E3 2011 is underway in Los Angeles and I have made it my personal mission to get as much info on all the games and accessories relevant to gear heads as possible. So, of course I paid a visit once again to the Codemasters crew to get the scoop on F1 2011. Unfortunately, due to FIA stipulations I could not get any video of the game in action but I do have a lovely collection of screenshots that you can view below (just click to enlarge). I also have tons of info on F1 2011 and what you can expect. Let me just say, any notion that F1 2011 is just going to be F1 2010 but with the new cars and liveries should be nixed right now. The Codemasters Burmingham team made a whole host of upgrades and changes to improve the F1 experience and add even more authenticity to the new title. What changes did they make? I am glad that I pretended that you asked that..
The first thing you are going to notice is that there is a lot more visual details put into F1 2011 vs F1 2010. The racing environments are much more detailed with nuances like more realistic foliage around the tracks, current and accurate representation of each teams garage, faces of the mechanics and crew look more realistic, and they have even added the “Parc Ferme” celebrations after qualifying sessions and races. F1 2011 continues to use Codemasters’ patented EGO engine so expect more top notch and dynamic weather effects in addition to all of the other environmental detail.
The Codemasters crew has taken all the feedback from F1 2010 players and made improvements to the car dynamics and handling to make driving the cars more true to life. If you see Vettel go over the curbs at turn 3 in Valencia then you will be able to go over the curbs there as well in the game without having to worry about your car unexpectedly spinning out. To further aid in making the handling more realistic Codemasters obtained data from Pirelli to make the tire dynamics as close to the real thing as possible. All the tires that the drivers are currently using will be available in F1 2011.
Current rules and innovations
All the cars in the game will be as representative of the real cars as possible. Most of all KERS, and the new DRS (Drag Resistance System) will be included. However just like in real life players will only be able to use those features per FIA rules. No fantasy KERS boost for the entire race or using the DRS on the first lap!
Multi-player much improved
The first major multi-player improvement for F1 2011 is the ability to do 2-player split screen mode. With most people owning decent sized HDTVs these days, going split screen is much more feasible now than it may have been before. Now you do not need to hop online for a quick race against your buddy. My favorite new Multi-player feature is Co-Op career mode. This is the icing on the cake of realism for F1 2011. In F1 2010′s career mode you went through the entire season as a driver competing against your teammate for the attention of your engineers. However in F1 2010 that teammate was the computer’s AI. In the new Co-Op mode your teammate can be a friend online and you go through the season together! In fact you can play it out exactly the way the FIA does. Join up with your buddy on Friday for practice, come back the next day for Saturday qualifying, and race on Sunday! You can share data and set up info as well, although you will probably be less likely to share your data once you get to the tail end of the season and realize that only one of you can be champion.
F1 2011 on the go
A while back I gave you wind of the announcement that F1 2011 will be coming to the new PlaystationVita (formerly Sony NGP) handheld as well as the Nintendo 3DS. I spoke with the Codemasters team on that today and they informed me that the handheld versions are being worked on by another team and will be much more accessible versions of what you would expect on consoles or the PC. As suspected the 3DS version WILL be in 3D! While there is not an official release ETA for the PlaystationVita I was told that players can expect the 3DS version to be available in November 2011 which is a month after the console and PC version is released.
F1 2011™ is the sequel to the BAFTA winning FORMULA ONE™ videogame from Codemasters®, the developer and publisher of award-winning racing games. Developed under Codemasters’ exclusive worldwide agreement with Formula One World Championship Limited, F1 2011 will come complete with all the official drivers, teams and circuits featuring in the 2011 FIA FORMULA ONE World Championship™.
With a new focus on multiplayer gaming, including co-op Championships and split-screen mode, F1 2011 will invite players to ‘Be The Driver, Live the Life, Go Compete’ with a range of innovations, improvements and enhancements on and off the track. Set to be the most enthralling season yet, the 2011 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP features two new circuits in India and Germany, new drivers, rules, tyres as Sebastian Vettel seeks to defend his title.
Developed using Codemasters’ EGO Game Technology Platform F1 2011 will deliver an unrivalled FORMULA ONE experience that puts players into the heart of the world’s most exciting sport, powered by cutting edge graphics, advanced physics systems and integrated network play.
- Go Compete! F1 2011 builds extensively on the multiplayer options from F1 2010. Split-screen racing is included for the first time in a high-definition FORMULA ONE title. Competitive online racing is extended with 16 players going head-to-head in GRAND PRIX™ with up to 8 AI drivers added to simulate the full grid of 24 drivers. An innovative new co-op Championship enables two players to lead their favourite FORMULA ONE team to Driver and Constructor glory across the course of a FORMULA ONE season. These enhancements are complimented by additional quick fire modes including Time Attack.
- New Circuits for 2011. Two stunning new additions to the race calendar extend the number of circuits to feature in F1 2011 to 19. Players will be able to debut ahead of the drivers on the Buddh International Circuit, the home of the first FORMULA 1 GRAND PRIX OF INDIA and players will be able to test themselves on the iconic Nürburging circuit for the first time in High Definition, as this legendary track returns for the 2011 season.
- Be the driver, live the life. From the paddock to the track, F1 2011 takes players closer to the experience of being a FORMULA ONE driver than ever before. A new Parc Ferme area, an expanded and revamped Paddock, new Pit Lane, celebration and reaction cinematics and an enhanced media interaction system fully immerse players in the glamour, pressure and excitement of being a FORMULA ONE driver. Players progress from rookie to FIA FORMULA ONE DRIVERS’ WORLD CHAMPION in an extensive career mode where gamers fight to become priority driver and shape the development of the car by performing well in races and earning performance upgrades.
- All the cars, all the stars. Fully licensed, F1 2011 features all the drivers set to contest the 2011 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, including Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button. All 2011 teams are represented including Ferrari, Red Rull Racing, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes and Lotus Renault GP in their iconic black and gold livery.
- KERS, DRS and more! F1 2011 includes all the new rule changes set to make this year’s season the most exciting yet. F1 2011 debuts DRS (Drag Reduction System) – the new system which enables drivers to adjust the rear wing on the car to give a boost of up to 10km. KERS also returns, giving players an extra 80BHP for up to 6.67 seconds, enabling drivers to blast past rivals. Combined, these systems encourage close wheel-to-wheel racing with new options for both defence and attack. This season’s new Pirelli tyres are faithfully simulated in the game, and if players push their car too hard they may experience a range of authentic new damage failures.
- Full Day / Night Racing. The 2011 FORMULA 1 ETHIAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX comes alive with a full day/ night transition which recreates the special atmosphere at this unique track. Every one of the existing circuits from the 2010 roster has been given a complete visual overhaul. New atmospheric effects, including dynamic clouds, compliment a weather system which features an advanced rain model that affects on-track grip. Powered by the EGO Game Technology Platforms, F1 2011 pushes forward the graphical standard of what can be achieved in a racing game.
- The world’s greatest cars, the most exciting racing.Building on the heritage of producing award-winning racing games for over a decade, Codemasters is uniquely placed to realise the spectacle and exhilaration of racing 200MPH+ FORMULA ONE cars for all fans. F1 2011 can be tuned for players from a wide range of skill levels, from the casual gamer to the hardcore simulation enthusiast and those in between, with a range of differing skill levels. A huge range of vehicle variables can be tuned to suit each player’s unique driving style, or drivers can entrust their Race Engineer to set their car up and head straight onto the track. F1 2011 will support a comprehensive range of racing wheels for the ultimate racing experience.
- Unprecedented authenticity. Codemasters has used its unprecedented access to the world of FORMULA ONE to connect the development team directly with FORMULA ONE teams and tyre manufacturers. Extensive consultancy has taken place with a range of FORMULA ONE professionals, including race engineers, mechanics and drivers. This has been combined with real world data including CAD and on-board telemetry to deliver a race experience complete with authentic handling, accurate circuits and precisely modelled racing cars.
EGO powered FORMULA ONE. F1 2011 is being developed on the EGO Game Technology platform, evolved from the award winning EGO engine. Enabling Codemasters development talent to share tools and technology across Studios and Central Technology teams, the EGO Game Technology Platform empowers Codemasters game designers to realise their creative visions across multiple platforms featuring cutting edge graphics, powerful AI, advanced physics systems and integrated network play.