Retro sim racing with the Man, the Myth, the Legend, Friedrich Bang! Other kind of stuff also.
MicroProse F1 Grand Prix
Hardcore season with wheel and pedals. 100% races, no driving helps and hardest difficulty.
MicroProse Grand Prix 2
Again with wheel and pedals, no driving helps etc. This time with team dependant car power!
This is a little description of my Formula One sim racing history and why I decided to do the hardcore seasons of Grand Prix 1-4 live on YouTube.
My History in Sim Racing
I first got into racing in 1992 when Nigel Mansell was dominating F1 with his FW14. My dads car was a Renault so for a young dude it was cool to see a Renault powered team dominating Formula One. As if there were any similarities :D
Back then I got my first racing game. Nigel Mansell's World Championship Racing by Gremlin Graphics for DOS, PC! It got some good reviews from a gaming magazine I subscribed back then. ”Real engine sounds sampled from Renault F1 Engine!”. LOL. The game was horrible. Perhaps the Amiga or Nintendo versions were a bit better but PC version was awful. Here. Look:
Funny thing this turd from 1993 was actually a newer game than Indianapolis 500 by Papyrus or Formula 1 Grand Prix by Geoff Crammond. Obviously the only purpose of the game was to make money from Mansells long awaited championship. Well, they managed to get my money! (Or my dads. I was 12.)
Microprose Formula 1 Grand Prix
Thank god I soon found out that there was something a lot better! F1GP by Geoff Crammond was the fist full-blown F1 simulation and it was gorgeous! I remember how awesome it was to actually recognize corners and sceneries form the game whilst watching races on TV. And vice versa! Also cars and helmets were more or less correct.
I remember I quite quickly started racing full-length races and also managed to win the championship. Of course the game was quite easy with a keyboard and AI tyre strategies don't work very well with 100% race length.
Microprose Grand Prix 2
I waited so long for this game and once it finally came out it was awesome! Although quite frustrating as well, since my PC couldn't handle the game very well. I remember having a 486 computer and had to settle for low-resolution graphics and low fps.
This game had a long life-span because of all the modding etc. We even played a self-invented game called ”GP2 Manager” with a group of enthusiasts. Everyone had their own team, a budget to buy drivers, engines, development etc. You would decide how much money you wanted to spend towards development, engine, drivers etc. To good drivers you'd have to pay, but you could also get slow drivers who would bring money to the team! The game-master rolled a dice so there was some randomness involved. The races then were played in GP2 in spectator mode. And of course we painted our cars to team colors! Also a lot of politics and cheating was involved so it was just like the real thing!
With GP2 my main goal was to drive a full season with 100% race distance with wheel and pedals. With no cheating. No luck, I failed. After a poor start I'd fall and restart the race and then, because of cheating, lose interest. Then I tried again with the same result. That's where – more than 20 years later – YouTube comes in! But more on that in the final chapter.
Grand Prix 3
For some reason I don't remember too much about GP3. Except that the dynamic weather would have been awesome - but ONCE AGAIN my poor computer was lacking power and I really couldn't enjoy it properly!
I also remember playing a ”career mode” with a separate program called ”F1 Career v3.0” or something like that. You'd start your career with a Minardi or some other poor team (with team dependent car power enabled in GP3 Edit) and enter your (and your team mates) race results to the program. I remember it was fun until I got a 5th place finish in rainy Monaco and immediately a contract from McLaren. Was too easy, interest died.
Grand Prix 4
Never really played this properly. My interest towards F1 died in the early 2000s and was too busy with my studies (i.e. getting drunk with my new student buddies) anyways. Missing this game is a thing I'm going to fix - live on YouTube!
After the GP series
Played some sims occasionally, like Grand Prix Legends (on-line), rFactor and Live for Speed. Was fun but I didn't really have passion for it and my interest only lasted short periods of time.
Returning to Sim Racing
Somewhere around 2017 or 2018 I found Jimmy Broadbent on YouTube. He was racing with a VR headset and my interest aroused! I was in a need for a new PC for my work and I thought what the hell, I got the PC, new wheel & pedals, Oculus Rift VR headset and a subscription for iRacing. And I was blown away! Most definitely found my passion for rim racing again! I had a lot of fun with iRacing but then.... I started to think about the old Grand Prix games and how my dream of completing a full “hardcore” season never worked out.
Got my wheel and pedals working with GP1 and GP2, played GP2 some and then realized I'm still a low-life cheater! Playing by myself I don't practice enough, I take too many risks, then crash the car, restart the race and do all that all over again... Then I thought about my YouTube channel that had been inactive for some time. I thought that if I'd live-stream the races, there might be people watching! I'd have to take the races more seriously, practice more and concentrate better. Then I decided I'll do hardcore seasons of all the four Grand Prix games and live-stream everything!
And so Friedrich Bang – the fast but inconsistent F1 driver - was born! First race in F1GP in Phoenix there was one person watching the stream! He asked in the chat “what is this”.... and then he went away.
But little by little we've built a small community around this and it's been great fun! As I'm writing this we are currently in midst of our season in GP2 and I'm already looking forward to GP3 and GP4 with dynamic weather and all that! So far it's been going as I've planned. Live-streaming keeps me from cheating and I also get to share this with awesome people who also love these beautiful games.
Also I have lot of ideas of what to do next – most likely to do something with some older racing sims.
So thanks you all for tuning in! See you on the next live-stream! Or watch the race afterwards, what ever suits you best!
Ps. Leave a comment if you like!