Dirt 4 – 2 Weeks In – Review

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Dirt 4 enters the arena of motorsport looking at embracing the danger. 2 weeks in we have seemingly played the majority of the game and tend to agree. From our first attempt at Rallycross and getting tire blowouts on 3 of our 4 wheels to not understanding Landrush for the first go – its all about the journey into danger.

 

About

“With DiRT 4, Codemasters have sought to combine the levels of thrill and realism from last year’s DiRT Rally with the fearless excitement, accessibility and adrenaline-fuelled races previously seen in its critically acclaimed prequels DiRT 2 and DiRT 3.”

Featuring classic rally racing that continues to build on the foundations set by the Colin McRae Rally games, the bruising contests from the official FIA World Rallycross Championship, the crazy battles of racing trucks and buggies, and the outrageous fun of open events in Joyride, players will face challenges from locations that span three continents.”

 

Features

Cars

  • Over 50 Cars to customise – Including Ford Fiesta R5, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI, Subaru WRX STI NR4 and Audi Sport quattro S1 E2

Locations

  • 5 Rally Locations – Australia, Spain, Michigan, Sweden & Wales
  • Rally – Your Stage – An innovative rally route creation tool that allows you to produce an almost-infinite number of unique stages at the press of a button. You choose your location and set the route parameters, then Your Stage does the hard work to create a unique rally stage that you can race, share with your friends and then challenge them to beat your time. Your Stage allows experienced rally players to create longer, more technical routes, whilst newcomers can create simpler shorter routes as they hone their skills.
  • 5 RallyCross Stages – Race at Montalegre, Lohéac Bretagne, Hell, Holjes & Lydden Hill in a multitude of different series
  • Some Landrush Stages – Short-course dirt track racing in Pro Buggies, Pro-2 Trucks, Pro-4 Trucks and Crosskart vehicles in California, Nevada and Mexico

Modes

  • JoyRide Mode – Laptime challenges, smash challenges, free-play area and send challenges to friends
  • Dirt Academy – Taking place at the DirtFish Rally School in Washington, USA, learn the skills, techniques and practice to become the best!
  • Career Mode – create your driver, compete across the disciplines, gain sponsors and build your team with clear goals and rewards

Car Care

  • Tuning Car – Tweak your set-up based on vehicle, track and weather conditions to best suit your racing style
  • Damages and Repairs – Wear and tear is faithfully recreated with an improved and realistic damage model. Damage can be repaired by hiring Engineers to work in the team’s Service Area between stages but with a finite amount of time available.

 

Gameplay

Now the details are said we can go through how the game feels – great for the most part.  The best way to describe the game is “in-car” and “out of car”.

Out of Car

The game aims to offer the modes and the immersion to keep the experience in the car for the most part.  Once you have decided what event to try from the variety of events – the Out of the car experience keeps you going in between races.

We spent allot of time, setting up our team in between events and preparing a new wave of sponsors – to get more money – to unlock more cars – to get opportunities at bigger events.  It feels intuitive and only the quantity of cars at the start can feel too much – scaling the cars you could buy at what time could be good.

Now you are ready to race – how about tuning your car – DAM ITS COMPLEX.  Tuning your car to perfection can mean your could be sooooo in depth. However the default setups will be good for the novices.

After racing – your car is injured? In between certain rally stages or in the middle of a racing weekend you get the opportunity to fix your car. Sometimes you have too much damage and have to pick what to miss out and cope with for another 2 stages.  Gladly we did not really have to experience that feeling but with the engineer recommending what you fix – we tended to gloss over this for the majority of our racing.

 

In Car

Dam racing is hard.  The way the driving feels for the different vehicles is different and so weird when you are trying out the different modes.  The rally car and the rallycross cars are all similar because they are basically the average car.  The setup could mean the turn of the wheel on a corner will act slightly different but the adjustment is easy to master.

However the change to the Land Rush vehicles and the novelty karts and cars is weird. The turns of the vehicle and the use of the accelerator felt so different – you cannot just press the accelerator when you are on dirt in a kart.

Now, that’s the vehicles.  The racing modes add a hell of a lot  of longevity to the game.  That’s why we are two weeks in to our review. At the start, we went to the rally mode – having played it in previous games all the way from the beginning in Colin McRae 1.  It felt the same and just graphically better – which we loved.  Obviously there was other improvements but it brought back nostalgia.

Rallycross was a weird thing to try because of the the Joker aspect. Imagine a stage where you were doing a figure of 8, on one lap you have to now drive a longer bottom turn on the 8.  It adds time to a lap but every car has to pick what lap they do a joker.  It keeps the cars together and adds to the strategy of the game.

 

Overall

Dam that’s allot more words than normal – but dam this game is big. There are some adjustments that could be made we feel to make it a top notch racer but it gives so much gameplay – it does not really matter.  If we could it be a 4.5/5 but no its a 4/5. Not perfection but dam near close.

4 out of 5

About Author

Assistant Editor for Erisea. Lover of all things Geeky and otherwise. Feel free to say hello - @Dresdenfalls

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