The F1 calendar may be on a bit of a break for the summer, but in the build up to the Belgium Grand Prix at Spa, the virtual racing is the focus, with F1 22 updating itself in a multitude of ways, with new Driver Ratings and Lando Norris designed content rocking up.
F1 22 is probably the best F1 racing game you can play today. Granted, we felt in review that it was being held back in a few ways – no more so than with a lack of narrative to play through and a tacked on F1 Life experience – but with fully up-to-date driver and team rosters and some of the biggest car changes in recent years, it’s still the F1 racer that petrolheads should flock to.
It’s a game that EA and Codemasters have continued to work on too (previously free tracks are proof of that) and today they have released the first Driver Ratings update for EA SPORTS F1 22. Playable on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, PS5 and PC, Codies and EA have brought in Formula 1 experts to give the ratings a once over – David Croft, Alex Jacques, and Anthony Davidson have all helped tweak the scores.
It comes as no surprise to see the current world champ and 2022 Season leader Max Verstappen holding place at the top of the board, with Lewis Hamilton sitting pretty alongside him, but it does see some changes elsewhere.
For instance, George Russell’s consistency has seen him move up to third in the list, above Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, whilst Mick Schumacher and Zhou Guanyu have also moved in a positive direction.
In fact, even though he had a number of race retirements early on in the championship, Alfa Romeo’s Guanyu saw his Overall Rating increase by five, with improved stats in Experience, Racecraft and Pace. Russell’s podium finishes in the last two races have taken his overall rating from 90 to 92, with substantial improvements in Racecraft and Pace. Additionally, Schumacher’s performances for Haas at Silverstone and Austria have also increased his Overall Rating by two, with improved scores in Experience, Racecraft and Awareness. Max Verstappen, Carlos Sainz Jr. and Daniel Ricciardo have all seen improvements in their ratings.
“The F1® 22 Driver Ratings are a key element of My Team, the driver-owner game mode. By updating these in step with the real season it helps ensure that the game is even closer to the reality on the grid,” said Paul Jeal, F1® Senior Franchise Director at Codemasters. “Whilst the battle on track between Red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari has been reflected in the latest update, we have also seen significant shifts in the middle and bottom of the pack with opportunities seized and missed by each of the drivers.”
But some have gone the other way and inconsistent performances from Monaco to Hungary have seen some drivers’ ratings take a tumble – Valtteri Bottas, Charles Leclerc and Yuki Tsunoda have seen their Overall Rating reduced mainly due to Pace, while Pierre Gasly’s Awareness and Racecraft have also impacted his score. Esteban Ocon and Nicolas Latifi also lost a point in their Overall Rating.
Driver ratings are broken into four categories alongside an overall score. The categories are:
- Experience (EXP): The number of race starts a driver has over the course of their career
- Racecraft (RAC): The driver’s ability to work their way through the pack and finish in a higher position than where they started
- Awareness (AWA): The less time spent in the Steward’s room will help drivers here. Real-world punishments will impact the score in this category
- Pace (PAC): Benefits those who get closest to the fastest qualifying and race lap times. A driver beating their teammate is also taken into consideration
- Rating (RTG): The combination of the previous four ratings. This overall rating will go up and down throughout the season based on performance
The full leaderboard now sits as…
- Max Verstappen – 95 Overall
- Lewis Hamilton – 94
- George Russell – 92
- Charles LeClerc – 91
- Lando Norris – 90
- Fernando Alonso – 89
- Carlos Sainz Jr. – 88
- Sergio Perez – 88
- Valterri Bottas – 86
- Sebastian Vettel – 85
- Daniel Ricciardo – 84
- Alex Albon – 82
- Esteban Ocon – 82
- Pierre Gasly – 82
- Kevin Magnussen – 81
- Lance Stroll – 80
- Mick Schumacher – 79
- Yuki Tsunoda – 76
- Zhou Guanyu – 75
- Nicholas Latifi – 69
But there’s more and come August 24th, F1 22 launches Podium Pass Series 2 for use in My Team and online modes. This new series of content has been inspired by the Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon Festival, and some of the key items gamers can get their hands on are the Lando Norris designed set in the free tier, and the Fish Lantern and Fire Dragon sets for the VIP tier.
And finally, that August 24th date also sees cross-play fully integrated into F1 22, letting players around the globe race with their friends and strangers across all formats. It’s something that should ensure F1 22 is seen as the go-to racer for any F1 fan.
You can buy F1 22 and play it on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, PS5 and PC right now. We’ll point you to the Xbox Store.
What do you think of the lates F1 22 Driver Ratings? Should Albono be higher? Does Gasly’s Awareness really let him down? Should Max and Lewis be level at the top? The comments are below.