DiRT 3 Review(360, PS3, PC)

Posted: May 18, 2013 in Reviews
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As a long time fan of rally racing, I’ve always wondered what it would be like to speed around the dirt tracks, mountains, and all the other white knuckle courses in a rally car. Rally racing is a blend of skill, luck, and a lot of bravery, the DiRT series does a good job of simulating what it would be like. DiRT 3 continues the series with familiar and new additions, some good, and some I personally was not fond of, but still adds to an already great series.

There are three game modes to choose from, DiRT Tour, Multiplayer, and Single Player, DiRT Tour has the majority of the content, you can make your way through many events, from beginner races, to the X-Games, all the way to Rally stardom. Multiplayer has Online Events, and Split-screen, it’s fun racing with friends, especially in person, and Single Player allows you to pick the whole loadout of the race, making it easy to just do quick races.

DiRT Tour has a decent amount of events, there are four seasons and each are broken up into four more sections, each section contains  a set of events, and the majority of events have multiple races. There are Rally Cross events, Rally events, Stunt, Buggy and Truck races, the stunt races will make you either have to do a series of stunts in a row like, donuts around light posts, jumps, larger donuts around water fountains, and drifting through areas. Some of the stunt events will also have you smash through small yellow walls for additional points, but these events don’t require you to do all of the stunts in order, and all are points based. While completing the season events, you will also unlock additional events, and there are quite a few to play through.

The courses in DiRT 3 are great, they look very good, and racing around them is a lot of fun. I preferred to just do the race events, the courses are fun to race on, they can be challenging, and the weather simulation, and effects on the vehicles was done very well. The snow and ice will make the vehicle slide, the tarmac is great for traction, the dirt and gravel roads also are good for sliding around corners. There are many locations to race through, Finland, Monaco, America, Norway, Kenya and Africa, they do a great job of simulating what driving on the courses would actually be like, without the risk anyways.

The vehicles in DiRT 3 include new and old rally cars, rally cross, trailblazer, buggies and trucks, all of the vehicles look great inside and out, plus on the Xbox 360 version, your avatar hangs from the rear view mirror. I personally prefer to drive with the in car view, so having a realistic look inside the vehicles is great, the weather, and dust will look real, they will obstuct your view, and also it looks real, but water seems vanish off the vehicle window pretty quick. All of the vehicle types are fun to drive, and the courses are done well for each type, though at times you can just spontaneously lose control, sending you spinning off the course.

The racing in DiRT 3 is very fun, there are 3 difficulties to choose from, Casual, Intermediate, and Advanced, plus there are also driver assists, like breaking and turning, as well as being able to toggle the driving line. Intermediate and Advanced give quite a good challenge, it’s faced passed, wheel to wheel racing, one mistake can lose positioning, it’s a good thing there is a rewind option, but there is a limited amount per race, and a bonus for however many you have left at the end of the race. The driver assists are also very helpful, if all the assists are turned on, it basically does everything but steer and hit the gas, it’s good for new players and people who want to play through without the challenge.

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The game looks great, so the replays are nice to watch, and the ability to directly upload replays to YouTube is a cool option to have, especially if something really awesome happens. Through uploading replays and playing online, you can gain fans, the more fans you have, the closer to online rally stardom you get, and adds a bit extra for the people who get really good, and like racing online. It’s not just a good option for the skilled players, there are cool things that happen throughout the game, roll over victories, close victories, awesome crashes, long jumps, and many other things can happen, it’s nice to be able to upload and share the replays.

There is also the DiRT Tour driver rep, as you progress through events you’ll earn experience, the experience depends on the difficulty level, how many flashbacks you have left, and if the race objective has been achieved. The more races there are in the event, the more experience is earned, certain levels unlock new company deals, which include vehicles, and liveries for the vehicles. Gaining levels is rewarding, there are 30 levels in total, and the vehicles generally get better, events that were difficult can become easier, and races become more intense.

Though the YouTube upload option is nice to have, the game really starts pushing it, not every second race replay needs to be uploaded, and it seems like it’s trying to remind the gamer that it’s there, over and over. Though the graphics are great, and the replays can be nice to watch, there are texture issues from time to time, and there are quite a few rough edges in the environments, though not enough to make the game look really bad. Beside the pushing to upload on YouTube, the before and after race dialog is really corny, it also doesn’t seem natural, and includes the word “Dude” so many times, it’s good some of the dialog can be skipped.

In my opinion, the events that require you to do stunts in a specific order, took away from the pace of the game, I’d rather just race, I did enjoy the events the break through events however, it was nice being able to go around and do whatever stunt I wanted, when I wanted, and it was fun racking up the points. These events however are not required unless you want to get 100%, but even if you don’t do the events you can finish off each season. Besides the original content, there are additional downloads that unlock events and vehicles, but there are not that many additional events. Though progressing all the way through the DiRT Tour will take a while, there is not much content beyond that, you can improve scores, or race with friends and online, but nothing beyond that.

DiRT 3 does a great job simulating what rally racing would be like, great courses, intense challenging gameplay, and great visuals make up the majority of the game, there really is not that much content, but the content that is there, is done well. Even though I felt the Stunt Events took away from the pace of the game, they also added additional challenges, and they can still be fun. All together DiRT 3 is a great racing game, the track, weather, and vehicle simulations are done very well, the events are entertaining, and all looks great too.

Overall Score: 8.5/10

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