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World Circuit

aka: F1GP, Grand Prix 1, Microprose Formula One Grand Prix, World Circuit: The Grand Prix Race Simulation

Possibly the finest Amiga game ever

The Good
The graphics were truly mind-blowing at the time, although ironically the plainly-filled polygons don't look as pretty as some of the sprite-based racers. The speed was impressive as well, especially considering everything else that was going on. The engine, tyre and contact noises were just right as well.

Every little detail about F1 cars was recreated. The computer cars behaved realistically, and the difficulty levels and driving aids allowed anyone to have a level they could play competitively at.

Car setup was a new feature for F1 racing, with minute control over gears, brakes and wings, which made a very clear and well-defined difference to the handling.

Unlike GP2, wet weather racing was recreated, impressively on a technical basis, and the wet races created suitably unpredictable action.

Races and qualifying sessions could be realistic lengths, in which case tyre choice and strategy came into play, or just short sprints for those of us without a long attention span.

Most importantly, the handling was spot on and felt exactly like the real thing.

The Bad
This was a very different genre to arcade racers of the time, such as the Lotus series. You had to race strategically and carefully, using the brakes frequently, thinking about car set-ups (often using a lot of trial and error practice laps), learn the tracks, and couldn't just smash everyone out of the way. If you weren't into motor racing, this may've been too much.

The damage model was a little unrealistic as well, with the cars being too strong in all areas except wings. This meant that pileups often resulted in a bunch of cars limping to the pits, often having to queue behind their team-mates

The Bottom Line
Magnificent. It's hard to imagine how to better recreate F1 on the hardware of the day. No wonder it got so many massive review scores.

by Martin Smith (61) on November 8th, 2003

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