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10 best Xbox One racing games of all time

Best Xbox One Racing Game

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Microsoft’s Xbox One console is a graphics powerhouse, and you know what that means – amazing, true-to-life racing games.

The Xbox One has a huge selection of racing games, but only a few merit a place in the top 10 racing video games available for the system.

The Forza series makes a strong showing, to the surprise of few, but the list is also packed with less traditional offerings that emphasize different aspects of motorsports, like DiRT Rally and Project CARS 2.

In this post you will find:

  • A list of the best racing video games currently on Xbox One
  • Brief highlights of each game
  • A few suggested games that are related to each racing title

So here you go.

10. Forza Motorsport 5

Forza Motorsport 5

Developed by Turn 10 and released for the Xbox One by Microsoft, Forza Motorsport 5 was a launch title for Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox One console in 2013.

The game is notable for featuring BBC Top Gear luminaries Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond as commentary voice-overs for menu selection screens.

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Featuring a total of 50 manufacturers with over 200 cars to choose, gamers have more than enough variety to keep them entertained for hours on end.

The game also features 17 racing circuits to explore and, while it eschews the licensed music found on past soundtracks, provides a nice sonic accompaniment to gameplay.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Forza Motorsport
  • Gran Turismo
  • Need for Speed series

9. Forza Horizon 2: Storm Island

Forza Horizon 2

The sequel to the 2012 smash hit Forza Horizon, Forza Horizon 2 is an open-world racing game that places the players in circuits located in southern France and Northern Italy, tracks that are part of the Horizon Festival competition in which the player participates.

To advance in the game, players participate in local events and progress as they complete them.

Storm Island is an expansion pack for Forza Horizon 2 and tasks players with racing in extreme weather conditions such as tropical storms as well as grappling with sudden terrain changes.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Screamride
  • Forza 3
  • Forza Horizon

8. Project CARS 2

Project CARS 2

Developed by Slightly Mad Studios for the Xbox One, Project CARS 2 is a racing motorsport simulation game that places the player in the role of a simulated race car driver, down to racing prep to finish.

Unlike other games in the genre, Project CARS 2, like its predecessor Project CARS, revels in realism and offers players the most robust racing simulation experience to be had on any platform.

Project CARS 2 has 182 cars from 38 different manufacturers and touts a variety of racing modes from grand touring to off-road racing.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Forza Horizon
  • Ride 2
  • Need for Speed Rivals

7. F1 2016

F1 2016

With gameplay inspired by the 2016 F1 racing season, F1 2016, developed by Codemasters Birmingham and published by Codemasters, is the eighth installment in the series and is centered around a revised career mode consisting of 10 seasons instead of five as in the previous installment.

The game comes with 21 circuits and narration provided by David Croft and Anthony Davidson with all 11 F1 teams present.

The game’s emphasis on simulating a career as an F1 driver is its main draw. Players engage in manual starts, manual pit lane entry and the formation lap – all in an effort to simulate the F1 experience.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Car Mechanic Simulator 2018
  • Roadclub: League Racing
  • WRC 6 FIA World Rally Championship

6. Forza Motorsport 7

Forza Motorsport 7

The tenth installment in the long-running Forza series, Forza Motorsport 7 has a whopping 700 cars on its roster – not to mention the exclusive Forza Edition vehicles – and more than 200 different racing configurations on 32 exotic locations, all available at launch.

Featuring beautiful graphics and tweaked gameplay, Forza Motorsport 7 is a worthy entry in the series and one worth a consideration, particularly given its budget-title status as of publication.

Generally well received by critics and players alike upon release, Forza Motorsport 7 takes some of the best elements of earlier entries and refurbishes them for a modern audience.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Forza Motorsport 3
  • FlatOut 4
  • Nascar Heat Evolution

5. DiRT 4

Dirt 4 Game

A rally-themed racing video game from Codemasters released in June 2017, DiRT 4 is the 12th game in the famed Colin McRae Rally series of racings games and the sixth game release to bear the DiRT name.

The main focus of the gameplay is rallying or rally racing, pitting the player in timed staged events on racing terrain such as tarmac and off-road racing conditions in a wide-variety of weather conditions that impact how cars perform and thus the course of gameplay as well.

Rally locations include places like Fitzroy in Australia, Tarragona in Spain, Michigan in the United States, Värmland in Sweden and Powys in Wales and the lineup of cars to select spans all different competition classes.

The game also has rallycross racing and bears an official FIA World Rallycross championship license. Team management simulation returns with players taking an active role in building and maintaining a winning crew and vehicle.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Spintires: Mudrunner
  • Trackmania Turbo
  • WRC 7

4. Forza Horizon 2

Forza Horizon 2

An open-world racing game in the Forza series that is a direct sequel to the widely-acclaimed Forza Horizon, Forza Horizon 2 was developed by Playground Games, the team behind the original Forza Motorsport way back in the day.

Released in September of 2016, Forza Horizon 2 places the player in the role of a contestant in the Horizon Festival, racing across exotic locations dotted across Northern Italy and Southern France.

Racing around the regions and completing events scattered throughout will help the player progress through the game.

One interesting new feature in Forza Horizon 2 is the “bucket list” system. This is a group of challenges that the player needs to complete in a fashion similar to Forza Horizon’s 1000 Club feature.

There is also a cooperative play bucket list for players to complete in cooperation with other Forza Horizon 2 racers.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • The Crew
  • Need for Speed
  • F1 2017

3. DiRT Rally

DIRT Rally

As you can tell from this list, publisher Codemasters dominates in quality racing games, rallying video games in particular.

This game is also focused on rally racing with 17 cars and 36 stages from locations from around the world such as Monte Carlo, Powys, and Argolis.

DiRT Rally also covers the gamut of rally racing vehicles, offering makes from the 1960’s up unto the modern era.

There’s a bit of something for everyone in DiRT Rally, even if you’re not a fan of rally racing video games. Many publications absolutely fell in love with DiRT Rally upon initial release, with some reviewers calling it the best racing game and/or the best game of all time.

This is not to undercut its very realistic nature – tires burst with relative ease, you run out of gas, and encounter any myriad of challenges facing a real rally racer.

In this respect the game can be difficult, but that makes it part of the fun for many.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Assetto Corsa
  • Sebastien Loeb Rally Evo
  • WRC 5

2. Forza Motorsport 6

Forza Motorsport 6

Released in 2015, Forza Motorsport 6 is the culmination of the best of the series and features the most extensive options in terms of racing type, vehicle type, configurations, and simulations of any of the Forza Motorsport series of games. It is in two words “almost perfect.”

The racing tracks are painstakingly digital recreations of real-world courses and the vehicle selection is vast.

Weather impacts the course of the race and how each vehicle handles, adding enough of a random chaotic element to each race that ups the replay value immensely.

Just when you think you’ve mastered a course you are thrown for a loop by the introduction of bad weather.

Small things like that add up to create a game that is simply irresistible if you love racing video games.

The game featured multiple partnerships and tie-ins with real-world brands and even other video games. A partnership with Ford produced the iconic cover with the GT and the Chryslus Rocket from Fallout even makes an appearance as a selectable vehicle.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Project CARS
  • Nascar Heat 2
  • Baja: Edge of Control

1. Forza Horizon 3

Forza Horizon 3

This is the ultimate Forza Horizon experience with cross-platform play between Xbox One owners and PC gamers as well as featuring one of the most grandiose settings ever for a Forza game.

Set in a fictional representation of the continent of Australia, Forza Horizon 3 includes many different types of racing, the bucket list challenges found in other entries, time trials, and drifting.

The game has over 350 vehicles available, the highest number ever in a Forza racing game. Instead of serving in the role as a competitor in the Horizon Festival, the player is now the manager of the said festival with the added task of making it the best in the world.

This gives the player a lot of customization options in terms setting up challenges and racing teams, an added element of experimentation that ups the replay value considerably, making for a racing game with seemingly endless variety.

Vehicle and avatar customization options abound, as in previous games, and even features four-player cooperative gameplay using the cross-platform functionality baked into the game between Xbox One systems and Windows PC gamers.

Gamers looking for the quintessential Xbox One racing experience need look no further than Forza Horizon 3, a game that combines the best of multiple racing games into one package that surpasses them all on Microsoft’s console.

You’ll probably like this game if you also like:

  • Rocket League
  • Need for Speed Payback
  • MXGP 3

Do you think there are other games that should be on this list? Share your thoughts!

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10 best Xbox One racing games of all time