F1 2009 Wii Review

After years of being on the Sony Playstation generation of consoles Formula 1 racing is now available on the Nintendo Wii. Released yesterday this game has had a fair amount of speculation prior to it’s launch, the question everyone would like to know, is if it is any good.

The Official Nintendo Magazine UK has rated F1 2009 Wii 75%, which isn’t the best, but also isn’t the worst! The best parts of the review are as follows in italics. The review starts off, with the problems that releasing a game, once the event has happened, causes:

“As this is an official F1 game, everything’s completely licensed and all the tracks, teams and drivers are present and accounted for. Although the 2009 season is now over, all the stats and drivers in F1 2009 are as they were at the start of the season. This means Hamilton is the world champion and Button hasn’t won anything yet. It also means that the drivers who dropped out of the season (including Massa, Piquet Jr and Bourdais) are in the roster again, and the ones who later replaced them (Badoer, Liuzzi, Grosjean etc) aren’t there at all. It seems odd then that the game would be released at this time, because it’s already instantly out of date. It’d be like EA delaying FIFA 10 and releasing it next June, just as the transfer window opens and players move all over the place.”

So not a great start, but once the gameplay is discussed it gets better.

“Still, we’re just thankful there’s actually an F1 game on the Wii now, and despite its out-of-date stats there’s still a lot to play through here. You can choose to play either a quick race or a full F1 weekend (two practice rounds, two qualifying sessions, race) on any of the tracks, or take part in a full F1 season incorporating all 17 tracks. You can also create your own driver and start a Career mode, where you start off by taking time trial tests in order to get offered a contract from a racing team, then work your way up the ranks to become world champion. Disappointingly though, Career mode only lasts three seasons before it ends. We’re fairly sure Schumacher’s career was longer than that.”

The main talking point for all driving games is the controls. Thankfully, Codemasters have got this part of the game spot on, and I agree that the Wii Wheel, or the included Official F1 Wheel controller, is the biggest draw to the game.

“The controls differ greatly depending on what control method you use. For some reason we really didn’t like playing with the Remote and Nunchuk because the analogue stick is far too sensitive and moving it slightly to the left or right results in the car turning wildly. This means turns are more a case of quickly tapping the stick left and right instead of making a fluid turn in that direction. Turn the Remote on its side and whack it in a Wii Wheel however, and the difference is night and day. The handling is perfect and if you switch to the in-car cockpit view this is one of the most immersive racing experiences on the Wii.”

The graphics however, get a kicking in the review. Disappointing really, :(

“The only thing that detracts from this unfortunately is the game’s dismal graphics. We know the Wii’s not the most powerful gaming system out there but when you’re dealing with tracks that are for the most part grass, barriers and grandstands, there’s no reason why the textures should be so ugly and the frame rate drop so badly at times.”

The overall verdict is probably - could have done better.

“It should go without saying that fans of Formula 1 and fans of racing in general will get a kick out of F1 2009, but the numerous niggles are too great to ignore. It’s a full season out-of-date, visually it’s a dog’s dinner and the career mode is too short. It’s enjoyable enough to keep F1-addicted gamers content until the inevitable update arrives next year, but still, this frequently reeks of shoddy workmanship.”

Find the best price for the game here:

Retailer Description Price Link
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.73
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.79
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.95
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.96
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.99
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.99
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.99
F1 2009 with Official F1 Steering Wheel £29.99

Read the Official Nintendo Magazine UK full wii review here.

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Something different about the Wii

3 Responses to “F1 2009 Wii Review”

  1. I cant wait to have a go on this! Roll on christmas morning

  2. I haven’t played the game but as a seasoned F1 gamer I was put off almost instantly by the trailers etc I saw. I’ve written a review giving my thoughts… Although it’s more of a rant about the game as I didn’t actually play it after watching the trailers!

    Anyway here is a link to the ‘review’ for what it’s worth:


    Enjoy :)

  3. Amazing game. All formula 1 fans need this. All 2009 season cars, drivers and tracks.

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