The DiRT series panders to the mainstream, extreme sports-loving crowd rather than hardcore Colin McRae Rally fans... and whilst DiRT 2 isn't quite the authentic experience that some would have liked, it's still a riotous experience in its own right. Starting off as a greenhorn rally driver, you'll be presented with the late, great Colin McRae's Subaru Impreza and embark into the breakneck world of professional offroad racing. Each car handles differently and authentically on each surface, and the racing mechanics are both realistic and accessible using the noob-friendly flashback function.
Unfortunately, the presentation and GUI is very divisive and will take some getting used to. Set in a fictional festival/race season, it's feels more like an X-Games crowd than a Rally meet. Luckily, the excellent graphics and damage models more than make up for it.
DiRT 2 toes the line between mainstream appeal and hardcore rallying. Whilst the American extreme sports vibe will soon start to get on your nerves, the thrilling racing and great mechanics make for an excellent little title. The sequel promises to provide a much bigger experience- but for the time being, offroad racing fans would do well to check this one out.
Thanks to andywedge @ HotUKDeals
Not only the best rally game out there, but arguably one of the best racers full stop. If you want a classic that you’ll still be playing six months from now then McRae’s your man.
There are over a hundred events spread out across more than 40 tracks. You’ll be tearing up gravel, tarmac and dirt around the world in locations like Utah canyons, Japan, China, Malaysia, London, Croatia, Baja and LA. Every track is a looker but the tracks in the Far East are just incredible to behold. Sightseeing at 150 mph never felt so good.
There are lots of rally disciplines available. As well as the usual split-times and lapped racing we have Raid where some seriously chunky cars all compete for space on a track with multiple routes. Landrush has similar trucks and buggies on a circuit filled with jumps and bumps. Domination has drivers competing for fastest section times and Last Man standing is your standard elimination mode. Gatecrasher is a lot of fun, but criminally underused as you smash through giant yellow barriers to earn extra seconds to help you reach the finish line before the timer runs out.
Dirt 2’s garage is packed with the best rally cars past and present, and the way the events unlock you’ll never get bored as you always have a wide choice. This is something Codemasters have improved on since Race Driver Grid.
You can drive without fear again too thanks to the brilliant ‘Flasback’ rewind feature acting as extra lives for when you catch a hidden rock and barrel roll down the track after pinging off a few trees first for good measure.
In the main game you unlock dashboard items and rubbish like fluffy dice *puts head in hands*, but also different horns. Now, on your own, a novelty ice-cream chime for a horn is soulless. But in a two player online race it’s absolutely f**king brilliant. Driving right behind someone, trying to nudge them off the road or better yet while passing them and blasting that out is an absolute inner-bastard pleasing joy.
Online racing is up there with the best with super-smooth races and the game is constantly supported by community events. Although, if I get one more Facebook update with them wittering on about Ken Block…
There’s huge list of audio names recorded so the game will address you personally. The only problem is that you’ll want to throttle most of the other racers who are made up of American ‘big-name’ rally stars (ex BMX riders generally, Dave Mirra WTF!). They’re all so friggin’ happy it’ll make you sick. Even as you’re trying to shunt them off a cliff from behind they’re pathetically apologising.
The festival n’ stickers design to the whole thing turned my miserable stomach at times too. Nobody told them MySpace is dead apparently. There’s some great music outside of the racing though and the way it jumps to a good part and increases in volume suddenly works really well.
Dirt 3 hasn’t been announced yet, but fingers crossed it’ll be soon. If it is, we’d like to see some weather variations, proper night races and snow so Britain can practice and doesn’t spack out next time we get a bit of the white stuff.
Thanks to amibees (again!) for the find at HotUkDeals
Opinion is very much divided regarding the arrival of Colin McRae: Dirt 2 onto the Nintendo Wii. Despite the fact that some customers clearly enjoyed Codemaster’s efforts to adapt a game, which many people describe as one of the best racing titles of all time, for the Wii console, many were simply appalled by how poorly it compared to the Xbox 360/PS3 versions. IGN absolutely slammed the Wii adaptation calling it nothing but ‘Dirt 2 in name’ whilst livid Nintendo Wii fans condemned Codemasters for their lacklustre effort, and described D2 as an unforgivably ‘sloppy port’.
However, as previously mentioned, some fans really did enjoy this title according to a few Amazon reviews - but it’s probably a good idea to do some research before you commit to buying this one on the Wii. If you do decide to have a punt you can get hold of a copy for just £14.73 from The Hut which gives you a great saving compared with the next best deal from Coolshop, where Dirt 2 is currently going for £19.99.
According to IGN - and something which will really give Nintendo Wii haters lots more ammunition to slate the console - Dirt 2 is really let down by poor graphics. Given that the PS3/360 versions provided some of the best visuals of almost any racing game, seeing it brought down the level of the PSP (as IGN describe it) has clearly angered many fans. IGN also condemned the game for its linear career mode, lack of variety when it comes to vehicles, cumbersome controls, lack of cockpit mode and inability to play music whilst driving. They also cited an overall lack of intensity during gameplay. Despite the fact this is a great price, if you put a lot of faith in the opinions of IGN, then this might be one to miss.
Thanks to millarcat from Hotukdeals.
Given that Colin McRae Dirt 2 is, according to some, one of the best racing titles ever, you might have thought the DS version would be a slightly watered down affair. But although there are undeniable differences when compared to the console experience, Dirt 2 on the DS is still a remarkably solid rally title which will not disappoint racing fans in the least. The game is currently going for £11.93 from The Hut which, according to price comparison, is the cheapest deal currently available.
Of course graphically the game can’t really compare to the breath taking scenes you get on the Xbox 360 and Ps3. With your rally car ripping round circuits from the deserts of Utah to mud of Malaysia the whole thing just looks so good - and exudes so much style - it almost brings a tear to your eye. However the tracks are nicely done by the DS and all provide the player with a unique atmosphere. You’ll be faced with scenes of desolation as you career round Iceland circuits whilst, when you take on some of the more accessible tracks, there’ll be a festival atmosphere with hundreds of fans watching from the side lines.
Most of the game is - like the console version - dominated by a lengthy career mode. Also like the console version you’ll have access to a wide variety of cars which can be fully customized and upgraded using the money you win from tournaments. It is also possible to create your own tracks just like GRID, plus the game boasts a decent soundtrack. All in all there is plenty here for racing fans to sink their teeth into and Colin McRae: Dirt 2 on the DS will eat away the hours as easily as its console counterpart.
Thanks to Amibees from Hotukdeals.
It has been out less than a month and already Colin McRae's latest racer has dropped down in price considerably. ShopTo are currently offering the game for the best price, at just £24.99, which gives you almost a £5 saving from the next best price.
Buying from Shop To means that you will also receive a “Dirt 2 – Pushing It” DVD, which is a nice bonus if you like that sort of thing.
I hear that the game is pretty much unmatched in terms of presentation; the graphics are gorgeous with great looking cars and lovely background scenery and the interface is excellent. Everything just feels well made and oozes style and quality.
A nice touch is the fact that the game offers incentives to keep playing to those, like me, who are not the speediest around the track. While you may miss out on the rewards for coming first you can still gain experience points for other achievements like turning the lovely environments into roadkill or clocking up the minutes pulling wheelies. Furthermore, there is a “flashback” function that you can use to rewind your race slightly if you make a boob of a particular section of track. This, of course, means that Dirt 2 is not the most realistic of rally racers but, to me at least, sounds like a function that would increase the fun factor.
Single player mode offers plenty to keep you occupied as it encompasses a whole 100 events and there are plenty of different multiplayer options to amuse you and your fellow rally enthusiasts. All things considered, I have to conclude that this is, indeed, a pretty hot deal.
Thanks to mark halsall at Hotukdeals!
It literally hit the shelves today according to the Shop.to website where, at £29.85, you’re looking at almost a £5 saving for a brand new copy of Colin McRae Dirt 2. If the reviews are anything to go by this is supposedly one of the slickest, most diverse, and visually spectacular racers ever. So if you’re a fan of the McRae franchise and fancy caning your way through all kinds of treacherous circuits from the dust clouds of Utah to the mud of Malaysia, then you should snap up a copy of this classy off road racer.
Graphically, it’s supposed to be unparalleled, with some reviewers even going so far as to say they have never seen a racer that looks as good as Dirt 2. Although that might send a few fan boys over the edge into a screaming, ranting frenzy, it’s obvious the game has real star quality. Everything is top notch – even down to the menu and loading screens – and you can even get the commentator to use your real name!
In terms of gameplay, Dirt 2 has a much greater emphasis on gaining experience points rather than cash prizes. This means that should things be going badly on the track and you find yourself in last place; there is still the opportunity to achieve various underlying missions – like driving 200 miles/ taking out scenery etc – offering players an incentive to persevere .
The rage factor is further reduced by the same rewind feature used in Grid, while dynamic tracks and events means that Dirt 2 never feels repetitious. It remains to be seen whether it snatches the title of ‘Racing Game of the Year’, but there are many who argue that should, and a few who insist that it must.
Thanks to dontdothatagain from Hotukdeals.