EA has swept up most of the major players in the racing game development scene. Codemasters was the latest acquisition, just happening at the end of 2020, a company that’s been making racing games since way back in 1986. Their most popular racing franchises, however, are the F1 and Grid series. With so many racing franchises under their publishing wing, many were unsure whether or not we’d see another Grid game anytime soon.
During EA Play Live 2021, we got a bombshell of an announcement, trailer and all, for the next game in the Grid franchise, Grid Legends. There’s a built-in audience for this series that will automatically be excited for another high-speed, beautiful racing experience, but also a lot of reasons for new fans to take a closer look at this game. This game is attempting to reinvent the longstanding racing series with plenty of new features and improvements. Here’s everything we know so far about the upcoming Grid Legends.
Unfortunately, this announcement trailer, despite having some really exciting info, did not contain the all-important release date. EA did say that they expect the game to come out at some point in 2022, but that was as specific as they wanted to get. Just based on our own hunches and speculation, we expect it either in the fall of 2022 or pushed into 2023.
There’s no release date yet, so we don’t know when we can play Grid Legends, but we do know where we can play it. This next racing adventure will hit both last- and current-generation consoles, including PlayStation 4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S, as well as PCs.
The official reveal trailer was quite short and very unique for a racing game. It did show off a lot of cars, tracks, and environments, but also a lot of live-action segments. While strange at first, we later learned that the new story mode is looking to really up their production by having a cast of live-action actors placed in the world of the game. The closest comparison to this would be what we saw in Quantum Break, where certain scenes were shot in live-action.
The trailer showed off a number of cast members, most notably Ncuti Gatwa, who some may recognize for his role in the Netflix series Sex Education. He will be just one of many actors playing the role of racers, friends and rivals, that will make up the cast of this expanded story. We don’t know much more about this story, except that it looks to be Codemaster’s most ambitious yet.
At its core, Grid Legends is going to be exactly what you think: A high-octane, fast-paced, dynamic racing game that pushes your driving skills to the limits. Again, we haven’t seen actual gameplay just yet, but we feel pretty confident in the fact that, with the exception of some new mechanics, you can expect a pure racing experience here.
What new details we do have are all very exciting for this next entry. We will be able to fully customize each and every one of Grid Legends cars, which is also expanded to encompass classic tourers, single-seaters, and even big rigs as seen in the trailer. The full number of cars at launch hasn’t been shared yet, but we do know that there will be over 130 routes, with plenty of iconic real-world tracks like Brands Hatch and Indianapolis, alongside brand new locals from across the globe such as London and Strada Alpina.
Aside from modifying your cars, players will also be able to create their own event types. Want to make an event all about seeing who can pull off the longest drift or have team-based elimination-style races? Go for it! You can even throw in more arcade-style options like boosts. Everything you make or other players make can be shared online via the custom event browser.
EA and Codemasters don’t even need to state it, though they do reference it nonetheless, for us to know that there will be multiplayer in Grid Legends. Every Grid game that has come out has had a multiplayer component, and now more than ever, online communities and games-as-services are being pushed, especially by big publishers like EA. As we mentioned, we know that there will be some kind of multiplayer server or playlist browser where you can play other people’s created game modes and presumably also all the standard modes we expect.
The only question we have on this topic is if there will be any split-screen support for Grid Legends. Games that push the graphical envelope, as well as strive for high frame rates, such as racing games, are very rare to get split-screen options anymore due to hardware limitations. We’d love to be able to have a friend next to us on the couch join in for some races, but for right now, we’ll have to wait and see if that’s a possibility.
Nothing’s been announced — the game itself was only just revealed — but this is another area where we feel safe in saying that there most likely will be DLC added down the line. Racing games have always been a perfect fit for extra content down the line, like new cars, tracks, modes, and other options. It’s easy for developers to just keep adding more to this type of game without worrying about any continuity or anything like a more narrative-based experience.
As with all EA games, though, we do have to keep an eye out for how predatory their DLC is. They’ve been doing better lately, and if trends continue, then we may get maps and modes for free but have to pay for cosmetic options and perhaps certain cars as well. If that ends up breaking the balance, Grid Legends could end up as another pay-to-win nightmare, but for now, we want to remain optimistic.
2022 is still far off, and if our predictions are correct, we’re still over a year out until Grid Legends may hit stores and digital shelves. We have to wait for EA and Codemasters to narrow down that wide release window to a specific date before pre-orders will open up, but once they do, we’ll have all the info on the different editions, where to pre-order, and all that fun stuff as soon as it drops.