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Top 5: Best Racing Games for PC - With 2014 Game Previews

Updated on November 26, 2013

Have the need for speed?

My love for racing games started with TOP Gear 2000 on my bellowed SNES, it was carefree, you didn't have to over think anything and I could always kick my neighbours ass so there really isn't a reason why one wouldn't love this genre.

I got my PC at an early age, me and my sister (older one so she had more financial input towards the purchase) bought it together after long months of not buying candy, comic books and other goodies in an effort to save as much money possible. I remember the computer came with a full version of a crappy racing game, I can't remember the name of it but it really was horrible but we still enjoyed playing it, considering all the money went towards the computer and none was left to buy the games.

Things are a bit different now, I'm a big girl and can buy my own video games for years now and over the past years I've grown to love (and hate) some of the games and this is where I'm sharing my list of best racing games for PC as this is where I spend most of my gaming time! Now as I am only a human naturally this list is subjective (because of my personal preferences and the fact I couldn't play each and every game ever released) and only includes the games I own or had the chance to play.

Don't worry all of the titles are up to date, I won't be including any retro games to this list (even though some would easily make it to my personal top list).

Original photo source: Amazon Product Photo

Top 5 Racing Games

In no particular order as each one is "the best" in its own way.

Grid 2 - A 2013 Release - Something new

I thought it would be best to start this list with something fresh, a game that was released in 2013. I haven't played the first GRID (something I should have done since the game has raving reviews) so I can't say how this one compares to it's first instalment but this one is one fine racing game.

Photo Credit: Amazon

Grid 2

As this is a new release you are right in expecting high quality graphics and this game does deliver, and I don't only mean in terms of clarity and smoothness, the designs of tracks and scenery are just beautiful. If you hadn't had the chance to travel around the globe this game captures the beauty of some of the top locations in high detail (a cheap way to see the world isn't it?).

The game has a somewhat interesting story. You don't start out as a no-name driver trying to get rep, you're already considered to be a top notch racer and are a part of an organization who's mission is to get the best drivers from all around the world and this is your mission - naturally you do so by beating them.

GRID 2 [Download]
GRID 2 [Download]

I do find the career mode in this game interesting as you are constantly served with new, quite versatile, challenges - new driving disciplines and tasks so you won't get bored with this game easily.

It's pretty easy to get the hang on the driving and handling your car does feel good.

 

Grid 2 Gameplay

F1:2013 - Super Realistic Formula 1 Simulator

Well I can only guess it's realistic as I've never actually driven the formula car before, on well...

We've been following F1 for as long as I can remember and watching the races are actually one of my fondest memories from childhood as this was an event when the whole family would gather and would cheer for their champions. Most of my family were fans of Ferrari team. I started as a Damon Hill fan myself as I really liked his name as it resembled the word demon (my dark side again I guess, and I was really into Diablo game at that time) but under the influence of my family I too was converted to a Ferrari fan. Today I'm all about Lotus and well Kimi.

There are many F1 games but I like Codemasters series the most. The first game in the series was F1:2009 but it wasn't made for PC's while all the sequels are available for PC's too.

Photo Credit: Amazon

F1: 2013

If you want something realistic the F1 series is perfect for you, well I can assume it's realistic as I've never driven a formula car in my life but the gaming experience really does take you there. It will also do you good to play this game with a steering wheel as you won't get as much from the game by using the keyboard, well it's a bit hard to play using the keyboard as there's so much things you need to do during the race.

F1 2013 Classic Edition [Download]
F1 2013 Classic Edition [Download]

This game needs more than just a heavy feet on the pedal, you will need to be very precise when driving as even the slightest mistake, as in the real deal, can cost you dearly. You'll also have to put in a lot of strategic thinking, something I probably wouldn't like so much in other racing games but as strategy is a part of F1 races in the real world this is a very much welcomed aspect of this game.

 

Burnout Paradise - Best racing game if you are looking for something fast and crazy

The first time I played a game from the Burnout series was Point of Impact for my PS2. This is not the most "intelligent" game when it comes to this genre but I really don't mind that as I'm a firm believer games are made for relaxing not for wanting to throw your computer out of the window because you can't pass that one super hard level or you just can't find that poison magic amulet. Pure fun that's what I'm talking about.

One of the things that made me include this game onto my top list is the fact this is an open world racing game, something not so common in this genre (as far as PC's games go) and as I am a fan of open world games in general I really do like this aspect of the game. I do think it adds to the value, you get to explore the world, find short cuts, beat you opponents in a sneaky way and face challenges like never before.

Before I go in depth with this game one thing has to be said, if you like running laps and race tracks that have their specific layout this game is not for you as it can get really chaotic and there are no set laps to ride.

That said this is another reason why I like this game, it's chaotic and it's all about speed.

With the introduction of open world this game does not have the classic way of choosing your tracks and laps from the menu you choose your games within the world itself.

There are several different game modes you can choose from from normal racing , avoiding every vehicle until you reach your destination, beating time limits to my favourite called "Road Rage" where you have to wreck a certain number of cars within your time limit (I do have a dark side).

As for the soundtrack it's oriented towards the alternative genre (like!), the main song is Paradise City by Guns N'Roses and some of the other names on the track list include Killswitch Engage, Alice in Chains, Depeche Mode, Faith No More...

Photo Credit: Amazon

Burnout Paradise - Best game if you want to have fast crashing fun

This is the latest title in the Burnout main series and it was released in 2008 but there is also a newer version in the franchise, a spin-off game named Burnout: Crash (released in 2011).

Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box
Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box

The game is set in fictional Paradise City where you do races and missions in order to unlock cool new rides (not only limited to cars too!)

The Ultimate Box release for PC includes all of the patches and updates made for this game so you really are getting the whole ultimate deal.

 

Burnout Paradise Gameplay - "Marked Man" Mode

Colin McRae Rally 2005

If I wouldn't put this game on the list my college room-mate would probably be a bit angry. I knew about Colin McRae Rally games but haven't played one until college. My room-mate, well she wasn't a gamer, and was always standing aside when me and my other room-ates would connect our computers and had a small LAN party (we started with RTS games) but one day she said she too would like to join in if we would play Colin McRae Rally. It was the only game, besides solitaire, she enjoyed playing so it was only natural we would indulge her.

Thankfully her limited liking of games had high standards as Colin McRae Rally proved to be one heck of a racing game.

Colin Mcrae Rally 2005 Gameplay

Race 07: Official WTCC Game

Photo Credit: Amazon

Race 07: Official WTCC Game

This game has all the track you see in Fia World Touring Car Championship, something that doesn't make much of a difference to me because I don't follow the WTCC but I still do like this game, very much. As a fan of formula myself, the first thing I have to say about this game is I love it has formula cars too!

Race 07: Official WTCC Game
Race 07: Official WTCC Game

As this is a simulation game you can expect the driving experience to feel really realistic and great graphics and audio only add to the great experience. The game can easily be played with a keyboard but you will be missing out a lot if you don't use the steering wheel (you can get a decent one for around $100 or you could try your luck on eBay - aim for something with vibration feedback)

 

Upcoming Racing Games in 2014 - You might like some of these

These are the games I'm eagerly anticipating.

The Crew - PlayStation 4
The Crew - PlayStation 4

An open world racing game? I'm in! This game will be available for the fancy new gaming consoles (Xbox One & PS4) as well as for PC.

 

Remember these? - We used to

...save our games on floppy disks to be able to play them at different computers!

There were two computers in our street when I was a kid, I had one and my neighbour did (I should mention the street only has about 20 houses and most of them had old people living in them at the time). As we couldn't play the games on my computer or his computer all the time (parental restrictions and all) we had to copy the saved game files on the floppy disks (and hope the files wouldn't be to big - well at least until we learned the power of Winrar) and transfer them that way. Can you imagine living without LAN, internet, DVD-R or USB keys and disks now? I know I can't!

photo credit: Blude

Which one shouldn't be on the list? Which ones are on your list? We all have our opinions and I would love to hear yours!

Comments - Share your thoughts on racing games?

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    • PaigSr profile image

      PaigSr 3 years ago from State of Confussion

      First I will have to have my son look these over. Second I maybe one of the few that still uses floppies. And not just 3 1/2 but 5 1/4 as well and that's high and low density.

    • steadytracker lm profile image

      steadytracker lm 4 years ago

      I haven't played Grid yet. I am going to see if they have it at the local store in the mall in a little bit. Thanks for sharing this great lens.