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Review of F1 2012 by Codemasters

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I enjoyed the review. I thought you guys did a great job.

I thought you hit the nail on the head about this being sim-lite or simkade and that it was what Codemasters has to do. They are making a game for F1 fans who like to play racing games or F1 fans who are gamers in general. That is a niche market anyway and to have made it strictly for hardcore sim racers would have meant that F1 2010 would have probably been their last F1 game. I think they put enough in there where sim racers can enjoy it particularly if they are F1 fans since it has all the official cars and tracks. While it would be great if a true sim like iRacing could get an officially sanctioned F1 series like they do for IndyCar, NASCAR, and GrandAM, I don't see that happening with a greedy old fart like Bernie at the helm even though I think it would benefit F1. So that being said, I'm happy at least that there is a good sim-lite official F1 game out there on all the major platforms. Wasn't to long ago when we had nothing like that.

One question, are you guys moving away from your weighted ratings scale for all reviews or was it just because of the nature of this F1 game being the 3rd iteration in a year release cycle.

One final note. I think it could be fun for you guys to do a Top Sim Cars on one of them from F1 2012. Maybe even a Top Sim Cars Shootout F1 Edition with say the Red Bull from F1 2012, the Ferrari F10 from Ferrari Virtual Academy, the Williams FW31 from iRacing, and the F1 car used in rFactor-based Formula Sim Racing.

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I posted the same below the actual video review...

Codemasters is doing an excellent job at "bridging the gap" for those of us looking for something "fun" and those of us craving something serious--as F1 should be. After spending a couple of weeks immersed in F1 2012, I can say it's their best effort yet. If you lost interest in F1 because it was too "hard," you might give this one a run. The interface is clean and gets down to business without a lot of fluff and flare (way too much in previous Codemasters titles) and it gives you several options to make it more fun, go right to hard-core sim, or better yet, take your time and transition from one end of the spectrum to the other.

Your overall goal should be to push yourself to take F1 2012 to it's full simulation side. Start out with easy settings and run a few quick races, Time Attack and Time Trial, and keep pushing yourself on every track. Concentrate on car handling characteristics, learning the tracks (there's 20 of them as in the real-world), and nailing every entry, apex, and exit. Get it right, and you feel it in your gut at every exit. In a race, once you start gaining two or three seconds per lap on the following car, start turning off assists (if you started with them), and increase the AI level.

Go to Season Challenge (an "abbreviated" career) and start on easy. By the time you work your way through medium and hard, you'll be ready to start a full 20-race career. Again, you have options for how challenging or sim-like you'll want to make it. It's very likely you may still set the AI to intermediate so you can concentrate on the tracks and strategy with some AI interaction. However, eventually, you'll want all assists off, and at the least, set the AI to professional (they're pretty good) with full "long-weekend" events and race length. What you must remember though, is you may not always get pole position or win every race. As with any season (or any race series), it's about points. Watch the current F1 season, and you'll get the idea.

At the least, I find it amusing when someone bashes on a title because they claim it's an "arcade" racer and not a simulator--especially when it's obvious they've never spent any real time with that title or really know anything about it. When I hear someone say a title doesn't support multi-screens when I know it does, or that you can't run a race series when I know you can, or they make reference to playing with a controller when I know there's excellent support for wheels--it's very clear to me. You may not have ALL the options, and a title may not manage everything for you in a race or series, but you can still have a similar experience.

iRacing is an excellent sim experience, and it better be if you're leasing it for about $90 a year. Also, once you're a "member," you have to pay $10-$20 at every turn to purchase cars and tracks just so you can join in on races and series (many of which are speedway events). You need at least an additional $100 ready to really get into it--and that's great if that's your thing. For what you're paying, iRacing better deliver--and keep delivering.

However, when I hear a "sim-snob" bashing on a title like Forza, or GT5, I wonder what the motivation is. I want to put my hands on the wheel, feet to the pedals, and master a car and track until I get down every nuance. I can tweak and adjust, try different driving lines, and when I've got it, I have a "community" to join if I have the time. These titles deliver as well.

I still like GT5, I keep returning to Forza 4, and I'm now "working" to master cars and tracks in F1 2012. I also still like to load up Race Pro occasionally. I see all of these titles as varying degrees of simulators, and the "Sim-Snobs" either don't know, or don't like to admit how close they are in the experience they deliver.

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