Codemasters edge Crammond for ‘best F1 game’ honours

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F1 Fanatic readers voted Codemasters’ F1 games the best Formula One racing series.

F1 2010 and F1 2011 were picked by 38% of readers as the top F1 racing titles.

Second place went to the Geoff Crammond Grand Prix series with a quarter of the votes – an impressive result for a non-console title, the last edition of which was published 11 years ago.

Another PC title, rFactor, was a distant third with 9% of the vote which over 500 readers participated in.

Codemasters creative director Stephen Hood said: “To be mentioned in the same breath as Geoff Crammond makes us very proud.

“Many within the studio grew up playing his games and they’ve been a true influence.

“Formula One is massively important to us at Codemasters. We recently signed an extension to the license and have exciting plans for our F1 series this year and beyond. We cannot wait to share them.”

F1 Fanatic readers were asked to nominate the best F1 racing games and from that a shortlist was compiled. Here’s the result in full:

Codemasters F1 games
Geoff Crammond’s Grand Prix series
EA Sports
Grand Prix Legends
F1 series: Psygnosis/SCEE
F1 series: Bizarre Creations
F-1 World Grand Prix

There are the individual games included in each series:

Codemasters F1 games – F1 2010, F1 2011
Geoff Crammond’s Grand Prix series – Formula One Grand Prix (aka World Circuit), Grand Prix 2, Grand Prix 3/GP3-2000, Grand Prix 4
rFactor – rFactor
EA Sports – F1 2000, F1 Championship Season 2000, F1 2001, F1 2002, F1 Challenge ’99-’02
Grand Prix Legends – Grand Prix Legends
F1 series: Psygnosis/SCEE – Formula One 99, Formula One Arcade, Formula One 2000, Formula One 2001, Formula One 2002, Formula One 2003, Formula One 04, Formula One 05, Formula One 06, Formula One Championship Edition
F1 series: Bizarre Creations – Formula 1, Formula 1 97 (aka Formula 1 Championship Edition)
F-1 World Grand Prix – F-1 World Grand Prix, F-1 World Grand Prix 2

Read F1 Fanatic’s reviews of F1 2010 and F1 2011:

Do the Codemasters games deserve to be at the top of the pile? What are you looking forward to in their forthcoming F1 2012? Have your say in the comments.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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77 comments on “Codemasters edge Crammond for ‘best F1 game’ honours”

  1. Some people need to be introduced to Grand Prix 2 and F1 ’97.

    1. Dzi (@dzaci214sid)
      17th May 2012, 23:13

      Agreed. GP2 is my first PC game and I love it!

  2. These games won because they are new.

    ’nuff said.

    1. Good point well made. If this pole had been created in 2008 the result would have been VERY different.

      1. It kind of goes without saying that a poll would wind up different if one of the choices did not exist yet…

        1. Yeah I phrased that badly. What I mean is that the poll is skewed by a recent, strong and high profile series. A few years ago, you would probably have seen a more even share of the vote.

    2. I agree

    3. I concur, most F1 2009/10/11/12 players have never and will never play any of Crammonds masterpieces, let alone dig into the vast wealth of data and options available. In comparison, the Codemasters games are shallow puddles that merely reflect the world of racing as opposed to letting you tweak and explore in detail.

      1. yeah i have to agree… but with that said, given that codemasters have all but make the dev teams job nearly impossibly by giving them such a stupidly small dev cycle they have done a pretty good job with what they have…. its a shame codemasters is such a shitty publisher and wont give the team say 2yrs to make a really finished fully featured f1 title…

    4. These games won because a large portion of people who voted are 16-18 at best.

  3. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – any series that has been plagued by as many bugs, glitches and straight-up broken design elements like Codemasters F1 series has doesn’t deserve to be considered the ‘best’ F1 gaming franchise of all time. That’s not to say the games are bad, they have just both suffered from horrible problems from day one which really should have been addressed before release, but weren’t.

    1. Well, have they? I think the problems have been over dramatized… I mean yes, problems… But things were mostly sorted out in their second release, and I think they were to be expected.

      1. The online multiplayer can still be a complete buggy mess.

      2. Ian (@valkyrassassin)
        18th May 2012, 21:08

        I still get save game corruption every other week, and have to use the trick to delete one of the files to avoid losing to much data. Also, the game still suffers from random crashes in general, often spoiling some good races. Penalties are poorly implemented too. Of course, it’s not as bad as Shift 2 though, that is the ultimate racing game for bugs, with a guaranteed crash every night!

  4. Not sure I can agree with the notion that F1 2010 and 2011 are better than the Grand Prix games, but they could have been a lot worse and they can only get better in the future (unless you own a PS3)!

    If F1 2011 ran as smoothly as F1 2010 (or at least had a bearable frame-rate), I might have rated it a lot higher, but as it is, Grand Prix 4 is the game that keeps me coming back and it’s been the case for many, many years. The only thing about the game that doesn’t stay young is the graphics, but if I want intense and realistic AI battles, damage that punishes your mistakes correctly, and a physics system that makes you feel like you’re driving an F1 car (and one that keeps you on your toes), I’m not going to be firing up anything from Codemasters.

    1. unless you own a PS3


      1. because like most game makers, they usually get bribed my microsoft to make it better on xbox and fill the ps3 version with bugs

        1. Does that ever actually happen? Because it sounds like the sort of thing someone would make up.

          1. I don’t think it has anything to do with bribes, but the PS3 version of F1 2011 is, at times, so bad that you crash simply because you can’t tell how fast you’re going. It’s terrible and I was extremely disappointed.

          2. @keithcollantine Games that are multi-platform (Xbox and PlayStation) are usually made for one, and then ported to the other. The developers usually choose which will make them the most money, develop for that console to make sure it’s as good as can be (easier said than done…) and then, kinda, ‘shoehorn’ it across to the other one, which can suffer because of it.

            It would be too expensive to build the game seperately twice from scratch. Microsoft usually wins, especially with games that are also released on PC, as the Xbox and a Windows PC are very similar.

            Not always the case though, must be said.

          3. @ajokay Surely the Xbox is miles behind the PC standard in terms of graphic capabilities now?

          4. @keithcollantine Xbox has more of a market share than people with PC’s that can handle games. However, there is a trend now where PC gaming is slowly coming back into vogue, with the lack of new consoles. Games like Star Wars: The Old Republic and Diablo 3 are leading the way at the moment.

            @ajokay is right in saying that they look for what is profitable and focus on that console.

          5. @keithcollantine True, the Xbox 360 is a good 7 or 8 years old now, and any modern PC with a decent graphics card will out-perform it graphically. But the core technology and the way the games work is more similar across those 2 platforms than it is with the PS3

          6. Whilst market share of the xbox does play a contributing factor, the main reason games are developed for the xbox is much simpler, it’s cheaper and easier to make xbox games because of the dev kits supplied by microsoft are simply light years ahead of what sony produce. The reason PC ports are better than ps3 ports is because there is a similarity in architechure of the xbox and pc, where as the ps3 has its 8 cell processor (which is also the reason it is harder and costs more to make games on). So whilst market share does play a role, the main reason is to do with cost and better dev kits.

            Even though pc’s are faster (top rigs were easily faster than the 360 when it shipped anyway) they have roughly the same achitechure as a 360 (although you now have direct x12 on graphics cards, where as the 360 is running off direct x9)

            Just another note, Microsoft don’t ‘bribe’ they often buy time exclusives of DLC (downloadable content) which I assume is where the ridiculus claim about bribing has come from.

          7. I’m very lucky to be able to have gotten myself a good pc with a quality wheel, I suspect, that 2011 was made to excel for PC users with wheels, as the feel and atmosphere the game creates is amazing. I love my ps3, but the PC allows for much more immersion.

            I suspect this is where differences in opinion are coming from (mostly).

  5. Well done to Codemasters. They make some great games, but please fix the bugs for F1 2012. It’s getting tiresome now…

    Depressed that F-1 World Grand Prix was last. I suppose it was last released in 1999 on a console which comparatively few people have played (I don’t count the Dreamcast version as it’s a bit rubbish), but I thought more people would remember it. Never really played Geoff Crammond’s games, but from what I’ve heard they’re very detailed and still hold up very well.

    1. Ahh, F1 World Grand Prix 2, I spent years playing that on Nintendo 64 in the good ol’ days.

      1. F1 World Grand Prix 1 for me. :D

        1. @mike – I absolutely loved the challenge where you had to win the Hungarian Grand Prix with Hill, and the one where you had to get a 3 wheeled Jordan back to the pits :)

          1. Drop Valencia!
            18th May 2012, 0:54

            And let your brother Ralf finish on the lead lap!

          2. Real challenges they were…

            I can’t remember now, but there was only one I couldn’t complete… The trouble ones were my favorite.

    2. In all fairness they’re virtually identical.

    3. Am I the only one who doesn’t see the bugs?

  6. I realise it’s too late now, but it would’ve been interesting to see the results broken down by age group. I wonder how many of those voting for the Codemasters games are too young to have played earlier titles.

    Also interesting would’ve been to get stats on which of the games people had actually played. You could then reduce the weight of votes from people who’d played only one title in the first place. Maybe. :)

    1. Very good point.

  7. Grand Prix series behind Codemasters’s F1 series and Grand Prix Legends only a poor 6% of the votes. Whatever… This is nothing more than a top favorite F1 games, because if it was about quality it would look a whole lot different.

    1. It’s about what game people, in general think is the best F1 game.

      I don’t agree, my favorite is on the bottom… But that doesn’t mean I can brush the data aside off hand.

  8. 2010 was brilliant! It had it’s flaws but the game was still amazing. 2011 was nothing but mediocre I thought :'(

    1. What?

      2011 is great! It’s absolutely fantastic!

      2010 was fun, but 11 is a whole new ball game.

      Out of interest, What platform do you run it on?

  9. I haven’t played f12010 or 2011 but I know they’re both inferior to GP2.

    1. in terms of a driving simulation, absolutely… but GP2 had nothing like the career integration and off track immersion.

      You had to get an external app to attempt to run any kind of career.

  10. The thing is, the Codemasters F1 games are very good and I enjoy them a lot, but really they could and should be so much better. The GP series were lightyears ahead of other stuff at the time and although obvious a bit dated now but if you judge it based on what it was like at the time it wins by miles. Same with other games like F1 ’97.

  11. GP4 – Spa – Monsoon conditions – 100% race distance – Ace mode – Back of the grid – Minardi PS01 – Heaven :)

    1. Challenge accepted. ;)

      Though not now I have a lot of things to do, but I ‘ll keep this in mind.

      GP4 and GPL are my favourites. While I think the latter comes ‘closer’ in realism, I actually like the former more simply because it’s not THAT impossible to win there. :)

      …Of course it is in this challange, but worth a try anyway. ;)

    2. That’s impossible! I simply cannot stop myself from spinning. I tried it the other day and built a 2 second lead after about 10 laps, then binned it at Les Combes when I got on the power too early and decided it would be a mature decision to go to bed. :-P

  12. Hey come on! Have you ever tried to lap Nürburgring Nordschleife in a 1969 (i think) Ferrari ?
    Sierra’s Grand Prix legends has been the most difficult F1 simulator i have ever played!

    1. Agree, all the hype of the Ring is grounded. I remember I tried to do a more of less ‘perfect’ lap on it once. I never made it. But I got to a point where I knew my limit, my combined FLAP, as I did each section of the track without error on different laps. So I could put the lap together theoretically.

      I can’t remember my lap record, but I did it in an 1967 Lotus 49. It is the most agile car in the game the least stable. It flounders compared to a, say, BRM.

      1. Yes i remember that the Lotus was one of the best in the game, nevertheless i could not imagine driving anything other than a Ferrari, regardless how good the car was :-)
        As for the ring, i agree that it was all about rhythm rather than pure speed that needed to put a decent lap.

    2. Wasn’t it also actually the first game to feature the Nürburgring northern loop?
      It took me weeks to actually manage a proper lap without driving aids.

      1. @dennis It was definitely one of the first, certainly the first game I ever drove it in. When researching the previous article I tried to find an earlier racing game with the Nordschleife in but couldn’t.

        1. @keithcollantine

          I couldn’t find anything either. After GPL Gran Turismo 4 was the next game that I had, that featured the track. Fully licences tracks were rather rare in the mid 90’s, anyway. Even Gran Turismo started out only with original tracks in 1996/’97.

          What I found most amusing is, that the basic layout of the nrorthern loop is still the same. Even when you hit the track now in real life you can see how it evolved, without changing too much from it’s former days. GPL really helped me to appreciate that old behemoth.

  13. As said above, Codemaster’s games have been voted as the best F1 games around because they are the newer ones.

    Having tried almost every series in the poll at the time of their release, Codemaster’s game are well below what others offered IMO.

    1. Codemasters F1 games have been poor. loads of bugs in them,graphics not up to standard for the Ps3. F1 97 was the best F1 game I ever played. I am shocked that people have voted for Codemasters games

    2. I played F1 2010 and F1 2011 because I’m a big fan of F1. The graphics is good and the carrier mode is ok but that’s all. Physics is poor, tyres and fuel consumption are not real because they are not dependent on your driving style. Even if you drive 100 km/h on 7th gear the consumption of fuel is the same as on 1st gear and is only dependent on actual car’s settings. Wet tyres are also strange thing. You cannot guess where is the right time to change wets into inters because this is dependent only on the moment game said that it’s now. I lost a lot of nerves playing F1 2011 but I like it. I’m a big fan of rFactor and its f1 mods because they can provide a real driving experience. And yes, it’s true that this game is really hard to learn if you don’t use any aids. In F1 2011 without any aids and on the highest AI level I won Championship on my 3rd season. It was too easy in my opinion.

  14. What the HELL. This is so wrong. The Codemasters game are buggy, poorly designed and soulless.

    1. The thing is, only two groups on the list are comparable, main stream, modern age, AAA level games (or meant to be)…

      And F1 Championship edition is well behind, even when it came out. Yes F1 20xx had bugs, but if you can get over that, they are great games.

  15. Which one among these games doesn’t require graphic card? I don’t have good graphics on my lappie..

    1. @viswanath

      F1 Challenge 99-02 is a great option, it has decent graphics for its time (2003) and it also has low requirements, there’s a huge selection of mods (every F1 season from 1964 – present, among others) and, most importantly, it has brilliant physics, only bettered by GPL and rFactor.

    2. @viswanath I’d start with GP4 and GP Legends. In fact when we get to the August break I’m going to dig out my copy of GP Legends and get reacquainted.

  16. Think this is a great win.. Love the code masters games.
    Buggy yes but it doesn’t affect the game play much which is awesome :)

    I personally can’t wait for 2012

    Yeah they older ones were good but a bit far fetch.. Hardly believable

    Well one codemasters!

    A DTM game next please ;)

    1. @nemo87 A DTM game would have three cars and nine tracks – think they’d need to offer a bit more than that to get the punters in!

      1. But a variety of different teams..

        I guess in a way F1 only offers 1 car.. Right..?

        I think DTM would be great, maybe even a ‘build your own team’ mode or something..?

  17. The top F1 racing titles? … The games have the charm of aplle.

    Very pretty but very sterile and deadlocked.

    many errors in the game and barely support from codemasters

    1. link fail, sorry. want to buy edit button.

    2. Hahaha, A video intro could never give me goo….

      dammit -.-

  18. Seems like a fair result to me. I voted for the Codies effort. I enjoy old F1 games but I won’t vote for something just because of nostalgia purposes.

  19. No love for It is by far the most realistic and accurate consumer-available racing simulation the you can get. It has an extremely accurate Williams FW31 and they also operate an officially sanctioned world championship.

    1. yes, it’s the best simulation out at the moment, I have it too and it’s all I drive for sim racing. But it’s hardly as immersive as the Codemasters titles in terms of off-track stuff in F1, and this vote was for the best game, not necessarily best sim.

    2. @xmurrx It didn’t get enough nominations to make the vote:

  20. Sadly a great number of people here are not familiar with quality as they have ‘grown up’ on rubbish. GP4 and Rfactor all the way. Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed F1-2010 and F1-2011 but they lack any depth or anything that actually resembles a simulation. Just goes to show that like some birds, people are attracted to shiny things…

  21. I even have a damn NES game collection and I still think you people should stop looking at the old games through rose-tinted glasses. F1 2010 and 2011 aren’t that bad, and neither are F1 ’97 or GP4 that good.

    1. Adding to previous post – just because a game is memorable doesn’t mean it’s good. Case in point. Fan-freaking-tastic soundtrack, especially for its time, but the game itself was not good.

    2. F1 2010 and 2011 aren’t that bad, and neither are F1 ’97 or GP4 that good.

      Any reasons for that assessment?

  22. I have a question: where are all the people who voted for the Codemasters games?

    Both here and in the previous article which featured the poll (which had nigh on 200 comments) there are very few comments from people saying they voted for them. I’d like to know why they did.

    1. They’re all currently busy developing F1 2012, Keith!

  23. I still wish that there was more love for rFactor.

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