DiRT Rally Review - Richard Burns Rally may finally be gone

Author: Przemysław Zamęcki
Date: 2015-12-12 15:29:00
The review was based on the PC version.

The British from Codemasters only had to face the specter of unemployment so that they could open them a bit more to the completely neglected subject of car rallies. These are almost real, not - still very pleasant to read - but completely arcade games like almost all the DiRT series. It is strange that a company with such traditions in motorsport games was so sluggish in gathering strength to hit the most critical episode of simulation games. Sure, the market has its own rules, and perhaps in recent years this niche has seemed too little promising financially, but there are no shortage of orphans after the late Richard Burns Rally . Well, it could not do without a mention of this title, which still "makes it", but as it sometimes happens with grandparents, its full potential is rather behind it. So does DiRT Rally have a chance to become a worthy successor to the legend?

A few days ago, after several months in the Steam Early Access phase, DiRT Rally finally received the 1.0 update and became a full-fledged game. Thus, it is assessed under the normal rules, like any full-fledged production. The first thing that catches the eye after launching the program is that the creators finally got rid of all this unnecessary baroque envelope that characterized the previous titles in the series. There are no caravans, balloons, not very eloquent oratory by Ken Block and the company, and above all, an unnecessary narrator who would introduce laymen to the rally meanders of their first rallies in their lives. No more lavish menus. It is elegant and probably even more modest than in the old Collinach McRae . This is very good, because I was afraid that after leaving Early Access, we would be overwhelmed with another unnecessary content that the creators were unnecessarily wasting time on. Meanwhile, quite the opposite. The development team polished the options for controller settings and improved the functions responsible for the settings of the car before the rally. Still not perfect. In the service park, you can combine the settings of the gearbox, differential, suspension, but for incomprehensible reasons it is not possible to change tires. However, the most important thing is that the changes made are of real importance for the driving model itself. Unlike its predecessors, DiRT Rally tries to be a real simulator.

Which does not mean that it is in the full sense of the word. However, it is close to the ideal. Codemasters managed to write a physical model, thanks to which DiRT Rally tries to very faithfully reproduce all the forces affecting the car speeding along the dirt road. In the corners, you can perfectly feel the weight distribution of the car, the tires behave completely different on different types of surfaces, and to top it off, the game is deliciously difficult. When all assists are turned off, the fun turns into a real challenge. Driving requires concentration, listening carefully to what the pilot says - by the way, probably the best in the history of rally games - sometimes almost millimeter precision and painstaking learning from your mistakes, after which you cannot refuse another attempt. And another one. It has been a long time since no car gave me such shivers. The creators managed to introduce a brilliant atmosphere to the game, including the option of employing mechanics who, as they gain experience in subsequent rallies, are able to repair our vehicle more efficiently or even improve it. One can only wonder how big a DiRT Rally with a full FIA license for WRC competitions could be.

The matter is better with the available vehicles, divided into several categories - most often by decade. There are almost forty of them, ranging from classics from the 1960s to modern strollers - from Mini Cooper S, through Ford Sierra Cosworth, Lancia Delta S4 and Integrale, Audi Sport Quattro, to Ford Focus, Subaru Impreza and Mistubishi Lancer. A total of fifty years of racing history are waiting to be tried, and most importantly, each vehicle offers a different experience. For enthusiasts, this is utterly irrevocable, showing how technology has evolved over the decades. Codemasters deserves a lot of applause for the right choice of vehicles. And one would only like the cost of their purchase to be slightly lower, because with the current difficulty level of the campaign, even the best drivers who want to buy these gems will have to turn the steering wheel for many, many hours. Which is a great pleasure in itself, but ... it is known that not everyone may like it.

The damage model is quite decent and allows you to simulate multiple defects. However, I had the impression that he can forgive a lot, and in order for there to be more serious faults that prevent further fun, the driver really has to try. In lonely struggles, any bigger bell results in restarting the ride, because there is probably no point in having to struggle with the matter, when we have no chance to dial it out anyway. The case is different if someone takes the adventure with DiRT Rally absolutely seriously or intends to compete on the Internet through the RaceNet service, but there are probably not so many people like that. After all, even this almost-simulation must have certain limits, so as not to scare off a completely potential customer who would just like to try what it is like to be a driver of a four-wheel-drive monster rushing through the forest . But here amateurs have nothing to look for. In addition, to feel the full experience offered by the driving model, you will need a decent steering wheel, at least the Driving Force GT, and even better something at the G27 level. Anyway, something with decent force feedback, no ladybug inventions. You can try to play the pad, but of course it's not the same. Keyboard lords better stay away from this title.