Game Features 7

The 10 best racing games on Android

horizon chase

Final Freeway 2R

Back in the days when amusement arcades were gaming wonderlands, and all home console and computer experiences were mere pale imitations, the arcade racing game of choice was OutRun. It was colourful, it was sexy, and it was fast.

Final Freeway 2R is not OutRun. That much is beyond dispute. But it’s the closest thing you’ll find on mobile to the pure arcade essence of Sega’s classic racer. It has 14 stages, three playable characters, a whopping six control methods (plus controller support), an authentic soft rock soundtrack, and a practically lethal dose of retro charm.

Get it here

Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing

Some people think Sonic The Hedgehog is better than Mario. Those people are wrong. But is Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing a better racing game than Mario Kart? Also no.

However, Mario Kart isn’t available on Android, and in any case many racing purists do prefer the slightly more demanding racing of the Sonic franchise, which sees you rocketing around a variety of Sega-themed courses as a variety of Sega-themed characters. Whereas Mario Kart is cuddly and inclusive, Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing is brutally exacting, without being any less fun. Get it here

Maximum Car

We don’t play racing games so that we can drive in a courteous and responsible fashion, observing the various rules and norms that are designed to keep motorists safe.

No, we play racing games for the thrill of driving fast and nearly dying the whole damn time, and that’s what Maximum Car lets you do. As its name suggests, this is a high-octane, bombastic, hard-rocking carnival of speed, danger, flames, and twisted metal. It’s Burnout for the pixelart-loving, touchscreen generation, and it will singe off your eyebrows. Get it here.


Given the generally casual emphasis of mobile gaming, there are some surprisingly serious, technically polished racing games on the platform. The Real Racing franchise got the trend started, demonstrating what’s possible with the humble smartphone, and Gameloft joined in later with the equally polished GT Racing 2.

But it’s Gear.Club that now holds the crown. This unbelievably gorgeous, authentic racer was created by the developers behind V-Rally and Test Drive, and the pedigree shows. It also has controller support, and a considerate free-to-play system that will let you enjoy yourself without spending a fortune. Get it here

Ridge Racer Slipstream

The secret of Ridge Racer Slipstream’s success is that it’s not a conversion of an old game. Yes, Ridge Racer is an old franchise, but developer Invictus has built something totally new from the ground up, distilling what made the original Ridge Racer great and injecting that bubbling essence into a game designed purely for mobile.

The hallmark of the Ridge Racer series is its drift mechanic, which has been executed perfectly here, and the cars have an impressive sense of weight and speed. With a choice of 12 vehicles, six performance-enhancing perks, ten venues, 20 courses, 108 competitions, and 8-way multiplayer, Ridge Racer Slipstream is a modern classic. Get it here

Need for Speed No Limits

Sometimes you just want a bit of big budget glamour. EA’s Need for Speed series is the Fast & Furious of the gaming world, a long-running franchise that consistently delivers a shallow but enjoyable dose of polish, excitement, and fun.

In mobile racer terms, Need for Speed No Limits has impeccable heritage, coming as it does from the team that made Real Racing. It has that game’s driving clout, but it also has the bright lights and thumping beats of a Need for Speed game, and the undeniably reasonable price tag of a free to play game. Get it here

Rush Rally 2

Forget road racing games, with their slow corners, inflexible physics, and dreary lack of skidding. What you want is a rally game, where you spend half your time accelerating and half your time kicking up clouds of dust in controlled slides that plunge you into the magical space between chaos and control.

Rush Rally 2 is just such a rally game. It has a range of multiplayer modes, controller support, skill stages, eight settings, a massive 72 tracks, and best-in-class racing physics that let you compete convincingly in numerous conditions, from wet tarmac to snow. Get it here

Slingshot Racing

Slingshot Racing is everything we love about mobile games. While the lack of buttons and joysticks could have been a fatal limitation of the platform, developers have defied this limitation by coming up with ever more creative and ingenious kinds of gameplay.

Hence we now have a racing game, Slingshot Racing, in which you propel a vehicle over a finish line but without the luxury of steering or accelerating. Instead, you shoot out a grappling hook, Batman-style, to grab onto towers and swing your vehicle around corners. It’s a brilliant idea, done perfectly. Get it here

Reckless Racing 3

Top-down racers can make for some of the most intense, enjoyable racing experiences, thanks to the god-like perspective they give you of the winding tracks and the bustling opposition.

Reckless Racing 3 is an example of a top-down racer done well. With 36 tracks, 28 cars, gamepad support, and numerous different events and modes to participate in, it’s a pixel-perfect, powerslide-packed romp through a variety of crisp, beautifully rendered environments. Get it here

Horizon Chase

Chasing a horizon is plainly a ridiculous thing to do, because it never gets any closer. But if you can look past this paradox, Horizon Chase is well worth checking out. Like Final Freeway 2R, it styles itself after OutRun, though it casts its net of influences wider, taking in lesser known 16-bit classics like Lotus Esprit II and Jaguar XJ220.

The result is one of the best racing games on Google Play. With 16 unlockable cars, 36 cities, a massive 82 tracks, gamepad support, and gorgeous graphics that perfectly evoke the 16-bit era with a modern twist, Horizon Chase is an absolutely compulsory purchase – particularly given that it’s free. Get it here.

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