XG3: Extreme G Racing is the third game in the Extreme G series, and is a weapons-based, futuristic, motorcycle racing game. Players take control of a sleek supersonic bike and pilot it for one of many racing teams during the game's career mode, unlocking more tracks, bikes and weapons as they progress. The game is notable for its sense of speed, which is accentuated through in-game effects such as a sonic boom when the player breaks the sound barrier, and raindrops beading on the camera during overcast races. Also of particular note is the game's soundtrack, which is a techno-heavy affair very similar to the famed soundtracks of the Wipeout series.
Gameplay consists of navigating an often winding course against other racers or the clock. At the player's disposal are a booster, which drastically increases speed at the cost of shield, and a suite of player-selectable weapons, which are used to attack and slow other drivers. These functions draw power from two seperate meters: one for shield/boost power, and one for weapons energy. To recharge these meters during a race, players must drive over color-coded strips: green for shield/boost, and purple for energy.
Similar to the F-Zero franchise, much of the game's strategy involves judicious use of the booster, as the fastest possible lap times can only be achieved be using your entire boost reserve and leaving your bike vulnerable. Unlike F-Zero, however, the strategy of conserving boost and preying on those who overuse it is much more effective due to the addition of both front and rear-firing, as well as area-of-effect, weapons.
Career mode is divided into four sub-classes, consisting of 250g, 500g, 750g, and 1000g class engines. Each class features significantly more powerful engines than the last, as well as fiercer, better-equipped rival drivers. During career mode, players earn credits to upgrade their bikes with more propulsion and increasingly powerful weapons.