Codemasters has detailed the all-new Super License
multiplayer feature making its debut in F1 2018, which launches
later this week on Friday, August 24th.
In the latest
Codemasters Blog post, the Senior Games Designer of F1 2018, Luke
Stephenson, dives deep into the Ranked Multiplayer and Super License systems
for the game – both of which he designed.
Super License has been made to keep track of your overall
skill, racecraft and investment into the game. Improvement in each of these
areas is something all players can aspire to achieve, and they act as a comparison
point against other drivers you meet online. Your overall ‘skill value’ goes up
and down based on the skill of the opponents you defeat or are defeated by, and
this value determines your overall rank.
Meanwhile, your Safety Rating evaluates how long you’re able
to race between incidents. Each incident you become involved in will issue you
incident points based on severity and keeping these to a minimum will improve
your overall Safety Rating overtime.
Finally, your overall level increases as you gain ‘experience’
from completing races, finishing in strong positions and hitting various statistic
milestones. This specific part of the Super License system persists across both
Ranked and Unranked matchmaking, allowing you to continue building your Super
License statistics however you play – just note it won’t be factored into the
Ranked matchmaking process.
Codemasters’ Luke Stephenson says the new Super License
system has been introduced because of feedback from the community who were put
off from playing the game over disruptive players. “The Super Licence is our
most significant step to date in regards to stamping out that problem, as those
disruptive drivers will tend to be placed in different lobbies to those who
give each other racing room,” he explains.
Another reason this new online system has been introduced is
because of the successful F1 Esports
Series. Stephenson hopes the creation of a new environment under the Super
License feature can produce the next wave of esports professionals in F1 2018. “We
want our multiplayer game to have a meaningful sense of progression, to foster
a culture of clean racing, and to allow new talent to emerge, regardless of
whether you are dropping in for a casual few races or trying to reach Master
Rank against the best in the world,” he says.
With the Super License system, players will be matched into
the most suitable lobbies the game can find with other players of a similar Skill
and Safety Rating. The number beside your Rank will be your Skill value, and
that’s what Codemasters is using for all its calculations behind the Super
License system and Ranked online matchmaking.
“The system will expect a player of higher Skill to beat a
player with lower Skill, so if that doesn’t happen than both players will have
their skill values adjusted a small amount,” Stephenson explains. “Every player
is judged against everyone else, so when you’re in a 20-car race you can think
of it like having 19 one-on-one races. The more you play, the closer you should
trend to your ‘true’ skill level, and the better the racing should become.”
The Skill value is also tied to your Rank, and this is the
badge that you can see throughout the game. Going from 1,900 to 2,000 skill
value may promote you from Silver to Gold, for example – and these serve as
enticing targets to achieve as you climb the ranks.
Stephenson also noted that the Safety Rating system has been
designed to encourage fair, competitive racing. Drivers that respect their
competitors on the track will advance their Safety Rating, get matched against
other respectful drivers, and then have even cleaner races. “This should
encourage more players to give racing room – especially down into turn 1 – and
maybe think twice about those dive-bombs from 100 metres back,” he notes. “You
don’t have to go for every gap that exists, after all!”
As for drivers who aren’t fast in online races and are
worried about this might impact their Super License, Stephenson says the
important thing to remember is that it’s not all about your outright pace, but
rather your relative pace to other drivers. With the new Ranks system,
Codemasters aims to keep players of a similar racing ability grouped together,
which should increase the chances of close, fun races regardless of your speed.
However, it’s also important to Codemasters that everyone is
competing on an even playing field, which is why Ranked races use equal car performance
with modern 2018 cars, whilst Spec races take advantage of the wide selection
cars available in F1 2018 – there’s a total of 20 of them, should you have
missed out on the full reveal.
You’ll get the chance to put the Super License system
through its paces in online multiplayer when F1 2018 launches this Friday,
August 24th. Stay tuned for our review dropping soon, but for now, be sure to
have a look at our 40-minute
Career Mode preview video, as well as how F1 2018 adds more
depth to research and development, improves its handling
and simulation models, and overhauls the visuals
and audio feature set in the game.
Alan is the co-founder and co-owner of FullThrottle Media. As someone who enjoys spending all his free time playing video games, he keeps the website updated with new and relevant content, including news stories, reviews and opinion pieces for the games he likes writing about the most. He also tweets too much, probably.