Common Sense Media says

A step in the right direction for the series.





What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable

There is a bit of shoving on the track, but you will get penalized for rough driving if you do it too often.

Not applicable
Not applicable

It's NASCAR, so be prepared for an onslaught of corporate logos like DuPont, Home Depot, Lowe's, Amped and Office Depot.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Although several NASCAR drivers are sponsored by alcohol companies, all alcohol references have been removed from the game. For example, the Miller Lite logo on Kurt Busch's car has been replaced by a logo that just says "Kurt."

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the game is filled with corporate logos, from the decals on the drivers' cars and suits to the banner ads that are posted around the tracks – just like NASCAR is in real life. The game has an online component where players can race against each other over the Internet, which will expose children to online chat. Common Sense Media does not recommend online play for kids under the age of 12.

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

Kids say

What's it about?

Fans who were disappointed by the lacklustre effort of NASCAR 08 will be happy to learn that NASCAR 09 is a significant improvement in terms of offering improved car handling, better quality production values, and several interesting modes. That said, the series still has a ways to go before it can be held in the same regard as flagship EA sports franchises like Madden.

Is it any good?


The decision to make Jeff Gordon not only the game's cover athlete but an in-game narrator and mentor as well goes a long way towards injecting some much-needed soul into the franchise. Also rewarding is the video footage of other popular drivers laying down challenges and giving advice about particular tracks in the Sprint Driver Challenge mode. The other three modes are a career mode where you create a character and fulfill contract and sponsor obligations to earn Reputation points; a Season mode where you can race a full, partial, or custom season as a NASCAR driver of your choice in either the Sprint Cup, Nationwide, or Craftsman Truck series'; and a "Test and Tune" practice mode. Another new addition is the ability to switch between Normal mode for more skilled drivers, and Rookie mode for novices that enables automatic gear shifting and various assists to make the car more stable.

While NASCAR 09's updates inject some personality and excitement back into the franchise, there are still some things that could use further tweaking. For example, the other cars don't always behave as logically or dynamically as real drivers on the racetrack would, and load times are excessive and distracting.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about which type of track they like best and why. Do they like the long superspeedways or the road courses where they have to turn both left and right?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Electronic Arts
Release date:June 10, 2008
ESRB rating:E for (PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360)

This review of NASCAR 09 was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 11 years old October 23, 2010

great game

i love this game and im wating for nascar 11 to come out in 2011. gunu be sick
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old August 30, 2010

Love it

Love it
What other families should know
Great role models
Teen, 13 years old Written byTaco Fox April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age

Not Bad

I played the demo awesome game i hate they rate in the red but ok it is alot of comericialism.


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential Apps Guide