As a complete novice to any sort of F1 game, I really did not know what to expect from F1 22, however, the sheer speed of the game already has me hooked!
In comparison to other racing games, EA has captured the thrill of F1 in the challenges posed during the races, leaving you always wanting more.
While a steep learning curve has been obvious, you can never take your eye off the ball (or foot off the pedals) as one slip in concentration can be costly…
Where best to start than out on the track?
After taking a quick tour through F1 Life (more on that later), I just had to get out on the grid and start racing, and where better to do it than the all-new Miami International Autodrome.
Race day is a fully immersive experience as you take in full F1 fanfare from the claustrophobia-inducing cockpit.
All the settings are in your control, from the length of sessions, laps in qualifying, and even the addition of the new Sprint session to determine grid position.
However, once the race begins all frivolities are put to one side as you feel every corner, apex, and in my case, collision through the feedback in your controller.
Barriers, pit walls, and other drivers beware! Thankfully, on the easier difficulties, the game is forgiving to novices as we get used to the controls.
A slow but steady start to F1 22 was abruptly ended by Alex Albon after his Williams spun my car, leaving me dead last. Forgiven, but not forgotten, Alex…
Fake it ‘til you make it
After my quick dash in a solo race, I then dived headfirst into the Career Mode to really get things started.
Career Mode in F1 22 offers a Driver Career or Team Career where you can take charge of all aspects of the racing team.
Opting for just the Driver Career, the character set-up is far from in-depth, but when you are looking at the back of a helmet for large parts of the game, this is certainly not an issue.
Once the brief customisation options have been sorted it is then onto team selection, and who better to race for than Haas and their loveable leader Guenther Steiner.
There are almost endless options for challenges, upgrades, and events to develop your career and you can choose to be as involved in this as you like.
Quick sessions offer you the chance to just get racing while not missing out on any perks, so you can make what you want from your own career save.
A thoroughly enjoyable introduction to the excellent Driver Career was made all the sweeter by beating my new nemesis Albon in the first race in Bahrain. Fantastic.
The high life
If you enjoy the glitz and the glamour of F1, then F1 Life can bring you a taste of what the high life feels like.
Whether you want to show off your collection of supercars, or gaze wistfully at the various trophies you have won during your career, F1 Life is the place to do it.
F1 Life also allows plenty of customisation, from the wall art to the furniture, the choice is yours as you toggle through the various areas of your luxury pad.
While F1 Life is an ideal place to see your own achievements, you can also check out your friends’ places too, and they will appear on your screen when they check yours out too!
It is not all about Formula One though.
You can take on various challenges in your own supercars, completing time trials, going all out in hot laps, and drifting your way around some of the toughest circuits in the world.
There are other offerings too with split-screen play available, a feature often forgotten in the realms of modern gaming.
Online events both friendly and competitive are all available too, so there really is something for everyone.
F1 22 really is a brilliant racing game whether you are a Formula One fan or not.
For fans of the sport, there really is no better way to scratch that race day itch than by immersing yourself in F1 22.
The in-depth Driver Career can be altered to suit both F1 novices and experts alike, providing a challenging but rewarding gaming experience.
A variety of settings and driver assists also offer a great experience to novice racing gamers too, while the more experienced drivers can challenge themselves with no driver assists.
Whatever your gaming experience, F1 22 is a must-buy.