Real Racing 3 features eleven different types of race; “Cup” (basic race against nine to twenty-one opponents over several laps); “NASCAR” (rolling start race in NASCAR cars with up to 42 opponents, with drifting available); “Formula E” (rolling start race in Formula E cars with manual controls and disabled brakes, players automatically lose the race if the battery runs out); “Elimination” (race against seven opponents, where the car in last place is eliminated every 20 seconds); “Endurance” (the player begins with sixty seconds on the clock, and must reach a certain distance before the timer runs out. Time is added, up to a maximum ninety (90.00) seconds, for overtaking other cars and completing laps); “Head-to-Head” (similar to Cup but with just one opponent); “Autocross” (the player must complete a certain portion of a track within a given time); “Speed Record” (the player must reach a certain speed over the course of a single lap); “Speed Snap” (the player must complete a certain portion of a track, and must cross the finishing line at a certain speed); “Drag Race” (a two car drag race, with three opponents taking turns); “Hunter” (the opponent is given a head start against the player, and the player must try to reduce the gap and/or overtake the opponent by the largest amount by the end of the lap to win); “Time Trial” (the player must complete a lap as fast as possible without all four tires leaving the track or the car bumping into the walls; time trial races require drive points).
Control in Real Racing 3 is similar to that of its predecessors. The player is given seven different control methods from which to choose: “Tilt A” features accelerometer steering (tilting the physical device to the left to turn left and to the right to turn right), auto accelerate and manual brake; “Tilt B” features accelerometer steering, manual accelerate and manual brake; “Wheel A” features a virtual on-screen steering wheel to steer, auto accelerate and manual brake; “Wheel A (Flipped)” is the same as “Wheel A” but with the virtual steering wheel on the right of the screen and the brake on the left; “Wheel B” features a virtual steering wheel to steer, manual accelerate and manual brake; “Wheel B (Flipped)”; “Buttons” features touch to steer (where the player touches the left side of the touchscreen to turn left, and the right side to turn right), auto accelerate and manual brake. Within each of these options, the player can modify the amount of brake assist and steering assist, as well as selecting to turn on or off “traction control”. In Tilt A and Tilt B, the accelerometer sensitivity can also be modified.
Drafting is only available to the NASCAR circuit. Drafting occurs when a car comes behind another and drafts at the bumper. When there is a group of 4 or more in a single file line, that is called train drafting. It holds more speed than normally drafting with 1 car. NASCAR features side drafting. But it has not been introduced in the NASCAR circuit.