Had Power F1 been released a year ago, folks would have sung its praises as a revolutionary racer with outstanding graphics, sound, and multiplayer options. Who cares if the controls are a little off, they would have said. After all, most every other element is superbly crafted.
Power F1's graphics are every bit as good as those found in Grand Prix II - and even move at a slightly faster frame rate on slower machines. From the lush green forests that line Hockenheim to the claustrophobic streets of Monaco, each F1 track is faithfully recreated in both look and layout. To compliment the outstanding visuals, Power F1 features some of the best sound effects found in a racing game. From the cheering of the crowd to the distinctive wailing of the engines, Power F1 manages to reproduce all of the sounds associated with the world's loudest sport. In fact, the illusion that you are watching a real race is uncanny, and it's further enhanced by the inclusion of multiple camera angles, a VCR-style replay feature, and even the famous "TAG HEUR" timing graphics. In fact, the only element missing is an obnoxious color commentator - and the world has too many of them already.
Sadly however, the first class audio and visuals simply cannot mask the fact that Power F1 contains a fundamental flaw - namely, it lacks the proper "feel" that is so important to racing simulators. Specifically, Power F1 fails to accurately simulate the car's inertia through the many twists and turns that litter a Formula 1 course. The resulting lack of over- and understeer gives Power F1 a distinct arcade edge that seems somehow out of place in this otherwise serious simulation. While this simplified control scheme may appeal to arcade fans, it will undoubtedly alienate simulation wonks from the moment the light turns green.
In all, Eidos Interactive's Power F1 makes a valiant attempt to dethrone Grand Prix II, the reigning champion of F1 racing. Power F1's high-octane graphics, sound, and extensive multiplayer options certainly make it a worthy competitor.
Power F1 is an F1 racing game that is based on actual F1 race data, and features the official cars, drivers and courses. The game includes 2 player split screen and multiplayer over LAN. Steering wheels and joysticks that were available at the time of release are supported.
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