Those new tracks--along with the already-famous roster of F1 circuits (including Monaco, San Marino and Silverstone)--are rendered in remarkably accurate fashion. Every last real-world detail has been replicated, giving players the opportunity to race on circuits that are virtually indistinguishable from those televised every other weekend. Team colours, as well as commentary from James Allen and Martin Brundle, serve to complete the televisual feel.
Before taking to the track, car setup can easily be tuned in the game's garage area. This provision is welcome and it's simple to navigate. Excessive mechanical jargon is dropped in favour of common terms, giving players of all levels the platform from which to launch a realistic bid for the drivers' Championship.
With its perfect blend of accessibility and lifelike simulation, Formula One 04 takes pole. As Murray Walker would say, it's "Go! Go! Go!" --Jonti Davies
U should buy this
While you have the normal options of Arcade, Simulation and TimeTrial modes (where you can make up whatever races and/or weekends you like), the Career mode is a whole different concept.
In career mode you have to make your way up through the ranks from test driver to a race seat, and then negotiate contracts, and of course do well in the races. Do well and the big teams will come knocking - do badly for long enough and even Minardi might fire you.
The cars of the various teams perform pretty much as you expect, but the makers of the game have kept them sufficiently close that you really can make the difference with a bad car once you get good at the game. The temptation to beat Schumacher around Spa in a lesser car is immense :)
The graphics are very good - fantastic tarmac, trackside scenery, shiny cars, clouds of brake dust and sand, and of course clumps of grass when you lose it. The sound is also very good - although not immediately outstanding. You hear a lot of ambient sounds around the track such as wind, and the PA system from the grandstands floating across the field...
Gameplay is probably the most important thing in a F1 game, and it doesn't disappoint here. The car setup can be changed right down to things like bump damping and wheel camber - and it all makes pretty obvious differences to the "feel".
While racing, the game (thankfully) isn't a total simulation - you can get away with a fair amount of wheel-banging before anything breaks or gets ripped off. In my opinion this is a good thing.
So there you have it - the best F1 game on the PS2, and probably one of the best games full stop.
All in all this is the best version they have bought out, well done Studio Liverpool!
First ill start by saying i love this game, physics, Sound, and gameplay! Recommend pumping up your sound for those gear shifts!
Anyway, for those of you who want a really good AI challenge, dont be too suprised if all of sudden you're 4 seconds ahead of the next driver and suddenly that goes to 30 seconds .. i had this happen to me and decided to watch the replays and see what was going on ... for some reason AI driver xx decides to come to a complete halt (randomly during the race) on the main straight (hopefully not all tracks, i have noticed this on 2 so far) and hence causes a pile up and some retirements! ive also noticed that coming to lap a backmarker on a main straight and all of a sudden have 6 cars in front of me and put me out the race!
Otherwise if they arent being stupid, semi pro AI is a good challenge, and im having a really good time playing this game.
Besides that issue i have found no flaws with the game ..i can feel those G's round corners and the excitement of taking a pitstop, graphic engine is very nice and smooth. so my review is over and i cant wait to finish the season kicking schummi off the no.1 spot!
As indicated by another reviewer there is a huge bug which is kicked off when the opponant cars pit. Read more