Racing games: Can they help you prepare for driving school?

Credit: Bandai Namco

Driving has become a necessary skill, especially nowadays when cars have become easily accessible to purchase and acquire. As such, almost anyone can get access to driving lessons and opportunities – especially when there is a ton of demand for drivers and other professions that require driving. In fact, even if you’re a professional in a non-driving field, having your own car and knowing how to drive it can easily save you a lot of time and money commuting. Given the many benefits and responsibilities that come with driving, it’s easily understandable how anyone could get scared of driving school at first glance. And if you’re in the same position, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with driving school.

Thankfully, a lot of resources exist to help you out. Aside from manual and tutorials you can read and watch online there are actually racing games that you can play to brace yourself with how cars work and how you should navigate roads. Wait what, racing games as driving school references? Turns out, playing racing games may be more helpful to your driving goals than you think. Here’s how:

Be Familiar with Manufacturers and Their most Popular Models

One of the best benefits of playing racing games is that you’ll most likely be able to familiarize yourself with a lot of car models from a lot of car manufacturers. Most car racing games feature recent and very popular car models in their games, and these games often show these cars in extremely realistic fashions. Despite some modifications regarding performance, being able to know some of the most popular models out there can help you make smarter choices on choosing a car to drive, especially if it’s your first time buying a car for yourself.

A ton of car games and other racing games regularly feature cars from real manufacturers. While their performances differ in the actual game, these racing games can be a great way for us to familiarize ourselves with what cars are available out there and how they generally “feel” like when we drive them. Familiarity with cars in racing games can help us know what cars we may want to get and drive.

Being more familiar with car manufacturers and their models allows you to have a better reference for cars you might want to buy in the long run. This is extremely helpful, especially if you want to have a car you’d want to use for a long time while you’re driving. And given driving schools offer different sorts of cars you can practice on, knowing beforehand what kind of car you might want to use can tailor your teaching experience specifically for your needs.

Be Acquainted with Basic Driving Principles

Credit: Bandai Namco

Another benefit of playing car games can provide to help you with driving school is the fact that racing games usually follow the most basic driving principles. This means despite the changes in car performance and “realism,” a lot of mechanics of car games still revolve around the idea that cars can have either automatic or manual transmission, both of which have different effects on how a car “drives” on the road. Being familiar with the most basic driving principles, even through car games, can help you be more confident as you take your driving lessons.

Recent studies also show that playing racing games can improve a driver’s ability to be more attentive and remain vigilant on the road. Aside from knowing how various elements of their environment interacted with each other, drivers themselves who play racing games can be more aware of exactly how basic movements in driving work, and how their movements can affect their car on the road. Researchers have also noticed an increase in memory and retention, meaning concepts on driving that could be otherwise tricky to understand could be easier to do – such as adapting quickly to both automatic and manual transmission, and driving in reverse.

Racing games can also help you have a general idea as to what sort of car gadgets and even car apps you might want to have. These may not be basic “driving” principles per se. However, these can be tools that can make your driving experience much smoother and much more efficient. Car games often feature handy features like maps and navigation devices, as well as in-game calling systems. While your car game’s dashboard may not be necessarily available in real life, you can generally get a gist of what apps you want your phone to have so your experience in real life can be efficient. These include navigation apps, music systems, or even dashboard cameras.

Be Aware of Advanced and Dangerous Driving Techniques and Maneuvers

Credit: Bandai Namco

One of the reasons why car games are extremely popular today is the fact that a lot of them feature death-defying stunts and just the idea of being able to “ram” into other cars during races. In the real world, this can cost a ton of insurance money, and even a lawsuit or two. For car games, however, the worst that can happen is that you’ll be behind a few competitors in the match. Racing games can help you be more acquainted with advanced driving techniques that can often be the cause of vehicular accidents, such as drifting and making sudden turns.

A lot of car games often have more complex mechanics that involve the environment or other special factors. These force players to know how to do more advanced driving techniques, or at least know how to drive in more difficult terrain and conditions. These include knowing how to drive in junctions where roads meet, in fog or other kinds of weather, steering properly, or even understanding acceleration and fuel economy.

Understanding advanced driving techniques will also help beginner drivers to be more aware of car parts and how they work. Thanks to customization systems and options in car games, you can have a better idea of what car parts are and what they can do to improve on your vehicle’s performance and aesthetics. Customizing your cars in-game can also give you a better idea as to how you want your actual car to look like in the future.

Be More Familiar with How Cars Interact with Each Other on the Road

Credit: Bandai Namco

Another way racing games can help you with your driving school lessons is the fact that racing games can tell you a lot about how cars behave in traffic. Remember, cars appear in other games as well, especially in open-world games that feature fairly accurate traffic simulations. Some racing games also have the same principle. If you’re up for the challenge, you can actually take your car and see how you can handle in-game “traffic” in your favorite games. This is a great way to assess the way cars can “behave” in games, and apply it in real-world situations.

One of the best ways racing games can help you prepare for real-life driving would be their psychological benefits to gamers. Racing games are hardly violent, and as such would be a great way to reduce stress from gamers and even help you control your adrenaline. That’s because high-speed intense racing matches with friends or even with computers can train the brain to decrease something called “signaling,” which in turn decreases the times your brain increases heart rate, sweat, and adrenaline. This makes you calmer and more controlling of your actions on the road.

Racing games force you to be more attentive of your surroundings all the time. You have to be assessing the damage to your vehicle, quickly adjust whenever you have to make turns or change tracks, and even more analytic of how your fellow racers are moving in the game. In real life, this helps you become more focused and concentrated on the many elements interacting on the road, and can even help develop your muscle memory.

Racing Games for Driving School: It’s About Going Outside the Box

Of all the things racing games can teach us about driving, it’s that there are really times where you need to think outside the box. Aside from knowing exactly how to ride a car, it’s important to be able to apply those lessons in the context of real-world situations. You need to understand exactly when to apply particular driving rules depending on things like traffic, other vehicles, and even other passengers. In the context of video games, this means being a great racing gamer has a lot to do with balancing your understanding of racing game mechanics and the matches you play.

What do you think? Do you think driving lessons can benefit players in racing games? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. And remember, we don’t necessarily mean to say that you should only take your driving lessons from racing games. Rather, racing games can help you feel calmer and more confident in your skills while you learn how to drive.

Guest Author Bio: John Salazar is a certified techie at heart, but he shares a love for all things science and technology, health and wellness, and even a bit of music on the side. As a creative writer, John makes sure to write both informative and entertaining pieces. He loves writing, and he plays the guitar when he has free time.

Image sources: Project Cars trailer

Facebook Comments

About author