F1 Fanatic round-up: 26/9/2010

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It’s race day! Join us in the live comments to follow the Singapore Grand Prix as it happen.

Here’s the round-up for today:


Singapore GP – Conference 3 (FIA)

Was this a cheeky dig by Sebastian Vettel at Fernando Alonso in the press conference? “Sure, the further you are up in qualifying the more it helps but obviously the race can still change a couple of things. I think Fernando started here from 15th on the grid and won the race two years ago.”

Confirmed: Race AI is phony (Codemasters Forum)

Heated discussion on the Codemasters forum about whether the racing in “F1 2010” is actually “real”.

Comment of the day

Is the drivers’ championship about to get even closer? BBT does the maths:

Think I?ve got this correct: If, big if, the race finished the same as qualifying positions the standings would be:

1. Webber 197
2. Hamilton 197
3. Alonso 191
4. Vettel 181
5. Button 177

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today. If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

We got our first glimpse of F1 cars racing under lights at the new Singapore street circuit on this day two years ago.

Take a look at the pictures from the first practice sessions here: Singapore F1 practice pictures

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 38 comments on “F1 Fanatic round-up: 26/9/2010”

    1. LOL! so many people complaining about the same thing at that forum :O!

      it’s weird tho! I don’t have the game (and I’ll never buy it, because i can’t run it), so I’m a bit sad I can verify it myself!

    2. I’ve been lurking the Codemasters forum for over two years, and a lot of what’s posted there makes me feel embarrassed to be an F1 fan.

      1. i don’t know which is worse – the idiots or the apologists. it’s like this every time a major title bombs.

        1. Couldn’t care less. What I find worse is the ridiculous short cut penalties for running slightly wide onto the grass after a mistake.

          1. worse is when u are on a flyin lap n the guy who is on his outlap busy tryin to pass u on the straights! DURING PRACTICE SESSIONS!

            1. I like the game in general myself but there are a few very annoying things about it, including the way it pitches you into a complete spin even though you are correcting it and how if you hit the brake when it is doing this it stops it which is not what would really happen.

              The AI is appalling, if you dive up the inside of somebody and they steer into you it’s somehow your fault!

              The running wide penalty is completely ridiculous, and the computer doesn’t move out of your way when you are on a flying lap, yet you get a penalty the other way around.

              Because I am a complete F1 addict I love the game, it is awesome with my steering wheel (not so good with the pad!). No matter how many things are wrong with it i’ll still be playing it whenever I get time (and there is alot wrong).

              Codemasters really should release a patch to correct thesew things. And lets hope F1 2011 improves on these things.

              Not a bad start.

    3. LOL at the kids whining about the F1 game, its a game, its not perfect guys, its only as good as it can be within the timeframe given and it certainly cannot replace the actual F1 race, its meant to complement it.

      1. No game is perfect, but doesn’t a good racing game requires at least a half-decent re-creation of the RACING part?

      2. Every racing game in the last 15 years has had a real AI at the very least. And the developers were tooting their horn and lying about how “realistic” their game was.

        Don’t be an elitist and call everyone “kids”. The people you see on the forums paid money for the game and found out they were being lied to. But I guess you’ll call me a kid too.

        1. The only good F1 games released were from Image Space Inc (ISI – F1 Championship 99-02 & F1 2001 & 2002) (The same people who went on to make the F1 simulator for the teams and the game rFactor).

          Codemasters were always going to make a cheap arcade game. Just look at Dirt2. Their best driver in that game is Ken Block…

          Our only hope is that Codemasters perfect their casual side of the game, and then work on adding a few settings/physics for hardcore F1 fans to select.

          1. … 97 on the N64 was good too…

            In fact pole position on the same system wasn’t bad either…

            I don’t think either of them were ISI.
            And I think there are a few Geoff Crammond fans who would disagree as well…

            1. F197 was pure gold because it had Murray Walker’s commentary :)

              …but my vote for fav F1 game goes to Grand Prix 2, opened the box and Quick Raced with a Simtek or Pacific at Monza, missed the braking point by miles saw bits of animated wings and wheels flying, and then I said goodbye to friends and weekends.

          2. If you want some realism you’ll need to play it online.

            AI is the hardest part to code in a game, its not only racing games that have this problem.

            1. There is a difference between realism and outright bull-turd. rFactor’s AI isn’t anything special. Neither is Burnout or Need for Speed’s. But this is elementary level stuff. Might as well have just called F1 2010 an interactive cut-scene.

            2. I’m aware of that Cyanide, but it just goes with the territory, all games suffer this problem, not just racers.

              The problem here is pronounced because F1 fans are hardcore stat lovers, hence we notice it more.

              We need to wait another 10 to 20 years before we get a racing game that plays like an F1 race.

    4. It was been confirmed earlier by one of the Codemasters team that qualifying is actually fake. All the AI times are predetermined and the cars you see on track actually bear no relation to the times that are being posted. What I think the vast majority of people on that forum are saying is that the same is happening in the race too. Ive been playing F1 2010 extensively since I got it yesterday afternoon and the AI has always been a bit suspicious, making up time when it physically shouldn’t be able to and generally behaving very oddly.

      Now I’ve read that thread, I actually feel a little cheated by Codemasters. I’m possibly not even racing against actual cars, just some AI timing system with cars put on track for cosmetic reasons. Even games from the early 90s aren’t that primitive. But because everything was hyped up so much and given good reviews, because of the ‘realism’ and depth in the dev diaries etc, I feel massively let down and disappointed. Racing against the AI is pretty pointless now you know it’s all fabricated, and it’s not something that can be fixed either as it’s inherent in the game’s design.

      1. It has been confirmed*

        I really should have checked that post again, but it’s late and I’m a bit miffed at the moment.

      2. I haven’t played F1 2010 yet, but I’ve done a fair bit of study on Artificial Intelligence. In combat games, etc, AI is quite easy to model – you just need to model a limited set of rules – (eg. when shot at, take cover, then fire back – not the other way around). AI in sims, on the other hand, is incredibly difficult to implement, and gets harder as the complexity of the sim increases.

        They were never going to get it right.

        It’s depressing, but to be honest, until people can put a computer in a real F1 car and enter it into the world championship, you will never play a high quality sim where the AI “drivers” are “driving” every inch of the track.

        Every game will have limitations in the AI if you look for them, and the more realistic the game, the more glaringly obvious it will be.

      3. If it is only qualifying, that isn’t too bad. I can’t imagine it being the same in the race though. For eg. if a driver is stuck behind you in a race, I can’t imagine that the drivers time is just generated and could be quicker than yours.

        I have yet to play it though, and I was a bit bummed when I found out about the qualifying AI, but that is something I could get over.

      4. Maybe a stupid question, but isn’t racing against the computer AI a bit fabricated by definition?

        A computer can not really make mistakes by itself, they have to be programmed to be there in the first place.

        It does seem to be strange, though that the times are like that for the AI cars in the race but in the end it is about passing the car on track isn’t it?

    5. Regarding the explosive accusations and revelations on F1 2010, I’m wondering whether Keith could test some of the conspiracy theories in your upcoming review for PC?

    6. Disgraceful by Codemasters. Good thing I haven’t bought the game yet. What’s the point of playing a racing game if you’re not actually racing anyone…

    7. 26th, 27th & 28th September of 2008 were some of the great 3 days of my life.

    8. LOL. So every reviewer was fooled by Codemasters and their team. That’s the problem with big publishers and their developers. They have time to release “dev diaries” and give out fake info about their creation but not enough time to fix basic bugs or create a real racing game.

      I’ll stick to my rFactor. It doesn’t rain in rFactor, but atleast it’s not as bad as being able to post the same times in the wet with slicks as in the dry.

      1. If you can still find it, get GTR2, it’s a very different game from F1 2010, and more sim-like. Use it when you don’t feel like messing with mods for rFactor (they’re built on the same ISI engine)

        I won’t complain too much about the bugs and crappy AI in F1 2010, especially when other similar offerings like GT5 have even worse AI driving…

        Also, I suppose the fudged qualifying times are a reason why the devs liked to use Keith’s timing data, just apply an error of +/-10% and there you go, qualifying times!

    9. It’s funny I had noticed very odd things in the race like being in the lead from the start making a pit stop and coming out 3rd… The others pitted at the same time and I was 2 corners ahead on the map.

      I am really miffed with how they have done this. It’s quite obviously been lifted from grid where this kind of thing wouldn’t matter so much. I wish I didn’t know to be honest because it has just ruined it for me. I think it’s a con of the biggest degree, I am going to contact game for a return out if protest, hopefully if others do the same we can make our point

    10. i think there’s still some value in playing against people online, despite how poorly it’s implemented. of course, things like AI, physics, graphics and anything else in the game remain a fraudtastic waste of time.


    11. The worst bit is that all those rFactor fans (of which I am one of them) now have reason to be able to say, rFactor is still the best F1 game… Which is sad, because F12010 should have stolen that from right under rFactor’s nose.

      O well…

      1. Games like NFS Shift, GT5:P and Forza have come and gone. None of them will beat the levels of realism that a hardcore niche-product can. You are silly if you ever imagined that F1 2010 could beat rFactor or Live For Speed. What irks me is the lies that were told before the game came out.

        Sadly, nobody will be held accountable for this and the stupidity will go on.

    12. I find the new game pretty tricky (albeit I’m still on a keyboard at the mo’), there’s a proper race weekend even with interviews, the tracks feel blooming good for a game and I have the option to race online with you fine people. Yeah, I’d say I’m pretty happy with the game. It’s a game made for fun and everything else is pretty superb. If they want it real maybe they should take up actual racing… :P

      I get they’re disappointed and I’m sorry for them as it’s a bit mental if the times really are that out of sync but it’s so much better than F1 2009 and it isn’t that big of a niggle.

      1. I find the game fun and enjoy the racing. Relaxes me from the frustrating R factor races :D

    13. I haven’t bought the game and likely never will since my console days are behind me now and I’m on a Mac – but if what’s coming out of these comments about the AI is true, then I can just shake my head in a tut-tut kinda of way and at the same time think that it’s not quite a shocker. I haven’t read what’s going on a the Codemasters forum, but I think that it’s unfair to tell people to just “get over it, it’s a game”. Games are not marketed as just games, as was evident in the campaign behind this one, which enjoined us to “live the life”. If you market things as being the next best thing to the real experience, then it’s not enough to turn around and say “well c’mon, it’s a game” after it turns out that your product is all pretty graphics without the actual racing. It’s not over the top to say that this is a case of fraudulent advertising. Perhaps all those who feel fleeced by Codemasters now can take this as an unintended but necessary lesson in looks-over-substance pop culture.

      1. Agree to some extent. I think the game is generally very good so I don’t really agree with the apparent anger but if there is a problem then Codemaster’s haven’t helped by their advertising which is probably a reason why some buyers are so angry.

      2. If all the stuff about faking the times ( but then, I didn’t see anything suspicious while I was playing) is true, I find it regretable, but in all honesty, it doesn’t change my game experience. So I don’t really care.

        1. I agree, I’ve been playing with my brother for a couple of days and we’ve had great fun on LAN, I’m not hugely fussed about the single player.

    14. I haven’t bought the game yet, so I won’t make a rash judgement on it.
      BUT based on what I’m reading, I won’t bother.
      The basic, fundamental aspect of a racing game has, is, and will be RACING.
      If F1 2010 does what it appears to be doing, generating the AI cars only to pop up around the player for him to overtake or to overtake him, and having the AI lap times come out of a database based on an equation, not connected to any physical object driving around the same track as the player is at the same time, there is something fundamentally wrong with the entire premise behind the development of the game. There is no immersive racing involved, just arcade style lapping for time with various objects hindering your progress. Thanks, we had that with Virtua Racing 20 years ago.
      Now, IF this turns out to be a bug in tying the timing system to the cars driving around the track, which I can see as a very strong possibility, a patch should fix that. They now have a few million beta-testers to sort that out.

    15. You are kind of right but think of this, your actions have no effect on the timings, so if at the end of qual you block vettel and hold him up by 6 seconds he will still take p1 with that lap.

    16. well codemasters, if your still reading keith’s blog….. what have you got to say for yourselves?

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