Around the track🏎

Master the virtual track: the ultimate guide to sim racing games in 2023

August 8, 2023

Gone are the days where the only way for racing aficionados to satisfy their need for speed is to head to the track!  


With how quickly the e-sport of sim racing has evolved, the thrill of race day can now be easily experienced from the comfort of your own home. Whether you’re a fan of Formula 1, NASCAR, rally racing or Mario Kart and regardless of if you’re racing with a simple PC or a professional-grade rig, there’s a sim racing game out there that was made to cater to your unique tastes! 


While there’s no shortage of different racing games to play, the best sim racing games on the market are a step above the rest because they’re not just about speed: they’re about precision, strategy, and pushing the limits of your vehicle to new heights; which ultimately makes you a better driver.  


Regardless of whether you’re a professional driver, experienced sim racer or just a casual gamer looking for an experience that will blow your mind in the best way possible, then this blog will tell you everything you need to know about the best sim racing games of 2023! 


When it comes to sim racing, there’s one game that stands out as the best-of-the-best and that’s nearly unanimously loved by all: iRacing 

Published in 2008, iRacing is a subscription-based game that is today used by professional drivers and casual gamers alike since nothing more is needed than a PC. Its commitment to realism sets it apart from the competition as each car and track that appears in the game has been meticulously scanned with lasers for accuracy, and because it enforces the rules of actual motorsport races—each player has a safety rating, and there are in-game consequences if a player’s rating is low. Players are rewarded for clean driving and for their finishes, allowing them to progress from a rookie rating to a pro! 

Additionally, iRacing is home to more than 400 different leagues, giving you the opportunity to truly immerse yourself in the game’s vast community. 

It is also one of the only sim racing games that gives players a cockpit-only view, which really puts players in the driver’s seat. The game also features day-night cycles and temperature variations, simulating the real conditions that drivers are faced with. 

Today, iRacing allows players to race in four disciplines: road, oval, dirt road and dirt oval. The basic subscription will give you access to 19 cars and 25 tracks, with the ability to purchase more as you go. In total, the game boasts more than 100 cars and tracks including stock cars, sprint cars, touring cars and more! If you want to purchase additional tracks, they’ll cost either a one-time fee of $11.95 or $14.95, depending on the track. Discounted cars and tracks can be purchased for $2.95 and $4.95 as well! 

Once you’ve climbed the iRacing rankings, you may get lucky enough to participate in one of the 6 World Championship series that they host. With more than $500,000 in cash prizes available to be won each year, iRacing is the perfect place for competitive racers to test their skills against others all over the world and see if they have what it takes to make a career out of motorsport! 

With unparalleled driving mechanics, realism and with its official races and private leagues, iRacing is the perfect game if you’re looking for the most authentic racing experience. 

The cover of the sim racing game iRacing

Assetto Corsa & Assetto Corsa Competizione 

Assetto Corsa (AC)—which translates to “race setup” in Italian—and its sister game, Assetto Corsa Competizione (ACC), are two more games that are must-haves for sim racing fans around the world! 

While they share similar names, the two games cater to two different types of sim racers. Assetto Corsa—which was launched in 2013—gives  racers the freedom to race in any car on any track, while Assetto Corsa Competizione—launched in 2019—takes on a more competitive stance, being the official game of the real GT World Challenge and offering only series-specific competitions and cars, but with extreme realism that continues to push boundaries. 

Other than the realism and offered cars & tracks, there are a few key differences in the games. Assetto Corsa allows modding of cars, while Competizione does not. ACC also has more weather options such as rain, whereas AC is limited to basic settings such as wind and day/night cycles. 

Both games have a strong focus on realism, offering detailed physics for an authentic experience. However, Competizione is much more realistic than the basic version—it was even crafted using Unreal Engine 4, which makes for stunning graphics! 

A wide range of racing accessories are supported in both games including wheels, gamepads, VR headsets and motion systems, giving players ample options to enhance their immersion. Both games also allow you to race online and offline against AI, ensuring that there’s never a shortage of opponents to test your skills against! 

By competing against official drivers, real teams and by participating in 24-hour races, the Assetto Corsa games are guaranteed to bring racing aficionados the adrenaline rush they crave. Plus, Assetto Corsa 2 is supposed to be released in 2024—giving drivers something to look forward to for years to come. 

The cover of the sim racing game Assetto Corsa

WRC Generations

If rally racing is more up your alley, then look no further than WRC Generations, the official game of the World Rally Championship. WRC Generations brings the bumpy, heart-pounding action of rally to the comfort of your home and realistically mirrors the demands of modern-day rally racing, making it a fan favourite! 

Available on multiple platforms such as PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation and Xbox, all types of gamers can join in on the action. Whether you’re driving a hybrid car or a classic one, WRC Generations challenges you to optimize your battery life or to manage the unique demands of each vehicle! 

With more than 750 km of stages located in 22 countries, there are endless ways to rally. Whether you play online or off, players have a vast array of modes to explore! If you want to become more competitive, then the League mode allows you to compete against other drivers of your caliber. You can even test your skills with more than 165 timed stages! 

Rally is a form of racing that demands precision and strategy, and WRC Generations lives up to this standard through its extraordinary gameplay. 

The game cover for WRC Generations

F1 2023

The latest version of the classic F1 games secures its spot as one of the best sim racing games of 2023 by delivering an experience that immerses players into the world of elite racing. 

Developed by Codemasters and published by EA Sports, F1 2023 is packed with hyper-realistic F1 cars and circuits, transporting drivers to the heart of the championship. Offering a wide variety of gameplay options, from a full season to simple sprints to their long-awaited Braking Point 2.0—which is a story mode that brings back beloved characters from the original version—F1 2023 adds depth beyond what previous versions of the game had, which helps to bring gameplay to life.  

Red flags, which haven’t been seen since F1 2014, also make a return in this version of the game which adds a new layer of realism. It also brings enhancements to driving physics and race distance settings to be more aligned with real Formula One events! 

Similarly to iRacing, F1 2023 introduces a safety rating for online players to enhance fair play and sportsmanship. 

If you’re a big Formula One fan and you’re looking for the next best thing to being on the track, then look no further than F1 2023! It is the game for F1 fans—all the beloved tracks are there, all the drivers are there, and you can even join leagues to participate in the F1 community. 

The game cover for F1 23


Catering to both beginner and professional drivers with adaptive AI, rFactor 2 gets a well-deserved spot as one of the best sim racing games in 2023. Taking realism to new heights with gameplay in day-night cycles and in different weather conditions, it remains one of the top games for sim racers despite its original release having been more than 10 years ago.  

rFactor 2 also has its place in prestigious eSports championships like McLaren’s World’s Fastest Gamer as well as in real racing teams: it has been adopted as the game of choice for many professional racing teams, including those in Formula One and NASCAR. 

Like most sim racing games, rFactor 2 is continuously being developed. One of its main features that separates it from the others on this list is the Real Road system, which dynamically lays rubber on track surface in real-time during races. This forces players to adapt to the ever-changing conditions and gives them an extremely realistic racing experience! 

The game cover of the sim racing game rFactor 2

Games for sim racers of all types

As we wrap up our exploration of the most popular sim racing games in 2023, it’s evident that the world of virtual motorsport continues to evolve at an outstanding pace. With everything from cutting-edge laser technology to an unwavering commitment to realism through in-game physics and telemetry, there’s a high-quality sim racing game for every type of racer! 

As the technology continues to evolve, one can only imagine what the future holds for sim racing. With virtual reality and haptic feedback—such as the feedback provided by D-BOX—becoming more prominent, the boundaries between real racing and virtual racing are blurring like never before. 

Whether you’re a real-life racer or someone whose looking into buying their first racing game, the games on this list provide you with an opportunity to learn from, compete against and connect with other like-minded enthusiasts from all around the globe, so buckle up and get ready to race! 

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