The Pinnacle of Motor Sports Visits the US

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With apologies to all the NASCAR fans out there, the most popular motor racing series in the world stopped in Indianapolis today, and we were there. As a personal fan of Formula One racing, this has to be one of the highlights of my year.

We were lucky enough to have a presence at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway pit walkthrough, as well as a private event with Jenson Button, driver for F1 Honda Racing later that evening in downtown Indianapolis. Racing fans waited over 30 minutes for a chance to experience Formula One Championship Edition on PS3 and the once in a lifetime opportunity to compete against Jenson, one of only 25 people in the world talented enough to race an F1 car for a living.

The graphical quality of the game caught Button a little off guard as he warmed up for the night’s competition. Jenson said it was “like watching TV.” At the end of the day, however, he burst all our bubbles by saying that it looked gorgeous and performed great, but ultimately a videogame could never fully replicate what it’s like to be in the cockpit of an F1 car saying:

No wind in my hair, the incredible G-forces or strain on a drivers’ body, it’s almost impossible to get into a videogame due to the physical nature of braking at nearly 4.5Gs, but this is still a lot of fun and amazing looking….

I’ll be back on Monday with a look from inside the paddock as well as an interview with Jenson. For now, check out some pictures from last night.

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98 Comments

  • “With apologies to all the NASCAR fans out there, the most popular motor racing series in the world stopped in Indianapolis today, and we were there.”

    NASCAR fans need to get over themselves. I’ve read (according to Ecclestone, so take it with a grain of salt) that they throw a party when a NASCAR race gets 8 million TV viewers (in a country of 250 million). Italy frequently gets over 8 million F1 TV viewers in a country of 58 million. o.O

    This article lists better numbers for both F1 and NASCAR, but still has NASCAR trailing by a long, long way.

    http://motorsportsreporter.com/2007/04/25/encouraging-euro-formula-one-tv-audiences-exposes-us-viewer-ship-as-pathetic/

    “Sony needs to make a Nascar game. Gran Tourismo is the closest thing.”

    NASCAR is nowhere close to GT. In GT, you need to turn left AND right. :P

    Jokes aside, I’ve really enjoyed the Papyrus series of NASCAR games (it is a very different style of racing) and remember reading somewhere that one is being developed for PS3. I don’t think it’s Papyrus doing it though.

  • NASCAR is where it is at. Why do you think Juan Pablo Montoya moved out of F1 to go to NASCAR? He knows where the real racing is.

  • cool cool

  • me and friends

  • NASCAR what

  • you call driving around in circles real racing LOL.

  • Thanks for the comments folks. Spent a HOT day at the track today – forgot how humid it can be this time of year. We will have some good stuff for you on Monday, including pics from inside the Honda garage and the rest of the paddock.

    Hamilton mania has hit the US as well, the kid really drew a crowd, both from the media as well as the fans during the pit walkthrough.

  • Big props to F1 Championship a good game overall. Overall there aren’t really that many technical racing games out on the ps3 to keep some of the enthusiast satisfied. We are eagerly waiting for GT5 keep us informed, I’m sure that it will deliver. Keep up the great work.

    BTW F1 ftw!!! NASCAR is pretty much like flushing matchbox toy cars down a toilet bowl. (humor) =P

  • “NASCAR is where it is at. Why do you think Juan Pablo Montoya moved out of F1 to go to NASCAR? He knows where the real racing is.”

    Since nobody ever goes from F1 to any other motor sport if they’re actually competitive in it, I’m guessing it’s due to lack of ability. Even a perceived lack of ability (as perceived by others) will stop a driver from getting a drive with a competitive team. And if you’re not in a competitive team, you can forget about winning races. Crashes are relatively rare in F1 compared to Indy and NASCAR, so luck is hard to come by too.

    Btw, I’m not saying JPM is a really bad driver. I think he’s better than half the field in F1. And you’ve got to be a very good driver to even get a seat. He’s just not good enough to win at F1, and drivers like Alonso make him look like he sucks.

    F1 is the most demanding racing class of all. You have to be substantially better than “very good” to consistently be in the top 10. With only a dozen teams, and only a couple of those competitive, it’s very easy to look like you totally suck at F1.

  • I now that this has nothing todo with the post but the backwards compatabillity site really needs to be improved. I think many of us (PS3 owners) miss a search function, and a sort function where we can list games depending on their playabillity-rating.

    Thank you :)

  • Cool! Can’t wait to get this game when I get my PS3 in August! I’m so friggin excited!!!! Damn! ;)

  • Personally i don’t like the sim games as much as the arcade style type. I’m more into need for speed, motorstorm, etc etc. and i make an exception for Gran Turismo. All i need now is steering wheel :D

  • The Formula 1 game was the game that made me break down and buy a PS3. Thanks Sony, for all of the great work on it.

  • Great work on F1CE, it is an incredible game. Disappointed my GT Driving Force wasn’t supported though.

  • I know this does not belong here, but why sony are you letting the 360 gain more momentum by not securing exclusives. Not only is beautiful Katamari for 360 users, but now the GTA4 episodic content is exclusive to the 360. How did you let this happen, when Blu-Ray disks hold a lot more space and would be perfect for episodic content.

  • F1 game is amazing and a must-have for any racing fan.. it’s won a ton of “Best” stuff too..
    ie:
    -Best Racing Game to convey “Speed” (like the car is really going fast)
    -Best Water Effect in-game (when it rains)

    great job!

  • This game has amazing graphics.

    []^XO

  • Whatever happened to the PSP connectivity feature where you use the PSP as your rear view mirror? Will we ever see any DLC for F1 CE in the near future? The online aspect of the game is very addictive.

  • To #67 I think you want to check your sources because Beautiful Katamari is also heading onto the ps3.

    [url]http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3158808[/url]
    (do some research next time.)

    I also wouldn’t care too much about the content for GTA knowing that they’ll have to pay extra for it and for what more side missions? Yeah it would be killer for them if it did impact the story but who knows don’t let that kind of news get your feathers ruffled up.

  • Yep thats right Katamari is going to be on the PS3. Also GTA will have episodic downloads for xbox but if you read the last news its the 360 that is holding up the game possibly because of the fact that not all the game can fit on a DVD.

  • When non-gamer adults play modern games and say they’er just like TV, you know just how lucky gamers are these days.

    Another problem with GTA IV for the Xbox 360 is that not all Xboxs have hard drives – perhaps the worst mistake ever made my Microsoft.
    Oh wait. They make millions of mistakes.
    Anyway, it means that they can’t make the game store stuff on the hard drive, because you can’t be sure it has one. Doing that can improve loading times, and the Xbox doesn’t get it…AND it also isn’t as powerful as the PS3, so it would load slower anyway.

  • Our father’s day present to my dad was getting him tickets to the F1 race this weekend. =D

    Anyways, he’s highly addicted to Formula 1: Championship Edition. Great job with the game!

  • Button says that ” . . .it looked gorgeous and performed great, but ultimately a videogame could never fully replicate what it’s like to be in the cockpit of an F1 car..

    You know and i’am glad that this never will happen.
    Imation a FPS that is so real that you really have the feeling that you kill someone…

    That will be the day that videogames will be forbidden, reality is nice but a game must stay a game…forever…..

    I’am impressed by this Blog Sony you are on the wright track, this Blog is for me a daily visiting routine…

  • Hey,

    Why don’t you guys build add-ons on with classic championship years?

    I would love to be able to drive Nelson Piquet’s Brabham, or even the 87 Williams… O Senna’s Lotus, Prost’s McLaren…

    Would be really good.

  • F1 is where it’s all at my friend. I remember playing the Psygnosis classic, F1 CE on the PS1, total bliss. Excellent soundtrack. The PS3 version is a great extention of that. Keep us posted on these kinds of events.

  • Whoa sounds great cant wait till I pick up my PS3 saving the money for it so it will be very very very soon!

  • #75, dude that would rock, good idea. also I want safety car..

  • Playstation shall shine again!

  • “Playstation shall shine again!”….As always

  • Even though i’m a HUGE NASCAR fan, he’s right that F1 is the most popular in the world, it’s just not the most popular here in the U.S. As for the F1 game, it’s awesome! If you love racing and own a PS3 go buy it if you haven’t already. I just hope Sony can give us some downloadable content for this awesome game, such as 2007 drivers? Pleeeeeeze?!!?!

  • ^^^^Sony, Downloadable Content helps sell games that have been out for acouple months. Speaking of which what about the Content for Oblivion? What ever you do Sony, do not give in and purchase DLC for GTA4….. PS, you did such a great job with this game that I bought it and became a new fan to F-1. :)

  • Massa rules!

  • I really love this game! That´s the only game I play when I visit a store to play some ps3 (haven´t yet purchased my own).
    I would really try it out online to see how it is to play against real opponents.

  • Some downloadable content for F1:CE would be awesome. I’d actually like to see some “unlockable” content such as early F1 cars (Lotus 49 would be my #1 pref.). Some earlier tracks such as Nordschliffe (sp?), South Africa, Spa, etc would be awesome for “historic” seasons. :)

    Btw, I’ve just been playing F1:CE. Monte Carlo in career mode is a PITA. I’ve had 4 tries at it today and I keep taking a corner off the car. Naturally, it always seems to happen in the 2nd half of the race. :(

    “Speaking of which what about the Content for Oblivion?”

    I had a look on the Bethesda site the other day. In their FAQ it mentioned that they were working on Shivering Isles for PS3. I’m pretty sure it’s coming this year (Aug/Sep?). Thinking of which, I’ll have to complete the Thief and Assassin quest lines (and the remainder of the main quest line). I’ve already completed all the crusader, magicians guild, fighters guild and all the town quests.

  • I’m really suprised of how quick they update this site and how honest they are. I just wish they would update PSN as fast as this website with demos and other useful content.

  • Yea some demos on the PSN would be very much appreciated since all we usually get are the same trailers that have been released days before on the internet.
    I really like this blog so far check it everyday hopefully we keep getting regular good updates.

  • Cool! I want to work for Sony.. :( lol
    You get to go to events like this. It’s great!

    By the way, Hamilton FTW!
    Finally, we Brits have an F1 driver to be proud of! Thank God, coz I was getting bored of Schumacher winning all the time… Even though he was good, and I admit that he is a legend, it was still getting boring, lol.

    Oh yeah, and I’ve been playing Formula 1 Championship Edition all night after watching the race earlier! It’s an awesome racing game if you want a quick adrenaline rush! But it does kinda lack the depth that games like Gran Turismo have, it just felt a bit shallow – I never really bothered with the Career mode. I prefer to just do a quick, race weekend. But still a great game none the less. :D

  • I would like to talk about Grand Theft auto 4.I heard a lot of things about the downloadable content.GTA 4 should be a sony only game.I heard that gaysoft payed 50,000,000 million dollers to get the content.I dount know who else to turn to,You are the only ones how can tell the facts.I love my ps3,but i might have to get a 360 to get the content.The only reason gaysoft had to get gta is the cant win the console war with only halo.

    PLEASE RESPOND OR POST A UPDATED BLOG!!!

  • @89 i wouldn’t worry the guys working on the game like the ps3 better they had to make a crappier game just so it could be ported and we will get all the content the 360 get and probably more.Besides they will end up making a new one just for the ps3 so they can final make the gta they have wanted to for years.

    @Sony what is the deal with the Agency i heard its going to be a pc game also i think this will be a mistake can you tell us why you have chose to do this.I don’t see people wanting to buy a ps3 to play a game thats on the pc.

  • ok that last one was @ 90 somehow the numbers changed so that first comment was at gman5 | June 17th, 2007 at 5:25 pm
    (incase the numbers change again i put your name)
    but i still want a answer about my second question sony why would you do that

  • I’m just happy that the PS3 is proud to be in the spotlight in an event like this! Good going Sony & PS3!

  • F1 is definitely a very good racer. I wouldn’t worry too much about Jenson’s not so nice comments – he’s having a hard enough time driving the real thing, so he might not be qualified to comment on the sim ;)
    Let’s get Lewis’ opinion…

    Any chance of getting some downloadable content for the game?

  • patrickp3 – LOL

    Button admitted that he doesn’t get time to game anymore, and Lewis said in the local paper here today that he learned the Indy track by playing PlayStation, so it clearly is working for him.

    From the article:
    “Know how Hamilton helped prepare himself for this unfamiliar circuit? He raced Indy on PlayStation.”

    Link and full article:
    http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070618/COLUMNISTS01/706180351/-1/LOCAL17J

    I’ll have the interview with Button and pics from inside the garage, up tomorrow.

    ron

  • F1 is good, but Rally driving takes more talent. Rally = The art of keeping control, while losing control.

    Full kudos go out to Hamilton, he has proved that he could become the Valentino Rossi of F1.

  • Hey Ron! Where’s that interview, man?

  • This is the most fun I’ve had in a career mode in an F1 game since “F1 Beyond The Limit” on SegaCD. Having to audition for teams via test sessions is great and really adds to the feel of having a career.

    Hopefully we’ll see another F1 game for ’08.

  • I’ve followed Formula One for about 14 years now, and have been waiting for a F1 game of this calibre to come out for ever. I live for Formula One Championship Edition, and am a higher ranking member of the F1CE online racing community. I’m currently ranked 36/12,700+ (18th at my best), and my fellow online F1CE racers and I would love to know the exact formula which determines the rankings. We all have slightly different theories, but can’t find an explanation of how the system works anywhere. I’ve even emailed Sony w/o any luck. Any ideas? Anyone know for sure? Feel free to contact me via email at f1-p1@hotmail.com, as well as respond here. Your time and effort are greatly appreciated!

    F1P1
    “Ten Tenths.”
    G.A.P. Member & Future Champ.

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