The top ten arcade racing games of the 1980sS

With nuclear annihilation, Reaganomics and Midnight Oil it's no surprise so many in the 1980s fled to the arcades to live out their F1 fantasies in sparklingly low resolution. According to Jalopnik readers, these are the ten greatest coin-op arcades of the Me decade.

Welcome back to Answers of the Day — our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!

Photo Credit: Bergius

10.) GP World

Suggested By: SennaMP4

Why it's rad: Those frankly stunning graphics you see in the background come courtesy of laserdiscs, the finest in readable disk technology 1984 had to offer.

That alone makes this probably one of the most hopelessly ‘80s games out there, especially when you see your little 8-bit car derping along in front of the photographic background.

9.) Indy 500: The Simulation

Suggested By: Jack Trade

Why it's rad: Indy 500 offered a lot of choice to the wannabe-driver of the ‘80s. You might have been stuck on your Huffy 10-speed in the real world, but now you could be racing the Brickyard, tweaking your car, and getting a feel for being a real driver.

Who are we kidding? Everyone drove the wrong way on the track to cause massive pileups. Let those pixels fly, I want to watch the world burn!

The top ten arcade racing games of the 1980s

8.) Final Lap

Suggested By: SennaMP4

Why it's rad: Some people call it Final Lap Pole Position 3, but what's important is that when it debuted in 1987, it was the first arcade game that allowed multiple machines to be linked, allowing for multiplayer races.

Each cabinet could hold two people, and four cabinets could get linked up. I f you actually had friends, that meant 8 person duels of road racing death were entirely possible.

Photo Credit: Namco

7.) Outrun

Suggested By: SennaMP4

Why it's rad: Outrun was so awesome, it could recognize just what a big time baller, shot caller you were and let you pick your own music when you played.

On top of that, you got a Testarossa (sweet), a babe (super sweet), and great graphics with tons of wipeouts. Classic.

The top ten arcade racing games of the 1980sS

6.) Road Blasters

Suggested By: Demon-Xanath

Why it's rad: Unlike other cheesy old driving games, Road Blasters had exactly what all the others were missing: guns. You shot sort of laser things, sometimes a cool plane would fly overhead and drop this huge laser thing on your car, and there were lots of explosions. And you ran out of gas all the time.

It wasn't the most lasting relationship, but it was awesome while it held your brief, infantile attention as you blew everything in your way to Kingdom Come.

Photo Credit: Atari

5.) Spy Hunter

Suggested By: Brian, The Life of

Why it's rad: Let that tinkly rendition of The Theme from Peter Gunn sink in, because it's time to get into the mindset of Spy Hunter. You were just a mild-mannered child, but now you're a hard-driving super spy. Do you have morals? Hell no! You drop oil slicks on people with morals!

Even with the alienating top-down view, and the pitiful by modern standards graphics, Spy Hunter really grabbed you. Of course, it made you into a bastard, but that was part of what made Spy Hunters so great.

4.) Ivan "Ironman" Stewart's Super Off Road

Suggested By: waveridin1959

Why it's rad: The red, yellow, and blue positions looked ready for players, and the three endlessly-spinning steering wheels were inviting, but the screens were always black.

That's a shame, because everyone loves Super Off Road. You had to twirl those wheels a couple complete revolutions to get around a single corner. You could get upgrades, you could drive different tracks and you could hit the nitro. It had everything you wanted in a racing game.

The top ten arcade racing games of the 1980s

3.) R.C. Pro-AM

Suggested By: Swine

Why it's rad: The A.I. cars cheated and you were piloting R.C. cars, but the game was still awesome.

It was like proto Mario Kart, and you could even go miniature powersliding in a Mercedes G-Wagen or a Suzuki Alto, which is about as badass as it gets in the world of coin-operated arades.

Photo Credit: Nintendo

The top ten arcade racing games of the 1980sS

2.) Pole Position

Suggested By: BrtStlnd

Why it's rad: Pole Position was a trend setter. It had the 3D overhead view, which we're still using today, and it was really a step forward for realism in video games.

It was fun to drive the cars, but it was also fun just to not be flying a spaceship or blowing up aliens or whatever. It's completely out of date in terms of dynamics or realism or whatever else you think is important, but it's still as bright and as colorful and as addictive as it ever was.

Photo Credit: Atari

1.) Hard Drivin'

Suggested By: rustE34

Why it's rad: With a force feedback steering wheel and a shifter with a clutch, there were plenty of people who well felt they learned to drive on Hard Drivin'.

I have no idea how the ‘realism' side fits in with loop-de-loops or jumping over bridges, but the game was a real challenge, something that stuck with people long after they were done laying down oil slicks in Spy Hunter or driving the wrong way into traffic in Indy 500.