The launch of F1 2021 is rapidly approaching.
Codemasters' new game is coming packed full of new features and will be their first release under the EA umbrella following the takeover earlier this year.
With so many players using F1 games as pure multiplayer experiences, the question of cross-platform & crossplay is always at the forefront of players' minds.
Latest news - Codemasters interview
We sat down with F1 Franchise Director Lee Mather to talk all things F1 2021.
From Braking Point to multiplayer and life as an EA Studio, check out what he had to say about how F1 2021 came to be.
F1 2021 cross-platform multiplayer
Cross-platform, or crossplay, is a growing part of the gaming landscape but not always for racing fans.
While battle royales and huge titles like Minecraft have embraced crossplay, most of the racing world is still segmented by hardware.
However, this is starting to change. Need For Speed: Heat, the most recent release in the classic franchise, had crossplay added last year. Importantly for us that game is under EA, just like Codemasters' F1 2021.
So will F1 2021 get the crossplay treatment too? Unfortunately not.
Having not been mentioned in the pre-launch publicity for F1 2021 we asked Franchise Director Lee Mather directly, who said that the functionality is not in the game this year...
Will crossplay ever come to F1?
... However he did say it's in the works.
“The work that would have been required to create private leagues when people could have been on different platforms in the future is something we’ll have to address.” Said Mather.
Crossplay is clearly something they are moving towards, as when directly asked about it he said: “That’s something we are continuing to work on for the future.”
He was of course reluctant to put a timeline on the inclusion of crossplay, but it is great news that they are thinking about it and working on it.
Major sports titles, be they from EA or 2K, are lagging behind when it comes to crossplay. FIFA, Madden, and NBA fans are all in the same boat with F1 racers when it comes to barriers in multiplayer.
This just makes the gradual decline in players over the lifespan of a game even harder to take, as the field is cut into thirds rather than pooled together.
There is hope among everyone that the barriers will soon come crashing down, but for the time being you'll need to make sure that you are on the same platform as your friends when it comes to racing.
F1 2021 release date
F1 2021 will hit the shelves on 16 July.
However, you can get hold of it earlier than that. The Deluxe Edition of F1 2021 comes with three days early access, giving players the chance to jump into the game from 13 July.
For more articles like this, take a look at our F1 page.