Prost Grand Prix 1998 brings you straight in the 1998 season with all its glamour, racing, and action. Start the championship season as Olivier Panis in the Prost Grand Prix AP02. Compete against the best drivers in the world. Beat the brother of John Newhouse J. Heldenview at Canada in his Johnsons. While Gerhard Merger will fight you at Monza in his Stretton! Moreover, don’t forget Pedro Pinze In his Gieger who will give you a hard time in Brazil! A game you have to have!

I hope I got you excited with that amazing intro, oh boy what a game this is. It is a thousand times better than Johnny Herbert’s Grand Prix Championship 1998, which I covered already. The game was developed by Visiware, which would later make Planet of the apes, and published by Canal+ Multimedia in 1998.

Digging through some old magazines and news articles, I found out that the first plans for the game surfaced in 1997. During the 1998 season the game started to get shape, obviously the game was made to promote the Prost Grand Prix team. When you install the game, when you start the game, when you play the game it all breaths French chauvinism. Nearly all the sponsors in game are French. All menus in the game show the AP02 in the background. While the Prost Grand Prix logo is always, close by. Which is understandable ofcourse.

When I installed the game, I was a bit shocked that, while the game was developed during 1998, it was a DOS game! Around that time, most of the computers were installed with Windows 95 or Windows 98. Instead of doing my best to have it working properly, I decided to use DosBox. If you know your DOS commands it is really to start the game. To be fair I’m not sure why this game was released on DOS.

Jarno Trulli, Alain Prost and Olivier Panis together with the Prost AP02 welcome you. After the welcome, which is a photo, the credits kick in. By hitting ESC you skip the credits. Once the game is loaded you have a simple menu. You can choose for Race, Drivers, Load, Hall of Fame and options. It actually is a user-friendly menu with some basic settings. Those who played the game in the past probably went straight to the drivers. Where you were able to edit the drivers and team names. Just to give it a 1998 vibe to it.  While I like the names in this game.

I have to say Prost Grand Prix 1998 feels a bit the same like Herbert’s Formula One game. Both games are based around the 1998 season and the cars look similar. However, Prost’s game looks and feels better. As well the gameplay, while it is still bad, seems to be smoother and more in place. What did feel odd though was steering. If you had to steer to the left, the steering wheel barely moved. While steering to the right it moved insane. Same goes for the traction and steering in general. When going full throttle it seemed as if the game took control and did the trick. Sadly, there was only one camera option and that was the drivers view. I prefer a 3rd person view for race games.

What positively surprised me was the track details; the game contains all the tracks from the 1998 season. All of them had real sponsors on the billboards, which I really like. The rain effect was good as well. Though the gameplay, it was something else. Somehow, no matter how difficult you made the game, you always seems to accelerate rapidly at the start only to lose traction 2 seconds later. During the race, it was easily to crash into another opponent, as it seems the AI is just random and far from tweaked. The fun was gone after 20 minutes of playing this game.

My conclusion for Prost Grand Prix 1998 is that it is a nice attempt to gain more attention for the Alain Prost his team around that time. The game came in a nice big box with Olivier Panis on the front. Regardless the lack of a real racing feeling the game is good enough to play it once. It is not Grand Prix 2 nor F1 Racing. However, the game has it’s own little charm, a charm from an era where many sport teams and athletes linked their own name to a game. Today you can buy a copy of the game for 10 euro’s or less via apps like Vinted.

The best about the game, John Newhouse his brother J. Heldenview appears in it racing for Johnsons!

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