The traffic lights are about to go out for F1 2021, the official game of the Formula 1 World Cup, whose current season is being the most competitive and surprising in recent years, as Max Verstappen and Red Bull have managed to put in check, Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes.

The game goes on sale on July 16, and we have already been able to drive hundreds of kilometers on its virtual asphalt to be able to carry out the pertinent analysis of F1 2021 and verify that it is continuous delivery, but that it adds some interesting news.

F1 2021: Hands-On Review

F1 2021

First of all, it should be noted that this is the first Codemasters game to be published after the acquisition of the company by Electronic Arts. It is something that you notice as soon as you run the game, because the first thing that appears is an EA Sports header, with the eternal motto of 'it's in the game'.

Of course, the takeover is so recent that there has not been time for the publisher to make noticeable suggestions or changes in the modus operandi that the development team has been applying since 2009.

With that in mind, we must add the fact that the current season is the last in which the technical regulations that were introduced in 2014 are in force.

This has contributed to the fact that, despite the premiere of PS5 and Xbox Series X-S, Codemasters has chosen to make an intergenerational delivery that does not include major technical or playable changes, waiting for the revolution that will be the cars of 2022.

In this way, in addition, a year of margin is gained for the user base of the new generation consoles to increase.

F1 2021 is licensed by the Great Circus, and it is noticeable that the relationship between the FIA ​​and Codemasters has grown closer and closer so that the games are really the official product of the championship.

We say this because now the headline of the game and the melody that plays is exactly the same as those that precede the Grand Prix, with the twenty pilots progressively parading under epic music.

Thus, the game has the ten teams and the twenty drivers of 2021, which includes the presence of Fernando Alonso in Alpine or that of Carlos Sainz in Ferrari.

There is also the F2, although, in this case, the content is that of the 2020 season, waiting for a free update that will add the drivers and cars of this year.

Regarding the circuits, there are twenty-one starting points. There are those that were anticipated in the initial calendar of the contest (including those of Montreal, Singapore, and Melbourne) and also that of Shanghai, where no races have been held for years.

However, due to the pandemic, Codemasters has not been able to include the Imola, Portimao, and Jeddah circuits as standard, which will arrive in the future through free updates. The one that will never arrive is Istanbul Park, as there is no room for maneuver since it was added to the calendar only a few weeks ago, as an emergency substitute.

The customary finesse

esports f1 202

The handling of F1 2021 follows the convincing path of recent years, with the usual balance between simulation and arcade so typical of Codemasters. Whether you're an expert in the genre or a newbie, there are countless aids that allow you to extensively configure the experience.

We refer to rewinding in case mistakes are made, a good string of driving aids, settings of all kinds, and up to 110 levels for artificial intelligence.

The ideal is to play with the steering wheel. We have done it on PS5 with a Thrustmaster T300 RS that, although it has given us some headaches for the console to recognize it, has left us great sensations.

Control is also very enjoyable, although we have to say that we expected more from the adaptive triggers of the DualSense when braking or locking the tires.

Team racing

Among the rest of the game modes, Professional Career stands out, which has two aspects: we can play as a pilot or as an owner-pilot of a team.

In both cases, in addition to competing on the track, we must worry about aspects such as finding contracts, interviews with the press, or managing the R&D departments to improve the car.

Although, as a game mode it fulfills its mission, the packaging, which has hardly evolved compared to previous deliveries, is still quite bland and with room for improvement.

As one of the things to note, if we play as a driver, there is a real season start option, which allows us to choose any of the twenty real drivers and start the championship in the grand prize we want, with the points that someone had in the real championship that particular moment.

Thus, for example, it is possible to start at the British Grand Prix and choose Lewis Hamilton, who has 150 points, compared to 182 for Max Verstappen.

The end of an era

Being in a transition year, Codemasters has hardly taken risks, but F1 2021 is a great speed game, especially because of how much it runs on the track, where it hardly makes any mistakes.

Off the tarmac, it could have been a bit more ambitious, but that will surely remain for 2022, when the Formula 1 regulation is turned upside down and, possibly, Electronic Arts will pump millions into spurs and new ideas.

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