F1 2011 – Marginal Improvements over F1 2010?

The early F1 2011 reviews are mostly positive, which is to be expected based on F1 2010 being well received.

It is interesting reading TheSixthAxis reviewer’s take on the game. Before the summary, the reviewer discusses new F1 technical ‘innovations’ that are included in F1 2011 (KERS and DRS), but also mentions that casual gamers are not likely to notice. I would go so far as to say that casual gamers should stay pretty away from this title and go after a more mainstream racer.

Now the tricky part – is F1 2011 worth picking up if you already own 2010? That’s a question that only the individual can really answer – there’s certainly a good, extensive and solid game here but then a good chunk of it is clearly based on last year’s code and visuals, even most of the menu interface remains the same. The improvements are all for the better – that’s for sure – but perhaps we’d have liked to have seen more of them. Anyone that bypassed 2010 and held out for this years can relax easy, though, this is probably the best Formula One game we’ve seen for years.

An improved AI, along with the addition of offline split screen and co-op Championship mode have me pretty excited.

Eurogamer has a remarkably similar take on the marginal year-over-year improvements in Codemasters F1 franchise.

Now comes the tricky third test; can it do enough to establish a yearly franchise, an exercise that’s normally the reserve of publishers with a little more clout?

F1 2011’s answer to that particular question is, sometimes, not too convincing. Some areas remain sparse and many of its improvements can be measured in tenths rather than seconds. Still, it’s a sport where every little detail counts, and the finite changes do undoubtedly make for a better game.

Now I just have to decide if I attempt to whore any of the many remaining Trophies in F1 2010, or if I call it a loss, flip it on eBay while the flipping still has marginal value, and see if I can stay focused on F1 2011. Last year I lost interest – really don’t know the reason why because I gushed about it during the first few weeks after it was released. At least I didn’t play F1 2010 half as much as Sony’s last F1 outing (Formula One: Championship Edition).

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2 thoughts on “F1 2011 – Marginal Improvements over F1 2010?”

  1. Things Eurogamer missed:

    – AI drivers whose tyres just don’t seem to wear at the same rate yours do
    – AI drivers who flatly refuse to overtake you, even if they’re clearly 3 or 4 seconds a lap faster than you
    – The bugs. Heavens to Betsy, the bugs

    What’s worse is that Codemasters have been working on a patch since before the game was released. The ‘release now, patch later’ mentality is something that drives me up the wall. I object, strongly, to paying £40 for a product that isn’t finished when it’s sold to me. In saying that, the act of driving the cars is all kinds of fun, with a much livelier car and shorter braking distances than last year, so F1 2011 will be a very, very good game once they’re done making it…

  2. I agree with you on publishers pushing out games that are not ready yet. There is a little good and evil to this. In the ‘old’ days (console, not PC gaming) a product had to be finished to be published. Of course the downside was if there was a major bug, not patching, but the upside was that you would not normally get a game that was clearly released too early.

    Of course there were always exceptions, but right now, patching is a crutch, and back int he day was the main reason I was never all that into PC gaming.

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