enough to give you hours of fun, and for me, that’s without the online portion, if you enjoy the online portion of the game, this will give you an immense amount of hours to play through.
I would highly recommend playing the new F1 game, the addition of the breaking point mode adds a new side to things and the updates to the Career and My Team make it a worthwhile update and purchase.