As a follow-up to its wildly successful F1 2000 PlayStation title, EA Sports is preparing a kitted-out sequel for the PlayStation 2 titled F1 Championship Season 2000. As the company line puts it, F1 Championship Season 2000 features advanced opponent intelligence, real car damage, user-friendly setup screens, and pit-crew feedback throughout the race. F1 2000 also offers a depth and realism as yet unseen, while the lightning fast 3D graphics and split-screen multiplayer mean the arcade racing fan will not be disappointed. Considering the fact that the PlayStation 2 release will be based upon the same code that went into the impressive PC release of F1 2000, it's hard to doubt the company line.
Still, for those who need more proof, here's some more specs for you: F1 Championship Season 2000 will include all the cars, teams, drivers, and tracks from the 2000 season, including such teams as McLaren, Ferrari, Jordan, Jaguar, Williams F1, Prost, Red Bull Sauber, Benetton, Arrows, British American Racing, and Minardi. Popular drivers such as Mika Hakkinen, Michael Schumacher, and Jean Alesi will also be in full effect. EA has worked very closely with all of the teams, circuits, photographers, and the official licensing body (the FOA/FOM) to ensure that all of the information and visuals will be 100-percent accurate.
As far as modes go, F1 Championship Season 2000 will feature championship, single-race, arcade, and time-trial modes, including prerace practice sessions and qualifying stages. There will also be multiplayer support via a four-player split-screen option, should you be one of the lucky few to own a PS2 Multitap. Pulling this all together, EA Sports promises to include a high number of car tweaking options, such as tire type, fuel level, suspension, brake type, and a whole host of other variables too numerous to mention in a reasonable span. Backing this up is a realistic physics engine that uses actual historical data combined with computer simulated courses to create a fully 3D racing experience. From speed-induced jitters and bone-jarring crashes to car drafting and tire wear, it will all be in the game.
Of course, if you've been exposed to any of the hype surrounding the PS2, you know it's the system's visual capabilities that has everyone's mouths agape. Not one to disappoint, EA Sports has a lot in store for driving fans with F1 Championship Season 2000. Up to 22 cars can be onscreen at once, dishing out roadway tire markings, spark effects, broken glass, paint chipping, and a whole variety of formerly impossible visual effects. With photo-realistic tracks replete with JumboTron screens and helicopters, as well as audio commentary provided by TV presenters Jim Rosenthal (UK), Jean-Louis Moncet (France), Kai Ebel (Germany), and Ivan Cappelli (Italy), F1 Championship Season 2000 seems to be the "all that and a bag of chips" of driving sims. Stay tuned race fans, this one's coming at you sometime in 2001. EA sports says to expect a lot of changes between then and now - more modes, visual gimmicks, and a 2001 schedule update may be in the works.