Deck Out Your New Christmas Console With These Racing Games and Accessories
SSo when all the chaos of the holiday morning has come and gone, you are sitting there in a pile of discarded paper, tape and bows. In front of you sits the shiny box to a brand new video game console. You must have been very good this year. But now that you have a brand new Xbox One or PlayStation 4, you are going to need the right racing games and accessories to get the most out of it.
We decided to make you a big list of every great racing game, and every necessary accessory to have the most automotive fun with your new gaming machine. We have broken it up by console, and then further separated it into games and accessories to make it easy to find what you need.
As a bonus, there are a few little extra items at the bottom for owners of PS3 and Xbox 360 systems who want to get themselves a little something with their holiday cash.
Don’t forget; after you make it through the list, be sure to comment with what you got for Christmas, and list which item on this list is your favorite.
Continue reading to see our list for best racing games and accessories for your new console.
The Xbox One is the latest gaming machine from Microsoft. With the power of Xbox Live, a completely redesigned controller, and a whole mess of great entertainment apps and features, the Xbox One wants to be more than the best gaming console you own, it wants to be the best piece of entertainment equipment you can buy today.
There are a ton of games available for the Xbox One this year, but really the only ones that matter are the ones that involve cars. Here is our list for best racing games you can get on the Xbox One.
Forza Horizon 2 is a game that takes everything that is awesome about huge car events like the Gumball 3000 and molds it into a playable experience that focuses on all the fun and glamor that follows these events. The game starts with players helping a millionaire mogul who set the event up by getting a fleet of supercars to the first stop of the Horizon Festival. You are tossed into a Lamborghini Huracán and get told to blast across the Mediterranean coast. It’s one hell of a party.
The game is big, open, and lots of fun. Turn 10 and Playground studios made sure that there is always a way to play the way you want with the cars you want, and the fact that you can drive through large parts of the map off-road just makes things a little better. To add even more fun to the mayhem, the first major expansion for the game called Storm Island just launched bringing even more weather, new areas to drive and big focus on rally-style loose surface racing.
Forza Motorsport 5: Racing Game of the Year Edition
Forza 5 may be more than a year old now, but if you just got an Xbox One and you are looking for the best simulation racer money can buy, this is what you need. Not only does this new version of Forza 5 give you all the same incredible racing that players love, but Turn 10 has packaged in extra cars and tracks that would normally come with the game. For even more fun, there are dozens of cars available to download from the Xbox Market.
In my opinion Forza Motorsports 5 is easily the best simulation racer I have played in a decade. It is a must-buy for any Xbox One player that reads a site as awesome as TopSpeed.com.
You have the games, but take the extra step and buy this extra gear to make you long racing stints in front the of the TV even better. These are our must-have extra that make playing even better.
Xbox One Controller Play and Charge Kit
Wireless controllers are great, but wireless controllers need batteries. Take it from my own experience; nothing will ruin a good driving game than having you batteries die, not being able to find any extras, and having to stop gaming to go to the store to buy some AAs. This battery is rechargeable so you don’t have to worry about replacing it for a long time, and thanks to some fancy electronics on Microsoft’s part, the Xbox One can read how much power it has to give you a battery meter. Best of all, if it dies, you can plug the controller in with a standard micro USB plug to any power source and keep playing while the controller charges. As an extra little bonus, this whole kit with battery and charging cable is only $20.
Thrustmaster Ferrari 458 Spider Racing Wheel
If you really want to get into you racing games, there is nothing better than to toss the controller to the side and pick up a racing wheel. Thrustmaster sells this incredible new racing wheel that is a replica of the steering wheel that comes in the Ferrari 458 Spider. Sadly you won’t find any carbon fiber or leather on this wheel, but the Rosso red rubber, metal shift paddles and the licensed Ferrari logo mounted in the middle, this is as close to a Ferrari as you can get for under $500.
The wheel is 7-percent scale to the real thing, but it comes with a host of special little extras like the Manettino dial and start button mounted on the wheel. Like all Ferraris sold today, this wheel only comes with two pedals, but the pedals are included. With prices over $400, it is a little expensive, but if you want the best racing experience possible, this is the best choice out there right now.
Razer Kraken Headset for Xbox One
One of the best parts of the Forza Motorsports series is the incredible sounds that each car makes. Turn 10 did a great job of really nailing the engine note for each and every car. Sadly, some other people in your house may not enjoy hearing the wail of a Ferrari V12 for hours on end as you blast around the track. That is where this new gaming headset from Razer comes in. These headphones feature huge 40mm drivers for incredible sound, but they come bundled with a wireless controller adapter that allows you to hook them directly to the Xbox One Controller to get audio wirelessly through the controller. That means you get to hear all the action of the squealing tires and exploding gasoline while your house mates enjoy some quiet, and you don’t even have to be tethered to the console to do it. This is easily one of the smartest buys you can get right now.
The PlayStation 4 takes all the lessons Sony learned from the PS3 and uses them to create a new console that is more powerful than any other on the market, and more gaming focused as well. If you want the best looking games in a new console, the PS4 is the one to choose.
The greatest racing game of the PlayStation family, Gran Turismo, has not had a PS4 version released yet. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t some great racing games available to buy and play. These are our picks for best PS4 racers out right now.
DriveClub is a social focused racing game that sees teams of players racing against a second competing team of cars. The game makes teaming up as easy as possible, and car clubs can have their own livery that gets applied to all members of the club and more. There are lots of tracks, tons of cars, and thanks to a recent update a dynamic weather system can cause all kinds of mayhem for players at random times.
The game was launched with a few server problems and glitches, but a steady stream of updates and bug fixes has ensured that players are having a great time and dealing with far fewer issues.
The Crew is quite an ambitious game that sees players trek across a condensed version of the US in a plot to take down a national automotive gang. The game’s graphics aren’t as pretty as the others on this list, and the actual racing has some serious problems, but the world that The Crew lets you explore is larger, more interesting and more dynamic than any other ever created for a racing game.
There are some major issues with the game that I covered in my review, but many of these issues can be fixed up by Ubisoft over the coming weeks. If you are on the fence about this game, just keep an eye out for sales. While $60 might be a bit much for a game that is still broken in a lot of ways, at $30, it is easily worth it just for the chance to drive around the great landscape that is provided.
Just because the PlayStation 4 is a more powerful system than the Xbox One doesn’t meant that you can get away without a few extra accessories to make your gaming binges more fun.
The PlayStation 4 controllers come with rechargeable batteries form the start, so there is no need to grab a new set. That said, the PS4 controller with its softly rounded edges can be a bit hard to hang on to when the racing gets crazy. SquidGrip helps to remedy this problem with a set of stick-on pieces that are formed from textured rubber to ensure that you can keep a strong hold on your controller no matter what is happening. They apply quickly like stickers, improve grip, and they are latex free for those who have allergies.
Thrustmaster T300 RS Racing Wheel
Just like for the Xbox One, if you really want a complete racing experience on your PS4 you need a good racing wheel. We have turned back to Thrustmaster to check out their new T300 RS. This represents the first force-feedback wheel available for the PlayStation 4. Just like their Ferrari wheel, the wheel is made of rubber to improve grip, it has two pedals, and the shifter paddles mounted to the back are made from metal. The wheel is 11-inches in diameter for quick turning action, and the new 1080-degree, dual belt system creates the most realistic force feedback in any wheel that Thrustmaster has ever produced. As a bonus, this wheel is also certified for use with the PlayStation 3.
Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 Games
If you didn’t get a new console, but you are still looking for a few good racing games, we have some things you need to check out.
Gran Turismo 6
For PlayStation owners, Gran Turismo 6 is THE racing game to own. Not only is it one of the best renown game series of all time, it also has more cars and more tracks than almost any racing game ever released.
Forza Motorsports 4
If you rock Team Green, Forza Motorosports 4 is still a great racer, and thanks to a collaboration with the BBC, there is plenty of voice over work from your three favorite British hooligans from Top Gear. If you don’t own Forza 4, you need to.
For a bit more fun on the arcade style of racing games, you can get the latest game in the Grid series; Grid Autosport. Grid Autosport is available for both PS3 and X360, and it gives players the chance to race how they want with GT3 racers, open-wheel cars and more. They even have drift events if you prefer a bit more sideways action.
F1 2014 is not the strongest game in the series of F1 games from Codemasters, but it is the easiest to jump into for first time players. For this reason, it makes our list of recommendation. Like Grid Autosport, F1 2014 is available for both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 system.