Thunderbolt Games had a chance to sit down with F1 2011's chief game designer Stephen Hood, to talk about the successes of last year's incarnation, and what they're planning for the upcoming game.
A huge amount of content was included last year and many of the subtle elements were, at times, lost within 2010’s Career Mode. 2011 uses new features such as Press Clippings and Emails to keep the player better informed of where they stand in the world of Formula One. We’ve tweaked everything, even the logic behind contracts, so that it’s a more refined experience this year.
Codemasters had some limited Q&A on Monday via their Twitter account, announcing they have no DLC planned for F1 2011, and they are still wrangling with licensing over the fate of the safety car. Codemasters expects to have a final go/no-go for it around Gamescom in the middle of August.
Play3.de has recently posted a video interview with senior producer Paul Jeal, again discussing planned features for F1 2011:
F1 2011 will be released for the PC, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 on September 23rd.
On the heels of the MadCatz announcement, Fanatec has announced their own line of licensed wheels for Forza 4. Fanatec is famous for making high-quality racing wheels, including authentic reproductions of Porsche wheels that are compatible with most 360/PS3/PC racing games. The new line is called "CSR", and will include five products:
Forza Motorsport CSR wheel
Forza Motorsport CSR Elite wheel
CSR shifter set
CSR Elite pedals
Fanatec reports the CSR will fall in the middle between their Porsche and Clubsport products. Here are the main differences between the CSR and CSR-Elite wheels:
Improved force feedback electronics and mechanics make the wheel stronger and faster
Metal CSR shifter set and large metal paddle shifters make shifting gears easier than ever
Lightweight aluminum wheel rim with Alcantara inserts allow faster, more responsive turns
Wheel base fully made of metal with carbon fiber and Alcantara wheel rim
DirectSensor™ technology with sensor mounted directly on the steering axis. This avoids all the interference and performance loss you get from the belt/gear drive found on traditional motor-mounted sensor systems
Dual force feedback motors with 120Watt (silent big fan cooling) and very low cogging force to avoid “notchy” feeling
Engadget got to spend a bit of time with the CSR pedals, and found they share a number of similarities with it's Clubsport Pedal brother, including a adjustable load-cell brake sensor and the ability to mount pedals vertically (via an optional kit). A "load-cell brake sensor" essentially means means the pedal converts force applied to the brake to the strength of braking in game, so the brake pedal acts more like it would in a real car. This is great for the precise braking required to tame the most savage of automotive beasts, and is something other major wheel manufacturers have yet to adopt.
It appears players will be able to combine any wheel, pedal and shifter set they want, letting them customize their setup to suit their needs and pocketbook. Speaking of pocketbooks, no price has been set, though a Fanatec representative has stated
We will keep our fully modular ordering system so the pricing depends on the options you take. It will range between 320 and 700 for a set with pedals.
No word if this is in Euro or USD. A release date has not been set, but they expect to have it out on the market by the end of the year.
Good news for XBox 360 drivers! Mad Catz has announced a new wireless wheel, which includes force feedback! The product is currently called "Wireless Force Feedback Wheel", and is expected to be released "holiday 2011". The wheel is built on a metal chassis, and comes with a quasi-F1 style gas and brake pedals, along with both paddle and sequential shifters. In a nice touch, the sequential shifter is also able to be mounted on either the left or right side of the unit.
The wheel will come with a lap holder, can be mounted to a desk, and is also able to be connected to a computer for firmware updates. No word yet if it will have 900° of rotation or the diameter of the wheel itself.