Review The fact that rally is a niche market, even among petrolheads, perhaps goes someway to explaining why Codemaster’s Dirt franchise strives to rein in the time challenge aspects of the sport – instead favouring racing, albeit in a way which retains the drifting and suicidal cornering of the motorsport. Codemasters: good decision.
Indeed, by embracing the mentalness that is Rallycross (whereby drivers race on circuits with as much dirt as tarmac) the company has managed to create a hugely diverse racer. Dirt 3 still just about walks on the simulator side of racing games, but feels arcade-like enough to please speed freaks too; beating Sony’s Motorstorm at its own game in the process.
It’s a long chalk from the series’ origins, Colin McRae Rally which first hit shelves way back in 1998 – a fine attempt at a pure simulation of the sport. Given that the game took a further nine months, after its European release, to find its way over to the US is perhaps a fairly massive indicator of why Dirt 3 crams in as many extreme, destruction derby type of races as it possibly can. Alas, pure rallying is still not particularly well followed in the States.
Having booted up the game you’ll first be tasked with selecting a nickname from the likes of Ace, Maverick or Jester. Suitably titled, then it’s straight on into your maiden race, which, rightfully enough, is a traditional timed rally in the wooded expanses of the Alpine circuit. The more engineering-minded might be disappointed by a lack of customisation options, the rest of us will just be happy enough to select one of the two cars available and rev the engine.
Next page: In the mode
It's all very nice
But somehow it's still not Stunt Car Racer.
Must go and see if my old A500 still works...
Wither Colin and Richard...
Is there a proper rally simulator at all anymore? Without Gymkhana and buggies?
I actually don't mind the Drift and Gymkhana events - Dirt stopped being a rally title years ago (I still have a Rally Championship installed for proper rallying, which now works brilliantly with the Logitech G25) - but the fact that you *have* to do the Gymkhana to advance from tier one racing is a pretty poor show.
I quite like the off-road racing aspect and am enjoying the game, but couldn't be bothered with the gymkhana stuff and while you can get enough points to avoid drift and gymkhana events in the seasons, you can't get out of that initial yawn-inducing school and event to get past first tier without doing the DiRTy "gymkhana" deed.
TBH, I'd prefer Dirt2 with updated graphics to this latest offering. It's fun, but so far I preferred its predecessor. In spite of being a stuffy middle class Brit, I don't mind a bit of fun every now and then and that's what these games offer. Then I can go back to the Welsh forests and wreck some poor unsuspecting virtual 106 or Escort or something in Rally Championship.
The core of the game is very good, exciting, entertaining and challenging.
The use of Windows live and needing to install Windows live id as service and have it running, the long load times and patronising commentary almost destroys what in essence is a very good game.
After playing for an hour with about 40% of that hour in loading screens, I am not particularly inspired to load the game again. I got some grief on my plate at the moment and I am not a happy bunny, I know this is affecting my patience. I will try the game again when my mood improves, perhaps my patience with the game will improve too. But at the moment the pleasure is not worth the pain.
This is my opinion and such things are subjective, but the use of Windows live in any game immediately annoys me and takes at least 30% off any rating.
Good game BUT
First off I am a huge Rally fan in the real wold as well as the electronic and have owned pretty much every rally game ever made.
This is a good game much better than the last Dirt because of the better rally content, game play and physics are nice and balanced and overall it is a definate move forwards however and this is a really BIG however the "Drift Showcase and Gymkhana" are totally out of place in the main game. I can accept that there are people out there who want to do these kind of events but to include both in what is essentially a rally game is annoying to say the least. They both need to be optional to the main game rather than form part of it. Make it a optional / bonus content.
Hopefully there will be yet another Dirt in which they will go back to the routes of the game and stop with all the "American" Yeah Ha and Chav rubbish and stick to the proper racing formats and any additonal content be exactly that additional content for those who actually want content like that.