Your Top 10 Racing Games of All Time

United Kingdom
Honourable mentions;
  • Super Trucks Racing (2003)
Good shout! Not one my all time favourites but I picked it up cheap years ago after watching some truck racing on YouTube, didn't expect much but absolutely loved it.
United States
United States
10 Gran Turismo 5
9 LeMans 24 (Dreamcast)
8 GP500 (PC)
7 SBK 22
6 Race Driver Grid (original)
5 MotoGP 08
4 Ride 4
3 SBK 2K/2k1
2 Sega Rally 1/2
1 Tourist Trophy
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Colin Mcrea 2 (psx)
Gran turismo 2 (psx)
Gran turismo 4 (ps2)
Formula 1 championship (ps3)
World toca touring car (psx)
DTM driver 3 (ps2)
Whacky racers (Dos)
Wipeout HD (ps3)
Ridge Racer Type 4 (psx)
Burnout 3 takedown (ps2)

Honourable mention:
Codemasters made a Indycar game in the 2000’s. Don’t know what it was called but I had a blast with it.
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
Honourable mention:
Codemasters made a Indycar game in the 2000’s. Don’t know what it was called but I had a blast with it.
Yep, it's just Indycar 2005, is in my top 10 for how much fun it was if broken beyond belief at various points :lol:
10) Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2

This was one of my first PS2 games and I was really into it, loved the soundtrack and the car roaster everything was well put together and really enjoyable.

9) Assetto Corsa Competizione

As a fan of GT3 race cars this is difficult to ignore, plus it provides the right dosage of sim and put my steering wheel to use.

8) Midnight Club Los Angeles

Played a lot on this one, I remember being quite involved on a French forum when playing it, plenty of online car shows and stuff.

7) Race Driver Grid

Same era as mcla, mostly remember the drifting and the fact it has mountain passes from Initial D basically

6) Motorstorm 2 Pacific Rift

Usually not my type of game but was blown away by the visuals and the settings, especially after the really brown first opus

5) DriveClub

Loved the challenges and the regulars updates on this, reminded me of a country road take on PGR.

4) PGR 3

My first Xbox Live game, got it on release day with my 360; great experience, and great game, remember being impressed with the sounds of the cars, the fact it was playable in first person view, and loved the balance between difficulty and fun

3) Auto Modellista

Amazed to not see it more; it’s an awesome game which still looks amazing thanks to the cell shading, very cool gem by capcom, contains every cool Japanese cars and nice mountain road, you can modify your car with lots of licenced parts and customise your garage; + at the end of the game you get a Tamiya RC mod that make your car a RC cars.

2) Gran Turismo 2

It was GT1 with way more content and for 10 yo me that was the best thing ever, one of my most played game ever.

1) Forza Motorsport 4

Simply my most played game ever. Did plenty of setups; loved the storefront; the car sharing club; had plenty of friend playing it on daily basis for 2years

Still a lot of other games but that’s my most important 10.
Automodellista definitely gets the Most Underrated racing game ever award. If it had any other games' physics, it would have been a knockout for the masses. I couldn't put a number on it. It is/was truly a unique game.
Nice thread and very good question. Now, when asking a question such as this, you really have to take into account several factors, 3 of which are very important in forming an opinion and a solid answer....

A)How much enjoyment do you have playing the game?
B)How does it score on the "Deserted Island" test? Meaning, if you were shipped off to a deserted island, would you take this game with you?
C)How much sentimental value does the game hold for you? How nostalgic is it?

With those important factors taken into consideration, I think I can safely list the following racing games as my top 10:

10)F-Zero GX
9)Scud Race
8)Initial D Arcade Stage 8
7)Rage Racer
6)GRID Legends
5)Ridge Racer 2 PSP
4)Outrun 2 SP DX
3)Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune 6
1)Assetto Corsa

Keep in mind, limiting the selections to ONLY 10 games is EXTREMELY tough, as I honestly feel dirty....guilty even....for not including Daytona USA. Daytona 2, or any Gran Tursimo games. BUT.....the rules are the rules, and if pressed to keep it at 10, that is my definitive list.
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
My 10:

Pitstop 2
V rally 3
Microprose grand Prix 4
Project cars 2
R Factor
Gran Turismo 6
Grand Prix legends
United Kingdom
Mansfield Woodhouse.
10. Wreckfest. Fantastically fun game, great for shadow realming people and some bonkers fun, just hop into a lobby and smash away. Some quirks regarding racing with friends but overall a solid entry.

9. Micro Machines V3. Top down racing on the PS1, big nostalgia factor for my brothers and I. A wide variety of track locations and vehicles, great party/hotseat game.

8. Ridge Racer 7. Looked fantastic for a PS3 game, played well, sounded great. Basically Ridge Racer PSP but on the big screen.

7. V-Rally 2. Another nostalgia game, I fondly remember my brothers and I using the track creator to make all kinds of crazy circuits and challenging each other around them.

6. MotorStorm. Underrated game, in my opinion. Multiclass fun.

5. Gran Turismo 2. My first Gran Turismo game, and what a banger it is. Great car selection, great tracks (bring back Red Rock Valley) and great soundtrack. One of the best PS1 racers.

4. Race Driver: GRID. Another underrated title, in my opinion. The closest game I've played that recaptured the feel of my no.1 spot, of taking a racing team to the tippy top. The rewind feature was great for those lapses in concentration, too.

3. Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition. I think everyone went through a boy racer phase, and the customisation in this let me indulge in that phase so grossly I think it's now a permanent part of me. Take a car, drop it, slap some neon underlights and a massive GT wing on the back and zoom around 3 cities. The wide variety of vehicles, amazing soundtrack and special abilities goes a long way.

2. Gran Turismo 6. I played the hell out of this game. I only got GT Sport and GT7 at Christmas so I can't really compare them yet, but so far this is the highlight of the series, and that says a lot considered how good 2 and 4 were. Online races were a blast, if not humbling, and the game heralded the return of one of the series' best tracks; Midfield Raceway.

1. Ridge Racer Type 4. I'm genuinely surprised this hasn't been mentioned, but this game consumed my childhood. I've not played it in a long time so maybe it doesn't hold up well today, but boy are those memories fond. A short but almost infinitely replayable campaign, unlockable special cars that are out of this world (a rocket car similar to the LSR holders, an anti-grav car and an instantly accelerating mini), PLUS a GOD TIER soundtrack. I spent many hours trying to unlock the secret 321st car.
In chronological order:
1)Super Sprint 86
2)Super Monaco GP 89
3)GP2 96
4)GT 97
5) Sega Rally 2 98
6)GP Legend 98
7)Initial D AS3 03
8)GT 4 04
9)Assetto Corsa 14
10)GT 7 22
United Kingdom
United Kingdom
10 - Racing C1 Grand Prix (PS2)
9 - Import Tuner Challenge (X360)
8 - Test Drive Unlimited 1 (X360)
7 - Tokyo Xtreme Racer Drift 2 (PS2)
6 - Toyko Xtreme Racer 3 & Zero (PS2)
5 - Gran Turismo 7 (PS5)
4 - Gran Turismo 4 (PS2)
3 - Gran Turismo 5 (PS3)
2 - Assetto Corsa (PC)
1 - Gran Turismo 1 (PS1)

Seriously this was a hard list to think of 🤣🤣

Touring Mars

ツーリング マルス
Glasgow, Scotland
Despite playing racing games my whole life, my list is perhaps a bit limited because I have a tendency to either love a game and play it for years, or I can ignore entire franchises for no other reason than I'm happy with what I've got. With that in mind, here's my Top 10:

10. Destruction Derby 2 (PS1, 1996) - A great, fun game but not exactly a classic, but I did spend a lot of time laughing my tits off playing this game.

9. Forza Motorsport (Xbox, 2005) - A great game, but to this day it's my only taste of the franchise and I donated my Xbox to my sister. I was also biased against Forza from the get-go, believing it to be an inferior GT clone and I hated the Xbox controller and default controls, but it was surprisingly competent and the livery editor put the GT series to shame at the time.

8. Gran Turismo (PlayStation, 1997) - Where it all began. My cousin and I were both instant fans of GT, and he was especially fond of the replays - the concept of having as much fun watching a game presaged the entire e-sports era. We both loved the ordinary-ness of the cars, the realism of the driving, and Richard also discovered the Hi-Res mode in GT1.

7. WipEout 2097 (PlayStation, 1996) - Mindblowingly great game and soundtrack, a taste of great things to come, and years ahead of its time. I never actually owned the original WipEout, so this was my first taste of the magic... plus, you could even take the disc out and replace it with a music CD and hammer around your favourite circuits to the dulcet tones of Simon & Garfunkel.

6. Formula 1 (PlayStation, 1996) - My first console game, and responsible for some of my most treasured gaming memories. As I unwrapped this Xmas gift as a 21 y.o. young adult, I was instantly disappointed to see that the car on the front was not a real F1 car/team, and almost dismissed the game out of hand... only that little hologram on the box gave me something to hope for. The blurb on the box was even more hopeful - all circuits, all cars, and commentary by Murray Walker?? From the first moment of actually playing it, I was in heaven. My cousin and I played it the entire night of Xmas Day '96... and then my cousin figured out how to connect our PS1s and play multiplayer... and, as with WipEout 2097, you could even listen to your own CDs during gameplay as well. The 'real' audio commentary was a revelation at the time, but to have THE Murray Walker was just sensational... an absolute classic PS title. (Sadly, my cousin Richard passed away in 2010 aged 35, and F1 on the PlayStation were some of our best times together :()

5. Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled (PS4, 2019) - Massive fun and fantastic graphics... a real challenge if you want it too. Having never played Mario Kart or any other similar games, CTR (remake) was a no-brainer for me since I was blown away by Insane Trilogy remake.

4. Gran Turismo 4 (PS2, 2004) - A ground-breaking game for me, but really only because it was the first console game that I played that could be played as a LAN, and thanks to the UKGTP (and SFGTP) organisers, it became the first (and alas only) game that I played as part of an actual event, meeting loads of great players in the process. It was, of course, more expansive than GT3, but the reason I love GT4 is really only because of the LAN aspect.

3. Gran Turismo 7 (PS4, 2022/2023) - A throughly expansive and amazing game, and a notable mention to GT Sport, of which GT7 is not that much of an improvement. Credit where it's due, GT7 maintains the tradition of being even better than the last game, and it's so high on my list simply because it does everything the previous GT games can do but better and more - and yet, it's not top of my list - why? Hard to say, but it hasn't captured my heart - it's magnificent, but its serious flaws (notably the in-game economy) has seen it die a very premature death for me, which is a real travesty.

1=. Wipeout HD/Fury (PS3, 2008/2009) - Arguably the GOAT for me, a flawless masterpiece (WipEout HD) that they only went and made it EVEN BETTER by adding the ludicrously cheap and fantastically brilliant Fury update. I'd say Omega Collection was even better, but since that's technically a compilcation, HD/Fury gets my vote. I played this so much that I only quit when my tendonitis flared up again, and yet I still play it every now and then just for the sheer fun of it. In-keeping with the spirit of 2097, I made playlists using my own mp3 collection on my PS3 (sadly not possible on PS4/Omega, though Spotify does suffice as a replacement), and there's nothing better than winning a tough race/event to your 'always win' song. Mastering this game is a fleeting but magical state - and now I'm merely a past master, like a retired golfer who can still cut it some times, but can only marvel at what used to be... but reaching the top - however briefly - is an unforgettable experience.

1=. Gran Turismo 3 (PS2, 2001) - THE game that defined my gaming future - and yet much of it is not really connected to the game content itself, but more the provenance of it... I got my first room in London because I had GT3, and my housemates called me 'Turismo' from Day 1... indeed, my old pal who called me that still calls me that to this day - and so does his wife :lol: I held off buying a PS2 (and GT3, which I was dying to own) until I finished my PhD, and when I finally got my doctorate and a job, I bought a PS2 and GT3 as my reward to myself for doing it... and I didn't even have a TV (which I bought the next day :lol:).

As I came out of HMV on Oxford Street, London with my PS2, I literally bumped into Bill Bruford, former Yes and King Crimson drummer and an absolute hero of mine - a great omen if ever there was one. GT3 is the only GT game where I've got 100%, and hence an honorary Platinum... and that licence test with the Viper at Laguna Seca was THE ultimate challenge that I've overcome in my gaming history. Gameplay-wise, it's trumped by every title that came after it, but even to this day, none of them have had the same personal impact, and the cars that I loved in GT3 are still my favourites to this day, notably the Denso SARD Supra and the Oreca Viper. In one of our last nights together before my old pal returned to Australia, he invited me to his work's farewell drinks for him in the City of London. I got chatting to some of his work friends about GT, and one of his friends said that Tim (my pal) knew this guy called 'Turismo', who was a legend at the game - Tim overheard and came over, laughing... and said, 'He IS Turismo', and pointed at me. The guy said 'Wait.. YOU're Turismo???' (I think he was expecting someone bigger and more handsome...) but he just smiled and said something like 'Oh wow, it's great to finally meet you, we've heard alot about you!'. Ah, the days before LAN and online gaming made me realise I'm actually rubbish :lol: GT3 was also a make-or-break game... I reckon that I wasn't a true fan of the series until GT3, and hence had I not had those experiences with it, my whole console gaming future could have fallen by the wayside. And GT3 was also the spur for me to join GTPlanet - which is nice.

0. TOCA Touring Cars (PS1, 1997) - Last, and by all means least, TOCA. In all fairness, it had little chance given the competition - F1, GT, GT2, Destruction Derby - heck, I even preferred playing with my Bburago Cars to this. I HATED it... it was so disappointing, I actually took it back to HMV on Princes Street, Edinburgh to beg for a refund, having spent my meagre earnings on it. The guy in the shop asked me what was wrong with it, and explained that they don't give refunds on the basis that you don't like the game, but my explanation was apparently so compelling, that he allowed me to exchange it for "something else". As the above list testifies too, however, I didn't really know of any other game that I wanted, so I just grabbed what was #1 in the chart, a random-looking game called Final Fantasy 7. So, thank you TOCA 1 for being so rubbish (IMO anyway), as I would never have bought FF7 and loved it without you :lol:
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Been a while since I posted here, but I could not resist so here goes.

10: Supercar Street Challenge (PS2, 2001)
One of the earliest arcade racing games I played when I first got my PS2, I loved the idea of creating your very own concept car and taking it up against established supercars like the Pagani Zonda or the Saleen S7. Has aged quite a bit since its release, but I’d like to see more games today try the same style it evoked.

9: Tokyo Xtreme Racer (PS2, 2001)
This was what introduced me to Japanese car culture that to this day I still love. The highway battles were tense and exciting and I feel that it was TXR Zero that executed it the best of the series. I do wish TXR3 had been available in PAL regions. I would love a remaster of it one day (I know SRP exists, but if the Discord could add into it an actual game with rivals and bosses like in the TXR days, it would be so cool).

8: Project Gotham Racing 2 (Xbox, 2003)
I didn’t pick this game up until a few years ago but it instantly hooked me in. The wide mix of different vehicle types structured in such a way that it made progression and going for those medals a fun and interesting challenge. Custom soundtracks and the range of different cities sealed the deal. I was never good enough to get platinum though, and also missed out on the Xbox Live heyday, but despite that it is still a great game.

7: Enthusia (PS2, 2005)
Enthusia is I feel criminally undervalued and, in my controversial opinion, better than GT4. I tried Gran Turismo 4 and did not like the way the cars felt to drive at all, but in Enthusia they felt really good, the physics engine still feels real to this day and the interesting career done in a very different way compared to GT or other games of the time still feels fresh. It was also the first time I ever drove the Nordschleife on this game.

6: Forza Motorsport 1 (Xbox, 2005)
The first Forza game to me does things better than most current Forza games do to this day. It may not be as refined or polished compared to its successors but I loved building a collection of wonderful cars that even today make me keep coming back to it. Also circuits like Alpine Ring, Tokyo, Pacific Shipyards that weren’t in Forza 2 or later that are really good fun and more interesting than other venues (looking at you Dubai).

5: Forza Horizon 3 (Xbox One, 2016)
For me, this has the best mix of a diverse open world with multiple biomes, various vehicle types and the incredible customisation that remains a staple of the series. However unlike the later entries Horizon 3 still offered a good sense of progression, you ran your festival your way with your own music (I even had a proper driving song playlist with all the greats) but you had to reach 25 million fans by completing all the game’s content. I don’t get that sense in later Forza games. I just wish that FH3 had a longer shelf life rather than recycling after a two-year period and we got the cars we got in later games added to FH3. Also being set in Australia helped ;)

4: Toca Race Driver (Xbox, 2003)
Specifically the Xbox version over the PS2, it offers the best career and free race mode creation of any game of its era. It is similar in structure to Toca World Touring Cars / Jarrett & Labonte (PS1, 2000) but I prefer its successor due to its more diverse selection of motorsport, e.g. V8 Supercars, DTM, BTCC, back when they were awesome. Also, Ryan McKane. This was where he made his mark.

3: Gran Turismo 2 (PS1, 1999)
Best game on the original PlayStation. I still love the massive and incredibly diverse car list that has everything from a Lancia Y to a Suzuki Escudo Pikes Peak, including a Jaguar XJR15 or a Mazda RX-7SA22C, in 1999, on the PS1. This game was mindblowing at the time and it just gets better with age. Years later I’m still learning new stuff and trying out new cars I never even thought to have a go with before. However…

2: Gran Turismo 3 A-spec (PS2, 2001)
…I still rate GT3 above GT2 as it represents the greatest leap forward for a franchise in gaming history, certainly with regards to the racing game genre. Bestselling GT game of all time, one of the greatest PS2 games ever made, it was the first GT game I got and it introduced me to one of the world’s greatest franchises. It was where I began to love all sorts of different cars from all over the world. However…

1: Toca Race Driver 2 (PS2, 2004)
…this is where my love of the racing game and motor racing in general began. This was the first sim-type game I played and I absolutely loved it then and I love it just as much now. I have owned this game on multiple systems (PS2, Xbox and PC) and in multiple regional names (V8 Supercars 2, Toca Race Driver 2 and DTM Race Driver 2) and I have beaten it multiple times. I know TRD3 has a higher diversity of motorsport styles but it just got too frustrating and annoying, especially as you got later into the game, e.g. trying to collect the last few trophies for the bonus championships. I have always preferred TRD2’s handling, gameplay, feel and content (I loved the 2003 seasons of V8 Supercars, DTM, F1 etc. more than 2005 IMO). I could play, talk about or do a presentation on every aspect of this game for weeks, I know it inside out and I will always love it forever. To me, it is an almost perfect game. I would kill for a more complete and accurate remastering of this game using the latest technology, but in the same style as it was new.

Honourable mentions: Auto Modellista, GRID (2008), Road Trip Adventure, Need for Speed High Stakes, Underground 1, 2 & Carbon, Toca World Touring Cars, Toca Race Driver 3, Outrun 2006, F1 Championship Edition, the first Gran Turismo, Gran Turismo 5, the first two Forza Horizon games and Forza Motorsport 6.

Disclaimer: I have never played any of the Xbox 360 exclusive games, so maybe one day if I do pick up a cheap 360 I could probably add another PGR game or another Forza or two to the list as well.
United States
Selatapura, Usea
I'll briefly touch on my top-10...

1.Ridge Racer (PSone) [First racing game I ever played, Namco and their games helped shape my childhood.]

2.Midnight Club II (PS2) [I understand the Underground games are revered, but Midnight Club II & 3 were a much bigger deal for me at the time.]

3.Midnight Club 3 (PS2)

4.Gran Turismo 5 (PS2) [For me Gran Turismo didn't find itself until GT5, I made so many memories on this game thanks to it's robust online component, I can go on for hours about how this game affected me personally.]

5.Ridge Racer Type-4 (PSone) [I've never played a game that oozed as much aesthetic as R4. The sexiest kid friendly game ever!]

6.Ridge Racer (PSP) [A high quality, excellent 60FPS racing experience on one of my favorite consoles of all-time]

7.Need For Speed Most Wanted (PS2) [The best NFS game to date, if you want a game that makes your palms sweaty this is it!]

8.Wreckfest (PS5) [Probably the best game I've played in the last decade, I was sort of falling out of love for gaming during the 8th gen and this game made me feel like a gamer again. Thank god for bugbear!]

9.NASCAR 08 (PS2 & PS3) [This was my foray into online multiplayer. The game was bugged from the start, but had excellent physics and sound]

10.Pac-Man World Repac (PS5) [This game is so much fun! There's actually a level where you have to race against a bunch of clowns!🤡 So therefore it counts as a racing game!]

BOLD = Legacy game, meaning a game that I felt was important to me not only as a gamer, but a person as well. Gran Turismo 5/6 pushed me to pursue my dream of becoming a car designer and impacted my tastes in music as well as other areas. R4 was the inspiration behind some of my creative projects while I was in college. Wreckfest saved the hobby for me and it helped me prove that I still love gaming and can compete at a high level!
Really enjoying reading through everyone's top 10 lists, but I'm finding it difficult to put top 10 list together. Top 5 is straightforward enough, but 6 to 10... well, I tried my best.

10 - Star Wars Episode 1 Racer
It's probably the best thing to come out of Star Wars prequel trilogy.

9 - Sonic & All Stars Racing Transformed
It's simple to pick up and play on the outset, but there's a lot to dig in. It really rewards track knowledge and skill.

8 - Burnout Paradise
This one rewards map knowledge in a way no other open world racing game does. It does have its flaws but it feels amazing to chart out my own route or go on a warpath with road rage events.

7 - Stuntman: Ignition
It's not really a racing game, but it's packed so full with energy and creativity that I thought it deserved a spot here (yes, I know it's a sequel).

6 - Colin McRae: Dirt 2
Great handling, ton of variety, great atmosphere, couldn't ask for more. And there's something so right about Colin's championship-winning Impreza being the secret ultimate car of the game.

5 - Enthusia: Professional Racing
There are so many ideas here that shouldn't work, but somehow it all blends perfectly and creates unique experiences. I admire that.

4 - Forza Horizon
It isn't as bombastic or expansive as the games that followed but it does manage to be more tighter because of it.

3 - Gran Turismo 4
I probably don't need to elaborate with this one. This is PS2-era racing game at its best.

2 - Race Driver: Grid
A lot of racing game lets you climb the career ladder starting from the bottom, but Grid makes it exciting.

1 - Driver: San Francisco
It's among the most unique racing game out there, and it's perfectly executed. Racing game genre peaked with this one if you ask me.


10. Colin McRae Rally
9. TOCA 2
8. Dirt Rally 2.0
7. Wipeout
6. Burnout
5. Microprose F1
4. NFS Hot Pursuit
3. Supercars 2
1= Lotus Turbo Challenge
1= GT2
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United Kingdom
United Kingdom
I can’t really rank them so I’m just going to start writing about ten games and see how it goes. All console - I’ve never been a PC gamer.

TOCA 2 : Touring Cars (PlayStation)
This is the game that left the biggest mark on me as a kid - I started off with the F1 games and loved them but when I got hold of the first TOCA game I just loved the whole feel of it and spent so many days playing it, perfecting it, I still remember that feeling of being completely on the edge round the really fast bit at the back of Thruxton knowing that the back end could go at any moment. The sequel improved everything about it, added in feature races and pit stops, and introduced the support series’ too, which were great fun particularly the Formula Fords - the handling of those was just insane, the feeling of control as you slid around Silverstone. I still can’t believe to this day how faithful this game was to the real life series, down to the weather at each of the rounds. The wheel to wheel racing was just perfect for its time. Codemasters can still do no wrong for me in 2023 simply because they made this game and it was everything I dreamt of as a kid. I would kill for an HD remake.

Assetto Corsa Competizione (PlayStation 5)
I’m including this because I see it as the modern day equivalent of TOCA. It’s a completely focused game replicating a real life championship as accurately and faithfully as possible and I love it for that. The level of depth it goes into to replicate everything about the GT World Challenge - all the liveries, all the drivers, all the tracks, I really appreciate that because nobody else does that anymore. It’s immersive, it feels completely right and the handling/racing model just feels organic. I’ve loved trying to master this (and am nowhere near doing that!) but it’s one of those games that almost feels quite intimidating because it’s like “where do I start with this”. But I’m so glad I gave it some proper effort, it took until the PS5 version because the old gen versions just weren’t the same experience. I don’t think I love ACC in quite the same way I loved TOCA 2 but I admire it so much and feel that for the type of racing game I like, it’s the best current gen experience on console.

Ridge Racer Type 4 (PlayStation)
I was so tempted to say Rage Racer instead as I think it’s incredibly underrated and close, but to be honest RRT4 is the only one I was going to pick because arcade racers from that era (and to be honest, any era) just don’t get any better. The whole look of the game, the presentation, the art style, the graphics were just insanely good for the PlayStation. I’ll be honest, even though I’ve so far named two PS1 games from three, I hate the 32 bit era. The games just don’t look good at all in 2023, most of them look horrible. Even TOCA, you have to get used to how ugly it is. But not RR4, it still looks good. And the handling is great, up there with Sega Rally in terms of how perfect it can feel sliding round the corners. I love the little details like the stories behind the teams, the lore….it’s sad really that Ridge Racer absolutely peaked here and never it these heights again. Oh and bonus points for coming with the Ridge Racer Hi-Spec disc too.

WRC2: Extreme (PS2)
Could just have easily picked WRC4 here, because I think those two were the best of a very strong line of WRC games from Evolution Studios. But WRC2, despite a few issues like superglue barriers etc, edges it because like TOCA2 it’s a completely faithful, immersive recreation of an absolute golden era of the championship, and just feels right. The jump from the original is huge, the stage design is just on a different level - longer, narrower, more accurate. The weather effects, the different characteristics of all the cars, it’s just one of those games that feels well tuned all round. Like all the best sequels this is the game the original should have been. I don’t think rally games got any better than this for a long time - probably until DIRT Rally to be honest. I know most people would go with WRC Evolved here instead, but for me the decision to reduce rallies down to three stages each absolutely killed that one for me, and it got everything else right so it was such a shame.

TOCA Race Driver 3 (Xbox)
After TOCA2 the series lost me a bit for some time, I thought World Touring Cars was a massive step backwards on handling and physics and the whole Ryan McKane thing lost me slightly, but Race Driver 2 and 3 were right back where I wanted them. No BTCC anymore, but the DTM is recreated with quite a similar level of accuracy alongside V8 Supercars which were exciting because it was great to feel immersed in championships I didn’t know that much about - this game (and the second one) made me a fan of both those championships. And there was so much else to get into - so much variety - not all of it great (the rally stages were terrible) but done with a fair bit of charm. Everyone loves GRID 2008, but I thought it was quite a shame the series took a different direction again after this because I loved this series.

F1 World Grand Prix 2 (Dreamcast)
I was only going to include one F1 game and knew this would be the one, because I think it’s incredibly good and pretty much forgotten these days. F1’97, F1 Championship Edition, F1 2003, Grand Prix Challenge….all some of the best. What I love about this one though is that it took what was great about the N64 games - the way races played out like they did in real life, for one thing - and put it onto a whole new engine and a handling model that felt like you were actually driving out in a racetrack rather than through a tunnel. The first one was ruined by terrible slowdown and awful handling but they got that much better with the sequel, the first F1 game that felt genuinely ‘next gen’ and yet, probably because it was Dreamcast exclusive, nobody seems to remember it now. I’ll still happily play this today if I want a retro F1 game hit.

Project CARS 2 (Xbox One X)
Modern console racing games just don’t seem to aim for what they did in the PS2 era but I think this is the exception. There’s something quite old fashioned about the first two Project CARS games - take what Codemasters were aiming for with Race Driver and achieve it with modern hardware - loads of different series, different types of Motorsport, licensed cars and championships, all in one game. I love that this is the only game where I can set up a multiclass, WEC style race, set it so it lasts 24 hours with a full day/night cycle, with realistic race strategy, tyre wear, even driver swaps. It doesn’t do all of that stuff well - the handling is pretty ropy on a controller, the AI is over aggressive, and don’t even bother with driver swaps because your AI driver is horrendously bad and will lose you the race within two laps of swapping them in - but I appreciate that it tried all this stuff and was pretty disappointed with where Project CARS 3 went after that. This game was so, so close to being the racing game of my dreams but made a hash of just enough of it to leave me wondering what could have been.

Sega Rally (Sega Saturn)
In terms of pure feel and fun, I think this might still be the best driving game of all time. It was just brilliant, it didn’t matter how little content there was because the cars just felt so brilliant, the track design was so perfect and it was just endless fun and so addictive going for the fastest time on each of the circuits. I remember staying up until the early hours of the morning playing this game, just endlessly doing time trials and trying to better my times. A perfect game. Sega Rally 2, for me, didn’t have any of the same feel and was a pale imitation of what came before.

Le Mans 24 Hours (Dreamcast/PS2)
Actually I think in terms of the pure feel of driving and racing, this is maybe the closest of all of these games to Sega Rally. The handling was just so organic, the frame rate perfectly smooth, the visuals incredible for that era, the AI was good, the wheel to wheel racing with the other cars, just perfectly tuned all round and so much fun. For me, the only think it lacked was atmosphere. The PS1 version was a vastly inferior game, but I loved the fireworks etc when it got dark, the sound effects etc - and I think those things were lacking here. Everything else though, just an incredible game. Another that captures perfectly what was a golden era of Le Mans and endurance racing. The PS2 version gets a bit of grief for the inferior visuals but was every bit as good to play and had much more content in terms of adding the 2000 cars and teams, Petit Le Mans etc. Melbourne House produced two gems with this and Grand Prix Challenge on the PS2.

Gran Turismo 4 (PS2)
For me this is the peak of GT although it was a hard choice because I could have chosen any of them really. The most cars and tracks, the biggest single player mode, the last of a run of GT games that always seemed to build and improve on the one before. Some people don’t like the slightly toned down colours and understeery handling, but I thought it was a logical progression from the earlier ones really. I think objectively you could look at GT7 and say that it’s a better game, but so much of this is about nostalgia and actually I’d argue that the single player game has never been better than it was here, and visually it’s amazing that they could squeeze this out of a PlayStation2. Just had to include a Gran Turismo because of the ‘big hitters’ I’ve always been more of a GT fan than Forza. I just think the games handle better and the track design is on a different level - Trial Mountain, Deep Forest, Autumn Ring, SSR11….sorry Forza 4, you’re a great game, but I think GT edges it.
Ufff, it's so many to choose, but here they are (not going to bother explaining):

10. Enthusia Professional Racing
9. Burnout 3 Takedown
8. Auto Modellista
7. Forza Motorsport 4
6. Need For Speed High Stakes
5. Ridge Racer Type 4
4. Tokyo Xtreme Racer
3. Project Gotham Racing 2
2. Forza Motorsport 3
1. Gran Turismo 1

Honorable mentions: Pro Race Driver, GRID, TOCA Touring Car Championship, Gran Turismo 2, 3 and 4, Metropolis Street Racer, Test Drive 5 and Unlimited.
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1. NFS 1 - Because it was my first
2. GT3 - Because it was the one where i was first really invested in something not too arcady
3. NFS 3
4. GT 4
5. NFS Underground 2
6. Test Drive Unlimited
7. NFS Underground
8. NFS 4
9. Flatout
10. Wreckfest

Didn't like the Forzas or newer NFS.
Oh, i forgot GT7 - but i still don't know where it will end up. At the moment i would say somewhere low in the Top 10.
@GBalao888 I love the shoutouts to Wipeout Pure and Ridge Racer PSP. While I think 2097(XL) and Type 4 have a better aesthetic style, the PSP games have so much more game in them.

@isamu Great picks with Ridge Racer 2 and Outrun 2 SP. Yet another mention of Grid Legends, I really should get that one.

@PHO3NIX_F1RE Micro Machines V3 is a great call. It is so much fun and the weapons are so satisfying. I never had any luck playing it in multiplayer though as it relies so much on track memorisation.

I think all of my top 10 have been mentioned except for Burnout Dominator. Yes, the removal of crash mode was a big loss, but the combination of the burnout chaining of 2 and the combat of 3 make for the best racing of the series.
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Seeing Driveclub everywhere makes me a bit upset that I never actually bought it.
Keep an eye out in physical stores, Gamestop's etc. I got a copy for a few pounds here and while obviously all the offline stuff is gone, you can still run some races and challenges in single player and get a feel for what people loved about the game.
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As someone who barely plays online anyway I still think Driveclub is well worth it because you'll get all the tracks and single player content, for me it's only the lack of leaderboards that I miss. Probably because it's literally the only game ever where I was top ten in some of them!!

It's a shame you can't still pick up the DLC - the bikes expansion especially. J can do without some cars.
Mainly to satisfy my own curiosity, I compiled everyone's top 10 list into one list. Every time a game appeared in a top 10 list it received one point. Location in each list was not factored in, mainly because the sorting logic of the lists varied. I did my best to interpret which games people meant, but if it was too unclear I left it out. I also left out honorable mentions. Below is the result of that effort.

Something interesting to note is that of the two most popular series (Gran Turismo and Forza), the only games to not appear in any list at all were Forza Motorsport 5 and Forza Horizon 2.

Gran Turismo 434
Gran Turismo 222
Assetto Corsa15
Forza Motorsport 415
Gran Turismo15
Gran Turismo 513
Race Driver: Grid13
Test Drive Unlimited13
Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec12
Project CARS 212
Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition9
Need for Speed: Most Wanted9
Burnout 3: Takedown8
Dirt Rally 2.08
Gran Turismo 78
Le Mans 24 Hours (Dreamcast)8
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit7
Project Gotham Racing 37
Assetto Corsa Competizione6
Colin McRae: Dirt 26
Forza Horizon6
Forza Motorsport6
Gran Turismo Sport6
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 26
Need for Speed: Underground6
Need for Speed: Underground 26
Project Gotham Racing 26
Ridge Racer Type 46
TOCA 2 Touring Cars6
Tourist Trophy6
Burnout Paradise5
Forza Horizon 35
Forza Horizon 45
Gran Turismo 65
Need for Speed: High Stakes5
Need for Speed: Porsche Unleashed5
TOCA Race Driver 35
Tokyo Xtreme Racer 35
Burnout Revenge4
Colin McRae Rally 2.04
Dirt Rally4
Forza Motorsport 34
Grand Prix 24
Midnight Club: Los Angeles4
The Need for Speed4
Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit4
Project Gotham Racing 44
TOCA Race Driver4
Crash Team Racing3
Formula One Championship Edition3
Forza Motorsport 23
Grand Prix Legends3
GTR 23
Midnight Club 23
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift3
Need for Speed: Carbon3
Need for Speed: ProStreet3
OutRun (Arcade)3
Sega Rally 23
Tokyo Xtreme Racer3
Auto Modellista2
Automobilista 22
Carmageddon 22
Colin McRae Rally2
Dirt 32
F-Zero GX2
F1 20062
F1 20102
F1 20202
Forza Horizon 52
Forza Motorsport 62
Forza Motorsport 72
Gran Turismo 5 Prologue2
Grand Prix2
Grand Prix 42
GRID Legends2
Import Tuner Challenge2
IndyCar Series 20052
Lotus Turbo Challenge 2 (Amiga)2
Mario Kart: Double Dash2
Mario Kart 642
Mobil 1 Rally Championship2
MotoCross Madness 22
NASCAR Racing 2003 Season2
NASCAR Thunder 20042
Need for Speed: Shift2
OutRun 2 (Arcade)2
Pole Position (Arcade)2
Race 072
Ridge Racer2
Ridge Racer V2
Sega Rally2
Sports Car GT2
Super Mario Kart (SNES)2
Super Monaco GP2
Test Drive: Eve of Destruction2
TOCA Touring Car Championship2
Tokyo Xtreme Racer: Zero2
Tokyo Xtreme Racer Drift 22
Top Gear (SNES)2
Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune (Arcade)2
Wave Race 642
Wipeout HD2
Alfa Romeo Racing Italiano1
Art of Rally1
Big Scale Racing1
Burnout 2: Point of Impact1
Colin McRae Rally 41
Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled1
The Crew1
Daytona USA1
Destruction Derby 21
Diddy Kong Racing1
Driver: San Francisco1
F-1 Hero1
F-1 World Grand Prix II (Dreamcast)1
F-Zero (SNES)1
F1 20001
F1 20111
F1 Career Challenge1
F1 Grand Prix Challenge1
Ferrari Formula 11
Ford Racing 21
Formula 11
Formula One: Built to Win1
GP 5001
Grid 21
GRIP: Combat Racing1
GT Advance 2: Rally Racing1
GT Legends1
Hot Wheels Turbo Racing1
Indianapolis 500: The Simulation1
Initial D Arcade Stage 3 (Arcade)1
Initial D Arcade Stage 8 Infinity (Arcade)1
Lombard RAC Rally1
Mario Kart 81
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe1
Mario Kart Wii1
Metropolis Street Racer1
Micro Machines1
Micro Machines V31
Micro Machines V41
MotoGP '081
Motor City Online1
Motorsport Manager1
MotorStorm: Apocalypse1
NASCAR Chase for the Cup1
NASCAR Heat 41
Need for Speed: Shift 2 - Unleashed1
Pitstop II1
Project CARS1
Racing Battle: C1 Grand Prix1
Rage Racer (Arcade)1
RalliSport Challenge1
RalliSport Challenge 21
rFactor 21
Ridge Racer 21
Ridge Racer Revolution1
Ridge Racer 71
Road Fighter1
Road Rash1
San Francisco Rush 20491
SBK 221
Scud Race (Arcade)1
Sega GT 20021
Sled Storm1
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed1
Star Wars Episode I: Racer1
Stuntman: Ignition1
Super Cars II1
Super Sprint1
Superbike 20001
Superbike 20011
Supercar Street Challenge1
Test Drive1
Test Drive Unlimited 21
Test Drive 61
TOCA Race Driver 21
Top Gear Rally1
V-Rally 21
V-Rally 31
Wacky Wheels (DOS)1
Wipeout 20971
Wipeout Pure1
World Driver Championship1
World of Outlaws: Sprint Cars 20021
WRC II Extreme1
WRC 4: FIA World Rally Championship1
WRC Generations1
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Of course now people who haven't put together their list are going to pick games to boost their position on this list. 😂

Dirt 2 is a bit surprising as it often considered a GOAT. I guess rally games are just not as popular.
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There are a few quite surprising things from that, but that’s what makes it interesting.

  • Driveclub being so high, because much as I love it, I think PGR is better
  • Gran Turismo 5 being well ahead of Gran Turismo 3
  • Wipeout being virtually nowhere to be seen
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I do think driveclub gets some 'what could have been' nostalgia vibes that place it so highly. I do like the game but to be a top 10 all time, indeed 3rd all time if we take the above tally, I find that a bit too much.