Racing games have had mass success on the iPhone due to the fact developers can make use of the steering wheel-type gameplay through motion control. It still remains one of the most popular genres on iOS today.
If you like adrenaline-fuled rushes to the finish line, look no further. Here are twelve of the best racing apps out there that will surely quench your thirst for speed.
Released not long ago, Heat is the newest addition to the Asphalt series for iOS. As with the previous game, you have to collect stars in order to unlock new cars and events to participate in, ranging from drift challenges to eliminations. I have to say, this game has stunning visuals — I couldn’t keep my eyes off it. Background afterthoughts have definitely improved from Adrenaline.
I managed to pick up the controls within the first race which was quite impressive. Cars are now classed into tiers based on performance, so I couldn’t take a peek at the most powerful car like I usually do, much to my dismay. The levels are well thought out and thorough, so you should get maximum enjoyability from your races.
This game, whilst still a racer, is orientated towards taking out all adversaries. You have events such as standard races, knockout races and races where specific weapons must be used. The online playability is great too; you can have six people race against each other across multiple devices!
Again, this is another game that scores big on visuals. It Runs 60fps smoothly with full screen anti-alias. The Retina display also makes it look even better. One thing though, is that you can’t unlock all the cars and parts by just succeeding, you have to purchase some. Even so, this is still a great app.
This is a great retro-style motorcycle game with a ton of great unlockables. The tracks are really nice, with a natural yet complex feel. Navigating your bike in and around the tracks can get a bit tricky though — make sure you bring your racing gloves!
One of the first games I ever had for my iPhone, Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit is still one of my favourite racers. You are tasked to outrun the law in supercars like the Pagani Zonda Cinque or stop racers completely in police interceptors. You can use weapons to get away such as overdrive, jamming and oil slicks, or if you’re trying to stop racers, you can use roadblocks, spike strips or an EMP lock.
The app has been updated to maximise the quality of the visuals on the Retina display, and it shows. Fast-paced, thrilling gameplay should keep you glued to your iPhone for hours. Some of the scenery through day and night looks aesthetically marvellous.
This may seem like a surprising entry when contrasted with apps such as Death Rally, however this is a very well done and polished game. It features 12 iconic SEGA characters such as Sonic, Amigo, Dr. Eggman and many others. You can set traps, fire missiles and, if all else fails, use your All-Star move which is unique to each character.
I didn’t expect the gameplay to be that good due to the endorsement of SEGA and that being its main feature, however after playing through the game a bit, the experience is not dissimilar to other bigger racing titles. It’s very Mario Kart-esque (but it would be), so if you want that same kind of experience on your iPhone, this is the way to go.
True to its name, Real Racing is a realistic simulation of racing competitively across a diverse range of environments with only the controls in the car to win the race (i.e. no boost, weapons etc.).You can touch or tilt to steer which may appeal to some and you have manual or automatic acceleration and braking.
The game is beautifully designed; scenery looks stunning all the way throughout the game, along with the cars too. This is probably best for any people used to games like GRID, as there’s no messing around. For skilful racing enthusiasts only.
Heat’s younger brother, Adrenaline has been one of the definitive racers for both iOS and OS X since its release. It involves highly-paced, highly-graphical gameplay that glues you to your display. With a whole bunch of cars to unlock, this superb racer has hours of fun in store.
Something I mentioned earlier that Heat has improved on is the little background details that just seem like afterthoughts and let the overall graphics down a bit. The gameplay more than makes up for it though; expect to not move for a while.
I thought this game to be a diamond in the rough when I first started playing it. This fun micro machines-style racer contains many colourful, detail-rich environments for you to race little remote controlled cars (with nitro of course) around.
I adore this game for so many reasons, and not just because of the cute, bloated vehicles. It looks great and plays great; definitely one of my favourite racers when I’m not feeling serious enough to try super hard.
If you’re not an F1 fan, this might not be your cup of tea. That doesn’t mean to say that this isn’t a great racer, however. The tracks have been recreated almost flawlessly, making this a great way to stimulate F1 hype. You can race against the famed players on the infamous tracks including the Buddh International Circuit, which played host to the first ever Indian Grand Prix.
Not really a racer but still in the category, Parking Mania is an unusual yet incredibly addictive puzzler that involves you placing one of over 80 vehicles ranging from sports cars to big rigs in the correct position while dealing with factors such as day, night and the location.
The precision-fueled gameplay keeps you coming back for more ultimately to achieve perfection, as the levels are all ranked out of three stars based on accuracy. I found that the elusive third star always seems to slip out of my grasp, cruelly bringing me back in for more.
This physics orientated bike game has to be one of the best out there. It has 90 different tracks and more than 300 challenges that range from a walk in the park to inhumane torture. It has a wonderful menu design and very appealing graphics.
You may be that type of gamer who can never die one too many times, and if so, this is the game for you. The controls are quite stiff, but with patience, you’ll find this game to be a little gem due to the fact that you can bide your time playing user-created levels as well as designing your own.
Anticlimactically, you have to recklessly get away from the police in this great racer. One of the things I love about racing games is the crashing, and this game offers exactly that; you have to generally crash your way through the 16 levels given.
It’s not a huge time-killer, but it’s definitely enough to have hours and hours of fun. It’s not a game that lasts ages, but for $0.99, it’s an incredible bargain.
Did we miss a racing game favorite of yours? Let us know in the comments!