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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 limited 3D capability) and is very similar to the SNES's SuperFX chips, used in games such as Starfox and Stunt Race FX.


Virtua Racing Genesis I'll take the low road...
Virtua Racing Arcade Sitting in the cockpit.
Virtua Racing Nintendo Switch Title screen
Virtua Racing Nintendo Switch Replays are automatically saved and can be viewed at any time.

Promo Images

Virtua Racing Magazine Advertisement
Virtua Racing Magazine Advertisement Part 3
Virtua Racing Magazine Advertisement p. 15
Virtua Racing Concept Art

Alternate Titles

  • "Virtua Formula" -- Chained version of multiple units with hydraulics
  • "SEGA AGES: Virtua Racing" -- Nintendo Switch title
  • "バーチャ レーシング" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Unnecessary? Yes Amazing? Also yes. Genesis AkibaTechno (254)

Critic Reviews

GamePro (US) Genesis Jun, 1994 5 out of 5 100
SuperGamePower Genesis May, 1994 4.8 out of 5 96
Hobby Consolas Genesis Jun, 1994 92 out of 100 92
Sega Force Genesis Mar 29, 1994 92 out of 100 92
Power Unlimited Genesis May, 1994 9.1 out of 10 91
Score Genesis Oct, 1994 90 out of 100 90
Game Players Genesis Apr, 1994 85 out of 100 85
Nintendo Central Nintendo Switch Jul 10, 2019 8.5 out of 10 85
ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) Genesis Apr, 1994 9 out of 12 75 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 !

Swing boat

In the arcade, Sega 32X, Sega Saturn, and PlayStation 2 versions of Virtua Racing, the swing boat in the Big Forrest stage moves back and forth. The Genesis version is the one exception where the swing boat is steady.

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 (1567), Rik Hideto (456868) and FatherJack (62724)
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