A lot of racing games were launched on PS2. Many of those tried to follow in the footsteps of greater tittles. Some were adaptations of video games from racing movies, and others were sports games from official series.
Despite the many games released, few came out on top as classics in the genre. Those games were praised as the best of the generation and added to the racing game lovers’ wish list. In the PS2 time, the competition to create the best racing simulator was more open than ever.
If you want to know the games that are worth playing, here you have a top list where we show you 11 of the best PS2 racing games of all time.
11 Of The Best PS2 Racing Games That Are Still Great Today!
11. WipEout Fusion
Gamers describe WipEout Fusion as “revolutionary.” With its stunning visuals, high speed, great design, and monstrous soundtrack, Wipeout truly defined “next-generation” gaming.
It took the PS2 a couple of years to finally get its take on this futuristic game, but it was well worth the wait. While there are technically no cars in this title, it is a title too good that players cannot ignore. The title developed by Psygnosis Games is genuinely a PS2 classic.
10. Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2
Hot Pursuit 2 honors its name, “Need for Speed” with an exciting game that can be defined as “Speed.” It is a series known for its fast-paced game, and this title is known as its opus.
The only complaints in the game are that it lacks car customization and a visual sense issue with the environment. It never changes its feeling when flying at breakneck speeds, such as uphill or different terrains.
9. NASCAR 2005: Chase For The Cup
Most critics viewed this title developed by Electronic Arts as Nascar’s best sports racing game. But others preferred to point out the missing features and technical issues.
NASCAR 2005: Chase For The Cup provides overall more options than you would expect from a sport racing game. For example, four teams of cars to compete with.
It was stagnant by frame rate issues and missing features like the first-person view, the angle of the camera from inside the vehicle when driving. Compared to others before this entry, the charts are considered a reduction.
8. Nascar Thunder 2004
Developed by Butcan Creations, NASCAR Thunder 2004 is the last title launched for the Thunder series that ended in 2009, and it is considered as the best installment of it.
Nascar Thunder 2004 is on this top list thanks to its career mode and car customization. Those are considered its best and deepest features. NASCAR Thunder 2004 will be one of your favorites if you like the big accidents and the vengeful AI that reminds you of your misdeeds.
7. Need For Speed Most Wanted
This title, developed by Criterion Games, is graphically delightful. It is a solid game, but one that curiously ends up being heavy and monotonous in the long run, prey to its innovation: the police presence.
It does not mean that Need For Speed: Most Wanted is a bad game, quite the contrary. It is a good title, but it lowered the level that its predecessors had placed so high.
Need For Speed Most Wanted is a game with remarkable details that we will enjoy and remember. It is a good purchase, highly recommended for lovers of racing games.
It is well cared for at all levels. The best aspect is the blacklist, a real goal that helps us focus on what we are doing, or what we intend to do.
Too much importance has been given to something that should be merely anecdotal, or at least selectable. The whole set is too absorbed by a succession of races against law enforcement officers that are little exciting or varied.
Still, this is a great game that deserves to be on this top list.
6. Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition Remix
Rockstar returned to offer a great driving game with new features that differentiated it from the increasing competition.
Who would have thought that the DUB culture would have grown enough to generate its own video game? Even more puzzling, who would have thought the game would turn out to be good?
After all, big heavy cars with numerous televisions and spinning tires are not exactly ideal for racing. Well, luckily, the Rockstar San Diego team decided to make a “DUB” game that was fast and incredibly addictive. With massive places to explore, numerous updates, and great gameplay, Midnight Club 3: Dub Edition showed that “bling-bling” could be fun.
It has unmatched customization. The remix looks like the ultimate edition with an additional track, adds to the soundtrack, and more customization features.
This Midnight Club is preferable to be considered as a remix than the original due to its similarities. But the remakes improved the features and add-ons.
5. Need For Speed Underground 2
Need For Speed: Underground 2 is a solid and entertaining racing game that will keep tuning lovers hooked for months.
It is a very original bet, giving us free will for a large city. But this city is not exploited enough. In the exploration mode, we would have liked a little more to do than look for secrets and go from one place to another. And in the races, where being in an open city, is not used to give us the freedom to look for new routes to reach the goal.
The new racing modes, especially the Outrun, are very interesting. The configuration options of the car will satisfy the most demanding gamers, whether mechanical or tuning.
NFS Underground 2 is a highly recommended purchase at any time you read this,
4. Gran Turismo 4
This Polyphony Digital game is one of the essential games of the PS2. It is a game that is a must-have if you like racing games.
Its performance, number of cars, and gameplay are considered the best in racing games. However, what hurts its ranking in this top list is its little innovation.
The 4th game offered minimal changes from previous games and a standard arcade mode.
Its graphics are considered the best in the system. Gran Turismo 4 graphics were compared with the incredible graphics available today.
3. Burnout Revenge
Burnout Revenge is an exaggerated, eccentric, and action-packed racing game.
This game reaches levels of destruction of GTA while you run. Pedestrians are not an obstacle if they get in your way because they will fly off the hood of your car. Auto over car action sees a lot of explosions and destruction while retaining that quick feeling.
All Burnout Revenge features have kept the reviewers busy for hours and have been viewed as one of the most detailed in that regard. The only caveat people talked about is that it is hugely similar to Burnout 3.
The difference is that what makes this game better for many players is the revenge mechanics and destruction of joy that you can do in the game.
2. Burnout 3: Takedown
Criterion and Electronic Arts managed to create the funniest high-speed title of recent years and one of the must-have purchases of 2004.
The only thing that this PlayStation 2 game lacks is the customization and tuning settings that the other games have, but it excels at everything else. Burnout 3 offers us vibrant races, spectacular crashes, amazing graphics, and a complete soundtrack.
It is an arcade-style racing title, so no realism is expected. This installment celebrates and masters its arcade-style, knowing very well that it is not a sim runner. Burnout 3 was an emotional search game on ps2.
1. Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec
We know that nobody will be surprised with this racing game that is in the first place. While Burnout 3: Takedown was the king of arcade-style racing games, Gran Turismo 3: A-Spec is the king of simulation/realism racing games.
This Sony Play Station Saga practically laid the foundations for console racing simulators, generated countless copycats. Also, it is responsible for some cool Japan-exclusive cars heading to the United States.
Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec is almost as realistic as any system – the way cars drive, accelerate, and brake feels incredibly real. Any vehicle you can think of has been added to the Gran Turismo series. Thanks to that, it is possible to have a “virtual” garage of almost every imaginable dream car.
Gran Turismo 4 did not add much to the gameplay, but it did add a lot more cars and tracks. However, it was not enough to surpass the third installment.
This title was a masterpiece for the Play Station 2 era. In its time, Gran Turismo 3 was the most realistic racing experience you could get.
Without a doubt, Gran Turismo 3 is the best PS2 racing game of all time.