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F1 2009 review

Will F1 on handheld qualify for our affection?


  • Crisper-looking than the Wii version
  • You can play for ages
  • An all-encompassing 2009 season experience


  • Lacks smoothness to the controls
  • Not better looking than past F1 games
  • Not entirely an authentic experience

So, if F1 2009 on the Wii has been created for father-son gaming and presented in a fashion that caters for the differing skill levels of both, F1 on PSP is obviously for the motorsport fan on the move. We%26rsquo;ll assume that it%26rsquo;s a particularly long journey if you%26rsquo;re attempting the full 70+ laps%26hellip;

However, whereas F1 2009 was fairly unchallenged as a racing simulator on Wii, what is essentially the same version on PSP doesn%26rsquo;t have quite such an easy ride. For a start, the PSP is home to a decent number of racers %26ndash; most obvious being Formula One 2006. And, while time has passed since the last official F1 racer, we can%26rsquo;t really say that the experience has moved on significantly.

Of course, you get Hamilton, Button and Brawn, Abu Dhabi and a Singapore night race but the gameplay is much as it was three years ago when Sony had the license for the game.

To be fair, F1 2009 does have a greater degree of accessibility, weather effects and the choice for a terrifyingly full fat, hardcore experience. Then there are the bite-sized challenges too, but the visuals (although crisper than the Wii equivalent) aren%26rsquo;t overwhelming and the control system can%26rsquo;t quite offer the smoothness a game like this requires. F1 cars are twitchy at the best of times %26ndash; it couldn%26rsquo;t possibly make us yearn for trigger buttons or a force feedback wheel any more%26hellip;

Like the Wii version, F1 2009 on PSP is an authentic companion to the 2009 season that features all the elements you%26rsquo;d hope for. Still, for a more satisfying racing experience, save up for the F1 car in Gran Turismo PSP or dig out an old copy of Codemaster%26rsquo;s own TOCA Race Driver 3 Challenge and try some of the single-seater races.

Nov 23, 2009

More Info

Description<p>Ultimately, it&#8217;s an acceptable racer rather than a mind-blowing one. Still, Codemasters has never been under any illusion about F1 2009&#8217;s purpose; as a pick-up-and-play racer that daddy and his younglings can use together and as a fan-calming appetizer before the &#8216;real&#8217; thing next year.</p>
PlatformWii, PSP
US censor ratingEveryone, Everyone
UK censor rating3+, 3+
Release date:17 November 2009 (US), 20 November 2009 (UK)
Available platforms:PSP
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