The 10 best racing games to play with a steering wheel

Lights out and away we go.

Images via Codemasters, Xbox Game Studios and SNS Software

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The racing genre is full of innovation, realism, and immersion that makes the experience of driving a car much more thrilling than real-life. To properly experience driving a car nothing is more essential than a steering wheel. This adds to the immersion and realism and can make the overall experience much more thrilling. A proper racing game is required to fully enjoy its benefits. With that in mind, let’s look at ten of the best racing games to play with a steering wheel.

Assetto Corsa Comeptizione

Image via 505 Games

One of the most challenging and unforgiving racing games currently is Assetto Corsa Competizione. It is based on the real-life Blancpain GT3 series and features authentic car models, tracks, and weather simulations. Not to mention, factors like tire grip, vehicle balance, and aerodynamics are accurately represented. Using a steering wheel is definitely essential with this game as the controller won’t give you nearly as much response to these factors. There’s a steep learning curve that comes with using a steering wheel setup but after some trial and error, the game will certainly reward you with success.

DiRT Rally 2.0

Image via Codemasters

If you’re a keen rally enthusiast, then look no further than DiRT Rally 2.0. This is Codemasters’ more realistic series on rallying, the other being the mainline DiRT series that features more of an arcade vibe. DiRT Rally 2.0 takes the art of rallying to the next level with its immersive graphics and gameplay. The handling and driving are as realistic as it gets because even a slight mistake can be a difference between you and that perfect time. Additionally, the new weather system changes how the ground feels and in turn impacts the tire grip. A wheel can help players understand what sort of steering input is needed. Something a controller is unable to give.

Euro Truck Simulator 2

Image via SCS Software

If you’re looking for a game that gives you some ASMR, then Euro Truck Simulator 2 is where it’s at. The game lets you take a truck and travel across Europe delivering packages. The graphics of the game aren’t as impressive as it was released in 2012, but the immersion and enjoyment it provides are unmatched. A steering wheel only adds more to this, especially when you need to deliver packages on a strict time limit without damaging them while navigating difficult roads and highways.

F1 22

Image via EA Sports

F1 22 is certainly one of the games that benefit the most from the steering wheel as it has a lot of features for the player that makes handling these 800 HP aerodynamic beasts much more forgiving. Using a steering wheel can help you nail that apex and shave off that few tenths of a second. Additionally, with VR being added to the game, it perfectly pairs with a steering wheel to provide the ultimate immersion.

Forza Horizon 5

Image via Xbox Game Studios

If you’re all for the fun and action, then Forza Horizon 5 will surely keep you occupied for a long time. This entry in the Forza series takes you to Mexico and features a vibrant world for players to dive deep into. Whether you want to show off your new car, race against other players, or just want to enjoy the Mexican landscape, this game has it all. Using a steering wheel just adds more to the fun factor especially if you want to drift your way across the map.

Gran Turismo 7

Image via PlayStation Studios

Gran Turismo 7 is the latest in Polyphony Digital’s long-running racing series and it’s safe to say, with a steering wheel, it’s probably the only game you’ll ever want to play. The game depicts the realistic handling and maneuvering of all the kinds of cars it has in its catalog. The steering wheel accurately helps in understanding the tarmac especially when the weather is stormy. Gran Turismo 7 also provides a great sense of speed that can be fully harnessed with a VR headset as well. It certainly is the real driving simulator.

iRacing

Image via  iRacing.com Motorsport Simulations

iRacing is where the pros play literally. Professional racing drivers play this game to improve their driving skills on the track, so a wheel is definitely necessary to play this game. The physics in this game is one of the best and car models are also accurate. If you have a steering wheel and want to improve your driving with some realistic competition, then this is a must-buy. There’s a definite learning curve to this game and enough dedication will surely bring in success. There are a lot of steering wheel settings in the game that can help you fine-tune your gameplay and improve your overall success.

Need for Speed Heat

Need for Speed Heat
Image via Electronic Arts

Need for Speed Heat is generally not one of the first games that come to mind when thinking about using a steering wheel, but it certainly is more fun with it. Driving across the beautifully designed open world of Palm City with an amazing car collection while running from the cops is something very few games can give. The drifting is also immensely fun when using a steering wheel as you can accurately nail certain corners and apexes without any problem.

Project Cars 2

Image via Bandai Namco Entertainment

Project Cars 2 is definitely one of the more underrated and underappreciated racing games in recent times. The level of immersion and realism it provides along with a diverse car catalog can be matched by only a handful of other games. The rain physics of this game is also worth mentioning as it accurately depicts how tires respond to damp or dry ground. Additionally, the tire grip, car balance, and weight are factors that also play a pivotal part in the game. As such using a steering wheel helps in understanding them much better and adds to the immersion. Project Cars 2 has numerous steering wheel options that can give the player a smooth but thrilling experience.

WRC 10

Image from Nacon

Another rally game worth mentioning in WRC 10. Developer Kylotonn has added outstanding features and improvements to the game that makes it more realistic and immersive than any other in the series. Tire grip and degradation while taking tight corners are one of the key areas this game focuses on. So, using a steering wheel is definitely beneficial as it makes rallying much more fun. Plus, you can drive legendary rally cars from different eras which in itself is a huge treat.