Codemasters announced that on September 18th, 2012 we will see the release of the highly anticipated F1 2012. This will be the third game in the very successful F1 2xxx series, and fourth game overall (there’s also a browser-based freemium title called F1: Online). Codemasters is following its schedule with releasing the game in third week of September, just like they did with two previous releases.

F1 2012 brings further improvements to the popular racing title – the game will start with the Young Driver Test, which takes place after the season concludes in Abu Dhabi. Given the timing of the game, players will start the game on November 15th, 2011 in one of three teams: Red Bull Racing, Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro or Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.

Artificial Intelligence is significantly improved from previous games, and the team mechanics will react towards your attitude. Even though F1 2011 failed to deliver on several realism situations (rain in Istanbul Park was the best example, with AI drivers driving dry weather times, while you struggled with intermediate or full rain tires), F1 2012 should prove to be a comprehensive experience for the gamer.

Furthermore, Hot Lap is the new in-game mode, narrated by Anthony "Ant" Davidson, short term F1 driver (his career was unfortunately cut short when the global financial crisis pushed for pay-drivers) and an excellent commentator. Ant should help you out to achieve the best possible lap time.

Unfortunately, given that the game video used console graphics, we are unable to comment on the graphics quality of the game. Worthy notion is that in the past three years, Codemasters shipped over 5.5 million units of the game, becoming the most successful F1 franchise of all times.

On a personal note, as an individual that gave its small contribution to the F1 titles in late 1990s and early 2000s, I cannot express how happy I am to see Codemasters making much better product that Sony’s line of F1 titles in mid-2000s. Luckily, FIA realized that $150 million for a license (the amount Sony paid to take away the license from EA) is nothing compared to the potential revenue. It took just three titles to reach almost $300 million in revenue and if Codemasters only made limited edition of games (with perhaps F1 memorabilia inside the large box), the company could have made much more money – take a look at EA’s Battlefield, Microsoft’s Halo, Activision’s Call of Duty and World of Warcraft, or Bethesda’s Fallout and The Elder Scrolls franchises (all titles mentioned above are multi-billion dollar franchises, with Warcraft being #1 with over $10 billion).