F1 Race Stars is a kart-style racing game with all the zany bells and whistles that kart games are known for. Unlike most kart racers, F1 features real Formula One drivers, cars, teams and circuits. It’s basically Mario Kart with real Formula One people.
Those real cars, teams and tracks have all been given cartoonish makeovers for the game and the result is cute, smooshed cars, bobble-head looking drivers, and real tracks that have been recreated as physics-defying circuits. All of this adds up to a fun and different racing game that one to four people can play together.
One element that I really like in F1 and that makes it fun is that your car will be affected by bumps and crashes and will gradually become damaged. The more damage you take on, the slower and less responsive your car will get. Luckily, there are pit stops on the course so you can pull in for repairs and hope you’ve timed it right to avoid losing your place in the race. This damage feature adds a level of strategy to the game that you rarely find in kart racing games.
Of course, no good kart racer would be complete without power ups. F1 has items scattered along the tracks, and when you drive into them, they either give you a speed boost or some sort of bubble weapon that can be launched at another car and screw up their race.
Both of the above elements are most fun when multiple people play the game and race each other.
Up to four people can play in split screen, so this is a great game that the entire family can play together. Controlling the cars is fairly easy, even at fast speeds, so young kids and inexperienced gamers should be able to figure out how to play and have a good time.
Since so much of the game is designed with kids in mind, it probably won’t be a big hit with most serious racing game fans.
In addition to the four-player mode, up to 12 players can race in the online multiplayer mode.
There is also an online feature that keeps track of races and results and shows how your rivals are doing.
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