Title: Formula One 2001   Developer: Sony   Type: Racing Simulation
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Formula One 2001
"The cars are lined up on the grid. Schumacher is in Pole Position, Coulthard and Häkkinen are in the second row. The drivers are revving their engines... Watch the lights... That's all five reds lit...They've gone green and they're off. It's Go! Go! Go! for yet another Formula 1 racer… Will this be the definitive game on PSOne? "
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PSone REVIEW:
 
The PSOne has seen it\'s fair share of Formula 1 games in its history. Some years ago we had the original and bug ridden \'Formula 1\'. This was then followed up by the definitive \'F1 97\', and then things took a turn for the worst when \'F1 98\' came out. Recently we\'ve had \'F1 99\' and the numerous but easily forgotten \'un-official\' games. Formula 1 2001 is the latest edition to this increasingly long list, will it make the grade? We\'re about to find out...

As you\'d expect from any F1 game worth it\'s salt, all of the drivers, teams and circuits are present and correct. Even Jack Villeneuve makes an appearance! (Remember the F1 97 gaff?) On the circuits, everything seems to be pretty much in the right place, and all the usual sponsor\'s advertising panels are displayed. Tobacco sponsorship is notable by its absence though, well done Sony.

All the usual game modes are available. Grand Prix mode allows you to participate in a Single race, take part in the Championship or Time Trial against the clock. Arcade mode is also available, and features a new and innovative method of play. In most F1 games Arcade mode is usually just a single race with simplified handling characteristics. Not so here ! Start by buying a car (all be it a rather slow one…), and then by racing and finishing in the points, prize money is won. This can then be used to upgrade the car\'s characteristics, or once enough money has been won, a new and more powerful car can be purchased. Although this method of play is different to previous games, it is unlikely to be of much interest to the hardcore F1 fans, but younger players may enjoy it.

Anyway, enough of this Arcade nonsense, Grand Prix is what we\'ve really bought the game for. A typical race weekend starts with a Practice Session, followed by a Qualifying Session, and then finally the Race itself. The Practice and Qualifying Sessions allow the car to be tuned for maximum performance, but changing these options seems to make little real difference. Even with all the driving aids turned off, including ABS and Traction Control, the cars still stick to the track like glue, making for much easier driving than in other games. This is in contrast to the PS2 version of this game, where the driving model is hyper realistic, bordering on the un-driveable! The options have also been simplified, Suspension settings being for example, Hard, Medium or Soft, not a percentage in sight. Some tuning options also appear to be entirely missing! No more tweaking the numbers a bit to scrape a few hundredths off a lap time...

Graphically F1 2001 is quite a \'dark\' game, with grey bland textures and yet bright harsh colours. But listen to this, and listen very carefully. The game has NO POP UP and there was very little slow-down during busier moments. However the game is no beauty and certainly not the best looking F1 game around. There are some nice touches though, including smoking & dusty tyres, weather effects, an excellent TV helicopter, and the driver\'s thumbs that actually move as you change gear! I also had difficulty selecting an ideal driving position, since the in-car view is much too low making corners a nightmare, and I\'ve never got on with outside car views, though these were infinitely more playable. A nose cone view is sadly lacking. Damage to the cars has been included, but I found the cars to be practically indestructible, and no actual parts ever fell off the car.

One particularly nice feature is the instant replay. This allows you to view a snippet of the last 10 or so seconds of the race. A handy feature for replaying those nasty crashes, or gloating to your mate about that rather smart overtake you\'ve just pulled off. Unfortunately a full replay of the race is not available.

Commentary has been provided by the usual Mr. Walker and Mr. Brundle, and is excellent. Martin Brundle occasionally chips in with interesting information about Formula 1, and Murray does the usual And he\'s hit the wall... again! routine. Luckily they can both be turned off when they start to get on your nerves. Sound effects too are very good, with engine sounds, crowd cheering and other effects all top notch. There is even a TV helicopter than follows you around the circuit, rotor blades humming above.

However, even with it\'s excellent sound effects, pop-up free graphics and innovative Arcade mode, Formula 1 2001 fails to make a real impact. Hardcore fans will be disappointed by the simplified driving model, and tuning options. Less experienced or younger gamers may enjoy the game more.

FEATURES:
 
· All of the latest Drivers, Teams and Tracks from the 2001 Formula 1 season

· Innovative Arcade Mode with the ability to upgrade, and purchase new cars by winning races

· Fast, \'Pop Up\' free graphics

· In game commentary supplied by TV\'s Murray Walker and Martin Brundle

· Ability to tune and tweak the cars to get the maximum performance from them

· Grand Prix mode with Championship, Single Race and Challenge options

· Split screen two player mode against a full grid

OPTIONS:
 
• 1 Disk(s)
• CD Media
• 2 Block required on Memory card per save (min)
• Up to 2 Players (without Multi-tap)
• 2 way split screen multi-player option
• Uses Dual Shock Pad Buttons
• Uses Dual Shock Pad Analog Sticks
• Uses Dual Shock Pad Vibration facility

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Review SUMMARY and SCORE
James Goode  "Yet again we\'ve got another Formula 1 game that fails to hit the mark. It\'s a great shame, since F1 2001 for the PSOne seems to almost have been written as an afterthought to the PS2 version. I did try very hard not to compare the two in this review, having played both, yet the PS2 version is a far better and altogether more complete simulation.

The Arcade mode may be different to other F1 games, but who is going to buy it just for this alone? The whole game appears to be easier and \'tuned down\' than previous versions. I suspect that it may have been aimed at a slightly younger market than previous games.

I also found the view options infuriating, but this is just a personal thing and the outside car views are probably adequate for most people.

In my view F1 \'97 is still the best and most realistic Formula 1 game on the PSOne, so don\'t get rid of your copy just yet."
Graphics  15/20
Playability  35/50
Sound  8/10
Lastability  12/20
70%
This is a good solid title that should still appeal to those who like this type of game.
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REVIEW SCORE GUIDE:

OUR PLEDGE:

We promise that we have fully played 'Formula One 2001' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.

SUMMARY OF FINAL RATING (%)

00 - 59 This makes your console seem like an older machine. It utilises little or none of the PSone power.

60 - 69 This game is little more than average and we advise renting or play-testing before considering a purchase.

70 - 79 This is a good solid title that should still appeal to those who like this type of game.

80 - 89 This is a fantastic game that we think you will enjoy playing for quite some time.

90 - 100 This game either pushes the boundaries of it's genre further than ever before on this system, or creates a completely new gaming experience. Either way, it should not be missed and is an essential purchase in our opinion.

IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ:

It is very important that you are aware that the criteria we use to obtain review scores on the PS2 is very different to that used for games on the original Playstation (PSone). The Processing and Graphical power of the two consoles are vastly different and as our reviews are graded against what we estimate is the achievable potential of each system, it does not mean in any way that a game scoring 80 percent on PS2 is worse than a Playstation (PSone) equivalent which scores 95.

A more detailed breakdown of this guide can be read here.


READERS REVIEWS:

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PSone Review SUMMARY and SCORE
Andrew Boullemier (andrewboullemier)  "Upto Now, There Has Only Been One Really Good F1 Game Worth Of Recognition But This Is Now 4 Years Old. Surely Developers Have Taken On Board Past Critisisms To Make The Ultimate F1 Game. After Past Success With F1 99 And F1 97, It Surely Looks Promising.

The Graphics Certainly Seem To Be The Best Of Any F1 Game And Show That The Psone Is Not Dead Yet. In Simulation They Are Very Well Detailed With No Popup And Run Very Smoothly. But I Was Even More Impressed With Them In Arcade Where The Graphics Are Deeply Atmospheric.

In The Past, Some F1 Games Just Went For The Simulation Type. But F1 2001 Has Incorporated Arcade And Simulation Very Well Indeed. It Incorporates Another Element To The Game And Certainly Expands The Lifespan.

This Game Is Very Fast And Cannot Be Criticised For Being Slow. But That May Well Be Contributed To The Low Cockpit As You Are Lower To The Ground. But I Do Not Find The Learning Curve To Be Great. This Is One Thing That Deeply Annoys Me With These Type Of Games. Once You Have Mastered Novice, I Can Easily Do The Harder Levels. The Cornering Of Al Cars Is Harder As You Go Through The Levels, But For Time Lost In Corners, You Can Simply Blast Past Them On The Straights. But It Is Very Difficult Still Especially In The Wet.
Overall This Is A Very Good Game Only Faulted With Minor Niggles.

This Has Won The Championship On What Is Possibly The Final Chapter Of F1 Games On The Psone."
Graphics  18/20
Playability  43/50
Sound  10/10
Lastability  20/20
91%
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PSone Review SUMMARY and SCORE
Daniel Moss (fluff)  "I've Been Long After A Decent F1 Game, With Most Of The Recent Attempts Being Rather Shoddy And Half-hearted. When F1 2001 Was Released I Thought More Of The Same... But After Renting The Game For A Night I Felt, As An Avid F1 Fan It Was A Must To Go Out And Buy This Game!!

I Admit At First, I Was A Little Confused Over The Menu's, As They're Not Exactly Easy To Use, Even For Us Playstation Veterans! But Once I'd Navigated Myself Around The Game, It Was Time For The Action, A 20 Lap Race Around Malaysia With Montoya! Off We Went On The Formation Lap, A Nice Little Bit Of, Repeated Dribble From Murray Walker. 10/10 For Realism Then! Then, The 5 Red Lights. 4 Lights. 3 Lights. 2 Lights. 1 Light...
Go! Go! Go! A Flying Start, Pushing My Way Upto 14th Until I Went Into My First Corner!! On My First 5 Laps I Suffered More Spin Outs And Crashes Than There Were Corners! The Handling Is Very Gentle, As It Is In A Real F1 Car, Again 10/10 For Realism. After Getting Used To Each Track Though I Was Flying Around Those Corners, And Beating All Track Records! The Real Tip Here Is To Take The Course Nice And Easy, Braking Late Into Corners Is Not An Option On This Game, You Have To Ease The Accelator On The Approach And Slowly Guide The Car Around The Bend Accelerating Out. Playing In The Rain However, Is Something Quite Different!! Unlike Other Racers, Driving In The Rain In F1 2001 Really Is Hard. You Slip And Slide All Over The Track, Even With M.schumacher The "rain Master"! You Have To Take Things Easier Than Usual. Overall The Game Is Very Realistic, Even The Drivers Have Their Own Driving Styles.

Moving Onto The Graphics. Coming From Ea You Expect The Highest Quality, And F1 2001 Doesn't Dissapoint. Ok, It's Not Gt3 But It's Pushing The Psx To It's Limits, Even Better With No Pop-up! The Tracks Are Identical To Real-life. The Scenary Is Good Too. With The Woods To The Stadiums, All Graphic And Beautiful, However You Don't Tend To Notice Them Much, As Your Concerntration Really Has To Be On The Track At All Times!

Murray Walker Provides The Commentary, But To Be Honest Theres Not Really Much You Can Say On A Grand Prix Race! The Sounds From The Car, And The Track Itself Though Are Very Life-like. From The Roar Of The Engines On The Grid, To The Cars Dropping Gears It's All Captured.

Lastability On This Game Is Pretty Good, I Tend To Have The Urge To Play This Game Every Time I Watch A Grand Prix! Theres 17 Tracks To Master, And Once You've Done That Theres The New "arcade Mode" Too. Where You Have To Build Up Credits To Improve Your Car, Don't Expect Anything Like Gt Though, You Get 4 Stats To Improve, And The 11 F1 Cars To Upgrade Too. It Still Adds A Few Extra Days To The Game Though.

Overall This Game Is Definately The Best Of It's Kind. A Solid Job By Ea, A Must Buy For All F1 Fans, And All Racing Genre Fans."
Graphics  18/20
Playability  48/50
Sound  9/10
Lastability  15/20
90%
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PSone Review SUMMARY and SCORE
Matt Shaw  "The Rule Has Been Proven Right Again - The Weeks New Formula One Game Has Just Been Released. I Bought This Straight Away And I Was Impressed At First, And I Am Still Impressed Four Months Later. If Formula One 2001 Was A Formula One Car, It Would Be A Ferrari Driven By Michael Schumacher With Traction Control.

The Striking Thing About This Game Is The Speed. It Really Does Feel Like You Are Driving An 800 Bhp Car, Rather Than A Beat Up Lada In Formula One 97. It Really Shoots Off At An Incredible Pace.

This Doesn't Even Compromise The Graphics. There Is No Pop Up, Very Little Slow Down, And Generally Feels Nice And Slick. The Graphics Aren't As Good As Gran Turismo, But You'll Be Too Busy Trying To Pass Some Of The Worlds Best Drivers To Notice. Everything Is In Place, And The Best Test Is The Monaco Circuit, As An Incredible Amount Of Landmarks And Hotels Were Exactly Where They Should Be, And This Makes It Look Fantastic To The Formula One Nutter Like Myself. Even The Lines On The Road ( Monaco Takes Place On Normally Public Roads If You Ddin't Know ) Are Where They Should Be!

A Real Test Of Gameplay Is The Championship. I Have Done Several Seasons, And The Final Results Show The Realism - Pick Tarso Marques In The Minardi, You Won't Score A Lot Of Points. Pick Michael Schumacher, You Will Have A Good Shot At Winning The Championship. Pick Kimi Raikkonen, And You Will Be Somewhere In The Middle Of The Table And So On. This Really Makes The Gameplay Much Better, As You Can Pick How Much Of A Challenge The Game Is.

Now I've Got Past All The Positive Points, There Must Be Negative Points. Sadly, There Are A Few. The Helmet Liveries Are The Same As The 2000 Season, So Montoyas Helmet Is Buttons Design ( In 2000, Button Was In Montoyas Place ) So Therefor Button Has Mclaren Test Driver Alex Wurzs Design ( Who Had The Second Benetton Seat In 2000 ) And So On. This May Not Be A Problem For A Non Formula One Fan, But For A Hardcore Fan, Then This Is A Real Niggle.

Also, The Instant Replay Doesn't Work Properly. It Will Give Strange Views, And Once You Use It Once, You Will Get That Same Shot Again And Again, No Matter Which Lap You Are On. The Qualifying Can Act A Little Bit Stange As Well - Use The Option To Skip 5 Minutes And Strange Times Will Come Up ( You Put In A Perfect Lap, Skip 5 Minutes And Bang, A Minardi Has Gone 11 Seconds Quicker Than You, Or At Indy, Put In A Rubbish Lap And You Are About 15 Seconds Faster Than Anyone Else ). This Means You Need To Go Through The Whole Hour Of Qualifying, Which Is Extremely Dull When You Are Not On The Track.

Also, The Williams And Benetton Teams Seem To Be Mixed Up - The Benetton Boys Are At The Front Of The Field ( In The 2001 Season, Giancarlo Fisichella And Jenson Button Were Often Near The Back Of The Field And Only Had A Few Good Races At The End Of The Season, Bar Monaco ), And Williams Are Not Nearly As Competative As They Were ( Juan Pablo Montoya Won One Race In The 2001 Season, Ralf Schumacher Won Three ). This Is An Annoyance For F1 Die-hards.

Apart From This, This Is An Excellent Game Which Apart From The Niggles, Is Fun To Play And Will Keep You Engrossed For Ages."
Graphics  15/20
Playability  48/50
Sound  9/10
Lastability  20/20
92%
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PSone Review SUMMARY and SCORE
Stan Winslow  "Formula One 2001 Is A Nice Game.it Could Be An Excellent One , But Yet It's Only "nice".it Has Best Graphics Of The All Ps F1 Titles , And All That Runs Pretty Smooth (no Big Framedrops/skips Or Pop Up Problems) , It Got "realistic" Car Behaviour , Good Comments , Since It's Licensed Product It Also Have All F1 2001 Season Cars ,drivers And Tracks , All That You Can Play In Gp (simulation Mode ) Or Arcade Mode.now You Will Ask Me , If It Have All This , Why Game Is Only Good.well Two Things: First , Game Is Full Of Bugs And Second It Doesn't Have That Presentation Feeling That Really Take You Into Game (like That F1 Title From Ea F1 Championship Season2000).

Lets Say Something Abaut Bugs. I Got European Release , So I Don't Know What's With Us Release, But After Playing 2 Weeks I Encountered Following Bugs:
1)game Replay It Doesn't Work Correct (that's Most Of The Time :) ).if You
Try To See A Replay In The Middle Of The Race (to See Your Latest 20 Sec. Of Driving)it Works Only First 1-3 Times You Use It.after That You Will Get Same Replay As In First Couple Of Times (looks Like Replay Doesn't Update With Your Driving).
2) Race Higlights After The Game Suffers From Same Bug/problem.sometimes They Will Show You Abaut A Minute Of Hottest Scenes (which Is Actually Excelent) Then Other Times (more Often) They Will Show You A 5-10 Seconds Of Some Driving That's Even Not Interesting.
3)one Day I Also Got A Big Problem With Game Freezing In "warm Up" Circuit Before Race.it Looks Like Cars Start To Crash Into Each Other In Warm Up Circuit , Then Game Freezed (strange This Occured Only One Day?).
4)in "sepang" Circuit I Get Speed/circuit Display Corruption On The Start Of The Race.actually "no Big Deal".


Abaut Game Presentation.
F1 2001 Just Don't Pull You Into The Game ,like That Other F1 Game I Mentioned Above , So It's All Reduced To Racing , Which Is Actually Best Part Of Game.(but Still Not Perfect).game Runs Fast,so You Really Get That Sense Of F1 Speed.also Framedrops/skip Is Reduced To Minimum (game Get Slower Only On Start (too Much Cars) Or On Few Points On Some More Complex Tracks (monaco :) ), But As I Said Before That Doesn't Spoil Fun At All.other Cars Ai Is Ok (but To Me It's Not Hard Enough )
What Dissapointed Me Was Absence Of Serious Damage Model.the Only Damage I Encountered Was Ussual 1-2 Cars Per Race Motor Blowout , And My Car Get First Wings Off (after I Hit 3 Or 4 Times Wall In Monaco At Full Speed 190 Mph/h !!! - And That's On Expert Level , Full Damage Settings And That Kills All The Realism In F1 Racing) . I Didn't See Any Tyre Blowouts,car Punctures Etc... (i Wouldn't Mind Too Much If All That Wasn't Written On The Back Off The Game Box !).so Without Any Damage Realism , You Can End Up Racing Full Speed And Bumping Off The Walls (like In Gt) And That's Not What I Call F1 Experience.

I Must Also Mentioned A Challenge Mode ,which Also Dissapointed Me .it's Only One Track (spa) And Three Laps To Race , Then You Can Submitt Your Record To Sony's Web Page And That's All.



In Conclussion.formula One 2001 Is Nice Game , That Could Easily Be A King Of F1 Titles On Psx , But It Seems Like Sony Didn't Want To Put Any Money Into This Year Release So We Got What We Got.if They Could Get Rid Of Bugs , If There Would Be A More Realistic Damage Model (at Least On Expert/full Damage Level),if They Put A Challenge Mode Similar To One Used In F1 Cs2000 And Last If They Put A Little Effort Into Presentation This Game Would Realy Rock."
Graphics  18/20
Playability  20/50
Sound  9/10
Lastability  7/20
54%
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