Gamer dad who loves the classics, indies, racers and the occasional shooter. Have been in the industry for well over a decade and am as enthusiastic as ever! #4theplayers
With DiRT Rally Codemasters once again show why they put their focus on racing games. It’s a game where the rally feeling is matched back to the time of Richard Burns Rally and Colin McRae Rally and perhaps even to be overtaken.
Hands sweaty around my controller looking at my screen at the start of a race, grip intensifies as the light jumps to green. While the tires seek for traction, I already try to pinpoint that first bend, sand slipping, engine roaring. Intense happiness when taking that curve perfectly, followed by a short convulsion when I just dodge those two concrete blocks in an S-curve. No time to think too long about it, because the copilot already points to the next obstacle: a hill followed by a gentle curve. I try to position my vehicle as well as possible for the bump, but in those few seconds the car is in the air, I see the next obstacle – very dangerous looking boulders – ahead. Fortunately I miss them by a hair, but I must confess I might feel a drop of urine in my boxers. I might should have mentioned that I’m not that great a racer and even in the Lego games I always hit everything on my way to the objectives….
This is my unique personal experience. But probably also the feeling that every gamer who plays DiRT Rally, experiences a few times during the races. The one time it’s a hairpin, sometimes a boulder. Sometimes you crash in the first minute, I might crash a little more often. But should this sound like frustration, then you’re wrong. In DiRT Rally every crash you make, you know what you’ve done wrong, so you restart and try again. Until it succeeds, in the end, and that’s the strength of DiRT, this feeling is exactly why you keep trying.
DiRT Rally is in fact a gem. A rally simulation in its purest form. The game contains nearly forty iconic cars, including the 1995 Subaru Impreza, the 2001 Ford Focus RS and many more. And although the cars within a specific rally class itself is not that much of a difference, so is driving a RWD, 4WD or FWD. If you drive your Subaru to that perfect time in one race, the next moment you crash it in almost every turn and this is when you decide to buy a Lancia Stratos with your hard-earned cash. And believe me that beast is hard to tame, but when you reach the finish, it’s a reall party. Even if you are fourth… Or tenth.
Then we arrive at a -particularly present in my case- point that should not be missed in a simulation. How does the car respond to damage. Codemasters created a great system, a blast at a rock or a fall over the edge of a mountain road does not instantly finish the race, there are checkpoints. The damage is both visible and tangible. In addition, you also get an additional penalty for these type of crashes. The crew will also warn if, for example, an leaking radiator and if the problem persists. At the end of each race, there is the possibility to do a number of repairs. This is limited by a time limit so you will have to make choices. In the Championship mode, there is a possibility to hire staff.The Mechanics are available in several different price ranges and of course the more expensive they are the faster and better ..
In terms of gamemodes, the game is what scanty, the choises are Championship, Online Events and Leagues. Also available is the Quick Race where you choose your car, map and conditions. Although if you think about it, there is not allot to invent around a rally game. Championship is starting on a budget, make a choice between three versions: Rally, Rallycross and Pikes Peak.
Rally is simply some races from A to B in the fastest time possible. You race against the clock. Rallycross on the other hand, is a circuit where you compete with direct opponents. Pikes Peak is a whole separate category, here you can participate in one of the oldest and well known races in the US. You travel to the Pikes Peak mountain in Colorado, and must get to the top as soon as possible.