Grand Prix Simulator

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Grand Prix Simulator
Grand prix simulator box art.jpg
Grand Prix Simulator box art
Developer(s) Codemasters
Publisher(s) Codemasters
Designer(s) The Oliver Twins
Artist(s) Mervin James
Composer(s) David Whittaker
Platform(s) Amstrad CPC
Atari 8-bit
Commodore 64
ZX Spectrum
Release Amstrad CPC[1]
  • EU: 1987
Commodore 64[2]
  • EU: 1987
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single player
2 players

Grand Prix Simulator is a racing game developed by The Oliver Twins and published by Codemasters for the ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64 and Atari 8-bit computer systems. The ZX Spectrum conversion was done by Serge Dosang.[3][4][5] A sequel, Grand Prix Simulator II, was released in 1988 for the same platforms.[6] The Spectrum version was endorsed by Ayrton Senna's teammate Johnny Dumfries.[7]


The game is designed so that the player is looking down on the track from an overhead view, similar to arcade games such as Badlands or Super Off Road. The player controls a car on the track, while the computer controls the other. Each race is three laps around the track. If the player wins a race, they progress to the next track. The game is over when the player loses a race or disqualifies himself/herself by crashing.

Points are earned for winning a race and extra points are given for picking up bonus items that appear on the track. Oil spots can also appear on the track that, if driven over, cause the player's car to spin, losing time.

The game can also be played competitively by two players.

Voice output[edit]

The game was notable at the time for its use of sound samples on limited 8-bit hardware. The game counts "!" to start the race, announces the player's status after winning, losing, or crashing, and says "Game over!" to end the game.[citation needed] Other games of the era that produce sampled voice output include Super Robin Hood, Ghost Hunters and RoboCop.

Critical reception[edit]

Review scores
Publication Score
Crash 42%
Sinclair User 8/10
Your Sinclair 7/10[8]

Grand Prix Simulator was rated an average of 19/20 in Amstrad User magazine,[9] 7 out of 10 by Your Sinclair[10] and, across all platforms, sold over a quarter of a million copies.[11]


In 1988 Codemasters sued Alternative Software because its title Formula Grand Prix showed a very similar gameplay and even cover (featuring a red car number 27). Ironically, not long ago Codemasters itself had been sued by Activision for intellectual property violation relating to Super Sprint.[12]


  1. ^ "Release Information for Amstrad CPC". 
  2. ^ "Release Information for Commodore 64". 
  3. ^ Grand Prix Simulator on World of Spectrum
  4. ^ Grand Prix Simulator on
  5. ^ Dillon, Tong (October 1987). "GrandPrix Simulator review". Sinclair User (67): 86–87. 
  6. ^ Grand Prix Simulator II Archived 2010-01-13 at the Wayback Machine. on
  7. ^ Spectrum version cover art
  8. ^
  9. ^ Amstrad User review
  10. ^ Your Sinclair review
  11. ^ Grand Prix Simulator Archived 2010-01-13 at the Wayback Machine. on
  12. ^ Retro Gamer issue 82, pages 20-21

External links[edit]