With F1 2018, it looks like the developers are improving upon the strong foundation laid by its predecessor.
F1 2018 is set to be the latest installment in the Formula One franchise from Codemasters. The game looks visually stunning and it also brings a lot of improvements to the series including better physics and handling, and lots of different game modes to keep players engaged.
To learn more about the game and its development, Gamingbolt reached out to Codemasters with some questions and the game’s director Lee Mather provided the following answers.
"Ultimately, the feeling of rubber on tarmac is unprecedented in F1 2018, giving the player an even more direct connection with the car and what it’s doing."
F1 2017 was a phenomenal entry into the series bringing some major progression changes and tons of different customization options. How will F1 2018 differ from F1 2017?
We are building on the success of F1 2017 and expanding in pretty much every area of the game. The most notable additions come in the Career mode as we look to give the player more control over their destiny both on and off the track.
You now have to face the press at various points during the season and the answers you give will directly affect the way you are seen within the sport, both by your own team and rivals. Some teams will prefer a driver who exhibits sportsmanship, while others will prefer a showman and that contrast will show when you want to make a big move.
How you respond to the press will also impact upon team motivation, with not only departments producing cheaper or more reliable upgrades, but also how the team values you as a driver, which will be very important when trying to get a better deal.
We have also made significant changes to the R&D within the Career, with each team now having its own bespoke tech tree with inherent strengths and weaknesses.
Outside of the Career, we have the most classic cars we have ever had in the franchise with 20 amazing cars from the history of the sport now available to the player.
Can you talk about the various changes in car handling and physics?
The car handling is central to the whole experience and it has undergone significant work this year. We are now updating the vehicle simulation at 1000htz, which means that you are getting a more realistic feel to the car. Ultimately, the feeling of rubber on tarmac is unprecedented in F1 2018, giving the player an even more direct connection with the car and what it’s doing.
The changes we have made have been based on real world data provided to us by the teams and F1. This information allowed us to further advance our vehicle physics, improving chassis and suspension response and behavior, as well as adding in additional sim elements to our tire model by modelling the carcass temperature and its impact on performance.
There is a common complain amongst fans that the Codemasters haven’t been able to push the visual barrier much in the last few years. Do you think F1 2018 will offer players with a drastic graphics jump they have all been waiting for?
I think anyone that has seen the game in action would agree that there has been a considerable uplift in the game’s visuals this year.
We’ve added a lot of new visual elements, which work together to create an even strongest representation of the real sport. Going in to more detail, we’ve added environmental mist/fog, as air has a density and that affects what we see. We’ve also added heat haze, track mirage effects, new engine heat haze, off racing line dirt kick-up and finally some new depth of field technology. It looks great.
Can you talk us through some of the different modes in the game?
We have Career, Grand Prix, Time Trail, Championships, Multiplayer and Events. I’ve already spoken quite a lot about Career, but that is where you get to create your own dynasty in Formula 1 by creating your own character and progressing them through the sport over a number of years in the hope of becoming a legend!
Grand Prix allows you to take on individual races or race weekends. It is up to you if you want to practice and qualify or whether you just want to jump into the race.
Championships is an area of the game where the player can experience unique ways of racing, with different weekend and points scoring structures. They can also take part in the full 2018 Season, driving as one of the licensed drivers. Another element of Championships is that the player can also access all of the Career invitationals, allowing them to replay their favorite events at their leisure.
Time Trial speaks for itself and Multiplayer allows you to race with up to 19 other players from around the world (with the option for two further spectators) in either individual races or a season. We also allow players to save their own season, with points and results all being stored.
Events are real world inspired race scenarios, where players are scored on their skill and performance. This has also been the initial basis of our F1 2018 esports qualifying.
What kind of changes are you making netcode and the multiplayer’s progression system this time around?
We have directed resources in this area to work on the technology and making sure that we get the most from the closed betas, which have provided us with some great feedback and data.
Feature wise for Multiplayer, we have introduced the Super License. This is a mechanism that rates drivers on their skill and etiquette and then uses a new matchmaking system to ensure players get to race with other gamers who play in the same way as they do, and at a similar skill level. It is designed to limit the impact of those who do not race properly online.
"Technically, we’ll be running Xbox One and PS4 at 1080p, with Xbox One X and PS4 Pro at 4k, with all four running at 60FPS"
Are there plans to bring the game over to VR?
Not at this point in time.
Are there any particular features you wanted to add this time around but didn’t make the cut?
We have a big list of features and ideas that we want to introduce to the franchise over time. Deciding which ones make the cut each year is always a very difficult process, but we have enough in our back pocket to keep us going for quite a long time. I won’t go into specifics though … 😉
How is the game running on the original Xbox One and PS4, frame rate and resolution wise?
As with F1 2017, there will be visual differences across Xbox One, Xbox One X, PS4 and PS4 Pro. The differences will all be related to enhanced visuals and screen resolution, but you can be sure that all four platforms will benefit from the huge visual uplift which the game has received this year. Technically, we’ll be running Xbox One and PS4 at 1080p, with Xbox One X and PS4 Pro at 4k, with all four running at 60FPS.
Do you have any plans to bring the game to Nintendo Switch? If not, why?
We are concentrating on making the best possible game for the PS4, Xbox One and PC at this moment in time.