Grand Prix 3 - Grand Prix 3 - success or failure?

Date: 2000-12-30 13:42:00
The review was based on the PC version.

The moment I found out that I would be a GP3 reviewer, I realized that I would not write anyway, the next day, a hail of letters with insults will fall on my inbox. This was certain, because GP3 is both a great and unrivaled product on the market as well as very disappointing, and therefore very controversial. So I'll try to focus on the facts, not on my own feelings ...

When launching GP3 for the first time, we will see a bit short and a jaw-free video shortly after this menu. Grand Prix 2 fans will not have any problems navigating the game. It is almost identical to the previous parts. Unfortunately for all the others, compared to other games, it will take a while to get used to what I can say a lot, an impractical solution. Let's imagine, for example, that to record your replay of the best lap, we need to press Escape to select the option Leave Cockpit, then the Options option, another Save Hotlap, here we choose the disk space and file name and only save! Then we have to go through all these steps again to return and move on. When it comes to the number of options (once we get to them), it is certainly more than satisfactory. You can even calibrate your analog controller to navigate the menu - this is an unknown option for me. As usual, route descriptions, real records achieved on them, and general information about tracks are very nice and factual. A thing that is credible for a change, which, with other games released today, should fill the creators with only a deep shame is the lack of support for separate axes! The separate axis function allows us to calibrate the gas and brake of our steering wheels (and all self-respecting wheels today have it) on separate axles. Ufff Mr. Geoff, here it looks like ordinary laziness because reworking the GP2 menu or implementing split axis support would probably not cost so much time from these 4 years of waiting players ...

Here again it is impossible to say unequivocally. We have the option of playing in software or hardware mode. The graphics at first glance are beautiful, in 1024 x 768 resolution and with all the details turned on it already reminds us of the situation on a real track and we forget that we are in the room in front of the monitor. But what of it, since after driving closer to the band you can see the pixel texture. The worst thing, however, is that the graphics engine has also not been optimized for the average player. The hardware requirements given by the manufacturer are not reality. During the race with a full grid, standing at the end in a resolution of 1024x768 with half of the details on the computer: Celeron II [email protected], 128 Ram, Voodoo3 or Riva Tnt2 32mb, the CPU occupancy on the first bend reaches 200-300%. In addition, this was not resolved as in other modern games by lowering the frame rate, only by slowing the display of the image. Believe me, driving through the first few turns with computer opponents at turtle speed (slow - motion effect) is nothing pleasant. From what I know from GP3 fans with the most powerful equipment, even the Pentium III 800 with Gforce 2 and 256 RAM does not work with displaying the image when several AIs appear simultaneously and one of them e.g. brakes so much that the cloud comes out from under the wheels smoke. So is it more laziness? Answer yourself ...

Unlike graphics, here I have the same praise for creators J. Sound is really at a high level. A whole new 3D sound, all the sounds are new - apparently for 18 months they were recorded with one of the Formula 1 teams. The sounds of F1 car engines are very similar to what can be heard during real competitions or TV broadcasts. All other, e.g. squeaking in corners, tires with blocked brakes, sounds of impacts on other cars or bands are very, very good. The game also has its own music, which, depending on the tastes, one will like, but not others, but of course there is an option to disable it.

And here again it is difficult to say unequivocally, because is the product which is definitely the best on the market, but because of the lack of competition, is it good? On the one hand, GP3 means: many different camera shots - over 10 on the car alone + virtual cockpit, visible head movements during acceleration and braking, fully mapped accidents - the car can even tip over or be completely destroyed, the tracks are great, we have to track 8 options to facilitate riding, up to 5 levels of difficulty (Rookie - Ace) and what is probably the only revolution and the biggest plus - variable weather conditions. Now we can feel like real F1 drivers, when it rains in the middle of the race, the asphalt is getting very slippery, you have to go to PITU to change tires or risk driving further. When the rain stops, the track gradually dries from lap to lap. Thanks to this, we get another element of the strategy against computer opponents. On the other hand, GP3 is: all teams and drivers in the game are from the distant 1998 season, the same 3D model is used for all cars and teams, and the biggest minus - no game via the Internet (the creators or did not realize the importance of this options, which I personally can't imagine, or they did not have enough time to implement this possibility, and nowadays all games, not just races, are striving to face other people, not just AI at home. As for the "offline" gameplay itself, GP3 is very pleasant. The physical driving model is not as realistic as it was announced and as all GP2 fans had expected it, but after turning off any help in steering it will take us a while before we can run the car with at such a speed as Michael Schumacher without falling out. The upside of the Polish version of GP3 is that it was released immediately with patch 1.13, which significantly improves "asphalt grass" (ie undifferentiated driving on asphalt, roadsides and grass) and a few other things. The setting possibilities of cars for F1 geeks and mechanics are very large, practically every element of the chassis, gear ratio, engine parameters, the type of tires is fully configurable. As usual in GP series, we have the opportunity to race in several modes - Practice, Quick Race (single, short race), Non-Championship Race and Championship that is the full season of the Formula 1 World Championship.

Grand Prix 3 is a must for every Formula 1 fan. It is the best game on the market that imitates F1 car driving, thanks to which it has already been a great commercial success. Thanks to it, each of us can empathize with the role of a real driver and try our hand at virtual F1 races. Unfortunately, this leadership is mainly due to the lack of competition. Who has ever played Grand Prix Legends and knows what a real simulator means, for which you need a real analog controller (in GP3 it is easier to play with the keys than the steering wheel) and participated in online races on the Internet with friends from around the world, using the Grand password The Prix 3 will only smile, but who has ever played Collin McRae Rally can expect a really big challenge to acquire the skills of fast driving a car in GP3. In a word - a great game that does not have competition in its field for the ordinary player, it is a pity that it is so underdeveloped according to F1 professionals and for the geek simulators at PeCeta. At the moment, everyone's expectations are directed at Ubisoft's F1 Racing Simulation, because the previous part of their simulator was already a big threat to the GP series, and the new part has (from screenshots available on the Web) better graphics than GP3 and the ability to play over the Internet, recording even hour replays, so in a word you will be able to play the Online League what we are all waiting for ...

Piotr "Richie" Oblicki