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Logitech Wingman Formula Force Review

Logitech Wingman Formula Force Review - PCSTATS
Abstract: Now as we see games maturing with a good degree of realism, it is now time to take gaming to the next level. And what better way is there than having the gamer more involved with the game itself? Adding realism to the graphics and sound are just not enough anymore.
 90% Rating:   
Filed under: Peripherals Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Logitech Apr 20 2000   P. Masrani  
Home > Reviews > Peripherals > Logitech Wingman

More Installation

This is certainly important and you don't want your hands slipping off the wheel on a fast and sharp turn, nor do you want to make too much effort in repositioning your hands in order to achieve a better grip on the wheel. Like actual F1 cars, 2 paddle shifters are provided for those you want to play a racing simulator in manual transmission.

Software wise, you get the Wingman Profiler CD along with full versions of Gremlin's Motorhead and UbiSoft's F1 Racing. Not exactly the latest games, but then again at least you have something to play with your brand new wheel.

3, 2, 1...Go!

After installation I immediately loaded up my favorite racing simulation, Need for Speed: High Stakes. The first thing that I had noticed was the great degree of control available with the wheel. Using a keyboard as my primary controller, I have had to use frequent and brief key depresses in order to navigate a smooth turn properly. In short, there is no distinction on a keyboard between a sharp turn or a wide turn.

Similarly with a keyboard you are either accelerating at full rate or you are not. With the Wingman Formula Force, this problem is eliminated hence a greater degree of control over the steering and acceleration/braking of the car. The car would turn only as much as I turn the wheel and would accelerate only as much as I depress the accelerator pedal. Speaking of which, the pedal base would probably need as much attention that was given to the steering unit. For one there isn't any degree of resistance offered by the petals like that on an actual car. The pedal base, although studded with round rubber pads at the bottom, slid around under my desk. And with marble flooring, it does tend to get quite slippery.

Leaving aside these complaints, the overall experience was quite nice. The effects of force feedback were (for me) strong enough and accurate. In NFS: High Stakes, the cobblestone road on one of the tracks added a pretty neat effect to it. In addition, the wheel does respond when you are putting the "pedal-to-the-metal" in neutral. Such minor details definitely add to the realism of the game. When crashing out, hitting another car or driving too far along the shoulder, the feedback is just perfect.

If you feel that the force is too soft, you can always "amplify" the effects by changing settings in the software. Personally, I prefer having a softer response as opposed to stronger feedback as it does tend to get pretty difficult to control the car if you are using force feedback at its maximum value. Aside from running NFS: High Stakes, I did use Midtown Madness, Carmageddon, Test Drive 5 and Need for Speed 3. In each game, response was crisp and found no problems at all with compatibility either.

Conclusions

My thoughts on the Wingman Formula Force are positive. It exhibits excellent control, a good amount of feedback and provides for a pretty realistic gaming experience. Unfortunately, I had to return this product back to the owner ;). Once you play your favorite racing simulator on the Formula Force, keyboards and mice will certainly be unattractive options afterwards. The only thing I would like to see in the unit is a gear shifter found in manual transmissions.

Sure, a lot of people do prefer the paddle shifting option as it allows for very easy access with your fingers, plus implementing a gear shifter would soon follow a request for a clutch as well. Leaving that aside, it would have be nice if Logitech had applied some realism to the existing pedal base. But trust me, once you start using the steering wheel, you will totally forget about any of these complaints! ;) The first day I got the unit, I was stuck on the computer for 3 hours straight. A friend of mine stopped by and he took over for another 2 hours. That is how addicting this thing gets.

The setup was easy + quick, performance is good and construction is pretty sturdy. Over the week that I had it, I never got bored. I think I will go out and buy me one of these in the near future. As for the company that made it, this is yet another winner they have in their already well-known product line...

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Contents of Article: Logitech Wingman
 Pg 1.  Logitech Wingman Formula Force Review
 Pg 2.  — More Installation

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