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Virtua Racing

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Virtua Racing is Sega's first ever 3D, polygon-based racing game. The game consists of racing Formula-1-looking cars around a beginner, intermediate, or expert track, competing against a second player or computer drivers. Despite having Formula-1 cars, the game controls are very "arcadey" and players can see the leap they made from here to Daytona.

The Megadrive/Genesis version of Virtua Racing is of note as it is the only game for the system which features the SVP chip (Sega Virtua Processor). The chip is a 3D processor built into each cartridge (the console itself had no 3D capability) and is very similar to the SNES's SuperFX chips, used in games such as Starfox and Stunt Race FX.


Virtua Racing Arcade Sitting in the cockpit.
Virtua Racing Genesis Who needs texture mapping!?
Virtua Racing Genesis Race Menu
Virtua Racing Genesis Lots of background scenery too!

Alternate Titles

  • "バーチャ レーシング" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Group

User Reviews

Unnecessary? Yes Amazing? Also yes. Genesis AkibaTechno (248)

Critic Reviews

GamePro (US) Genesis Jun, 1994 5 out of 5 100
Player One Genesis May, 1994 99 out of 100 99
Joypad Genesis Apr, 1994 96 out of 100 96
Consoles Plus Genesis Jun, 1994 94 out of 100 94
Hobby Consolas Genesis Jun, 1994 92 out of 100 92
Game Players Genesis Apr, 1994 85 out of 100 85
Video Games Genesis Apr, 1994 80 out of 100 80
Video Games & Computer Entertainment Genesis Aug, 1994 8 out of 10 80
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) Genesis Jun, 1994 7.8 out of 10 78
Sega-16.com Genesis Mar 22, 2007 7 out of 10 70


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1001 Video Games

The Arcade version of Virtua Racing appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


This game won't work on a model 3 Genesis.

SVP chip

This game caused a quite interesting problem for owners of phones. The SVP chip had a frequency that was so high it was picked up by the phones and they rang like crazy. It was enough to sure cause headaches!


  • Gamefan Magazine
    • 1994 (Vol 3, Iss. 1) - named the Best Genesis Driving/Racing Game of the Year ("Megawards" )
Information also contributed by Big John WV and DANIEL HAWKS !

Related Web Sites

  • Sega's SVP Chip: The Road not Taken? (A feature article on the fansite Sega-16, which discusses the history of the SVP chip and its use in Virtua Racing, as well as the unused potential that the chip offered to Sega. The article also provides a comparison between the SVP, the 32x peripheral, the Sega Saturn, and Nintendo's SuperFX chip (Marc. 17th, 2006).)
Contributed to by Tibes80 (1495) and --x-- (58548)