By FoolInjection 0 Comments
This post marks the first in a series of posts that I am planning regarding F1 2013’s Classic Mode. I am a huge Formula 1 fan and have followed the sport fairly regularly since the early 90’s. It was only during Herr Schumacher’s dominance at the turn of the Millennium that my interest in the sport waned.
When Codemasters announced that F1 2013 would have a separate mode dedicated to classic F1 machinery I was over the moon. There simply aren't enough F1 games which hark back into the past and allow you to drive cars from previous seasons. There is a good reason for this though as teams regularly change hands and therefore names; so licensing rights are a complete nightmare. Not to mention because you aren't licensing the team as a whole you would have to gain the rights to plaster the car with all the sponsor decals completely separately as well.
I was fairly please with the line-up of cars Codemasters has managed to include in the classic mode. There are some notable exceptions, one of which being the McLaren team, but for the most part the cars included are pretty good. Codemasters chose to focus on the decades of the 1980’s and the 1990’s which were, in my mind, some of the best years for the sport. The 80’s era includes cars from Williams, Lotus and Ferrari; all of which look totally different so the grid looks amazing when the cars are lined up at the start.
Which leads to my first criticism of the Classic Mode; the 90’s era only has cars from Williams and Ferrari so more than half of the grid are red cars. They really could have done with another team in the 90’s era to break up the red a bit. It’s mostly down to having 3 Ferraris however the red car syndrome is compounded by the fact that Williams in the late 90’s had changed their sponsor to Winfield and were running a red livery instead of the predominantly blue liveries they had before. As a result the 90’s era races all look a bit drab; which is a shame as the cars which raced in the early 90’s were very vibrant and a variety of colours from across the spectrum. Including a rather striking shade of pink.
My only other criticism of the Classic Mode stems from the decisions Codemasters made regarding who drives what car. This is primarily what this series of blogs will be about.
When you read the description of the mode in the instruction manual it notes that the Classic Mode is a “modern day event which gives you the chance to relive the history of the sport” and that Williams, Ferrari and Team Lotus have “the option of rehiring the drivers who drove the original cars, or hiring supporting legendary drivers who have driven for them previously”.
This means the Classic Mode is taking place in 2013 and means that deceased drivers obviously can’t take part. Whether that was a decision made because they couldn't get the rights to McLaren and Ayrton Senna, I don’t know. Regardless of that it’s the part about hiring legendary drivers that ruins it for me as it then means you have Damon Hill, for example, driving a 1988 Williams alongside Nigel Mansell.
Now maybe it’s because I'm an F1 fanatic but I would have much rather Codemasters had stuck to bringing in living drivers from roughly the eras that they raced. So it felt more like these F1 teams were “getting the band back together” and recreating the era as a whole. Having more modern drivers alongside the era appropriate drivers takes a little atmosphere away, especially when they went to the trouble of applying era specific camera filters and a retro HUD as well.
So in my next post I’ll start looking at the driver line-ups and give you my thoughts on who I would have chosen to pilot each car.