Here is a list of the best horse racing simulation computer games of all time, these games are not in any particular order as each game offers a unique horse racing gaming experience, and a true horse racing game fan will find something to like in each of these game. Over the years, most horse racing games were pretty poor quality and lacked any real long-term playability. The three games I offer up today are in a league of their own, offering engaging atmosphere, realistic simulations, and addictive game play.
1. Derby Owners Club
First game on the list, is Derby Owners Club which was a multi-player arcade game developed by Sega which gained a fiercely loyal fan base all over the world. Each player is put into the roles of owner, breeder, trainer, and jockey, of one of more thoroughbred racehorses. What made this game so unique is the electronic horse cards that were printed and that players can take with them and use again the next time they played the game.
The appeal of Derby Owners Club was the time spent to develop your young racehorses into champions, then breeding those champions with other champions and starting all over again. The actual races were also challenging to play and fun to watch, each horse had a unique racing style the player had to exploit and control. The statistical modeling and rankings made the game very addictive, and players often had collections of dozens of these horses. Sadly, the game was shut down completely in 2019.
2. Cruise Ship Horse Racing
Cruise Ship Horse Racing is a new engaging indie horse racing wagering simulation. which is available on Steam for the PC and MAC. The game is roughly based on the horse racing wagering game played on cruise ships for the past 100 years. There are eight, 3D animated horses running in each race based on the rolls of an 8-sided die many times per second. The betting odds are also randomly simulated, and you can bet on which horses will come in first, second, or third (Win, Place, or Show).
Cruise Ship Horse Racing is a lot of fun to play, the developer paid a lot of attention to the details, the wagering environment is beautiful, and the jazz music tracks transport you back in time. The 3D race-running feels more organic than I expected, and it’s a game I can see myself playing over and over again.
Players can also track their success in Cruise Ship Horse Racing by using their winning dollars to purchase one or more pieces of the original racehorse art rewards created exclusively for this game, maybe you will unlock a rare or legendary piece of racehorse art. There are no ads and no in game purchases. The rich atmosphere and music track makes this a game to definitely have in your library. Cruise ship horse racing.
3. Rival Stars Horse Racing
Third on the list, is Rival Stars Horse Racing, here is a compelling game that gives you some of the same feel and game play of Derby’s Owner Club in an incredibly graphically rich 3D environment, with multiple racecourses, and unique off-track experiences. Here you acquire young racehorses, train them, and ride them to victory against 11 other simulated horses in each race. Horses progress as they gain experience, and you can breed horses to acquire new horses and start the process all over again.
One of the race elements that makes this game so much fun to play is the ability to maneuver your horse though traffic around the track during the race, positioning your horse for that final run to the finish line keeps the game fresh each race. It takes knowledge of your horse’s abilities and some strategy to make sure your horse has enough energy for that final push to win the race.
4. Rival Stars Horse Racing
This game was developed by PikPok, a New Zealand based game developer. The game is fast paced, very detailed, and well thought through. And although there is some complexity with a learning curve, anyone can get up and running pretty quickly. The game is available on multiple platforms, and is free to play on mobile, with in-game purchases to speed along the horse leveling process. This is a must try for any horse racing fan.