Any Formula One fan will tell you that not all of the entertainment the sport offers comes from the on-track action. The soap opera that plays out in the paddock provides vital context for these Sunday drives, offering pantomime heroes to root for and villains to despise. Of course Codemasters knows better than anyone that no matter how authentic you strive to be, you'll never get an officially licensed Formula One game that simulates pit lane slap-fights or Kimi Raikkonen passing out in a strip club.
Fortunately, the studio has other titles where it can reintroduce the human element into the genre. Grid 2's already demonstrated it can take care of the drama that occurs out on the asphalt, but it came as a bit of a surprise that Codemasters is tentatively poking the bleached bones of 'narrative in racing games' once again. After all, Grid's roots are in TOCA Race Driver, whose telenovela-grade storyline has the dubious honour of introducing the trope of the inexplicably evil, well-spoken Englishman to the driving genre. Spoiler alert: Of course he killed your father.
Nevertheless, after a hiatus in Race Driver: Grid, story is back in a big way in Grid 2. The difference is it's an altogether more mature and intriguing prospect. In a plot that perhaps inadvertently mirrors the sport's current crisis of relevance, you'll follow a dual story arc over the course of several seasons. Via the medium of race results, you're responsible for the fortunes not just of the player driver but also of a fledgling international racing series that attempts to unify all disciplines of motorsport into a single telly-friendly format.