9 best racing games on PC, PlayStation, Switch & Xbox in 2024

9 best racing games on PC, PlayStation, Switch & Xbox in 2024
Images via Microsoft

Written by 

James Lynch

Last updated 

2nd Apr 2024 10:00

Racing games have a long and storied history, with some of the earliest arcade games ever put out into the world doing their level best to simulate, well, driving.

Since then, every type of vehicular competition has been turned into a video game. From overtly silly titles to realistic simulators, there's a little bit of something out there for everyone.

And while as a genre, not all racing games are built the same, there are certainly a few top-tier ones that stand out from the crowd as the best of the best.

How I chose the best racing games in 2024

Racing games are nowhere near as popular as they used to be, but there are still plenty of great racers around to enjoy. When I was younger, it felt like you would get a couple of racing games a year, all with their own unique twists and enjoyable gameplay.

These are some of the games that will evoke a similar feeling I felt as a boy, whilst some of them, like Mario Kart, were even around then!

Best racing games in 2024

#9 Mario Kart 8 Deluxe 

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Click to enlarge
Images via Nintendo

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe details:

  • Platforms: Nintendo Switch
  • Release date: 2017
  • Subscription Service: N/A
  • Key features:
    • Family friendly fun
    • Huge cast of characters
    • The best kart racer around 

You can't have a list of the best racing games and not include everyone's favourite moustachioed plumber and co. If you're looking for a racing game to play with all the family, then this is the best place to look. Now with the added DLC, there are also so many new courses it's given the game a second life.

This is the perfect game for work parties and family gatherings, but it's just as enjoyable to play by yourself as you try to unlock new vehicles and complete every Grand Prix.

#8 Dirt Rally 2.0

A porsche drifts around a dirt bend in Dirt Rally 2.0
Click to enlarge
Image vie Codemasters

Dirt Rally 2.0 details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4 and Xbox One
  • Release date: 2019
  • Subscription Service: EA Play
  • Key features:
    • Dynamic weather and terrain
    • Interesting selection of rally cars
    • Solid control systems

There are several games in this list that dedicate a portion of their races to off-road rally racing but players looking for the very best at delivering that experience should stop searching and buy Dirt Rally 2.0.

The nature of rally driving places particular importance on simulation elements like dynamic weather, changing terrain and a lack of computer-related assistance, all of which this game delivers in spades.

Equally, the rendering of damage is particularly impressive with crashing almost always spelling the end of that race, exactly as it would in real life. Car options are limited by viable options for the game's tracks but it's difficult to notice when enduring the thrills Dirt creates in one of these best racing games.

#7 F1 22

An F1 car prepares to go round a corner
Click to enlarge
Images via EA

F1 22 details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 Xbox One and Xbox Series X 
  • Release date: 2022
  • Subscription Service: Xbox Game Pass
  • Key features:
    • Deep single-player career mode
    • Licensed F1 assets
    • Rewarding, realistic difficulty

F1 games have a spectacularly spotty history in gaming but more recent efforts have shown a remarkable increase in quality, with the penultimate release easily the best game tied to the immensely popular sport to date.

Featuring fully licensed teams, cars and drivers, F1 22 was the second game in the series to be published by Electronic Arts. Don’t let that put you off though, as the developer has done a great job expanding the single-player career and adding the F2 season after the game’s release, meaning there are now more ways to RP Lewis Hamilton than ever before.

The style and clean driving experience of Formula 1 may not be for everyone but it’s difficult to deny that the developers have done a great job transferring the sport to our medium and this is currently the preferable choice over the most recent entry.

Formula 1 is certainly an acquired taste, but that doesn't prevent it from being one of the best racing experiences on this list.

#6 Gran Turismo 7

A race screenshot from Gran Turismo featuring multiple Porsches
Click to enlarge
Images via SIE

Gran Turismo 7 details:

  • Platforms: PS4 and PS5
  • Release date: 2022
  • Subscription Service: None
  • Key features:
    • Accessible gameplay
    • Beautiful graphics
    • Hundreds of cars to use

For a very long time, the Gran Turismo series was seen as the greatest approachable racing simulator in the world, allowing PlayStation players to experience hundreds of cars and dynamic weather long before anyone else.

Though Forza has since levelled the playing field and opened the genre up further to players on other platforms, there is still a lot of good to be said about Polyphony Digital’s latest offering. As the seventh game in the series, more dedicated fans will know roughly what to expect.

It does feature the long-awaited return of the single-player mode and myriad features like classic tracks and Championships to take part in. Though player reception was lukewarm thanks to the Gran Turismo 7’s always-online DRM and microtransactions, it still feels fantastic to jump on and play.

#5 Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 - Turbocharged

Hot Wheels Unleashed 2
Click to enlarge
Image via Milestone

Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch 
  • Release date: 2023
  • Subscription Service: None
  • Key features:
    • Cars control very well
    • Chaotic, wacky races 
    • Enjoyable for all ages 

The biggest strengths of Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 - Turbocharged is not only how accessible it is for all ages, but also the sheer amount of things on offer in the game.

It builds on the original in every way to be one of the standout racing games of 2023, as there's truly nothing quite like whipping around racetracks in iconic toys from your youth. 

#4 Trackmania 

Cars set off from the start line in Trackmania
Click to enlarge
Image via Ubisoft

Trackmania details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 Xbox One and Xbox Series X 
  • Release date: 2020
  • Subscription Service: None, free-to-play
  • Key features:
    • Fun arcade-style gameplay
    • Super responsive miniature cars
    • Thriving hardcore community

As an outwardly classic, arcade-style racer, Trackmania may seem like the antithesis of many of the games on this list but after a few races, it becomes immediately obvious that it's the most competitive of them all.

The entirety of the game revolves around time trials and leaderboards that see players go up against each other to post the best time. The very top echelons of Trackmania have a thriving and extremely tight-knit community that quite literally all know each other, as well as a huge following on sites like Twitch and YouTube.

Though it might be a little more difficult to get into than a lot of racers, those it does hook will likely be players for a long time to come. 

#3 Wreckfest

A huge crash occurs on a corner in Wreckfest
Click to enlarge
Image via THQ Nordic

Wreckfest details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Nintendo Switch
  • Release date: 2014
  • Subscription Service: None
  • Key features:
    • Incredible destruction physics
    • Unique mechanical systems
    • Wide range of vehicles from hatchbacks to trucks

Sometimes there's a special bit of the brain that needs to be stimulated not by pristine graphics or realistic, finely-tuned racing, but instead by wanton destruction. That's where 2014's Wreckfest comes in.

A delightfully zany demolition derby release from developer Bugbear Entertainment, the game has some of the best destruction physics in any genre. Watching an opponent's car get absolutely obliterated by a concrete barrier or, even better, yet another opponent's car genuinely never gets old and Wreckfest is likely the game that provides the most outright excitement on this list.

#2 Forza Horizon 5 

Sports cars speed through the streets of Forza Horizon 5
Click to enlarge
Image via Xbox

Forza Horizon 5 details:

  • Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X
  • Release date: 2021
  • Subscription Service: Xbox Game Pass
  • Key features:
    • Deep vehicle customisation
    • Dynamic weather and seasons
    • Interesting open world to explore

The Forza series has arguably cemented its place as the world’s most popular racing game and the latest in the series takes everything the developers have done up to this point and somehow draws even nearer to perfection.

The open-world elements and varied biomes within that make exploring without aim just as appealing as participating in one of the game’s very varied multiplayer modes. Equally, the customization and tuning options available to players are extensive and refreshingly implemented, with it more than possible to stay competitive without having to delve into the minutiae of the fuel mix for each type of engine.

If that is your jam though, it’s absolutely something that can be done and it remains the hallmark of a game that can be as casual or hardcore as it needs to be. It's easily one of the best racing games out there right now.

What is the best racing game you can play right now? 

#1 Assetto Corsa Competizione

A Lamborghini Huracan pursues other cars down a straight in Assetto Corsa
Click to enlarge
Image via 505 Games

Assetto Corsa Competizione details:

  • Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5 Xbox One and Xbox Series X
  • Release date: 2018
  • Subscription Service: None
  • Key features:
    • Beautiful graphics and models
    • Engineering levels of vehicle tuning
    • Hyper-realistic gameplay

Where Forza and Gran Turismo attempt to strike a balance between simulation and arcade-style playability, Kunos Simulazioni’s Assetto Corsa Competizione makes no such claims. Going all in on creating a full-scale racing simulation for a knowledgeable audience of enthusiasts, playing this is probably as close as it’s possible to get to driving a real car without going outside.

The development offices are actually located at Vallelunga Circuit in Italy and the team garnered real-world knowledge by working alongside actual racing teams on a day-to-day basis. Assetto Corsa Competizione is built entirely via a proprietary in-house engine and there is truly nothing else out there that feels quite like it.

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Now that you know the best racing gaming to try out in 2024, check out our lists homepage for more recommendations on pirate games or the best games like Elden Ring

James Lynch
About the author
James Lynch
James Lynch is a freelance writer who has spent the last three years editing and writing for the website he started back in 2018. When he's not deeply embroiled in an epic PC strategy, he can usually be found supporting his beloved Brentford FC. Catch him on his newly active Twitter @jamesjlynch.
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