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Best racing games on GamesNostalgia

Racing games, where players have the chance to drive a powerful car, have been a staple in the video game industry since the early days of arcade gaming. Of course, it's not just about cars, it could also be motorcycles, and it can be street racing, track racing, or offroad. What's important is the vehicle should be fast and fun to drive. Pole Position, released in 1982, was the first biggest arcade hit, while the first popular computer game was probably Pitstop II, released in 1984. One year later, Geoff Crammod created the first racing simulation when he developed Revs for BBC Micro.

In 1986, OutRun revolutionized the genre and set the tone for many other street racing games, with 2D pixel-art graphics, music, and a behind view showing the driver and his girlfriend.

Hard Drivin' in 1989 was the first racing game to use 3D graphics, but many games continued to adopt 2D graphics, like the well-known Lotus Esprit Turbo Challenge for the Amiga, a game famous for the split-screen 2-player mode. There are also motorcycle games, like Super Hang-On, an arcade ported to many platforms, and Thalion's No Second Prize.

In 1991, the legendary Formula 1 Grand Prix (aka World Circuit) by Geoff Crammod was released. It was a realistic Formula 1 simulator with 3D graphics, a damage system, weather effects, and many other details nobody had seen before.

With the arrival of Windows 95 and more powerful graphics cards, many great racing games were released, like Screamer and, most importantly, The Need for Speed, published in 1995, a game that inspired movies and books.

The famous combat racing game Road Rash was released in 1996, like Death Rally, while the two fantastic driving/racing simulations Midtown Madness and Driver saw the light in 1999.

You can find many other racing games in this list, from Super Mario Kart clones to sci-fi racing sims or post-apocalyptic races. Just browse the list and have fun!

Road Rash windows

Road Rash is a violent motorcycle racing video game developed and published by Electronic Arts released initially in 1991 for Sega Genesis. It was later ported to Amiga and other platforms.

Year: 1996 Genre: Racing

3do combat racing driving motorcycle racing street racing

Road Rash - Original Version sega-master-systemgenesisamiga

Road Rash is a popular motorcycle racing game created by Electronic Arts and first released in 1991 on the SEGA Genesis. Originally designed by Randall Breen, Dan Geisler and Walte...

Year: 1992 Genre: Racing

combat racing driving motorcycle racing

Carmageddon dos

Carmageddon is a violent and destructive racing game developed by Stainless Software and published by SCi and Interplay in 1997. It was released for DOS and Mac (ported to other platforms in later years).

Year: 1997 Genre: Racing

automobile driving racing vehicular combat simulator violence

Need for Speed II: Special Edition windows

Need for Speed 2 is the second game in the popular series of racing games created by Electronic Arts starting with The Need for Speed. It was released in 1997 for PlayStation. An...

Year: 1997 Genre: Racing

3d acceleration automobile driving multiplayer racing street racing vehicle simulator

Midtown Madness windows

Midtown Madness is a racing sim created by Angel Studios for Windows and published by Microsoft in 1999. The game allows you to drive different vehicles in four different single-player modes: Blitz, Circuit, Checkpoint, and Cruise.

Year: 1999 Genre: Racing

3d automobile multiplayer north america open world racing street racing vehicle simulator

Stunt Rally windowsdos

Stunt Rally is a free racing game featuring 167 tracks in 34 sceneries, 19 cars + 4 vehicles and a Track Editor..

Year: 2014 Genre: Racing

3d freeware multiplayer off-roading racing

Skyroads dos

Skyroads is a remake of the driving game Kosmonaut. Both games were made by Bluemoon, a small studio based in Estonia. The game was released in 1993 for PC MS-DOS only. Compared t...

Year: 1993 Genre: Racing

freeware platformer racing science fiction track racing

Death Rally dos

Death Rally is a top-down combat racing game developed by Remedy, published by Apogee, and distributed by GT Interactive Software. It was released in 1996 for MS-DOS, but in 2009 it was re-released for Windows as freeware.

Year: 1996 Genre: Racing

automobile combat racing freeware racing top-down

Twisted Metal windows

Twisted Metal is a vehicular combat/racing game developed by SingleTrac and published by Sony Computer Entertainment initially for Playstation in 1995. A Windows95 version of the g...

Year: 1996 Genre: Racing

automobile combat racing racing vehicular combat simulator

Network Q RAC Rally Championship dos

Network Q RAC Rally Championship is the sequel to the rally sim Network Q RAC Rally, developed by Magnetic Fields. It is also known in the US as "International Off-Road Racing". ...

Year: 1996 Genre: Racing

driving off-roading racing rally

OutRun amigagenesis

Out Run is an arcade racing game created by Sega in 1986. It was one of the best-selling video games of its time and it won the Golden Joystick Award for Game of the Year. It was p...

Year: 1989 Genre: Racing

arcade automobile coin-op conversion competitive driving racing street racing

Grand Prix II dos

Grand Prix II, also known as Formula One Grand Prix 2, is the second Formula 1 racing game in the series created by Geoff Crammond. It was published by MicroProse in 1995 for MS-DOS.

Year: 1995 Genre: Racing

automobile f1 racing track racing vehicle simulator

The Need for Speed dos

The Need for Speed is the first racing game in the Need for Speed Series, and it was developed and published by Electronic Arts (EA) in 1994 for 3DO. It was ported to DOS in 1995, and PlayStation and Sega Saturn in 1996.

Year: 1995 Genre: Racing

3do automobile racing street racing vehicle simulator

Lotus Turbo Challenge 2 amiga

Lotus Turbo Challenge 2 is the second game in the Lotus arcade racing trilogy. It was developed by Magnetic Fields and published by Gremlin Graphics in 1991 for the Amiga and Atari ST.

Year: 1991 Genre: Racing

2 players automobile licensed multiplayer racing split-screen street racing