Despite growing up with two older brothers with a love for anything with an engine – I absolutely loathed every form of racing they made me watch. Although my brothers were unsuccessful in converting me, playing Codemasters’ F1 2016 may be the most compelling argument to get into car racing I’ve ever been subject to. Whether you’re a racing rookie (like myself) or a Formula 1 fanatic – this year’s release boasts a myriad of customisable options and game modes that will allow you to tailor an experience suited perfectly to the amount of time you’ve spent behind the wheel.
A key component that makes F1 2016 so compelling is its new career mode. However, before you embark on your 21 race journey around the world, you must select where your allegiance lies in regards to the 11 Formula 1 teams. Being raised on a diet of pasta and cannoli, I was naturally drawn to Ferrari. As you’re a new addition to the team, you automatically play second fiddle to one of the team’s more seasoned drivers. You can improve your standings within your team by spending as much time as humanly possible on the winner’s podium throughout the season.
Being a racing game first and foremost, the game’s career mode understandably does not follow any real form of narrative. In between races, you will, however, receive visits from your agent and race engineer. These periodic pop-ins are used to keep you updated on upcoming races, potential improvements for your car, driver rivalries and whatever else that happens to come up. In comparison to the action that takes place on track, these interactions leave a lot to be desired. Dialogue is at times stilted and the frame rate often drops inexplicably. As a whole, the execution of the exchanges does a competent job of selling the immersion of what it potentially may be like to a part of a Formula 1 team.