F1 22: Xbox release date, features, modes, trailers, and more [updated]

By Kes Eylers-Stephenson,

EA Sports is publishing Codemasters' latest entry into the sim-racing Formula 1 series. The devs unveiled a few key details about the release date, modes, and new features, so here is all you need to know about F1 22 for Xbox.

Introduction

This is everything you need to know about F1 22: the latest official yearly racing game based on the sport for Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One. Information here is collated from a Q&A session with Codemasters' game director Lee Mathers with social manager James Bralant, as well as press releases about the game.

Update Log

31/05/22 — New 'Features trailer' section added along with new contents table
20/05/22 — All track changes are detailed in the "new tracks" section.

F1 22 trailers [updated]

Features trailer

The new 'Features' trailer was released on May 31st, 2022. It outlines most of the major changes which you can find illustrated in further detail in some of the sections below. Check it out:

Miami Hot Lap trailer

The 'Miami Hot-Lap' trailer was one of the first announcement trailers that dropped on May 5th, 2022. Take a peek:

F1 22's release date, tracks, modes, and other new features

When does F1 22 release on Xbox?

F1 22 launches on July 1st, 2022 for Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, and PC. The deluxe Champions Edition of the game offers a few days of early access, letting owners hit the starting grid from June 28th. Champion Edition preorders are 10% off until May 16th.

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What new tracks are in F1 22?

Miami has been added to the game for the 2022 season. Additionally, there are updates to Australia, Abu Dhabi, and Spain.

All track changes in F1 22

Spain — Turn 10 has been altered with a wider and flatter corner, removing the previous kinked 9 into 10 corner. Next to turns 10-14 there are the new offtrack areas and no sausage kerbs.
Australia — The layout changes have altered 1, 3, and 6 have all been widened; the 8/9 chicane is replaced with a single bending straight; and 11, 12, and 13 are improved with a straight entry and 3.5 meter widening of the track. Totally "remodelled using LIDAR data, boasting more detailed height and camber." In addition, the outfield walls have been repositioned and the kerbs have "photogrammetry versions."
Abu Dhabi — Turn 5 now has no chicane before the hairpin, with more runoff after the hairpin itself thanks to a shortening of the track. With Turn 9 and the other 90 degree turns, the camber has been evened out so the cars can flow a little faster. The hotel corers are rounded to keep the cars flowing through the section.

What mode updates are there for F1 22?

In My Team, you build your own F1 team. This year, you can start from the back of the grid-like Haas, be a midfielder like Mclaren, or a team with massive finances like Mercedes or Red Bull. The team has also expanded department events. In Driver Career, for example, there are optional interviews with pros and cons for each choice. Or in the main career, it might be the choice between long-term investment in a facility or a huge short-term outlay for immediate effect.

Though budget caps aren't fully simulated this year, Codemasters has instead offered customisation for the number of start points you have for your team. Using this, you can alter how much 'funding' the team will have and mimic the budget cap if you want to.


Customisation is a huge component of the My Team mode. Mathers confirms that you can still make your own brand, with F1 22 adding paint finishes — matte, satin, and metallic confirmed — and places to stick your decals. You can copy and paste this scheme to your driver's wear and your facility colours as well.

Will Breaking Point story mode be in F1 22?

"So, the simple answer is it won't," says Mathers. "The reason being, it's such a huge undertaking — as you can imagine. If you remember in 2019, we did that feeder series intro for Formula Two. Then we came in with a fully-fledged Breaking Point story in 21. That was, as you know, a two-year dev cycle. That's the sort of cadence that we believe we need to retain in order to keep pushing that side of the game."

Mathers does seem to suggest here that Breaking Point could well return in EA Sports F1 23.

What is F1 Life?

"F1 Life is the new player hub, and is the new location where the player will stamp their own customisation and flavour onto the front-end of the game," says Mathers. "It's where you showcase the supercars that you've unlocked through gameplay, it's where you'll show the clothing and the items that your character and your driver are going to wear within the game. It's also where you'll showcase your trophy collection through a virtual trophy cabinet. And it's also the lobby location for the multiplayer game. So, you'll be able to see your friends in that lobby, see how their characters dressed, see what they're wearing, and actually stamp your own feel onto the game."

He notes that you can customise your character with gloves, suit, helmet, car, and the character itself. The actual environment you put yourself in and the objects that surround you can also be customised. There is a lot of talk about real-life brand integration, too. These items appear to be purchasable with in-game credits or microtransactions from a storefront. There will be challenges to earn unlocks, as well.


What other cars can you drive in F1 22?

Obviously, you can drive all ten F1 cars on the team sheet. You will also be able to drive some select lower-class Formula cars, with F2 cars being updated to 22-spec later in the year. However, F1 22 is also allowing you to drive some supercars. Confirmed are some McLarens, but also the Aston Martin and Mercedes AMG Black Series safety cars. No more have been announced just yet. There will be a Pirelli Hot Lap event in My Team and Career to try out cars. There are drift events and time trials, too.

How do Sprint Races work in F1 2022?

Sprint Races will be available in the normal six locations in Career. However, you can select for that to happen across any location in GP mode. No word on online implementation just yet.

What other features are there in F1 2022?

In terms of broadcast presentation, Mathers says: "You'll see revised podium sequences, new locations, also the intros and outros to the races. Again, we've really scrutinised what they present on TV, and we want to represent that authentically within the game."

The team have altered your track experience in what Codemasters is labelling Race Day Refined. They wanted to "tailor them to the hardcore player, but also make them accessible to the casual player," says Mathers. There is an AR grid lineup, so you can position your car on the grid offensively or defensively if you choose. If you want to turn off the formation lap, you can.


Pitstops have been rejuvenated with refreshed animations — but if you want, you can participate with a pitstop turning mechanic where you have full control over entry and exit. If you toggle the button on, a wrong move by the pit crew or yourself and you could be 2021 Bottas in Monaco. The AI can actually make pitstop mistakes, too. The animations are all mo-capped with real equipment, according to Mathers. You can add the full safety car period too, or just trim it down to a quick cut broadcast like every other minor aspect of the sport if you just want to get on with racing. This will be available in online eSports modes and in My Team with a more dramatic effect on a long-term F1 career.

In addition, there are variable Practice Sessions. These occur before the race and allow you to moderate how much time you want to put into learning the track. Again, these are totally adjustable. Full assists can include a highlighted pathway through braking zones, corner lines, and acceleration spots. The on-screen HUD can give hints and tips. Or, you can have nothing at all but your race engineer giving testing instructions from a set regimen.

Adaptive AI is a big thing Codemasters is talking about this year. Mathers explains it best. "[It's for] somebody who's trying to get onto the sports track; somebody who really loves Formula One, but maybe isn't so strong in a racing game. It will allow the AI to race closer to the player. We want players to not just be able to navigate the circuit, we want them to race. It's a racing game — you want cars wheel to wheel, you want them racing side by side." The 'Standard Mode' is for someone fairly new to the game, whereas a super-harsh [low difficulty cap] variant will dull the other cars for someone who has a really, really low skill level. The AI race strategy will be compromised at both levels, so this is not for experienced players.

On other difficulties, there will be no scripting. As Mathers points out: "In its purest form, the AI is 100% driven by the AI, we don't manipulate it in any way. Unless you're raising [the difficulty to] 110%, where we've always said anything above 100%, we tweak it. But up to 100%? The AI driving those cars is the same as the player car."

What does multiplayer look like in F1 22?

There will be no drop-in/drop-out multiplayer functionality like Grid Legends here — the developers decided it just wouldn't work for the long weekend structure of F1 with qualifying, tyres, and positioning. The matchmaking and ranking system has been tweaked based on feedback from previous years. There has also been a mention that safety car triggers have been adjusted and there will be more clearly communicated reasoning to the player. Also, cross-play was confirmed as a post-launch update, though no word on cross-gen implementation.

Who are the commentators in F1 22?

"For years, we've had a really strong contingent of real commentators, ex-drivers, [and] people who've really reinforced the authenticity of the game," says Mathers. "We have David Croft, who is the primary commentator. You can now — if you choose to do so — change David for [commentator] Alex Jacques. We've had Anthony Davidson play that second commentator role and now he can be replaced and joined by Natalie Pinkham, who will take on the role at certain races. Across the territories, we've also altered some of the talents. We've now got the likes of Jacques Villeneuve. We've brought Sascha Roos in, we've got Jean-Éric Vergne.


"It was noted in the teaser that the voice of Jeff had changed significantly. So, we decided that after joining the series in 2010, it was time I have to give Adam — the voiceover artist [for Jeff] — a break. We bought in Mark Priestley — the 'F1 Elvis,' a well-known character in the world of Formula One, [and] former race engineer at McLaren. He's absolutely fantastic for the role. And to reinforce that authenticity, we're able to record all of his lines with a real Formula One engineer headset."

What are the handling and physics updates for F1 22?

Mathers said that the Codemasters team talked extensively about the new cars with the teams, leading to multiple physics changes for this all-new F1 era. However, we aren't quite sure about the specifics as of yet: though PC hands-on players will certainly have more to a say on that matter.

"We met with the teams at Formula One — we spoke with the teams. We had got a really good understanding of where things were going with the cars; the difference in weight; the difference in body inertia; the way that we need to move from a more overbody aero system to something that was more underbody.

"Along with changes to the tyre model, you really feel how different the game is this year. We really felt we needed to be pushing forward not only because of the changes in the sport, but also to allow us to create the best handling model that we believe we've ever implemented in the Formula One series."


Mathers emphasised the tyres later in the presentation, saying: "We've done a significant amount of work on the tyre model this year to give you that real feeling of the traction because, as we've seen, the cars are moving around more." Mathers continues, "The cars [are] heavier this year — you'll feel the inertia in them. The wheels and tyres are obviously bigger. So again, that's a heavier unsprung mass [and] you'll feel that through the car. All of those things will come through the feedback so you'll get the force feedback through a steering wheel you get the rumble through the pad."

Is 'porpoising' in F1 22?

There will be no 'porpoising'. This is the name given to the new 2022 ground-effect cars as they are designed to be sucked to the floor for traction, but they lose suction and raise, before catching the underbody aero again and being sucked down, thus creating a porpoise-like motion. Since this wasn't simulated in the million-dollar programmes at the real-life F1 team factories, Codemasters had no idea that it would happen or have such a dramatic effect. Therefore, it isn't in the game.

What is the damage model like in F1 22?

"Damage model changes obviously been made to suit the new models," says Mathers. "Previously, we were knocking little bits and pieces off here and there, but they don't exist anymore. We've got things like the floor damage and the ability to catch the edges of the floor, the carbon fibre, and the wings, as we always had. When the wheels come off, the tethers actually catch them. You get the marks and scratches on the bodywork — a little bit of carbon fibre splintering off.

"We obviously don't go to those huge extremes. I mean, two reasons, really. One: it's not something that people really want to be seeing. I know people engage with crashes, they love seeing them, but it's not something that you want to do or be seeing people in jeopardy. Also, they're often their game-ending experiences. If you have that level of damage, your race is over."


Is F1 22 a good jumping-in point for new players?

Mathers certainly makes it sound like it. "We want F1 to be — as always — authentic, and we want it to be welcoming, and we want it to be a racing game for anybody who wants to follow Formula One and engage in Formula One."

This doesn't appear to just be talk. F1 22 is widening its approach to inducting new players into the sport with the new Adaptive AI system, which will keep competitiveness high for lower-skill players. In addition, a range of accessibility options will be available, too. For the more hardcore, you can expect a continuation of the rule enforcement systems online, as well as the normal toggles for racing assists and racing wheel support.

Is two-player still in F1 22?

Emphatically yes, confirmed Mathers. "We will be bringing into two-player play career some of the new elements that we're bringing into [single-player] Career and My Team, so things like department events. So again, [we are] keeping those experiences as close as possible so that if you want to play with a friend, you can experience it in the same way."

How are driver ratings decided?

Mathers goes into great detail on this one, so let's just let him explain it all. "We've got an incredibly complicated spreadsheet. It's all done through real statistics — we literally scrape the statistics for all of the drivers. A simple one would obviously be their experience," Mathers explains. "We'll always take the most experienced driver in Formula One at the moment as the high point, and then everybody else scales from there. Experience is derived from that.


"In terms of things like focus, that's based on incidents," Mathers continues. "If they have a number of incidents: what type of incidents? Were there penalties? [Are they] their fault? Are they a car fault? Any circumstances we can bring into it. It's a fair way of determining those figures. And then there are various other things: fastest laps, qualifying positions, [and] positions gained.

"We're trying to take as many statistics as we can, put them into the spreadsheet, run them through the numbers, and [the spreadsheet] kicks the [driver rating] numbers out at the end. This is why sometimes the numbers betray the narrative; because sometimes what you see in real life doesn't necessarily always go along with what the science tells us. I mean, you don't want to offend somebody by not giving them a true representation of their performance."

Will there be legacy cars, tracks, and drivers in F1 22?

No word on cars, but we assume they will feature as a potential part of F1 Life as they were so missed in the last entry. About the tracks, Mathers says: "I'm going to say 'watch this space.' Nice and vague." So, probably a yes is the answer here. About the drivers, we do have a confirmation: "I can say that the icons from the last game will be returning, minus one of them. And there will be some new icons joining."

That is everything you need to know about F1 22! What do you think of the modes? The aero changes? F1 Life? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Written by Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Working across TrueTrophies and TrueAchievements, Kes writes news, reviews, and a variety of bespoke features. Kes left university after four years with a first-class MA in English Literature — a subject that required research, creativity, and lots of writing. He also has dabbled in teaching, farming, and building websites. Some days, he plays Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag to pretend he is a pirate.
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