Automobile racing started out after the first gasoline-fueled cars were produced. In 1887 the first car race was organized in France and featured a 2-kilometer course. However, only one entrant showed up. About seven years later, the first automobile race kicked off, with a 79-mile race from Paris to Rouen in France. A total of 69 “horseless carriages” registered for the event, with 25 selected for the race.
Since then, automobile racing has evolved into what it is now. Today we have an assortment of automobile racing types such as Formula One racing, touring car racing, sports-car racing, production car racing, stock car racing, rallying, drag racing, off-road racing, and kart racing. In addition, car racing games found its way into the computer age through online car racing games which can be played as a standalone program or with a web browser.
Interestingly, the first “racing” computer game did not involve automobiles. Atari introduced Space Race in 1973 as an arcade game wherein players control spaceships and race with each other. It was only a year later that Taito released Sped Race, an automobile-themed car racing game. From these humble beginnings, car racing games have evolved into games such as Need for Speed, Virtua Racing, Ridge Racer, and the more recent X Motor Racing.
Browser-based car racing games are usually provided free from countless websites, ranging from pure online gaming sites to social networking sites such as Facebook. Racing video games can be classified into two general genres: racing simulators and arcade racing games. Racing simulators attempt to simulate auto racing to a certain degree of accuracy. This involves taking into consideration real-world factors such as fuel consumption, tire wear and tear, braking, and g-forces. Most racing simulation games follow real-world physics to ensure more believable car handling.
On the other hand, arcade car racing games put more emphasis on the fun side of racing, giving way to more liberal laws of physics, as well as real and fictional car designs. Races can take place just about anywhere: city streets, dirt roads, highways, race tracks, etc. Racing physics are more simplified and racing environments can vary from the conventional to the imaginary.
Here is some free online car racing games:
• Race Duel. Play against a computer-controlled opponent. Choose over 5 different tracks. Navigation is simple since the car follows the mouse pointer.
• Highway Mission. Drive your car along the highway and complete missions. Use arrow keys to navigate and the CTRL key to fire at red cars. Vehicle upgrades can also be picked up by passing through it.
• Street Rally Tokyo Edition. Race through the streets of Tokyo in this faced-paced racing game. Choose from three customized speedracing vehicles. Race against various challengers on eight (8) different tracks. Select from three difficulty levels: easy, normal, and hard mode.
• Underground Racer. Compete within the underground racing circuit and dominate the competition. Choose from four different underground street racing cars and four levels. Use the arrow keys to navigate.