Formula One Championship Edition Review Roundup

Formula One CE on PS3

The game should be hitting stores near you today or tomorrow if you live anywhere in the greater Americas, and so let’s take a look at how the media are reacting to the title with a little help from GameRankings.com. The review scores are all over the place, ranging from as low as 4/10 to all the way up to 5/5, a spread that is a bit unusual to see.

Many of the lower scores come from UK-based print magazines, so we don’t have the text from their reviews, just the scores. Edge Magazine weighed in with a 4/10, the lowest score, with PSM3 Magazine delivering a similar 48/100, and gamesTM magazine a 5/10. If you’ll forgive my making some demographic assumptions, due to the popularity of F1 there vs. in the US it’s likely many of these reviewers are more serious F1 fans than your average American gaming journalist, so if you are as well these scores may give you reason for pause.

Switching to the American online media things are much more positive. IGN has the lowest review, a 7.2/10:

Formula One Championship Edition can be a really fun game if you happen to be a big fan of either Formula One or technical racing in general. There aren’t many whiz-bang features that will draw the interest of outsiders, though it’s likely one of the most newbie-friendly Formula games around.

GamingTrend is next with an 83% score:

The 2007 season opens on March 18th, and this isn’t a bad way to get ready for it. The game is a triumph for simulation fans, and is moderately accessible to new players. If you are a racing fan, you owe it to yourself to pull the demo and give the game a try – you may find that flying around tracks that aren’t perfectly shaped ovals is more your speed…so to speak.

PSX Extreme delivers a gushing 8.7/10:

Every once in a while, a racing game comes along that is so intense, so precise, and so damn addictive that it takes you completely by surprise. What’s even more surprising is that this particular game doesn’t start with the word “Gran” and end with the word “Turismo”. No, it’s actually Formula One. And you’d never guess just by looking at the screenshots, or even playing the demo, that this is one well-crafted racing game. If you’re a fan with things on wheels, Formula One welcomes you. Developed by the talented folks over at Liverpool Studios, Formula One was one of the first PS3 games showcased at E3 2005 as a tech-demo. Originally believed to be an over exaggerated mock-up of the final product, one glance at Formula One on your TV is all you’ll need to realize how absolutely wrong that assumption was.

Finally, GamePro.com rates the game a perfect 5/5:

With blazing speeds approaching 215 miles per hour, fragile cars, and highly demanding, technical race courses, the international F1 circuit serves as an interesting counterpoint to the far more popular macho, roughneck world of NASCAR.

Amazingly, Formula One Championship Edition captures all of these themes. Perhaps the greatest compliment that can be paid to this game is that it feels markedly different than a NASCAR racing game.

Amazingly, of all these online reviews, only PSX Extreme doesn’t take the time to mention NASCAR. Are American gamers incapable of understanding a racing game unless it is related to NASCAR? It seems some think so.

tim.stevens

Freelance journalist and software architect based in Upstate NY. I write for a variety of different places (as you’ll see) -- maybe even for you if you ask nicely.

4 Comments

  1. Hmm, interesting. I read the Edge review as well, it was none too favourable! But they’ve timed it so well, I can’t see it not selling well. F1 fans who haven’t played any other F1 sims should love it, as they’ll have no point of reference. I feel bad for those that’ve only got NASCAR to compare it to though, heh. 😀

    The last thing I expected this game to be was a good simulation however! :s Of course I’ll reserve judgement until I’ve played it, but the videos haven’t done much for the game. It’d be interesting if SimHQ plan on reviewing it..

    On another note, you guys have probably read about what Honda are planning on doing with their mean black livery? They’ve got this ‘environmentally friendly’ scheme where people donate and make pledges on their website, myearthdream.com, in return having their name microscopically printed as a pixel on Jenson or Reuben’s car – eventually making up a picture of the earth…

    It’s all good stuff, but I wonder if their planning on making a hybrid F1 engine any time soon? 😛

    http://crashnet.cars.msn.co.uk/news_View.asp?cid=1&id=143751

  2. It is awfully stupid in my book. There’s nothing environmentally friendly about Formula One and IMHO it’s just a marketing ploy because they couldn’t get enough sponsorship any other way 🙂

    But, yes, I’ve read Bernie & Co. are investigating adding some sort of hybrid drive system to the cars, but focused more on regaining the energy lost under braking, which would be quite interesting to see.

  3. Heh, yea I can’t see anyway they’ve actually made F1 any more ‘green’…

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