Introduction: How to Make an Racing Game for All Ages
A few years ago I made a horse racing game for the residents at the aged care home where I work. This car racing game is based on the same idea. I have had many requests over the years from people asking for the printouts so they can make their own. For your convenience, I have included the PDFs for the cards needed to play this car racing game in the instructions below. My horse racing game has always been the most popular project that I have ever made. My idea was to expand on this game and create a car racing game that can be played on a dining table. This is also a great game that can be played around the table at dinner parties or for entertaining the kids indoors. If you have small children, to keep the racing game interesting the cars can be replaced with plastic toys or insects. You will need at least 2 or more player to play this game.
Step 1: Making the Track
To make the track you will need a large piece of thick paper or cardboard. I live near a paper mill and I was given a large roll of brown paper which is what I used. Alternatively, you can use a large sheet of poster card, fabric or astroturf if you want to make a more permanent car racing game. This car racing game can also be adapted to any size depending on the area you have available. My track was 950mm x 580mm.
Step 2: Paint the Track
If you cant find paper in the colour you want you can just paint the paper you have with poster paint. Please ignore the green paint I changed my mind and used black in the end. I would recommend using a foam roller to add the paint. Your paper can become very soggy and creased using a paintbrush.
Step 3: Adding the Lanes
I started, by working out how many lanes I could add based on the size of the cars. I used cheap racing cars from Kmart for this project. You only need between 10 and 15 lanes to have a good racing game. That does not sound like much and you would think the game would be over very fast, but it is sufficient. Our residents only manage to play 2 to 3 games in an hour. I will explain later why.
To make the car racing game more appealing and easy to follow. I added a border around the outside for the lane numbers and the finish post.
Next, you can divide the space in the middle between the 6 cars and draw the vertical lines. To draw the lines I used a white paint pen. I measured the length of the space and the length of the cars and divided the space equally. Or so I thought, I was wrong and had a small gap left over at the top. To hide my mistake, I painted it to look like a checkered flag at the end.
Step 6: Adding the Number
To make the racing game easier to follow I numbered the lanes on the side. You can do this on both sides to fill the spaces if you want. I used stickers for my numbers but you can draw them on or use a stencil.
Step 7: Making the Tokens
You will need tokens that will be given to the winners of each game. I typed these tokens up in a word document and added a Grand Prix image from clipart. If you are going to type up your own, you can create them to suit your game, e.g. add a toy insect image in place of the flag.
You will need multiple sheets of these tokens if you are going to have a few people playing. If you plan on playing the car racing game on a regular basis you can laminate the token sheets to make them more durable.
Step 8: Making the Car Racing Cards
You can use the same design as the token sheet, you will just need to change the word token to Car 1, Car 2, Car3 etc.
Step 9: Adding Hurdles to the Track
To make the car racing game more fun I added some hurdle cards to the tracks. I found randomly adding 2 per track is sufficient. I have included a few hurdles I made up you can also add your own. You will need to print a few sheets so you have a variety across the track. I have included a PDF for each sheet you need to play this car racing game.
Step 10: Cutting the Cards
I used a paper guillotine to cut all the cards if you don’t have one you will have to use scissors which can be time-consuming.
Step 11: How to Play the Game
How to play the car racing game
To start the game, each player picks two different cars and takes a card with that number on it, which is placed in front of them. Next, the hurdle cards are all put in a hat or bucket and each player takes a turn to pull out a hurdle card and place it randomly on the track. (2 Hurdles per track) It is ok to place the hurdles tactically to benefit yourself. This means, for example, if you draw the go back 5 spaces card you can place it on a track belonging to a car you did not pick. If all the tracks already have 2 hurdles the card must be placed in your tack. It is just the luck of the draw. The layout of your car racing game should now look similar to the image.
You will need 2 dice to play this game. Every person throws the dice to see who will go first, the highest goes first and you go clockwise around the table. The first dice picks the car the second one is the number of moves that the car will make. The car that gets to the end of the track first will earn each player with that car number 1 token.
To make this game a little harder you can only go out with the correct number of moves on your final dice. Meaning, if the car is 3 away from the end the dice must be a 3, if they throw a 4 the racing car stays where it is. If the car lands on a hurdle it must do as the hurdle says, ie go back 2 spaces etc.
Step 12: Add Prizes
At the end of the game, the player with the most token is the winner. You can have prizes to make the game more exciting, a few examples are:
- Bottle of wine
- Small toys
- Losers wash the dishes
These are a few silly examples, but you will get the idea. This is just a fun DIY car racing car I made up so hopefully, I have covered everything and I hope you enjoy it.
Step 13: More Project Ideas
Are you big into entertaining? If so this trough party table will be a hit.
Step 14: DIY Sparkling Perfume Stand
This is an entry in the
Toys & Games Contest