F1 2020 – Beginners Guide

The F1 series continues to represent a high level. In today’s tutorial I will show you how to become better, as well as some interesting facts and tricks.

Guide to F1 2020 for Beginners

System Requirements


  • Requires 64-bit processor and operating system
  • Operating System: Windows 10 64 bit
  • Processor: Intel Core i3 2130 / AMD FX 4300
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA GT 640 / AMD HD 7750 (DirectX11 Graphics Card)
  • Disk space: 80 GB of available space
  • Sound card: DirectX Compatible
  • Additional Notes: Dual Layer Compatible DVD-ROM Drive


  • Requires 64-bit processor and operating system
  • Operating System: 64 bit Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 9600K / AMD Ryzen 5 2600X
  • Memory: 16 GB RAM
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA GTX 1660 Ti / AMD RX 590 (DirectX12 Graphics Card)
  • Disk space: 80 GB of available space
  • Sound card: DirectX Compatible
  • Additional Notes: Dual Layer Compatible DVD-ROM Drive

Casual Mode

The release of F1 2020 is undoubtedly the best time for less experienced gamers to enter the world of F1. Codemasters set themselves a goal this year to significantly lower the barrier to entry, and they’ve been hugely successful in that regard. While they’ve also managed to facilitate some of the more advanced mechanics with F1 2019, the main improvement towards amateurs is the casual mode.

When a new difficulty level is activated, the assisted steering will be switched to high, going off-track will result in an automatic return between the white lines, and DRS, ERS and fuel type will be optimised without your intervention. The casual mode allows you to focus primarily on driving your car.

This is obviously not enough to compete on higher difficulty levels. The multitude of assists slows down the more experienced players, and veterans will eventually decide to turn off all of the facilities. Although the bar is raised high and even the seemingly simplest corners require a great deal of concentration, you do gain full control of your car. But before you start thinking about turning off assists and raising the difficulty, the casual mode lets you get to grips with the basics of F1 without having to worry about the small details.

Learning and Memorising Tracks

One of the most important elements of most racing games, apart from mastering the vehicle itself, is a proper understanding of the track. This doesn’t mean, of course, that the best time to get behind the wheel is when you’ve learned all 22 Grand Prix by heart.

Each i My Team weekend consists of five parts – three practice sessions, qualifying and the race. The final two parts, of course, are the culmination of the entire Grand Prix. You have to get in the car in full concentration and give it your all in the fight for points. The practice sessions, on the other hand, provide very valuable information on each of the circuits. During the three 30-minute sessions, you will have several different tasks to complete. You will learn the optimum racing line, how to save ERS and tyres, and start working on your qualifying pace.

After even one season, by completing all the tasks in the practice sessions, you will have gained a wealth of track knowledge that will be essential for competing at a higher level in the future. If you can translate the knowledge you gain from practice into Sunday’s race, you’ll be well on your way to dominating the field.

The Perfect Start

There’s nothing worse than taking pole position in qualifying and then having that advantage wiped out by a poor start. Before lights out, keep engine revs in the optimal range, between 10700 and 11500 RPM. While holding this range, apply the clutch (if you have previously set manual start in the options) and throttle all the way down. This will avoid unnecessary wheel slippage. If the RPM is too high, instead of a perfect launch the wheels will start to slip, and if it is too low, the launch will be too sluggish.

The Racing Line Is the Key to Success!

An integral part of any newcomer’s UI should be the inclusion of a dynamic racing line, 2D or 3D. This will probably be the last assist you decide to turn off when it comes time to raise the bar in F1 2020, so that as you get to know the track you’ll know where to start braking and how well to exit corners.

In racing games, learning to drive and control vehicles is very fluid. There is no golden mean that will turn you into a virtual Schumacher in a matter of weeks. You have to take into account some of the elements mentioned above and use all the tools the game has to offer. Ultimately, though, it all comes down to “I went out on the grass after the fourth corner? You’ll need to slow down more on the next lap’. It is the building of muscle memory, very high repetition and regularity in driving that are the keys to victory.

The dynamic racing line is one of those tools that will help you understand the track and its limits much faster. Follow the green line, brake when it is suggested to you and learn from it.

How to Overtake?

For several editions of Virtual F1, AI-controlled drivers have been really good at fending off player attacks and forcing players into mistakes, so you need to get the timing right for overtaking. As in real racing, the DRS system proves extremely helpful here. It adjusts the rear wing so that the air flowing around it reduces downforce, giving you a little extra speed in return. Acceleration should be much easier with DRS. A second aid should be delayed braking before corners. You just have to be careful not to cause a collision this way, because instead of a higher position, you will face a penalty, or simply crash the car.


Each Formula 1 circuit has a specific number of so-called “DRS straights”. This is nothing more than a straight section where you have the opportunity to apply extra acceleration to your car. As soon as you are less than a second behind your rival, casual mode will automatically trigger the DRS system, which guarantees you extra speed on the straight.

With less drag and better acceleration, DRS sections are often the primary places on the track where drivers choose to attack. On the long straights you’ll have plenty of room to manoeuvre, and the higher speed should make it easier to overtake your opponent.

Riding in Crowds

With all those practice sessions, qualifying sessions and hours spent on time trials, it must be remembered that ultimately it is the performance in the races that determines a driver’s ability. So it’s not your qualifying pace or the fastest lap in the F1 2020 rankings that matters, it’s your ability to drive under pressure and control the car when you find yourself unexpectedly between Norris and Albon.

Rivals in F1 2020 are aggressive, confident and will respond to your opponent’s attacks with redoubled force. Most importantly, the others manage to do this while maintaining a full driving culture. “Bots” can consequently be regarded not only as a solid rival and introduction to online competition, but also as a great source of learning.

Try to observe the AI’s behaviour. See how they react to your attacks, how they fight among themselves and on which corners they decide to overtake. Then start using what they did to you against your rivals. Learning to drive aggressively and confidently in races is very much about learning from your mistakes. Don’t be afraid to take risks and see what works best.

F1 2020’s highly dynamic difficulty level is also perfect for the learning process. For several years now, the Codemasters racing series has had a slider for selecting the sophistication of your rivals, instead of a few simple terms like ‘Easy’, ‘Medium’ and ‘Difficult’. Here you’ll have to choose a number between 10 and 110, with low values making the Grand Prix an obstacle race. However, the more confident you feel on the track, while gradually increasing the difficulty level, the more aggressive and faster your rivals will be.

Car Management During the Race

We can divide vehicle management in F1 2020 into two types. One is the pre-race setting of parameters such as wing angles, tyre pressure, suspension height and hardness, etc. I have devoted a separate section to the topic of these settings and how they affect vehicle behaviour. Now I will focus on the parameters that we can control during the race. The cars are equipped with various systems that, depending on the situation on the track, cause them to behave differently. The key ones are ERS (Energy Recovery System) and fuel mixture control. In addition, we can check the condition of the tyres, engine and gearbox. ERS is indispensable if you need a little extra energy to overtake the vehicle in front of you or at least close the gap. Assuming you have not ceded total control of the ERS to the processor, it will initially be set to dump maximum power, so it is a good idea to limit its operation after a few laps. Otherwise, you may find that you have no reserve left at the crucial moment. In F1 2020, there’s another way to use it – by taking no interest in it for the majority of the race, and activating maximum power with the press of a button at a key moment. This is an assist recommended for novice drivers. This way, at least one thing is practically out of your hands.

When it comes to tyre wear and temperature, usually before each race the player is offered a strategy, that is, how many laps they should run on a given tyre. According to this strategy, during the race, you will be called by radio to the pits for a tyre change. However, there is nothing to stop you from choosing the moment to pit based on the tyre data that the car’s systems show you. You will be able to sense when you start to lose time and the car stops sticking to the track – just don’t let it happen too late, because the last lap before such a forced pit-stop will be a huge nightmare, where you will lose all your advantage.

Of the settings controlled while driving, fuel mixture is also important. There are three, but as a rule of thumb you drive on intermediate. Switching to an enriched one, especially if you have some fuel left over (because, for example, you did a few laps while trailing behind a Safety Car) will add a few priceless seconds. On the other hand, you have to be careful not to overdo it and end up without fuel at the end of the race.


The time rewind feature in racing games was popularised by Forza Horizon 3, over 10 years ago. In the F1 series we call it Flashback, and it’s both a great way to correct some minor mistake and a strong motivation for extra aggression.

Running onto the grass or damaging your car doesn’t have to mean the end of the race. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Attack your opponent in a place where you haven’t done so before. Failed? Use Flashback, rewind a few seconds, and try again. When learning the basics of overtaking and cornering, rewinding time is an invaluable tool.

It is also great for qualifying or practice sessions when you are just getting to grips with a new track. Get to the corner you find most difficult, drive it along the racing line and see if you gain time against your personal record. If you didn’t, go back in time to the start of the corner and try again. Use Flashback this way five times, or even ten. Find the right entry speed into the corner, the perfect place to start braking and a line that allows you to move dynamically to the next part of the track.

As with any game with a strongly developed competitive element, experience comes with time. Codemasters has managed to significantly lower the entry threshold to its game this year. However, that doesn’t mean that turning on casual mode will allow you to keep up with your more experienced peers. Behind every fast driver are hundreds, sometimes even thousands, of hours spent in time trials and league play. Fortunately, the satisfaction you will gain from racing is great motivation to keep learning, and F1 2020 is packed with tools to help you do just that.

At the Beginning Fight Against Low AI Opponents

Year after year, Codemasters try to improve the behaviour and skills of the AI-controlled drivers. Therefore, you may find that the AI level you excelled with in F1 2019 will now become much more difficult. So it won’t be any disgrace if you start your adventure with the new edition at a lower level and gradually adjust it to your preference from scratch.

Volodymyr Azimoff
About Volodymyr Azimoff 13317 Articles
I love games and I live games. Video games are my passion, my hobby and my job. My experience with games started back in 1994 with the Metal Mutant game on ZX Spectrum computer. And since then, I’ve been playing on anything from consoles, to mobile devices. My first official job in the game industry started back in 2005, and I'm still doing what I love to do.

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