CarX is the drifting game that's taken the world by storm. If you've enjoyed drifting in Forza or GTA, this will be right up your street!
Let's take a look at getting started in this rich and varied game.
Getting the game
CarX Drift Racing Online is based on a mobile game from Russian developers CarX Technologies. The publishers claim to have 120 million installs worldwide and over a million daily players!
We're interested in the PC and console version here. The good news is that the game is available on Steam, Xbox One and Series X|S, Playstation 4 and 5, and Nintendo Switch. The great news is that CarX has online crossplay so you can jump into lobbies without needing to worry whether your friends are on the same platform.
Your first car in CarX
Starting the game, your garage consists of three cars. These are the Hachi-Roku, based on a Toyota AE86 Trueno, the Panther M5 90-S, based on the Mazda MX-5 Miata NA, and the VZ 210, based on the VAZ-2101.
You also have $6000 of in-game credit available to spend initially. You can either upgrade these cars from the start, or choose another level 1 car.
Buying an alternative level 1 car doesn't leave you with enough cash for any upgrades, so we recommend sticking with what you've got initially. You have one upgrade available for each of the cars, which enables some tuning.
The VZ 210 isn't the lightest of the options, but with the most power and torque it's probably the sensible choice for absolute newcomers.
You'll want to get out and earn some money before you start investing in anything else at this time.
Earning money and experience
Your first goal should be to get to level 11. At this point you unlock the "ultimate" upgrade for your cars, which comes with a massive boost in power. It's an expensive upgrade, but the game is generous with money.
I started in the single player Drift Races mode. It's essentially the same as the Training mode but with a timer running and you can gain money and experience, so skip the training here.
If you are keen to explore without timing and scoring, set up a multiplayer room with a password. You can then explore locations and get to grips with your car on your own terms.
Progressing through the game
CarX Drift Racing Online is a multiplayer-focused game. Once you've got the confidence and skills, you'll primarily be drifting with other players. There are fun modes to explore in single-player though!
Single-player tandem drifting is very challenging. You first perform your drifts through an area as the lead car. Then you have to follow the ghost and replicate the movements without collision. I definitely need practice following before I'm ready to tandem drift in multiplayer!
There's also the world of tuning to explore. We'll cover this in more detail in the future, but how you set your car up makes a big difference to its handling.