F1 2015 a lesser game than its predecessors
For the petrol heads among us, the draw of the Formula 1 video game series is almost irresistable.
The visceral open-wheel racing, intense speeds and the glamour appeal of the Formula 1 season mode are all well-trodden ground for any serious car fans, so it is understandable that many of us waited with bated breath for F1 2015.
We needn't have bothered waiting. Codemasters latest instalment to the revered series is a sharp reminder that context is everything in the world of gaming.
F1 2015 would be a passable open-wheel racing game had it been a standalone release, but it being part of a larger series of games means that not only would I not recommend it, but I would say that it is laughably bad in terms of the sheer lack of content and innovation.
By contrast to previous titles, F1 2015 dumbs down the level of customisation by an order of magnitude.
Instead of the wealth of difficulty controls offered in previous versions, F1 2015 offers just a choice between playing either of F1's two available seasons (2014 & 2015) on custom realism settings (Championship Season) or full realism settings (Pro Season). These are your two main game modes.
Calling Pro Season a different game mode, when it's really just a bunch of difficulty sliders set to different positions, feels a little cheap.
One concession I will make for F1 2015 comes in the form of the handling, which might actually be the best in the series. There are enough customisable assists for the game to be simply picked up and played.
Saying that, however, true veterans of the racing genre might be a little disappointed with the 'point and shoot' style of the handling system this year.
It may feel a little too much 'point and the car will exactly the way you are pointing' for some of the most die-hard fans out there.
F1 2015 is a lesser game than its predecessors, and pales in comparison to the current crop of PC racing games in nearly every way. Perhaps next year's instalment will be the first 'true' new-generation F1 racer from Codemasters, but I wouldn't hold your breath.