Racing games history has sure been up and down. With a slow start from Atari’s 1973 Space Race, Pole Position in 1982, we saw something spectacular n the 90’s: Mario Kart 1992, Ridge Racer 1993, Daytona USA 1993, Need for Speed 1994, then the iconic Gran Turismo series took off in 1997. These great franchises have kept up the pace in the 2000s, with the Burnout series, F1 series, Flatout, Forza, Need for Speed and even Hot Wheels getting into the mix. Enter the 2010s. Dirt 1,2,3 and Showdown, F1 series continuing their annual release and getting better, iconic racer Grid, and a plethora of indie/mobile devs flooding the market with servicable racing games, believe it or not, 2014 might be the best year for racing. With Assetto Corsa getting multiplayer and strong updates, a strong return in GRID: Autosport, F1 2014, MotoGP 14, Nascar ’14, Mario Kart 8, Trials Fusion, and Trackmania 2 Canyon already in the mix, we are getting hopefuls Project Cars, Forza Horizon 2, The Crew, and Driveclub. These titles look and feel like the best racing has to offer yet.
Project Cars is Slightly Mad Studios’ ‘sandbox’ approach to let players choose a variety of disciplines, tracks, and vehicles. With input from the community and real racing drivers they are taking an ambitious approach to what looks like the most realistic (at least graphics wise) racer to date.
Forza Horizon 2 builds upon the success of its predecessor, with a fun story, beautiful location (southern France and northern Italy), dynamic weather and large map.
The Crew is a massive open and persistent world of racing across the United States, which Shaun Prescott of Ubisoft says takes 90 minutes to drive from coast to coast ingame. Boasting a 20 hour long campaign, missions can be played alone, with friends, or with online co-op matchmaking. With 8 player multiplayer and no loading screens this one sure shows promise.
Driveclub is still on for a 2014 release date, despite delays primarily concerning the 30 fps vs 60 fps debate. 30 was finally the consensus, however Forza Horizon pulled off a fantastic game with 30. (Forza Horizon 2, Driveclubs competitor, will also be 30 fps)
With these beautiful titles in the works, we may actually have more great racing games than we have time for. And that is never a bad thing.