F1 Games to hit the tracks in India

New Delhi: With Formula One all set to make its India debut, here`s a chance for everyone to hit the tracks, virtually.
 
Days before F1 cars show their mean power on the Greater Noida tracks, the virtual word is abuzz with additions of F1 to their gaming sites, with companies like Ibibo, Zapak and 7Seas Technologies leading the pack. The games give the users a chance to experience the feeling of the original track.
 
Zapak has launched the F1 2011, the official Formula One game. Developed under Codemasters` exclusive worldwide agreement with Formula One World Championship Limited, F1 2011 has all the official drivers, teams and circuits featuring in the 2011 FIA F1 World Championship.
 
Says Vaibhav Odhekar, business head at Zapak Games, "Formula One craze is at an all-time high right now, with the first-ever Grand Prix race  to be held in the country this month." Hyderabad-based 7Seas Technologies also has a F1 type game `Xtreame`.
 
"Online Racing Games type of genre are most popular in Indian gaming scenario, in the online racing, F1 plays are key role, the most popular known racing on field is F1, so the gamers who play online games, especially the racing are attracted to play these games, and win prizes for winning the online F1 racing games," 7Seas MD L Maruti Sanker.
 
"Mostly kids and teenagers are playing these kind of games daily. Our portal www.onlinerealgames.com attracts new gamers especially to play these type of games," he says.

The game on ibibo.com offers an opportunity to the player to own a `high speed racing car` in the virtual world, something he or she would only aspire for in the real world.
 
"The fast growing interest among the young towards racing in different forms is very visible, and our offerings match this audience`s aspirations and that`s how you see the introduction of `High Speed Racing Cars` in our popular game about cars – `The Great Indian Parking Wars," says Rahul Razdan, president (product and operations) of ibibo.com.
 
"The element of excitement comes when the player parks his car in his friend`s street and challans other cars illegally parked," he says.
 
Gaming world aside, the merchandise industry is also geared up to have a share of the F1 pie. "The industry feels that there is a strong trend towards people wanting to wear Tees that express their interests and having a tee with F1 related designs is the new `in thing`.

This is a new dawn for Indian sports as the much celebrated Formula One makes a foray in India," says Kashyap Dalal, CEO of Inkfruit.com.
 
"As all the fans gear up to enjoy the first F1 event in the country, we have received quite a few requests for t-shirts around this sport. Our community of artists has already started making designs around F1 and we will soon launch some of these on our site," he says.