Codemasters has officially confirmed that it is releasing a game based on the Formula One 2009 season.
The official F1 licence used to be Sony's property but there hasn't been a game for quite some time now. After rumours that EA were considering picking it up, UK publisher Codemasters has stepped in and aquired the rights.
Here's the press release:
A new generation of FORMULA ONE video games featuring Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and all the official drivers, teams and circuits from the 2009 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP™ was announced today by Codemasters®, the developer and publisher of award-winning racing video games, under its exclusive worldwide agreement with Formula One Administration Limited.
The first title in the series, F1 2009™, will debut on Wii™ and PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system this autumn. F1 2009 will deliver an authentic and accessible recreation of the current FORMULA ONE season, including, for the first time in a FORMULA ONE title, the stunning Singapore night race. A trailer video is now live at www.formula1-game.com, Codemasters’ new online destination for the game.
Talking about the partnership with Codemasters, Bernie Ecclestone, CEO Formula One Management Limited, commented: “Codemasters has a great heritage when it comes to racing games and their reputation is second to none. We’re working very closely together on the upcoming FORMULA ONE titles and are very impressed with what we have seen.”
Rod Cousens, CEO, Codemasters, said: “FORMULA ONE is the pinnacle of motorsport. For many, it embraces a lifestyle and its audience is far reaching and growing. We are producing a series of games that will deliver the passion, glamour and exhilaration that fans deserve and we know how to do that. F1 2009 is the start of something very special for Codemasters and will set the standard for the high definition versions that will follow in mid 2010.”
“Our studios are working extremely closely with Formula One Management Limited and the teams to produce the most authentic and thrilling experience possible. We are delighted with the level of support and access afforded to us so far, enabling us to get as close to the sport as possible. It is this level of support, understanding and working in partnership that enables to deliver superb FORMULA ONE games for whichever platform players choose to race.”
In addition to bringing FORMULA ONE to Wii for the first time, F1 2009 marks Lewis Hamilton’s debut in a videogame and will enable players to take to the wheel of his MCLAREN MP4-24 FORMULA ONE car and battle to retain his FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP crown. The new 2009 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP promises to be one of the most exciting and closely fought, thanks to new regulations on aerodynamics, slick tyres and the introduction of the KERS boost system, which is designed to aid overtaking. The rule changes, including KERS, will be reflected in F1 2009 to deliver a truly enthralling racing experience.
Setting new standards for immersion and authenticity on Wii, F1 2009 will offer a variety of race modes, including a full FORMULA ONE season and individual arcade-style challenges. Customisable driver aids will be offered to individual players, so both novice and expert drivers will be able to keep their car on track. In the game’s multiplayer mode, driver aids will enable friends and families of different abilities to play together in wheel-to-wheel split screen co-operative and competitive multiplayer races.
Apprently the Wii version will be handled by Sumo Digital - the same team that ported Outrun 2 to home consoles. It's not yet known if there will be an in-game option to lie to the stewards, but we'll keep you informed.