F1 22 EA Sports - Review

F1 22 - Review

Reviewing annual games can be a thankless job. Often one has to look in detail here to see what has changed from previous releases. Yet when you add to that that these same annual games, primarily sports simulations, try to convey real experiences into virtual ones, there should be no room for error.

Formula 1 has postponed its new regulations from 2021 to 2022. Consequently, it is clear to everyone that the release of F1 22 was just as exciting as guessing who will do best in the new era of the octane circus. Let's add to all that this is the first game in the series made under the baton of Electronic Arts, and the excitement immediately turns into skepticism.

The first and foremost thing to look at in the game right away is driving the car. From 2022, the emphasis is on the so-called ground effect to help drivers get rid of dirty air and lack of downforce and have close racing. The feel of driving in such cars is significantly different from all previous iterations.

There is no room for mistakes, although realistically there were none in previous games. However, then you could afford a lack of concentration because it was relatively easy to step on the gas pedal to the end. In F1 22 this is not the case, but the gas must be dosed gradually and smoothly so as not to lose control of the car. Easy to understand, but harder to master, especially if you're used to driving from previous games.

It is precise because of this gas dosing and different car management that it can sometimes happen that you lose control at higher speeds, which was not a common case before. Third gear is especially sensitive, and you can easily end up in a wall there. The good thing is that the curbs and banners are tamed, but they can also knock you out if you add the wrong gas or change gear in the middle of going through them.

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The turning of the car also changed. Somehow I get the impression that it’s a lot harder to turn tires now than it was before. In addition, tire consumption has been modified and it now pays to drive on a hard component. In last year's edition of the F1 game, that was almost impossible. Not only because hard rubber was a disaster, but consuming it allowed you to use two strategies in racing - either soft-medium or medium-soft.

Tire processing is also felt when you have freshly installed ones on the car. The coldness in the tires in this game is very pronounced, so you have to have a slightly different driving line compared to when your tires are warm. In racing, those who go to boxing first will benefit greatly because the difference between hot and cold tires can be up to a second per lap. Again the addition of another way of tactics and timely decisions.

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The only thing that bothers me about all this is the ride on the controller. In previous releases of games like this, you could feel the limit on the gas button. There’s no such thing in F1 22 so you’re left to feel how much gas you need to add. Who knows, maybe in game development the Codemasters decided to nerf the controller because we all know how powerful they are in F1 games.

Or they just forgot to include feedback in the gas button because on DualSense, as far as I’ve heard from those using the PS5 controller, everything works as it should. In addition, other vibrations such as going off the track feel quite normal.

What is advanced compared to the last game is driving with a damaged front wing. In F1 2021 once you damaged the wing, you could come to terms with good placement in the race because you were forced to go to boxing for a replacement. We’ve seen that it doesn’t work that way, but it’s possible to be even faster with a damaged wing.

That was changed in the F1 22 and now you can stay competitive without any problems if you earn damage to the car. You’ll feel a little lagging behind, but nothing you can’t make up for with your skillful driving. Of course, the ground effect also has a big impact on this, because the aerodynamics are mostly harnessed to the floor of the car, and not to the wings, as was the case before.

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In addition to driving in this game, there is also manual parking on the formation circuit. In addition, independent entry into boxing has been introduced. Don’t get me wrong, by manually entering the pits I mean you have to turn to your mechanics yourself before performing a tire change.

There is a specific timer, and you have to guess the exact time if it wants to set up the car perfectly. If you make a mistake, one of your tires may remain stuck or the mechanics cannot lower you on time.

The same is true of the formation circle. There is no longer taking control at the last turn, but you have to drag yourself to the starting point and park. This is a great novelty that you can profit from at the start if you perfect it. You can even set aside to close the driver in another position as soon as possible if he threatens you.

Both changes belong to one novelty of the settings called immersion. In the settings, you can choose exactly whether you want an authentic experience to drive yourself to the grid, enter the pits or drive under the Safety Car, or you want real television monitoring, so you will follow all these actions as a viewer.

The game will give you control just before (re) starting the race or leaving the box. I think the TV broadcast option is unnecessary to the game because the goal should be to make you feel like real F1 drivers, but lo and behold - the option exists.

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Computer-controlled drivers generally perform better on the track. They can make a mistake by going to the curbs and losing control of the car there, or you can force them to brake late and overtake them with the well-known switchback move.

Also, their defense is at the level of real drivers, and they can make you give up prestige. However, I can’t help but get the impression that almost all drivers make the same mistake. It refers to late braking in corners that is dangerous for other drivers, the so-called divebomb. All AI drivers do this, whether it’s Nicholas Latifi or Lewis Hamilton.

I would understand that this is the practice of those inexperienced drivers who do not yet know how to assess the situation, but such actions are common for Formula 1 veterans. If certain parameters that evaluate drivers are already implemented in the game, then it would be right.

And when we touch on the topic of artificial intelligence of drivers, we should now move on to the single-player component of the game. Unfortunately, there’s very little shift here compared to last year’s game, not enough to entice you to play it if you’ve already played the previous two editions.

The biggest novelty is the one in My Team that at the beginning of your career asks you if you want a team that starts from scratch, is affirmed in the middle of the table, or attacks the very top of the sport.

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Someone will surely welcome this decision because who can drive a whole season before the team becomes more or less competitive. In a broader sense, this novelty is the same as in a regular career when you have the choice to immediately jump into the fastest car on the track. All this would be great if the rest of the single-player is not identical to the one in F1 2021. After selecting that part, you can do everything else by heart - make a character, choose a co-driver, choose the color of the car, etc.

As for the choice of engines and the distribution of power in them - I would not agree that it is correct. Ferrari is the best, it almost lacked 100% in the power and endurance categories of the engine. Right behind him is Mercedes, followed by Red Bull Powertrains and Renault.

Codemasters made a mistake here as in previous years. According to strength, Ferrari and Red Bull should be equal at the very top. Only behind them would come to Mercedes and then Renault. In terms of engine durability, here Mercedes deserves to have the highest percentage while Ferrari’s should drop to Red Bull's level. I believe they will solve this with future updates, but even worse if they rewrote this based on the first race in Bahrain.

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I would like the career and My Team mode to be worked out in more detail. However, my wishes (still) have not been granted, and in F1 22 we have practically the same tasks in both categories. The only difference is that in one mode you drive for already existing teams, while in another you have your team.

The story that marked last year’s game in this one doesn’t exist. Instead, you have the F1 Life feature that even changes that disgusting white interface from the previous title. And that's the end of all the good that F1 Life has to offer.

It might be fun for someone to show off supercars and furniture to other virtual drivers, but realistically it doesn’t make any sense in the game. That’s why F1 Life seems to focus on microtransactions, not the player.

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At the mention of the supercar, I can only say that I did not enjoy their ride. The brands Mercedes, Ferrari, McLaren, and Aston Martin, are beautifully transferred, but like F1 Life, they have no place in the F1 game in this edition. The rides in them seem too stiff and uninteresting. I have the impression that supercars have replaced classic cars, which in my opinion is a step back to the real experience of the past and present of Formula 1.

Add to that the fact that you can't race other players in supercars, but only in Time Trial and Pirelli Hot Laps - the result is disappointing. The latter mode can be found separately, but also through career events, such as going through cones, achieving average speed, drifting and more.

The tasks are varied, but very quickly become monotonous. Even more monotonous than the constant driving of a Formula 1 car in a circle, as some in the newsroom would say. If any story was implemented and related to supercars, I would understand their addition, but this way it is completely unnecessary.

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The audiovisual display of the game is still as good as it was before. The graphic look is practically the same as in the last game, but still driving in the rain stands out the most in terms of beauty. The car models are faithfully transferred to the game, except maybe Red Bull which for some unknown reason looks pale.

The trails also look nice and it’s a pleasure to ride on them, especially in the new Miami. Spain, Abu Dhabi, and Australia got the modifications they were supposed to get back in the last game. All tracks have slightly modified curves and curbs compared to the F1 2021, but still, it’s not the same as their actual models.

What has improved in that presentation is the sound. Ferrari’s engine from earlier game displays has changed and now sounds right. The sounds of all engine manufacturers are in the game transmitted faithfully. In addition to all this, there are new sound options, where you can now choose which commentators you want to choose for the race, how you want the car sound to sound - normal, like in a TV broadcast or the way the driver hears it.

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There are plenty of sound options, and here you can play and choose what is best for you. It should be mentioned that the racing engineer has changed (RIP Jeff) so we have a new male voice informing us about the state of the races. And it also sounds good, much closer to how racing engineers sound when talking to drivers.

The only drawback to all this is the lack of creativity - the new engineer has the same sentences as his predecessor. If they changed the sentences and introduced something new, the arrival of a new teammate would also make sense, but this way it is completely unnecessary.

In technical terms, F1 22 is no better than F1 2021. The disaster with the inability to access the online part of the game on the Origin continues, while in the early days of early access to the game it was impossible to access it via Steam.

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Once you merge into races with other drivers, you see that there are no major shifts here either, other than changes to the grid graphics design. Some long-standing bugs like crackling sound, misplaced cameras from a television broadcast, and the constant turning of the engine in the spectator are still present. Luckily, so far there is no misrepresentation of entering the pits, but we will see what happens after July 1 and the official exit.

The F1 22 spins quite solidly at the highest settings, but still encounters crashes of the game or fps, which drops from a stable 60/120 to barely two. Also, the game cannot recognize some steering wheels that worked normally on previous versions. I believe the next updates will fix that, but still devastating for a game in which Codemasters and Electronic Arts are collaborating for the first time.

F1 22 also offers rich content, but it is that part of the content that is either unnecessarily in the game or has already been seen, without significant novelties that would distinguish it from its predecessor.

The feel of the ride is fantastic, as are the novelties in the field of immersion and that’s why I’m just sorry that the rest of the game couldn’t keep up with this part. Looking only at the cars and their handling, the F1 22 is the best game in the series.

When you put the rest of the content and certain technical issues into that calculation, the new era of F1 games started like McLaren’s season at the Bahrain Grand Prix - below expectations.

Much more was expected from F1 22, and only half got it. After all, racing is the most important thing, and that is why those whose natural habitats are league competitions will enjoy the new game the most. Of course, if the network part works normally on all platforms.
  • The driving feel is fantastic
  • Revised tire consumption process - hard components are no longer repulsive
  • The options of manual parking on the grid and getting to your pit rate are a complete hit
  • Excellent audio offers customization options
  • F1 Life and supercars are good ideas on paper, not in practice
  • Minimal novelties in My Team and career
  • Lack of creativity in the new racing engineer
  • Initial technical difficulties should not happen to a $ 60 game

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