The countdown ends and the race begins. You slam down on the gas pedal and your car rapidly accelerates to full speed. A glance to your left shows that you’re neck-and-neck with your main competitor. You see a turn about 100 meters out– your best chance to pull ahead. You position yourself in the low groove, lock in the turn, and slide into first. You’re playing one of the best racing games of 2019, and it’s your lead.

The best racing games offer speed demons and driving fans a chance to battle it out in high-speed races. Customize your vehicle, climb the ranks, and take to the track to outmaneuver the competition. Do you have what it takes to take home gold? This article walks you through the best racing games available and gets you up to speed on the industry’s hottest upcoming titles. Ready for some high-speed action? Let’s get started.

10 Best Racing Games of 2019

We’ve curated the following list to give you a glimpse at the top racing games on the market.

3. F1 2018

Our pick for one of the best racing games PC

F1 2018

  • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One, iOS, Android
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Codemasters
  • Release: 2018

The F1 franchise is modelled after the Formula One Racing Championship that takes place every year. Naturally, F1 2018 was based on this year’s exciting tournament, and it features brand new racing circuits, physics engine, cars, and more. The result? Immersive gameplay that lives up to the twists and turns of real-life racing. Best of all, alongside the release of F1 2018 is a brand new multiplayer experience that delivers a revamped competitive scene.

2. Forza Horizon 4

Forza 4

Our pick for one of the best racing games Xbox One

  • Platform: PC, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing, Open World
  • Developer: Turn 10 Studios
  • Release: 2018

If you’re a fan of track and street racing games, Forza Horizon 4 is the way to go. A Microsoft exclusive title, Horizon 4 is set in an open-world full of racing possibilities. Choose from over 450 cars and compete in one of the game’s dynamic races, unlocking new items and perks along the way. The game features exciting maps, including sandbox-style courses created by players, and is set in servers that accommodate up to 72 players at a time. An excellent game for casual and competitive players alike.

3. DiRT Rally

DiRT Rally

Our pick for one of the best racing games PS4

  • Platform: PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Codemasters
  • Release: 2015

DiRT Rally is unique in that its races are based around rallying, and not professional racing circuits. To that end, the game boasts unique courses and maps that feature several different locations, various terrain, and dynamic weather systems. Choose from a variety of vehicles and battle it out against AI or other players from around the world. As an industry game-changer, DiRT Rally is one of the best car games for PS4.

4. Project Cars 2

Project Cars 2

Our pick for one of the best racing simulator games

  • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing, Simulator
  • Developer: Slightly Mad Studios
  • Release: 2017

Project Cars 2 features nearly 200 cars and over 100 custom-crafted tracks. You’ll spot vehicles by some of the world’s most popular manufacturers, with options ranging from Hondas to Lamborghinis. As for the racing mechanics? The game features a proprietary in-house tech called LiveTrack 3.0 which offers true-to-life elements like changing weather patterns, variable track temperatures, and other simulation features. Project Cars 2 is one of the most realistic and immersive options on our list.

5. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Mario Kart

Our pick for one of the best racing games Switch

  • Platform: Switch, Wii U
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Release: 2017

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is heavily inspired by its predecessors, and it includes the same playful characters and mechanics seen in previous iterations. Select your character, choose your stage, and jump into the kart race for a lighthearted romp! The Deluxe version is a Nintendo Switch port that includes numerous DLCs and gameplay tweaks, while offering 1080p resolution and incredible portability. It’s one of the best 2 player racing games thanks to the Switch’s built-in dual controllers, and it maintains a following of dedicated online gamers.

6. Ride 3

Ride 3

Our pick for one of the best bike racing games

  • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Milestone
  • Release: 2018

If you’re a fan of motorbike games, Ride 3 is your ticket to the races. The game features tons of customizable bikes that you can deck out with your favorite mods, and the racing mechanics offer solid gameplay with excellent immersion. Play on the game’s custom tracks and compete against players from around the world to test your racing skills and claim the championship. Ride 3 is available for PC, PS4, and Xbox.

7. Rocket League

Rocket League

Our pick for one of the best multiplayer racing games

  • Platform: PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
  • Genre: Racing, Sports
  • Developer: Psyonix
  • Release: 2015

Rocket League is one of those online driving games that you just can’t put down. That’s because it delivers unrivalled immersion with rocket-powered cars, soccer-inspired competitive arenas, and assorted game modes that cater to every taste. Whether you like sports-style gaming, or simple high speed mayhem, you’re sure to enjoy countless hours of action-packed excitement. Best of all? Rocket League is available on PC and every major console, making it an excellent cross-platform game to play with friends.

8. Asphalt Xtreme

Asphalt Xtreme

Our pick for one of the best mobile racing games

  • Platform: PC, iOS, Android
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Gameloft
  • Release: 2016

Choose from a wide variety of off-road vehicles including monster trucks, rally cars, and buggies. Then, get ready for action. Asphalt Xtreme boasts exciting gameplay that has players race across various terrain to perform stunts and maneuvers that rack up points. Play in 5 different locations across a variety of courses and see if you can outperform the competition. The game is both single and multiplayer, and it’s perfect for PC and mobile OS.

9. Driver Speedboat Paradise

Speedboat Paradise

Our pick for one of the best speed boat racing games

  • Platform: iOS, Android
  • Genre: Speedboat Racing
  • Developer: Ubisoft
  • Release: 2014

Driver Speedboat Paradise is Ubisoft’s foray into the mobile and racing markets, and the result is simply brilliant. While there are a few quirks, the game features smooth gameplay, excellent graphics, and exciting multiplayer races. Soar across the water in your own amphibious vehicle and enjoy the thrill of the high seas. There are a variety of maps to play on, and the game remains popular across iPhone and Android devices.

10. The Crew 2

Crew 2

Our pick for one of the best motorsports games

  • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing, Open World
  • Developer: Ivory Tower
  • Release: 2018

If simple car racing isn’t your style, The Crew 2 may be the best option for you. Assume control of a driver and choose from a variety of vehicles, including airplanes, boats, and various land-based options. Then, navigate around a map of the United States to race, gain vehicle proficiency, and battle it out against other players. The Crew 2 features an exciting storyline and a full-blown co-op mode for increased immersion and friendly open-world romps.

Racing Ahead: Top 3 Upcoming Racing Games of 2019

Let’s also take a look at the top 3 upcoming racing games slated for a 2019 release.

1. F1 2019

F1 2019

  • Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Genre: Racing
  • Developer: Codemasters
  • Release: 2019

The time is nearly upon us– the Formula One Racing Championship is well underway, and F1 2019 is sure to follow close behind. Get ready for groundbreaking new mechanics including custom mods, new cars, and multiplayer rebalancing. The game will be available in June of 2019 and is slated for release on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

2. DriftForce

DriftForce

  • Platform: PC
  • Genre: Racing, Survival, Arcade
  • Developer: Greyish Games
  • Release: 2019

If you’re a fan of arcade racing games, DriftForce offers that casual pick-up-and go style with procedurally generated maps and a full leaderboard. Avoid obstacles, wind your way through challenging levels, and put your racing abilities to the test. The game features full vehicle customization, modding, and upgrade possibilities. Coming soon!

3. Assetto Corsa Competizione

Assetto Corsa

  • Platform: PC
  • Genre: Racing, Simulator
  • Developer: Kunos Simulazioni
  • Release: 2019

The Assetto Corsa franchise features some of the best car games in history, and initial feedback for Competizione appears to continue the trend. This racing-simulator crossover offers incredible modding possibilities and exciting race-based gameplay. Try it out in single or multiplayer modes to test your skill and shoot for gold.

What are Racing Games?

Racing games are a genre of video games wherein players compete in speed competitions. These competitions can take place in various terrain, including land, air, sea, and space. Mimicking real life, the most popular games feature land-based vehicles, but there are options to suit every style of play. In-game opponents vary depending on the selected game mode, and they range from AI-powered, to local players, to gamers from around the world.

Like most video game genres, racing games rocketed to popularity in the 1970’s with hit arcade titles like Space Race and Moto-Cross. Then, the introduction of home consoles saw the release of familiar titles like Formula One and Super Mario Kart. These both went on to achieve incredible commercial success, inspiring a new wave of racing games and cementing the genre as an industry juggernaut. The current outlook? There are dozens of new titles released every year, and the best racing games remain top sellers across the board.

About Racing Games

General Thoughts on Racing Games

We’ve penned our thoughts on racing games to take a deeper look at their mechanics and general nuances. Let’s have a look.

1. Atari developed the first racing game.

The first racing game to hit the market, Space Race, was developed by Atari for arcade machines. It featured multiplayer gameplay and cutting-edge black & white graphics.

2. Racing games are popular across all platforms.

From expensive PC setups and console systems to mobile and handheld devices, racing games are popular among all player demographics.

3. Racing wheels offer enhanced immersion.

The best racing wheels are a unique way to experience racing games on an entirely different level. Steer, shift gears, and press the pedals like you’re in an actual car– no controller necessary!

4. They’re great for competition.

After all, you need someone to race against. To that end, the best racing games satisfy your competitive cravings with adrenaline-fueled action.

5. By air, land, and sea.

And don’t forget space. The best racing games utilize a variety of different vehicles and mechanics to offer exciting tactical possibilities and unrivalled immersion.

Further Reading

Enjoy our list of racing games? Be sure to check out our other game roundups below: