7 Great Racing Games to Play While you Wait for Gran Turismo 7

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The Gran Turismo franchise has come a long way since its debut in 1997, providing racing enthusiasts with thousands of exciting hours in front of their PlayStations.

Now, Polyphony, the studio responsible for the series, is working on Gran Turismo Sports, which will release in 2017. And once it reaches stores worldwide, it is still unclear whether the studio will work on Gran Turismo 7.

But don't worry if you're waiting for the next installment of the franchise. This delay actually provides you a unique opportunity: You can experience different racing titles on other platforms to get your daily adrenaline fix.

And there are A LOT of them. 

With this in mind, we have compiled a list of seven racing games you must check while you wait for Gran Turismo 7.

Live for Speed

Platform: PC

The graphics of this game may be outdated, but you cannot judge a book by its cover. Featuring one of the best physics systems available on the market, one of the most accurate force feedback systems in the racing genre, and a dedicated and stable fan-following, this game delivers one of the best user experiences available in the racing simulator genre.

And best of all? Live for Speed is free to play in its basic package.

Players can choose various tracks, ranging from a superspeedway to a tight street circuit, and race in them with a variety of cars, including go-karts, streetcars, touring cars, GTs and even the BMW Sauber F1.06.

Note: The free version of the game features a Formula BMW and two streetcars, as well as three race tracks.

Project CARS

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC

Considered by many the racing game with the best graphics on modern hardware, Project Cars offers players the possibility of taking sim racing to new heights.

Featuring a detailed physics engine, this Project Cars allows players to get as close as possible to a real race without entering a real racecar. With a dynamic weather system, players must keep an eye on the sky, as, for example, dark clouds approaching the track may represent rain coming. What's more, the game also simulates differences in air/track temperature and wind variations. 

This adds an interesting element in long races, as players must adapt their tire and fuel strategy to the demands of the situation at hand.

With a large variety of cars ranging from go-karts to Le Mans Prototypes, and an engine that simulates even the slightest variation on weather and how it affects the handling of the car, this game is a must play for any racing aficionado.

iRacing

Platform: PC

This production may not have the graphics of Project CARS, but iRacing is the definitive racing simulator, if you are only looking for realistic physics.

Available for a monthly payment of $6.50, this simulator offers a license-based career, in which you can only race against drivers of your level, which ensures a more balanced experience.

Despite featuring more than 50 real life race cars, what allows this simulator to stand above every other is its physics system, which is so accurate. Real drivers even use this simulator in order to train for their races, while real racing teams use iRacing as a tool to develop their cars. 

RaceRoom Racing Experience

Platform: PC

We have presented you with the most realistic racing simulators available in the market, but now we will propose something a bit different.

Available for free through Steam, RaceRoom offers a more casual experience, with physics that do not aim for a hyper-realistic reproduction of real on-track races.

However, RaceRoom presents player with a good balance between the difficulty of a hardcore simulator and the fun of casual games, due to its physics, which allows for a more “forgiving” behavior of the cars.

If you do not have the skills of a real racecar driver and simply wants to have some challenging fun, this is the game for you.

Formula 1 2016

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

The Formula 1 World Championship, the largest racing series in the world, has a history with the video game industry that dates back to the 70s. In 2016, Codemasters delivered the latest title to carry the name of Formula 1, Formula 1 2016.

Featuring 22 drivers and 21 tracks from all over the world, the game replicates the 2016 season of the pinnacle of motorsports.

Following the trend of RaceRoom, this title offers some challenge to its players, but it does not take realism to the extreme, making it a fun experience for those who wish for a more casual drive.

Valentino Rossi - The Game

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC

We move from the pinnacle of four-wheels to the highest form of racing on two wheels.

Valentino Rossi – The Game features the 2016 season of the MotoGP championship, the largest series in motorcycle racing, as well as moments from the career of Valentino Rossi, a six-time MotoGP world champion.

Players can face the same 291 opponents Valentino encountered throughout his 14 years in the premiere series of the sport.

Additionally, the game also features dirt bikes and rally racing, the other forms of motorsports Valentino has also competed in during his career, ensuring a great racing experience for each motorsports enthusiast.

NASCAR Heat Evolution

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC

The last two entries presented you with games that take you behind the wheel of the two largest racing series in the world, but now we will show a game that allows you to drive in the biggest championship in the United States. Of course, I am talking about NASCAR.

Featuring 40 drivers and 23 tracks from the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Heat Evolution puts you behind the wheel of an 850-horsepower stock car driving through the high banks of the American speedways.

The game includes common modes, such as race weekend and season, but the most unique of them is the “challenge mode," which replicates critical situations that occurred throughout the 2016 season.

36 races, 40 drivers and one championship. Welcome to NASCAR.

While the future of the Gran Turismo franchise remains uncertain, many other racing games can provide you with your daily racing fix, while providing different angles of the motorsports industry, which GT may not tackle.

From the hyper-realistic physics of iRacing to the mythic career depicted in Valentino Rossi – The Game, if you are a racing fan, there is life outside the Gran Turismo series after all.

Published Dec. 4th 2016

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