There are a lot of powerful games for the Nintendo 64, and racing games are no different. Even in this day and age, the N64 has some of the best pilots. If you like old games, you owe it to yourself to spend a weekend doing nothing but playing the best games the library has to offer.
We’ve done the hard work and put together a list of the best racing games for the N64. You might as well check out an N64 emulator if you don’t already have one. Here, are some places where you can find emulators.
Best N64 Racing Games to Play Right Now
1. Mario Kart 64
Was there any doubt about which game would be number one? Mario Kart 64 is one of the best racing games for the Nintendo 64. It builds on what Super Mario Kart started and has four different game modes and eight characters you can play as. Mario Kart 64 has the best versions of the most popular levels in the series, especially Rainbow Road. Mario Kart 64 is a great way to spend time with friends if you can get it, either on the original console or through emulation.
2. F-Zero X
The first F-Zero game came out in 1990, so when the sequel came out in 1998, fans were excited to see what would happen next. The F-Zero X did not disappoint. It’s one of the best games for the N64, and it has a ton of stuff to do.
There are 30 different cars to drive and 24 different tracks to race on. You can even play in the “X” cup, which gives you random streaks every time you play. This means that there are a lot of different kinds of races. This is one of the most playable N64 racing games because every race is different.
3. Wipeout 64
Wipeout is a rare Nintendo game because, with the exception of three, almost every other game in the series was made for a Sony console. The game is a futuristic racing game that looks a little bit like F-Zero but stands on its own. In split-screen mode, up to four people can play at once. It also has more weapons than previous games, including missiles that can be fired from the back.
Longtime fans of the series will notice that most of the tracks are just mirror images of tracks from the previous games, but that doesn’t make them any less fun to play on the Nintendo 64.
4. Micro Machines 64 Turbo
Micro Machines is an odd series, but don’t let the name fool you. This game is anything but small when it comes to fun. Anyone who liked playing with Micro Machines cars as a kid will love this game. You drive a small toy car and race on tracks made out of everyday things, but because your car is so small, they look bigger than life.
The game is easy to learn and play because the controls are simple, but you won’t get bored anytime soon. You can drive 32 different kinds of vehicles on 48 different tracks. There are both time trials and head-to-head games.
5. Star Wars: Racer Episode 1
Star Wars Episode 1: Racer is a great racing game for the N64 that you shouldn’t pass up. Don’t just pass it over because of the name. It keeps the best parts of Episode 1—like the pod races—and leaves out the rest.
There are 25 different racers, and each one has its own skills and pods. Each vehicle can be upgraded in the shop. For a Nintendo 64 game, the ability to change things is pretty cool. Upgrades change the way each vehicle moves and acts.
Damage is also an important part of this game. If you hit something on the left side of the car, you might find it harder to turn to the left. On that side, your pod will also be less safe. It adds a level of strategy to racing that many other N64 games don’t have.
6. Lego Racers
Any game called Lego should have at least two or three things that stand out. Lego Racers lives up to that with a ton of ways to change the game. As a player, you are given a set of Legos that you can use to build the driver and the car.
As you play the game, you unlock more Lego pieces that you can use to change your car and driver. You can also get four different cups with six tracks on each as you progress through the story. You can even increase the power of the weapons you have by leveling them up.
The split-screen mode only works for single races in Lego Racers, which is a shame. This would be a great game to play with friends, but there aren’t many ways to play with other people. But playing by yourself will be one of the most fun things you can do on the N64.
7. San Francisco Rush: Extreme Racing
San Francisco Rush: Extreme Racing is a port of an arcade game, but the N64 version is arguably better than the original for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that it has more tracks. The racing game for the Nintendo 64 has six tracks, and two of them are secret “stunt” tracks.
Depending on who you ask, the game’s controls aren’t the best. Some people like using the analog stick on the Nintendo 64, while others find it hard to move. We think it works well, but the use of a steering wheel on the side adds a new element to the title.
The practice mode and the “death race” mode are what make San Francisco Rush: Extreme Racing stand out. In Death Race mode, cars that crash stay on the tracks. This makes the game harder and is also a great technical achievement, given that the Nintendo 64 doesn’t have a lot of hardware.
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