DiRT 2: Dirty Videos

By Jim Rossignol on August 10th, 2009 at 9:19 am.


Beneath the grimy click are ten million videos of DiRT 2 doing its thing. The one you probably want to watch is an interview with Codemasters’ veteran and Chief Game Designer Matthew Horsman talking about why the game has benefited from the work the team did on GRID. He chats a bit about the one hundred events the game contains, and explains why multiplayer enables players to have a lot more freedom in the kind of game they play, particularly with mixing up car and track types – allowing you to race buggies around the spectacular Battersea power station Rallycross track, or traditional rally cars around the deserts of California on the game’s wide open “raid” stages. Oh, and it’s all a bit pretty, too. Go and judge with your eyes.


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51 Comments »

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  1. AndrewC says:

    You can buy furry dice.

  2. Howard says:

    Again with the slightly poor looking graphics. I know it looks ‘kinda; shiny but there were a lot of duff textures in there and the car models seem pretty low=poly. Again. I’m hopeful that this is just a symptom of the 360 and its feeble horsepower.
    Also: deferred lighting? Sigh. If people REALLY have to use such a bloody awful system could you at least do so in a DX10 engine so that we can have anti-aliasing? All the specular lighting, environment maps and reflection maps in the the world are for nought if the screen looks like its made of Lego…

  3. Schmung says:

    I want Dirt2 to be good, simply because it’s been far too long since I played a really good rally game, but the the first one was ass and despite their assurances that they’ve played around with the physics I’m not entirely convinced. Arcadey fun is fine with Grid, but I want a little more meat with my rally games and the emphasis on the XTREME angle is a little iffy.

    Still, it looks and sounds fantastic – for instance the chattering of the anti-lag on the turbo of that scooby in that one vid.

    I’ll give the demo a punt, but I’m not holding out any great hopes for it.

  4. Gurrah says:

    Why are those videos on RPS? The guy mentioned every console system in the land but he didn’t say it’ll come out on the PC.

  5. Jim Rossignol says:

    Because it’s coming out on PC. Obviously.

  6. Gurrah says:

    So why didn’t the guy mention it? I mean he listed 5 systems and not one of them was the PC. I trust you did your reasearch and it is coming out on PC, but why wouldn’t the big cheese behind the game not mention it?!

  7. Howard says:

    @Tally
    Oh yeah, I forgot that. That definitely puts me off. There s no way in hell that CM will get that right…

  8. Jim Rossignol says:

    Why wouldn’t the big cheese behind the game not mention it?!

    Just a mild attack of lameness I guess. They generally assume they’re talking to console gamers.

    Howard: What are you basing that on? Do you have some crucial insight into Codemasters’ production pipeline? Have you been leaked their plans for DirectX 11 development?

  9. Schmung says:

    I’m not sure my PC is Monstro enough to give me anything better than I’d get with my PC (assuming the game is actually decent) but it’s good of them to actually give those people with properly ninja systems some extra eye-candy I ‘spose.

  10. MrBejeebus says:

    I’m actually really liking the look of this, I haven’t bought a rally game for yonks

    Unless this is just GRID on dirt tracks and not proper rally? In which case they’ve lost a sale…

  11. Howard says:

    @Jim
    Its pretty logical deduction:
    1 – CM suck. Sorry but they just do. So many of their games of late have been utter and complete consolised crud its unbelievable.
    2 – DX 11 shows no sign of being anything other than the damp, badly planned squib that DX 10 was. Sure DX 10 is all fine and good now nearly 2 years on but in the beginning it was just terrible
    3 – Even more worrying is that DX 11 is dependant on M$’s fresh off the bug-inducing line, shiny new OS. And new OS’s from Microsoft always run flawlessly, right…right?!
    4 – DX 11 is going to rely on a whole new generation of hardware which, as of yet, no one has seen hide nor hair of. Delaying a big title simply to add a feature that, let’s be honest, less than 1% of your target audience are ever going to use, is stupid even for Codemasters. Also let’s not forget that brand new hardware running on a brand new OS with brand new drivers is always so much fun!!

  12. Andy`` says:

    Howard: Vista will also get updated to DX11. Given that the Steam Hardware Survey says almost 29% of systems are DX10 compatible (OS + Hardware), even if you take Steam out of the equation it’s going to be a little bit more than “less than 1%”.

    And the rest seems based off a) opinion of CM’s games which not everybody will agree to and b) complaints about Microsoft that have nothing to do with Codemasters.

    Not to deduce that you’re definately wrong, but it does feel like guesswork centred around the fact that you dislike CM a bit.

  13. Andy`` says:

    Just make myself stupid by completely forgetting about the hardware thing.

    Meh.

  14. AndrewC says:

    How is it that sometimes Howard comes over as a reasonable person?

  15. Howard says:

    @Andy
    Glad you spotted that =)

    As to CMs games being bad, they really have been for the last few years. Who remembers such gems as:
    -Turning Point
    -Jericho
    -Fuel (HUGE let down)
    -Damnation
    -Rise of the Argonauts
    -Overlord 2 (Okay, not actually terrible but also nothing more than a huge patch for the original game really)
    -Grid (okay, opinion is divided but I bloody loathed that game)

  16. Howard says:

    @AndrewC
    ‘Cos I am, I just hold unpopular views about games, as I’ve said before…

  17. alset says:

    29% systems running vista? That doesn’t sound right. I would think even half that would be a bit of a stretch considering what a trainwreck vista was.

  18. Howard says:

    @alset
    Vista was not a train wreck. Stop swallowing hyperbole so willingly and you’ll find that the odd fact comes your way…

  19. alset says:

    Howard, then why did they ditch the name with 7 and resell the same OS with a few bells and whistles on top? I mean, it’s pretty obvious to me…

  20. Jim Rossignol says:

    Generally speaking CMs problems are not technical problems, but game design. DX11 implementation is a technical issue.

    And having played Dirt2 pretty extensively, I’m not overly worried about the game design side of things either.

  21. alset says:

    Oh, and I’m not swallowing anything, I just watched how my brother was having fps in the 10’s in Fallout 3 on his gaming laptop running Vista, while my weaker machine with xp had 30+. It’s just an anecdote, but I saw with my own eyes how Microsoft can ruin performance in games.

  22. Coombs says:

    “3 – Even more worrying is that DX 11 is dependant on M$’s fresh off the bug-inducing line, shiny new OS. And new OS’s from Microsoft always run flawlessly, right…right?!
    4 – DX 11 is going to rely on a whole new generation of hardware which, as of yet, no one has seen hide nor hair of. Delaying a big title simply to add a feature that, let’s be honest, less than 1% of your target audience are ever going to use, is stupid even for Codemasters. Also let’s not forget that brand new hardware running on a brand new OS with brand new drivers is always so much fun!!”

    3. Windows 7 is really very stable Im running right now(the RC) but thats beside the point as DX 11 will be released as a patch for vista (not xp though).

    4. From what I’ve heard nearly all the DX11 features are compatible with DX10.1 hardware and some are compatible with DX10 cards so anyone with a recent ATI card should be fine and nvidia users wont be completely screwed. Although you’re right drivers could be a problem since the first DX11 cards (and therefore drivers I assume) are I think rumoured to be coming in Novemeber while the game is scheduled for december which is maybe one driver release later based on the rate they currently update them.

  23. Howard says:

    @alset
    They ditched the name ‘cos they ditched the name. Brands just change is all. Beyond that Vista’s uselessness has essentially become an urban myth. As with all urban myths it is based on nothing substantial

    @Jim
    That’s fair comment. Still does not mean I have a single ounce of faith in them anymore and it still does not detract from the fact that delaying a game for such a niche feature is not a logical move. Nothing angers PC owners more than not being able to run their games at maximum detail and I cannot see people dashing out for these (still-to-be-seen) cards and paying launch prices for this one game.

  24. Howard says:

    @alset
    No, what ruined the performance in Fallout for your brother was that a) he was running on a laptop and b) he most likely did not know how best to configure his machine (not being rude, its just the way it is with PC owners) .

    PCs are not consoles, you have to give them some time and effort. Vista runs everything faster than XP if you know what you are doing.

  25. Howard says:

    @coombs
    The main changes with DX11 are hardware tessellation and SM5.0 both of which will require DX11 hardware and are not backwards compatible. The other changes DX11 brings are useful (GPGPUs and multi-core optimization) are all fine and good but they are not the type of thing you would delay a game for

  26. CrazedPenguin says:

    @ Howard: “Vista runs everything faster than XP if you know what you’re doing”

    That may be true, I don’t now, but isn’t it also true that most games require considerably more hardware resources on Vista than XP?
    Why else would developers list things like ‘1GB RAM for XP/ 2GB for Vista’ or ‘2 GHz Processor for XP/ 2.5 GHz for Vista’ and stuff like that on the system recommendations?

    Then wouldn’t XP be the more viable option for the guy that only has the 2 GHz processor and the 1 GB of RAM?

    I think this distinction between XP and Vista on nearly all game boxes is a huge proponent of the “myth” that XP is better than Vista.

  27. alset says:

    Howard, I’m not getting into this. You make it sound like we’re back in the old DOS days. There isn’t much more to PC’s than having all your drivers up to date and keeping your system clean of bloat.

    And about Microsoft: I’m not gonna dig up where they themselves said Vista underperformed, and you don’t think shipping 7 so soon has anything to do with it? Not to mention the dozens of tests on the web showing that Vista simply has lower overall performance.

  28. Howard says:

    @CrazedPenguin
    Oh sure, if you have a weaker system then yeah, XP is the way to go, no question. Let’s be clear: I am not arguing that Vista is a *good* OS, it is just the best M$ has to offer, assuming you have a high end gaming machine. If you do not game or have a lower spec setup then XP will give you more mileage to be sure.

    @alset
    Fair enough, I am not looking for a fight either I do not need to as I am confident in my abilities as a techie and in my understanding of both OSs. As I have just said above though, if you have a good gaming PC (i.e. a DX10 capable one) then Vista is just the better option. While it does offer things to non gamers it is likely not worth bothering with the upgrade.
    My problem with this concept of VISTA=BAD is that it is a throw back from when Vista launched. Back then there were no drivers, fewer working apps and a shed load of issues, exactly as there were with XP on launch (in fact the anger at XP was even greater than it was at Vista back then. Pre SP1 XP was utterly unusable, unlike Vista). Vista has moved on, has good drivers, a couple of Service Packs and is now FAR more stable than XP and a much better performer.

  29. AndrewC says:

    So about DIRT2, Jim – could you tell us if it offers difficulty options like in GRID where you can actually change the driving model?

  30. Gravious says:

    I’m super excited about DiRT 2, i loved the first one, and i loved GRiD and this looks a lot prettier :D

  31. Alex says:

    Maybe it’s because I’m not that into racing games, but the titles are blurring together in my mind. Why do they all seem to use four-letter-long names with weird capitalization?

  32. Howard says:

    @Alex
    Its just a brand awareness thing by CM. DiRT, Fuel and GRiD are all their IPs so they just trying to make them sounds similar I guess…

  33. Phil says:

    Raaaaawwrrr. I hate all games. Troll troll troll.

  34. Eli Just says:

    @alset, it is not the same OS with a brand new name. You should run the release candidate because as soon as I did I finally realized how much I hate Vista. It’s easier to use, way easier on the system resources and the broke networking is fixed. It’s just great, not Vista with a new name tag.

  35. jalf says:

    @Howard: Just curious, but how can Vista be “more stable than XP”? XP is stable. It doesn’t crash. So it seems to me that the best Vista can achieve stability-wise is to be *also stable*. You can’t be more stable than something which is already stable.

    As for “Vista running everything better if you know what you’re doing”, I’ve yet to see any consistent benchmarks demonstrating this. Perhaps the big benchmarking websites “don’t know what they’re doing” then?
    I’ll happily agree that Vista today runs games about as well as XP. Sometimes, you get a marginal performance boost under Vista, and sometimes you lose a few percent off your framerate. In neither case is it anything worth getting worked up over. But so far, I’ve seen no evidence of Vista being consistently and noticeably a *better* performer on the same hardware.

    My beef with Vista is that it is a major step backwards in terms of usability in a lot of respects, and the improvements it offers in return are all under the hood where users simply don’t see or benefit from them. I don’t *care* that they implemented a new network stack. XP let me get online just fine. That’s all a network stack is required to do. And yet, it is one of the big selling points and justifications for Vista.

    My problem with this concept of VISTA=BAD is that it is a throw back from when Vista launched.

    For some, yes. For the rest of us, it is a statement of the fact that we find Vista to be a pain to use. This is not about performance (and even today, with all the updates, patches, hotfixes and service packs, Vista is more demanding than both XP and Win7), and it is not about being buggy or lacking driver support.

    It is simply that Vista is… annoying… to… use. Explorer is rubbish. Because the Start Menu sphere thingy intrudes on the desktop, it can overlap windowed games which *totally* destroy performance. It adds a lot of eye candy which slows down everyday tasks, but offer no benefits. Common settings have been renamed and moved, and are now only accessible by clicking through two layers of “advanced” buttons and dialog boxes added solely to make Vista look *different*. And when you finally manage to dig through them, you get to the *exact* same dialog box as Vista used. The start menu is a pain to navigate, and where 7 uses the taskbar so you virtually never need to open the start menu in the first place, Vista has no such option.

    The reason I use Windows 7 today is that while it still retains a lot of Vista’s annoyances, it also contains actual improvements which are visible and beneficial to the user.
    Vista offered no *meaningful* improvements as far as I’m concerned.

    It’s nowhere near perfect, but virtually all my complaints about it are “features” introduced in Vista, and carried over to 7. At the same time, all the things I *like* about 7 are new, and did *not* exist in Vista.

    That is why I consider Vista to be a lousy OS. Buggyness or driver compatibility are non-issues for me. The things I dislike about it are the *intentional* changes.

  36. Howard says:

    Well sorry but I disagree. XP was unstable for me. Not massively so I grant but it would lock up during games and I would get fatal exceptions at regular intervals (maybe every 2 hours of use or so). In Vista I don’t.
    Sure it sues more resources and I look forward to Win 7 getting released for that alone but that’s about it. I’ve no idea what you are on about with the explorer by the way…
    As to the network issues: they were all removed in SP1 as they totally stripped out Vistas (admittedly broken) network layer and stuffed XPs back in. No longer a valid complaint.
    As to “simply not liking it”, fair enough, but I still say that this is juyst hyperbole. There is nothing particularly abhorrent about it, nor is there anything to sing about. I have no doubt at all that Win 7 will be better but I simply refuse to do M$s beta testing for them and I question the sanity of anyone that would!

  37. Howard says:

    That’s “every 24 hours of use” not two…doh…

  38. alset says:

    jalf, yeah you said everything I meant and I feel exactly the same. Why they ruined something so simple and efficient is beyond me.

  39. alset says:

    @eli just
    I’m looking forward to the windows 7 release, and using that starter version, the one for EEEPCs for my gaming if it’s faster than xp.

  40. Tetracell says:

    Howard it would be cool if you could not use “M$” in the future because it basically makes you look retarded.

  41. Guhndahb says:

    Thanks to GOG, I just got my first taste of rally racing w/ Colin McRae Rally 2005. I really liked it. I was thinking about picking up Dirt based on my positive experiences with 2005, but I’ve seen a number of comments about the arcade-y-ness of it both here and looking around at reviews. And in those searches I read a lot about how even 2005 was arcade-y next to, say, Richard Burns Rally.

    I think 2005 was just about right for me in the sim:game ratio as I’m not as hard core into racing as I am into flight sims. If so, given what we know so far, does skipping Dirt and waiting for Dirt 2 seem prudent for one such as me? Am I screwed either way? Or am I asking a question for which it is too early to speculate?

  42. jalf says:

    I’ve no idea what you are on about with the explorer by the way

    1: The ‘up’ button is removed. I used it a lot to navigate folders.
    2: The folder hierarchy pane no longer shows the current folder or its subfolders, making it needlessly difficult to do something as simple as browse to a sibling folder.
    3: The statusbar at the bottom contains almost no useful information. Try selecting a number of files in XP and see how much info it gives you just there. Even if you deselect everything, XP puts relevant information about the partition in the statusbar.

    It is entirely possible that most people are not bothered by this. It’s likely that I use Explorer more than most, and more often need to navigate up and down my folders. But for me, the “new” Explorer is a pain, and has caused a major decrease in my productivity when managing files.

    And of course some people had stability issues with XP. Just like some people have stability issues with Vista. That’s pretty much my point, it’s not quite that simple to determine which is most stable. You certainly can’t do it just by looking at your own experiences (or at mine).
    For you, Vista was a compelling upgrade because XP ran like shit. For the rest of us, who’ve had rock solid XP installations for 5+ years, what do we care about “better stability”?

    As to “simply not liking it”, fair enough, but I still say that this is juyst hyperbole

    No. It would be hyperbole if I exaggerated it. I’m not. I’m saying precisely why the worst aspects of Vista annoy me, while the best aspects of it are no better than XP.

    @Tetracell: Amen to that.

  43. Coombs says:

    @Guhndahb

    I recently picked up DiRT from game for £10 and found it to be a real blast.

  44. DerangedStoat says:

    Ugh, the series formerly known as Colin Mcrae’s Rally, is no longer…
    It is now Travis “Xtreme!1!!” Pastrana’s DiRT.

    The man is a walking exercise in branding, marketing & self promotion (did I mention he’s XTREME!!1!). Sure he can drive a bit, but I’m not sure that many people outside of the US would be all that aware of him when compared to someone like Loeb.

    Won’t someone please think of the WRC fans!

  45. Howard says:

    @jalf
    Ah right.
    Okay, but:
    -The up button is gone but instead you have the entire DNC address in selectable blocks at the top of the screen. Much better as you can go “up” to any level of the hierarchy you choose.
    -The folder hierarchy pain shows eactly what you say it doesn’t…errmm?
    -And the status bar contains, if anything, MORE info than the one in XP.

    This is why I didn’t understand what you were saying… =)

    As to arguing the stability or lack there of of a given OS I am not just arguing from my own experience. While I do have more PCs than most (7 at current count, excluding business machines) I am a self employed custom PC builder so I will, on a normal week, build, repair or upgrade something like 8 – 15 PCs. It is the experiences of these PCs that I am talking about and, when taking them into account, Vista wins hands down in the stability battle.#

    @DerangedStoat
    Yeah, I gotta agree. The actual “Rally” has kinda fallen by the wayside. I suppose I have to be honest and say that DiRTs rally sections were, while far from realistic, actually pretty fun so not all hope is lost but the other vehicle classes (bar the hill climbs) left me cold.

  46. alset says:

    jalf, I recommend you try Total Commander for your file management. I’ve been using it starting with windows 2000 and I haven’t cared about explorer since.

  47. A Delicate Balance says:

    @Howard: I’ve been running Windows 7 for a while, first in beta, then RC1 and I’ll be buying it when it’s available for purchase – I prefer it to Vista and there’s no way I’d go back to a 10 year old OS that doesn’t even support my previous graphics card (XP).

  48. A Delicate Balance says:

    …damn no edit: 8-year-old OS, but, my point remains.