Three F1 cars, one on the right in black, one on the left in red and one at the back in blue racing on a closed off street circuit at night.
Image credit: Codemasters / EA

3 Details from F1 23 Las Vegas Reveal

F1 23

In the most recent F1 23 video by Codemasters and EA, we got our first look at the new Las Vegas Grand Prix street track. We saw some things that have us excited for the release!

The latest expansion of F1 into America will see the series visiting the Las Vegas later this year. The drivers will race on the 3.8 mile street track – part of which is on the Boulevard – on the night of 18 November.

Just like last year with the previous new US race in Miami, the upcoming F1 game has content tying in to the Las Vegas race. But with the game releasing before the race takes place this time round, Codemasters and EA have provided us with our first official look at the track through F1 23.

The video showcased a short three lap race with the player using the spec car, and picking the newly confirmed Pastor Maldonado as their teammate. But there were a few other elements that may have gone under many people’s noses. Here are three of the most important.

1. Increased Traction

One detail about the Las Vegas Strip Circuit is that drivers who qualify towards the rear of the field will start on a curve. So when it comes to the race start, they will need to turn whilst attempting to accelerate, which could be a recipe for disaster.

But as Jarno Opmeer has pointed out, this appears to be less of an issue on F1 23. When watching the video, the 2-time F1 Esports champion took notice of the player going half throttle off the start. Whilst it did result in some wheelspin, Opmeer claimed any more than 20% throttle would result in a spin in F1 22, so that’s already very intriguing.

He also pointed out how the player was able to go full throttle by the time they had shifted up to third gear, something that was impossible on F1 22 without TC. Codemasters and EA have confirmed that they have tweaked the handling model to offer more grip, as a common criticism laid against the F1 games in recent years has been its lack of traction in slow speed acceleration.

This is very promising. Hopefully F1 23 is a step in the right direction to making the cars more driveable.

2. Gear Ratios

As pointed out by F1 content creator Alex Gillon, the cars were maxing out their speed and bouncing off the redline very quickly. With Las Vegas being uncharacteristically low downforce for a street circuit, it’s no surprise that they are going at such high speeds.

Fixed gear ratios have been a part of F1 for a few seasons now and are track dependent. The organisers wouldn’t have the same set of gear ratios run at a high downforce track like Monaco be used for a high speed track like Monza. But once they’re decided upon, the teams can’t change them during the event.

It’s perhaps likely that in the lead up to the game release and the race itself, these gear ratios will be changed. In past games featuring a new track, some elements haven’t perfectly aligned with what is depicted in real life. Like in F1 2012, Circuit of the Americas’ run-off didn’t match how it was in reality.

Hopefully, when the game releases, the gear ratios won’t be so short as to torture the power unit. That could run the risk of an engine failure.

3. The AI Still Don’t Fight

Another thing evident from the video is that it wasn’t that difficult to lunge on the AI. The move the player made on Hülkenberg into T7 on the last lap was particularly noteworthy. Just like every other move, the AI seem to jump out of the way.

The F1 gaming community has spent years bemoaning the AI’s lack of nuance. Simply show them a wheel and they yield, they don’t really feel like real opponent drivers and a more akin to moving obstacles.

An onboard shot on F1 23 at the Las Vegas Strip Circuit.
Will these slow corners be a place to do some surprise overtakes? Image credit: Codemasters / EA

With the effectiveness of DRS and usage of ERS, overtakes were relatively easy. The player started in 22nd and last place but in three laps made it to 11th, but it’s impossible to know exactly what AI difficulty was being utilised. The fastest lap in that race was a 1:36.862, but we can’t say whether that will be easily beaten in the Grand Prix.

The AI skill may be tied in with their aggression, or for this year maybe they could be separate. Assetto Corsa for example features different adjustors for the AI’s difficulty and aggression, although in F1 games historically they’ve been paired into the one setting.

When F1 23 rolls around, if you’re looking for a means to find the perfect AI difficulty then check out our video on how to get the optimal level for your ability.

Is there anything we may have missed from the F1 23 Las Vegas reveal? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!

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