It’s been a tumultuous time for NASCAR game fans. After NASCAR 21: Ignition crashed and burned, the only official NASCAR games have been the Switch-exclusive NASCAR Rivals and NASCAR Arcade Rush spin-off.
For weeks, there were rumours that Motorsport Games was considering selling the NASCAR game license to raise cash. These rumours were true. In a big shakeup for NASCAR gaming, Motorsport Games has sold the NASCAR game license to iRacing.
iRacing acquires NASCAR game license
iRacing has been a technical partner for NASCAR since 2010, hosting dozens of official NASCAR tournaments. Now, in a big shakeup for NASCAR gaming, iRacing holds the rights to the NASCAR game series.
“After careful consideration, it became apparent that it is in the best interest of Motorsport Games to concentrate our resources around alternative assets and revenue growth opportunities. We believe that this is a continued shift toward quality,” Motorsport Games CEO Stephen Hood announced in a press release.
“This sale to iRacing, a preferred NASCAR partner, is expected to be beneficial to all parties. We believe it will allow us to rebalance our immediate cash needs, reduce our contractual and financial obligations and double-down on near term revenue generating releases already in advanced development. We would like to thank our partners at NTP and fans of the franchise over the years and wish iRacing the best with their future plans.”
Motorsport Games’ exclusive rights to the NASCAR game license in 2018. This led to the company publishing NASCAR Heat 5 and developing NASCAR 21: Ignition and NASCAR Rivals. Heat 5 and Rivals will continue to be “available and supported by Motorsport Games through 2024,” before presumably being delisted.
Meanwhile, Motorsport Games’ long-delayed IndyCar game is undergoing a “detailed review.” Curiously, the official BTCC game is not mentioned. Le Mans Ultimate, also in development by Motorsport Games, is not mentioned either but is still expected to release in December.
New NASCAR console game coming in 2025
After acquiring the rights, iRacing confirmed a new NASCAR console game is “expected in 2025.” An accompanying image confirms NASCAR 2025 (title to be confirmed) is heading to PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam. This marks the first time iRacing’s simulation technology has come to consoles since World of Outlaws: Dirt Racing.
“When we were approached with the option to acquire the license for the simulation-style NASCAR console game, which was the console game and franchise that we were dreaming about doing, it was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up,” said iRacing President Tony Gardner.
“Having the ability to build a NASCAR console game is a privilege we promise to execute with the utmost care. We look forward to working diligently with NASCAR industry stakeholders to deliver a product that provides an amazing experience for the gaming community and NASCAR fans worldwide.”
With no new official NASCAR console games on the horizon until at least 2025, it's going to be a long wait. With iRacing in the driving seat, this could be the reboot the NASCAR game series has sorely needed.
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