The Best Car And Racing Arcade Games From The 1980S

The Best Car And Racing Arcade Games From The 1980S

The Best Car And Racing Arcade Games From The 1980S

You indeed can play video games today on any computer, console, or even your phone. But playing in an arcade has its delights and exudes a quintessential vibe for real gaming, typically from what we had in the 1980s. Racing video games then were more of a staple of the arcade scene. Be it any joint or a pizza parlor; you had a crowd betting for the highest score on classics like Enduro Racer and Pole Position. It would not be wrong to say that the modern time racing games have their primitive roots from the most formative years of arcade gaming, i.e., the 1980s. 

Arcade racing games were a giant mecca for the crowd gathering, whirring, and chirping to the strikes of New Wave Punk. Perhaps, it would be next to impossible to jot down a list of all the racing video games of the decade. Therefore, we have listed a couple of the popular car and racing games from the 1980s in this post. 

#1. Outrun

Outrun was all about a cool Ferrari Testarossa hovering on the open road alongside the mountains, desert, and ocean. The special highlight was introduced with a blonde passenger for a sweet company. All these were novel to this era - the smooth graphics, classic music, the one-of-a-kind theme, all cherished with your hands-on-the-wheel. 

Gave a semi-realistic driving feel and chills to the game freaks!

Arguably, it was the most beloved of all and still is. Outrun was introduced in 1986, and since then, this arcade racing game has become timeless. No matter what innovation may come with other racing video games, its unique element for the branching path and game replayability cannot be overshadowed. Players were actually able to steer and swap between different gears to race at their desired speeds. Outrun had “five goals” to be completed with each race stage ascending the difficulty.

#2. Pole Position

F1 circuit games have always won hearts, and racing has been revolutionized with the debut of Pole Position in 1981 to the arcade world. Realism in video games was not ubiquitous then, and pole position became a trendsetter with its 3D overhead view. The arcade racing game was a big hit in North America, becoming the most crowd-pleasing coin-operated arcade game

However, it was the pioneer with a qualifying lap feature and a track based on a real circuit befitting the period. The success of the pole position cemented the groundwork for its sequels later introduced as Pole Position 2 and the Final Lap in 1982 and 1988. 

  • Pole Position 2 (1982), compared with its former arcade machine game, was easier to integrate with an original cabinet and this could be simply done by switching out a few chips. It was an advanced version with improved graphics, several tracks to race on, and debris-laden explosions. 
  • Final Lap, another sequel to Pole Position, was introduced in 1988 after a long wait. This version is considered the ground for modern racing video games

#3. Enduro Racer

Racing video games are not only about F1s and Ferrari; the superbikes and dirt bikes also stand separate in the arcade world. The dirt bike arcade racing game version was produced in 1986: a motorcycle racing game, or probably more of an off-road version. One could experience lurching movements and pounding music alongside the sweet jumps and selection of tracks for a partially real racing essence. 

With a third-person representation, this arcade machine game was much like Hang-On in some aspects. It had a total of seven stages with elevated turns, which were to be smoothly played. The game racers mostly cherished the pull-up they get with the handlebars for a wheelie. 

Now You Can Enjoy These Classics With Creative Arcades

The good news is that you can get all the “record-breaking games” of the 1980s with classic arcade machines offered by Creative Arcades. We offer a wide range of arcade classics with in-built hundreds of thousands of arcade games to hit nostalgia right on the spot. 


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