Dirrty Enough: Dirt Rally Skids Out Of Early Access

How dirty is dirty enough? Two Rs, says Christina Aguilera, and she’s a judge on The Voice so she should know. After seven months in Steam Early Access, skidding through mud and gyrating against pine trees, the racing game now known as Dirrt Rally [official site] has properly launched. It screeched out with a big update too, with a wintery track set in Sweden. Codemasters seem very proud of their snow physics. I’d expense a trip to roll around in the snow if I could too. Horace, do we have room in our budget for a trip to Sweden? It’s vital to my understanding of this news post.

Dirrt Rally is £28.04 on Steam. The patch notes for that launch update also include shiny newness like Steam Workshop support for car setup and haptic feedback, for folks who are happy to let others fine-tune their rides. Anywho, here’s what Codies say about the new Swedish stages:

“These snow-filled stages are known for their snow banks and Codemasters has pioneered new soft edge tech that simulates the density of snow. As a result, players can now lean on the snow banks when pushing for those stage records.”

Soft edges. Very good. Very safe. Health and safety and all that, yeah?

A PC retail release is also coming on April 5th, launching alongside console versions. I’d be surprised if that’s much more than a pretty DVD to accompany a Steam key, mind.

Skidmarks. Those are dirty. Cars make ’em too. That’d be a double entendre if I’d tried.

30 Comments

  1. The First Door says:

    I bet those snow banks aren’t soft enough to save my car when I accidentally slam into them at 90mph. I’m so very, very bad at this game.

  2. Goschti says:

    Great game. Early access done absolutely right. 135 hours in and counting.

  3. RogerMellie says:

    On a sliding scale of Mario Kart to Gran Turismo (my gaming racing knowledge does not run deep), where would you put it in terms of pick up and play?

    • h_ashman says:

      Depends on how you start, if you were to launch into the career where you can only afford a 60s car, it’s reasonably straight forward if you’ve played any form of racing game that requires a basic understanding of a brake pedal.

      The thing is they’ve really captured the lunacy & more knife-edge handling of the more advanced vehicles, if you launch in with rallycross, hillclimb or something like a group B car and try and go flat out you’ll be upside down by the first checkpoint.

    • DrollRemark says:

      It’s a little tricky to say, but I guess I’d put it in a similar camp to Gran Turismo. For someone that’s not big on driving games, it will seem difficult to get the hang of almost never going flat out (the tracks are often so bumpy and twisty that it’s more risk than it’s worth). Although, as said, the simpler cars are more forgiving in this regard.

      But get over that inital hurdle, and it’s great fun. Because most of the game is about long(ish) solo rally courses (apart from the quick fun of the 4-6 car rallycross races), the challenge is in bettering yourself, and making it round a course with as few scrapes as possible (good luck with that!)

    • Premium User Badge

      Grizzly says:

      It’s a bit Gran Turismo yes. It progresses in difficulty very nicely and there are adjustable driving aids to boot. I think anyone, from the “Keyboard it like it’s CMR2.0” to the “I have a leo bodnar racing wheel and I am going to use it!” has something they can agree to.

      We also run a dirt rally league right here on the forums :)

    • RogerMellie says:

      Thanks for the feedback! Sounds like I’m after something a little simpler.

  4. DrollRemark says:

    This is a very good game, I like it a lot. You should try it.

  5. Goinsey says:

    Using a wheel with this game is one of the best racing experiences I have had in quite a while, I’m horrendously bad at it but its so much fun that it doesn’t even matter

  6. BadManiac says:

    I tried this out for the first time last night and I think I like it. But I am catastrophically shit at it. “Not coming last” is my current goal…

  7. Capt. Bumchum McMerryweather says:

    I’m so ridiculously terrible at this game. Love it to bits though! One thing I can’t work out though: When I start the career mode, I’ve just about got the hang of the mini and lancia, but even if I blast through the tracks at mace speed I always seem to come about 10th. Am I just really rubbish?

    • Capt. Bumchum McMerryweather says:

      Max speed, not mace speed.

    • Premium User Badge

      Arnvidr says:

      It’s hard to not be rubbish in the beginning. It took me a few hours before I could even get to the finish line with all 4 wheels still on the car. Getting better.

    • DrollRemark says:

      In fairness, getting the hang of the Lancia should be an achievement in itself.

      From what I remember reading, the seasons supposedly reward consistency, so getting round in 10th every time, but being relatively unscathed will eventually net you a pretty high final place. That said, I can’t verify that from experience, because I’m in much the same boat as you.

      • hollowroom says:

        I just got this the other night. The 70s Stratos? Took it for a shakedown, booked it on the first corner in Wales.

        Magic.

    • remon says:

      Is your car fully upgraded? Also, there are some videos that you should watch. Both about Dirt Rally, and real world racing.

  8. Perjoss says:

    At first it can feel a bit like the Dark Souls of driving games, specially if you play with all assists off and are using a wheel with pedals and a gear shifter, but it gets better and more fun the more time you spend with it, really rewarding once you start taking corners like a pro. Top quality game, highly recommended to any driving game fan unless you hate rally.

    • Goschti says:

      Dark Souls of driving games is really fitting. But nothing beats the sense of accomplishment after winning against this pesky masters AI in a Group B car.

      Most intense game I ever played

      • Capt. Bumchum McMerryweather says:

        Winning?! Holy fuck knuckles. I was punching the air and doing the fonz point at my dog over 4th place last night.

  9. Czrly says:

    How many energy-drink company logos does one have to survive to play this? Does it have ALL THE LOGOS?

    • Czrly says:

      … or merely MUCH LOGOS, MANY SUBLIMINAL-MESSAGING?

      • hollowroom says:

        I actually can’t remember any logos, so it must be subliminal.

        • Cyroch says:

          In Rallycross there are some Monster Logos at the tracks. But that is mainly because it’s the FIA WRX license. And they happen to be sponsored by Monster energy.

          Apart from that, no energy drinks, no Ken Block, no Gymkhana, no dudebro awesome bro put it on youtoob.

          Very pure experience overall.

          300+ hours in and still sucking at it xD

          • hollowroom says:

            Ah, I haven’t touched the Rallycross. That would explain it. I’m still bimbling around a welsh forest in a mini.

            Or dying a horrible death sideways in a Lancia.

          • DrollRemark says:

            Aren’t there a couple of Red Bull liveries? Though you should only be seeing those briefly at the end of races, unless you’re some kind of exterior-view heathen.

          • Cyroch says:

            You’re right, there are. But the only car that forces you to use it is the Polo Rally because that’s the only livery for it. IIRC the others do have more to choose from

  10. Foosnark says:

    I was having a hard enough time with Finland, where you feel like you can absolutely floor it and then SURPRISE there’s a “care left 2 over crest jump” and you fail to slow down in time and bounce off a tree about 12 feet off the ground and roll over 47 times and crash into a rock and lose a tire and smash your radiator. And inevitably this happens 9km into a 10km stage, and the next stage is also 10km, and it’s nighttime, and you don’t get to repair.

    And then they brought us Sweden, where every corner is a disaster waiting to happen and that one straightaway is worse because it’s so narrow and the snow on the left side is loose while it’s hard-packed on the right and how did I manage to get turned around backwards while trying to drive straight in 2nd gear? Augh.

    I love this game :P

  11. raiders says:

    Greatest racing sim I’ve ever owned.

    Get yourself a beefy gfx card, max out all settings and play in 1440p.

    Eye candy? No.

    It’s a diabetic eye spasm!

  12. Sim-Deck says:

    I am rubbish at this. It’s a wonderful game.

  13. caff says:

    I play this with keyboard. It’s quite entertaining changing up/down gears with one finger, and accelerating/decelerating with another.

    Like others here, I am spectactularly shit, probably more so because of playing on keyboard. But I don’t care, because it’s the most fun rally game I’ve played in probably 10 years.