Formula One Grand Prix boasted detail that was unparalleled for a computer game at the time as well as a full recreation of the drivers, cars and circuits of the 1991 Formula One World Championship. On the other end of the spectrum, Sega produced Virtua Racing in 1992.While not the first arcade racing game with 3D graphics (it was predated by Winning Run, Hard Drivin' and Stunts), it was able to combine the best features of games at the time, along with multiplayer machine linking and clean 3D graphics to produce a game that was above and beyond the arcade market standard of its time, laying the foundations for subsequent 3D racing games.That same year, Atari released another early car driving game in the arcades, Gran Trak 10, which presented an overhead single-screen view of the track in low resolution white-on-black graphics.
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The game is generally regarded as the first true auto racing simulation on a personal computer.
Accurately replicating the 1989 Indianapolis 500 grid, it offered advanced 3D graphics for its time, setup options, car failures and handling.
with the course width becoming wider or narrower as the player's car moves up the road, while the player races against other rival cars, more of which appear as the score increases.
The game was re-branded as Wheels by Midway Games for release in the United States and was influential on later racing games.
In 1986, Durell released Turbo Esprit, which had an official Lotus license, and featured working car indicator lights.
Also in 1986, Sega produced Out Run, one of the most graphically impressive games of its time.
While not the first third-person racing game (it was predated by Sega's Turbo), Pole Position established the conventions of the genre and its success inspired numerous imitators.
According to Electronic Games, for "the first time in the amusement parlors, a first-person racing game gives a higher reward for passing cars and finishing among the leaders rather than just for keeping all four wheels on the road".
The game offered an unofficial (and hence with no official team or driver names associated with the series) recreation of British Formula 3.
The hardware capabilities limited the depth of the simulation and restricted it (initially) to one track, but it offered a semi-realistic driving experience with more detail than most other racing games at the time.
Unlike most other racing games at the time, Indianapolis 500 attempted to simulate realistic physics and telemetry, such as its portrayal of the relationship between the four contact patches and the pavement, as well as the loss of grip when making a high-speed turn, forcing the player to adopt a proper racing line and believable throttle-to-brake interaction.