After a weekend of eager anticipation, we now have hard details about F1 23. From new handling and improved physics to more details about Braking Point and the journey of Konnersport Racing, EA and Codemasters have finally let the cat out of the bag.
F1 23 launches...
We have an official F1 23 release date and fans don't have long to wait. The game is set to launch on 16 June. This is the earliest release date that Codemasters has done for its F1 series, and represents a huge effort to get the game out as quickly as possible.
Of course, this comes with the usual three days early access for those that buy the digital-exclusive Champions Edition, which means racers can get behind the wheel on 13 June.
The Champions Edition will include:
- Time-limited Las Vegas content (for pre-orders before 31 May)
- Max Verstappen Race Wear Pack
- Braking Point 2 Icons and Vanity Item Pack
- Dual Entitlement (for Xbox & PS players)
- Four new My Team Icons
- An XP Boost
- F1® World Bumper Pack
- 18,000 PitCoins
That's quite the package!
Codemasters always has a fine line to tread between realism and accessibility with the Formula 1 games. Hardcore players want it to be more like iRacing or rFactor 2, but the masses who play on a controller need it to be far more accessible than that.
They have done a great job of that over the years, and are making some bold claims about this year's title.
"Our close relationship with the teams has allowed us to refine our handling mode, adding greater realism to pad-play," says Creative Director Lee Mather.
The press release accompanying the announcement goes on to say: "F1 23’s handling has been upgraded from last season, allowing for more predictable behaviour, and new vehicle physics gives the cars better traction when braking, accelerating, and cornering."
"By incorporating actual F1 team feedback, a greater balance between aerodynamics and tyre grip results in a more realistic feel. Engine torque and inertia improvements also mean throttle control is more authentic and offers a greater level of connection to the car."
"Alongside these improvements, Precision Drive controller technology will give pad players better control and confidence in those crucial race moments."
These are huge claims, and ones we would love to see F1 23 live up to. Traction has always been an issue with the F1 titles.
When the real-world drivers were jumping into the game seriously in 2020, Lando Norris claimed that the medium Traction Control assist was more realistic to F1 cars than totally removing it. Low gears have long been off-limits due to the wheelspin they would generate, so these claims about traction will spark keen interest from the elite players in particular.
Braking Point is back
Last week's Konnersport Racing team reveal gave us a taste of what is to come with F1 23, and now we have some more details.
As suspected, Aiden Jackson returns. This time, however, he will be Devon Butler's teammate in the new Konnersport team. Clearly, that Mercedes stint didn't go as planned.
Will it be a redemption story for him? Or will we get some time in the shoes of Butler as we did with Kasper Akkerman last time out? That remains to be seen. What we do know is there will be plenty of twists and turns in the story.
After the flop of F1 Life last year, when news leaked about F1 World the consensus opinion was one of disappointment. However, it seems that Codemasters may have listened to the community here.
F1 World is set to "deliver a fresh experience with content inspired by the real-world calendar. Helping introduce players to the complex world of Formula 1. F1 World brings together multiple game modes, including Time Trial and Grand Prix, offering an exciting new way to play the game."
This certainly sounds like an actual game mode rather than the couch simulator that was F1 Life, which is a relief!
What else is included in F1 23?
Along with the release date, handling & physics upgrades, and F1 World, we also got plenty more details about F1 23.
Let's start with the big one - red flags are back! Perhaps the most requested feature in the F1 community for years, red flags are returning to the series for the first time since F1 2014 to make the game more realistic.
Both the Las Vegas Street Circuit and Losail International Circuit will be in the game at launch, while Portimao, Shanghai, and Paul Ricard stay in the game. These legacy circuits will also be available at launch.
A new progression system will allow players to level up by completing challenges to unlock car upgrades, new liveries, race suits, and helmets. So while PitCoins remain in the game, it sounds like Podium Pass is getting an overhaul.
Elsewhere, a new safety rating system is hitting the game that will link online & offline play, encouraging drivers to race cleanly. Whether this takes influence from iRacing's iRating system or is similar to Assetto Corsa Competizione's more detailed rating system remains to be seen, but it sounds like a good step to encourage clean racing.
Finally, 35% race distances will, at last, be added to the public game. This was an esports-only distance for a long time but will finally be included in F1 23, giving players more flexibility.
For more articles like this, take a look at our F1 page.