Posts Tagged ‘Codemasters’

Nyyoooom: F1 2014 And 2015 Announced

That's, like, SO last-gen.

In the way that mood cycles can revolve around Christmas or birthdays, do diehard game fans slip into emotional rhythms around marketing cycles? Do Call of Duty fans start to feel excited around the start of May, fidgeting and laughing more than usual, expecting the announcement of the next annualised sequel? Is E3 why I grow increasingly angry and desperate to flee to a forest over May?

Late July brings announcements from Codemasters of their next Formula 1 race ’em up, which is why you may have been anxiously checking your phone and inbox. But as well as F1 2014, today they announced another game too. One breaking the rhythm. A “next-gen” F1 game is coming earlier than usual next year. What does this mean? And how do you feel?

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Colin McRae Rally Released On Steam, Sort Of, Not Really

Content from the sequel, named after the original, actually a re-release of a mobile game.

It’s easy to think that simulation and sports game are advancing along a straight line of progress, each sequel or yearly iteration delivering a game with better physics models, more polygons, and all towards some objective perfection. To this strawman that exists within my brain I say: not true! As would have been interestingly demonstrated by Codemasters releasing Colin McRae Rally 2.0 on Steam today. The game, a precursor to the modern Dirt series, was originally released in 2000. It was good.

Except that’s not what has happened here. This game, called simply Colin McRae Rally, is only “based on” that old game. Instead this is the PC release of last year’s mobile version, which used tracks, cars and audio from the older games but was otherwise its own thing. Is that misleading? It certainly confused me for a bit.

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GRID Autosport Out Now In America, Europe This Friday

I’ve played three hours of GRID Autosport and enjoyed every minute of it. I don’t know anything about cars; I just liked going fast. From the in-depth interview we did, I know that Codemasters’ return to multi-discipline racing aims to blend together the best of the last two games.

We’ll have a review from a more expert driver than I in the next few days, but in the meantime you should know that it’s out now in North America and hits European roads at the end of the week. There’s a trailer and a few more more thoughts below.

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Fleet Streets: GRID Autosport

GRID Autosport is Codemasters back to basics attempt to recapture the glory days of multi-disciplinary racing. It will include innovations such as decent handling, a lack of overarching social media narrative and in-car camera views. The latest trailer shows street racing events, with the landmarks of various cities popping on screen as orientation guides. It’s attractive and the cars really are going very fast indeed. The editor of motoring website PistonHeads.com provides commentary, telling us that “racing is exciting and if you can accurately replicate that in a game…it’s gonna be exciting.” His t-shirt displays a list of dire warnings.

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Interview: Kicking The Tyres Of GRID Autosport

Race Driver GRID still stands as a benchmark for racing games. Way back in 2008 it drove a path between sim and arcade, offering powerful, weighted cars in a structure that was approachable and accessible.

GRID 2 skidded off that path. It pushed too far into accessibility and bundled weak handling with a tedious structure. Now GRID Autosport is out at the end of June – barely a year after GRID 2 – and it comes with a promise of going back to the magic of 2008, but leaning even further to the “sim” side. Being an avid sim racer, I caught up with Clive Moody (Senior Executive Producer) and James Nicholson (Chief Game Designer) to talk in-depth about tyre simulation, ride heights, commanding teammates in endurance races and more.

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Tour The Merrier: GRID Autosport

GRID Autosport wants you to know something. It isn’t like the other GRID games, with menus more finely engineered than their car handling and plots about automotive megalomaniacs. Autosport has no truck with that sort of thing – in fact, I have the feeling it won’t have any trucks at all. There will be a variety of cars though, all with handling ‘one or two steps further towards simulation than Race Driver: GRID’. Touring Cars are one of the vehicle types included and to show how serious the implementation is, actual men of motorsport talk about the game in the trailer below.

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Back To TOCA: GRID Autosport Announced

I liked GRID 2 quite a lot but I’m some kind of racing simulation heathen who has no qualms incorporating a little bump and grind into the art of the automobile. Codemasters manage to avoid the phrase ‘going back to our roots’ when describing the newly announced follow-up, GRID Autosport, but a lengthy and informative blogpost suggests that’s exactly what they aim to do.

On release of GRID 2, I think it’s fair to say that through listening to you guys and a after a substantial amount of reflection, we hadn’t quite achieved everything we set out to do…we’re not above admitting that we made a few decisions that perhaps we shouldn’t have, and perhaps moved some of the aspects of the game too far away from our core fanbase.

What does it all mean? A flashy teaser, an enticingly close June 27th release date and a pile of information to wrap your head around.

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Dity Flashpoint Overlords In The Humble Codies Bundle

Humbly I present to you, our bundle of readers, this week’s Humble Weekly Bundle. It concerns seven games from venerable Brit publisher Codemasters, which are on average Quite Good. Racing! Man-shooting! Very sweary man-shooting! Imp-herding! An ARPG I’ve never played! More racing! More imp-herding!
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F1 2013’s Classic Content Available To All


F1 2013’s pre-order bonuses – a bunch of classic cars, and some even more classic tracks to race them on – have now been made available to all as DLC. You can, among others, pilot Nigel Mansell and David Coulthard’s 1992 Williams, and the 1996 Ferrari of Michael Schumacher and Gerhard Berger. Full details about the DLC can be browsed over here.

Wanna see trailers with that F1 music? WE GOT THAT.
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F1 2013’s Kitten-Free Launch Trailer


I am outraged. At the beginning of this F1 2013 launch trailer, celebrating the launch of the game about cars that sound like angry chainsaws, they had a list of quotes about the game from various media outlets. I usually don’t care if a thing I wrote is used, and I mostly write nonsense so it would be a brave marketing dept who’d mine my words for commercial purposes, but they had the perfect opportunity here to do something special with my previous coverage. It could have gone: “Blah blah blah!” – GamesRadar, *PHOTOGRAPH OF JOHN’S KITTEN*, “Blah blah smeh!” – Videogamer. Instead they have words and cars and not a hint of a Lucy Hermione Merida Katniss Walker*.
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Good Deal Lauda: Classic Cars For F1 2013


Codemasters send word of the “classics” in the forthcoming racing game, F1 2013, which will allow folks to drive the F1 cars of yesterday. Which, in the case of one such motor, is 1976. They explain: “The 1976 Ferrari 312 T2 is an exclusive free gift to all those that sign up to Codemasters RaceNet and will be drivable in F1 2013’s Time Trial mode.” It’s almost as if it were coinciding with another media racing event type affair. Hmm!
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Destruction On The Derwent: Grid 2

As the birthplace of the industrial revolution, Derby is no stranger to acrid fumes and the grinding progress of metal on metal. Perhaps that’s why it’s the place that cars choose to wage war against one another in designated arenas? Grid 2 has now added just such an arena, along with a suitably violent car to smash around in it. Oddly, Codemasters reckon the car-crashing facility is in Detroit but that seems unlikely. If this isn’t taking place in the East Midlands, I’ll eat a carburettor. If you’re still playing Grid 2, it should now contain more destruction. The Masters of Code have also added light modding support but I’ve yet to return to the game to check what that involves. Below you will find culture.

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At Last, A Sequel To F1 2012! The F1 2013 Trailer

Meowwwwwwwwwwwwwww!
You know that bit in expensive movies, when a burly man stands in front of a crowd and makes a speech that sounds like: “Today is the edge of tomorrow. The time is now for us to put up a fight that your children’s children’s children’s grandchildren will talk about. We will batter our foes. We will flatten them, flip them off, and then squeeze lemon juice in their eyes. Today is Pancake Day!”? Well that is probably what inspired this new trailer for F1 2013. It is the most Alan Partridge game trailer I’ve seen in quite some time. But the cars are pretty, the wheels are bouncy, and if the trailer is enough to keep John’s new kitten entertained, then I have every reason to post it.

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Rallying Cry: Codies Going Back to McRae Roots?

I'm not very good with racing games, but I think that's a car?

UPDATE: Oh dear, turns out to be some mobile thing. BETRAYAL.

The DIRT and GRID games have all been jolly good, accessible fun, but I know a certain contingent of Metal Box Moving At High Speed fans have long rued Codemasters’ retreat from traditional rally games – specifically the once-ubiquitous Colin McRae Rally series. Looks as though mud’n’hatchback fans might be due to have all their Christmases come at once, as the CEO of Codemasters has announced plans to visit all their houses, tie them to a kitchen chair and force-feed them 85 whole turkeys, 340 roast potatoes and 21 pints of gravy each. After that, he might even confirm that there will indeed be a new McRae Rally game, as today’s viral teasing has heavily implied.
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In The Driving Seat: GRID 2 Cockpit Mods

PC people really are clever and dedicated folks. If they’re not inventing new and grotesque ways to contort the G-Man’s face and limbs, they’re making mods for games that have only been out for a few hours. Codemasters didn’t include cockpit views in their enjoyably silly racing-game-with-a-plot, GRID 2. The reason given was that only 5% of people who played the original ever used the in-car cams and “they are expensive to run due to the requirement for high-resolution interior textures which are seen close-up and require a considerable amount of in-game memory (to store) and processing (to render).” Intelligent sorts have already modded the game, adding cockpit views, and, lo, the interiors are indeed low resolution, but there are already folks working to sharpen the whole thing up. Video under the hood.

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Wot I Think: GRID 2

I’ve had my suspicions about GRID 2’s narrative since I first played the game, believing the multi-disciplinary racing organisation around which the story is constructed may be a front, concealing something more sinister. Now that I’ve conquered most of the world’s continents by driving around them really fast, I’ve discovered the truth. You can read all about it below.

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Imaginative Car Pun Headline: Grid 2’s Eliminator


Grid 2‘s Eliminator game mode, where the dude at the back of the pack is knocked out every twenty seconds, sure looks exciting. Sure, there’s no jusy-rigged rocket launcher, and no desert apocalypse with attendant moral dilemmas, but speeding metal carts around concrete gullies will have to do. Codies have showed off this Eliminator thing on the Dubai track, which you can see below, and it looks really quite fancy. But trailers can soon be dispensed with: the game is almost upon us 28th/30th, depending on your ocean, and I’ll be keen to play it, because I haven’t enjoyed a racing game in quite some time. Big drift!
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Hands-On: GRID 2

A happy coincidence. I had recently installed Grid, having never played it before and feeling a craving for velocity. I’d gently eased myself into the world of cars wot drift when Codemasters appeared in my inbox, offering a preview code for the sequel. Before playing Grid, I hadn’t spent a great deal of time with any racing game for a couple of years, but the series seems to be pitched at those, like me, who want something more complex than a kart game but less intricate than a sim. Mirror, signal, manoeuvre – and we’re off.

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Continental Drift: GRID 2’s European Tracks

I hadn’t realised that GRID 2 is a game about global domination disguised as a competitive automobile racing simulation but, following an Americar trailer, there’s now a video of European tracks and vehicles narrated by fictional Racing Lord and Man of Business, Patrick Callahan. He is an entrepreneur who dreams of recruiting drivers for a global, multi-discipline Cars Wot Go Fast Championship and he is particularly attracted to Europe because, in his own words, “that desire to race is in the blood here”. I can’t speak for the rest of Europe, but given how much of an average Brit’s blood is taken up by ‘the desire to queue’, I don’t know how much room is left for racing.

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Gird Your Loins For GRID 2

but will there be Dukes of Hazzard DLC?

I haven’t played a car game for aaaaages. Much like my real-world driving, I’ve always been rubbish at them but secretly enjoyed them, and Codemasters’ original GRID, with its subtle silliness and invaluable rewind mechanic, very much hit the sweetspot of pandering to incompetence without chucking out all vestiges of believability. I’ll probably be driving into walls and accelerating into rather than out of corners in the upcoming sequel, which we now have in-game footage of to look at.
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