Review: F1 23 is a very safe entry in a solid game series | The Sun

EA SPORTS’ F1 series is always reliable, with fans knowing what they’re getting with each entry, and F1 23 is no different. 

Like FIFA and other annual releases, there are some years that are better and some years that are worse, but the base experience rarely changes much. 

F1 23 has had marginal tweaks from previous entries in the series, but its accessible, but customisable gameplay experience is as solid as it’s ever been. 

The game is a pleasure to play, regardless of whether you play with a controller or a steering wheel setup, and it always feels natural and exciting. 

In previous entries, Codemasters’ experience with rally games made the standout modes in F1 games the Time Trials mode, but that’s shifted a bit in F1 23. 

Now, challenging the AI in a race or a championship is just as enjoyable as Time Trials, sometimes even more so, thanks to various adjustments that make the experience much more fluid. 

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There aren’t many new features in the latest entry in the series, but Codemasters has made it more about refinement than evolution. 

Touching curbs with the floor of your car can cause you to lose control for a moment, which while realistic, has been somewhat of a controversial feature in F1 games. 

That’s been ironed out a bit here, with less drastic results, but there’s a new phenomenon where certain parts of the track will spin you out every time if you’re going too fast. 

Codemasters says this is part of the new traction control system, but through testing it seems to happen no matter what, so it ends up feeling a bit too scripted at times. 

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Two new tracks are included in this year’s entry too, Las Vegas and Qatar, and they feel designed to leverage the new generation of F1 cars. 

There’s quick turns, fast straights, and overtaking is much easier, which makes them pretty easy tracks to learn and master. 

F1’s story mode, Braking Point, returns after taking a break in last year’s entry, and features a new management component with choices and consequences for your actions. 

The story shows us the world of Formula 1 through the perspective of three different characters, adding more variety to the storytelling and gameplay in a satisfying way. 

It retains its scenario-based structure as previous iterations of the story mode, and it’s mostly enjoyable. 

The main problem with Braking Point is that the races are far too easy, with no difficulty options, so completing main and bonus objectives is never really challenging. 

Quite rare for a licensed game, F1 23 also does a good job connecting the story mode to real-world events, with emails and news reports in-game for events that happened in F1 history. 

It’s not often you see an officially licensed game grapple with themes of billionaire sponsors and controversial parts of motorsports history with such vigor. 

There’s also a mode called F1 World, which offers rapid-fire races updated on a regular basis, and will change and evolve over time to tie in with current F1 events. 

It has a host of challenges for both solo and multiplayer players, and features interesting scenarios unlike most other aspects of the game. 

For example, you could race in series such as European GPs, or compete in a scenario where you have to make a comeback in the pouring rain, which is an exciting addition. 

F1 World has its own progression system, detached from the rest of the game, so you can upgrade your car and team with a surprising amount of depth. 

It’s a fantastic addition that combines the best of Braking Point’s scenarios and the management side of Career mode, with a healthy dash of arcade fun thrown in for good measure. 

Unfortunately, it’s not all good, as there are far too many currencies in F1 World, which becomes confusing and frustrating, especially in post-match screens which detail everything you earned. 

There’s different money and resources and other currencies for leveling up your parts or your team members, and keeping track of it all is exhausting. 

It does, however, come with a huge amount of objectives to complete, and these are pretty obviously designed to keep you engaged in the long-term, much like a free-to-play game. 

Overall, F1 23 doesn’t do much to differentiate itself from past games, but it’s a fun, if very safe, outing with plenty to enjoy for fans of both the motorsport and the game series. 

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F1 23 is available on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows PCs. 

Written by Oliver Brandt on behalf of GLHF.

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