Codemasters does a good job with the F1 license, but it’s also nice to get away from the strictness of a license and the more sim-racing approach, and just get behind the wheel and drive. The return of the Grid franchise affords racing fans just that, letting them tear up the track across over 150 events encompassing different racing series.
The beauty of the game’s structure – apart from being able to race muscle cars, touring cars, prototypes, and more – is that it’s designed around openness. Although each series progresses linearly once you start it, culminating in a boss showdown, you can skip between the other series as you see fit. This way you don’t have to feel stuck in a single racing silo.
Grid also features multiplayer, various customization options, rewind during races when you need it, a teammate, and a rivalry system that you can see activated when you get too aggressive. Naturally these new enemies bump back in response, and although your relationship doesn’t carry on from race to race, you have to spend money to repair your car, so be careful with how you use that front bumper.
On the track (using a wheel), the muscle and touring cars felt appropriately different, and the game’s late-in-the-day lighting looked great. I was also pleasantly surprised when a car ahead of me skidded out and caused all sorts of trouble.
I look forward to finding out more about the game’s multiplayer and other customization aspects as we approach the title’s fall release.