Look at the cover of F1 2018. Hmm… Frowny face, smiley face, frowny face.F1 2018

Yes, of course the smiley one is Daniel Ricciardo, who’s likely perennially grinning his head off as he has one of the coolest gigs in the entire world. Don’t you love it when people actually look grateful for their good fortune?

His obvious delight is infectious, as is this latest – and by far the best yet – iteration of Codemasters’ officially-sanctioned F1 game, packed with all the latest cars, teams and tracks.

The most appealing aspect of the F1 series is that it caters for most every whim a true F1 fan could require in a racing simulator without bolting actual wheels to it, while also letting those who want to take an arcade-styled blast around Albert Park stay on the track and have fun. Yes, there are assists coming out of every car’s wazoo (that’s the little bendy metal doohickey just to the left of the discombobulator). You can dial them right up and pretty much cruise about with your eyes shut, or zero the lot and discover that these F1 drivers aren’t just pretty boys going for Sunday joyrides.

F1 2018

Hit the seriously deep career mode – facing the media and all – or just assail one track. Race in three-lap bursts, or tackle however many you want. Heck, take on a full race if you have the stamina – and encounter variables that come into play such as tyre wear plus fuel (and, if you’re us, damage repair) stops.

HDR now comes to the party, making the current assortment of F1 machines appear shinier than the shiniest things you could ever imagine. Seriously, you could assemble Hayzi Fantayzee, Kids in the Kitchen, Vanessa Amorosi, Take That, Collective Soul and, what the hell, Shannon Noll and the level of shine they could muster would be negligible in comparison. They’re just so SHINY!

Add classic F1 machines – with classic dashes, sound and, handling – and this is one truly special racing game.

We drink to Codemasters for a job masterfully done – but not out of our shoe (eww!) Sorry Dan.

F1 2018 is available now for PS4 and Xbox One.

Buy now at JB Hi-Fi