These 5 arcade racers are the perfect antidote to sim racing

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After endless hours in sim racing games, is it time for a refreshing change? Check out our list of fun arcade racers to find just that.
Photo credit: EA

Sim racing is a fun hobby, but it can get rather intense. Hours of concentration while completing an endurance race in iRacing can wear you out and make you crave something a little bit more 'relaxed'. That's when arcade games step in! The fast-paced nature of the genre is still enough to give any racing fan their fix, without having to worry too much about hitting every apex perfectly. So check out our top five antidotes to sim racing – you might find that they're just what the doctor ordered!

Hotshot Racing (2020)





This brightly coloured game is a love letter to bygone racing games of the 90s, such as Ridge Racer, Virtua Racing and Daytona USA. A single-player Grand Prix mode sees you racing through cities and mountain passes against seven opponents, which may not sound many, but with all the bumping and grinding the action is constant. A four-player splitscreen mode ensures that you can play against friends from the comfort of your own sofa. It's a modern game with a retro feel, available on Xbox, Nintendo Switch and Steam.

Inertial Drift (2020)





Sim racers everywhere know that while drifts may look cool, they cost time and increase tyre wear. So if you can't resist the temptation to drift, it's best to do it somewhere it is actively encouraged – such as in Inertial Drift. The cars are drifted with the two controller sticks, making it a refreshing contrast to all other racing games. Like Hotshot Racing the game has a colourful retro vibe, only this time it harks back to the 90s drift scene in Japan. The PS4 and Nintendo Switch where you can slide your way into this game.

Wreckfest (2018)





Even the most dedicated of sim racers sometimes has to suppress the urge to straight-line a corner and take out an annoying opponent. With the potential to lose safety rating and friends alike, iRacing is not the place for such behaviour. Instead, reach for your PlayStation or Xbox or PC and load up Wreckfest. Here, the aim is to ram and destroy your opponents in destruction derby style races and tournaments. There's also a hilarious array of interesting rides to use, which can be customised too. So save up your sim racing anger and frustration and vent it here in the correct environment.

Need For Speed Hot Pursuit Remastered (2020)





Next up is a classic game that has been revamped for modern times. Need For Speed Hot Pursuit originally hit consoles back in 2010, but following a remaster nearly a decade later it's still going strong today. You can play either as a cop or a renegade who is trying to escape them. The beauty is in its simplicity – if you're tired of making intricate changes to damper settings, an good old-fashioned 'cat and mouse' police chase on PlayStation, Xbox or PC could be just the thing for you.

Forza Horizon 4 (2018)





Yes, it's an obvious one, but we could hardly list the best arcade games without mentioning Forza Horizon 4, could we? Set in a large, open plan map in a fictionalised UK, the game is huge with over 700 licensed cars and a host of races, events and challenges. While taking the racing line is as important as in iRacing, you might find it faster to cut through a farm or along a river. With the announcement of the upcoming Forza Horizon 5, the formula is set to evolve in the streets and countryside of Mexico on 9 November. Until then we'll have to make do with its very polished predecessor, available on Xbox and PC.

Are any excellent arcade racers missing from this list? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!
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