to the moon, athena
AusGamers caught up with 2K Australia and Randy Pitchford to discuss the recently revealed Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and why Australia is making an impact on the moon. Click for more!
inquisitive minds
AusGamers managed to catch-up with BioWare's Cameron Lee, an Aussie expat who serves as a producer on Dragon Age: Inquisition. Check out our full interview!
oracle of ages
Batman: Arkham Knight is set to be Rocksteady's final in the Arkham series, so it's fitting that it's just so damn big. And Batmobiles. Nuff said. Click for more!
Trial By Dirt Bike
We take a look at the fourth title in the Trials series, and the first to hit next-gen platforms. Does it live up to the name? Find out in our review!
AusGamers Games
DiRT 3
DiRT 3

Genre: Racing
Developer: Codemasters Official Site: http://www.codemasters.com/
Publisher: Codemasters Classification: PG
Release Date:
26th May 2011
DiRT 3

Genre: Racing
Developer: Codemasters
Official Site: http://www.codemaster...
Publisher: Codemasters
Classification: PG
Release Date:
26th May 2011
Hide Video Player
Click To View the DiRT 3 Video
DiRT 3 Review
Review By @ 12:56pm 21/06/11
XBOX360
How can I put this gently? Colin McRae’s DiRT 2 was one part driving game, one part douchenozzle simulator. Despite bearing the McRae moniker which is synonymous with down-to-earth professionalism, DiRT 2 was a down-with-the-kids, American-pandering, rally-lite “car-nival”. DiRT 3 is the first title in the series to remove Colin McCrae’s name (due to his untimely and tragic death). Ironically, as Codemasters has corrected the tone and gracefully drifted the IP back towards technicality and tradition, this is a DiRT game that has never been more deserving of his endorsement.

The overtly Americanised sideshow events have been stripped right back as has a lot of the bombastic ‘bodaciousness’ of the presentation. I say ‘most of’ because there is still a “duuude” voice-over character who takes every opportunity to aurally fellate you (eg “you nailed it amigo, you gotta thrill the hills to fill the till to pay the bills, compadre”). This imbecile is balanced out by your British team sponsor and an Aussie mechanic, who subtly take the piss out of this motor mouth at any chance they get.



In the DiRT Tour the random buffoonery events have been stripped away. This is a sequel that has three times the ral¬lying content of its predecessor, and thanks to the long awaited inclusion of snow, rain and night events it’s immediately superior to anything else in the series. The traditional rallying is set across Finland, Kenya, Norway and Michigan (go figure), and puts a larger focus on WRC, Open Rally, Super Rally 2000 and Raid events.

In truth I found the most entertaining disciplines to be the ludicrously overpowered Group B events and the classic rallies tiered to every decade from 1960 to 2000. All told you get access to 30 pure rally machines and there are some great fan-service appearances in that mix – such as the Mini Cooper S, Audio Quattro, Celica GT-Four and the stalwart Lancia Delta. Petrol-heads will also be pleased to hear that the sketchy driving physics of DiRT 2 have evolved. Codemasters has paid a lot of attention to damper response characteristics, which, as a result, make for more realistic weight transference, not to mention better suspension and tyre behaviour. It’s a pity then that the tuning options are dumbed down to a small collection of sliders.

Even still, I instantly found that I was getting improved feedback from the car through the controller, especially in the later courses where shifting surfaces required measured pedal feathering. Failure to show respect means bonding with a tree as the glorious new destruction model crumples you into something better resembling a Terminator’s crap. On the plus side, any AI spectators near said vehicular vivisection will freak the hell out. It’s a small touch, but it sells the experience and makes me smile every time – as do the incidences of suicidal spectators running across the track.



When Codies popped the hood for a tune-up it decided to bolt on some new improvements to its gorgeous Ego engine as well. Two of the big¬gest disappointments we had with DiRT 2 – a lack of weather and no track deterioration – have been seen to, but they’re fairly stopgap solutions. Rain effects have been ported across from sister racing title F1 2010, but it isn’t on par with that title. The downpour looks amazing, however it’s static precipitation that doesn’t dynamically change in intensity.

Similarly, the ability to shred up the track has been implemented in a fairly lacklustre manner. It only comes into its own on the multi-lap snow tracks – mud is still fairly immune to your wicked handbrak¬ies. Beyond those niggles, hardcore rallyists can turn off the HUD and the assist and be assured of a decent challenge. Trusting your life to a co-driver and going flat-chat through some serpentine, black ice ridden goat-trails at night makes DiRT 3 an utterly exhilarating experience. Conversely, there’s a casual setting that effectively turns the game into Sega Rally – only prettier, and without a mocking game over jingle that plays every time you cock up. Should you take the time to tweak it to your needs DiRT 3 is a car game that can service the needs of practically anybody who wants to get more sideways.

Speaking of accessibility, Codies hasn’t completely done away with the more approachable ‘to the extreme’ events – rather, it has excised the wackier ones and streamlined those that did have potential. DiRT 3’s garage holds 20 non-rally vehicles and now has the good sense not to house the sort of unlikely rides that belong in a Hot Wheels collection. Returning events include Rallycross, Trailblazer (both modern and classic), Landrush (trucks or Buggies) and the surprisingly technical, recently popularised Gymkhana.



Gymkhana, for those not “hip to the drive jive”, is basically what we all did with our first car when we lost line of sight with our parents and the po-lice. We’re talking doughnuts, burnouts and busting morbidly-obese air; all of which has somehow been legitimised into an actual, rateable sport. Despite what the old guard may think of it, these side diversions require a heck of a lot of skill to complete. Each trial is essentially a sequen¬tial series of tricks in a sandbox ‘skate park’ that is built for high-performance paddock-thrashing.

If that sounds like big globs of goofy fun, that’s because it absolutely is: driving like you stole it through an environment that’s a stuntman’s wet dream come true is a phenomenal pass-the-controller (or splitscreen/online) concept. This massive DC Compound offers structured events, or you can just bomb about in free-roam and hunt for collectibles, tick off 80 skill objectives or just shred your car to pieces. Codies score extra marks here for including YouTube integration for replays, but promptly lose them again for failing to put in a ‘save to HDD’ option.

As mentioned earlier the splitscreen multiplayer – another first for the DiRT series – works fantasti¬cally, and the online enabled can also enjoy an all-new selection of eight-player Party Mode diversions. They’re pretty left field modes for a car game: Invasion has you running down card¬board robots whilst avoiding miniature skyscrap¬ers, and there’s a serviceable Capture the Flag mode. The pick of the litter is Outbreak which is a game of tip based on Halo’s Infection mode. Honestly, I haven’t had this much fun trying to avoid diseases in a car since my Year 12 formal after party. Aside from that, purists will be happy to know that all the traditional rally modes are available too, and they perform just as well as their single-player counterparts.



Dirt 3 isn’t perfect as there are still a few kinks that need to be ironed out of the formula. Damage, for one thing, still has bugger all conse¬quences in multi-part rally events (you still get insta-fixed) and the stages in these events reuse environment and seem pretty damned short. On top of that the flashy-looking, triangle obsessed DiRT Tour menus look slicker than owl shit but are just as unpleasant to sift through – the main problem being that they don’t provide enough info to let you make informed decisions.

That aside, DiRT 3 has confidently overtaken DiRT 2 in my esteem (which, admittedly, I disliked a whole lot more than my contemporaries did). DiRT 2 sacrificed a lot of its soul in the hunt for a wider, more youthful audience. DiRT 3 has halted this ‘fun at the expense of realism’ devolution, picks the perfect line between core and arcade, and ends up setting the pace for my favourite driving game of 2011.
WHAT WE LIKED
Expertly caters to both core and casual
Gymkhana is a great time-waster alone or with a mate
Sumptuous visuals and sound design
Snow and night time events (finally)
WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE
Poochy the broseph voice-over duuude
Uninformative menu system
Car customisation and damage feel a bit thin
MORE...
WE GAVE IT:
9.0
OUT OF 10
AusGamers
Latest Comments
trillion
Posted 01:41pm 21/6/11
This guy! Where did you find him? Best review I've read and funnier than a wet towel across the chops in a hot tub time machine while nursing a hangover too.

Since I love to hate on fruit I'm going to cherry pick a few of the relevant bit's :)

[sic] It’s a pity then that the tuning options are dumbed down to a small collection of sliders.

Gymkhana [...] is basically what we all did with our first car when we lost line of sight with our parents and the po-lice.

^ overused apparent abuse of trust assumption by externals, but fun to fling around nonetheless, if you can appreciate what fwd torque steer is

Codies score extra marks here for including YouTube integration for replays, but promptly lose them again for failing to put in a ‘save to HDD’ option.

great review and well worth the wait. not that anyone particularly was?
Steve Farrelly
Posted 01:55pm 21/6/11
yep, Grizz is one of the best writers in the biz, and has the ability to grow a beard like no man I've even known
demon
Posted 04:41pm 21/6/11
cool review although i don't know why so many people get all caught up with the 'gnarly dude' aspect of both dirt2 & dirt3... just turn the voices off ffs & race! personally i rekn dirt3 has more of the broseph action than dirt2... but it doesn't bother me coz once i had heard it a few times i disabled it. i think the reviewer isn't giving dirt2 a fair shake... when someone says something like "DiRT 2 sacrificed a lot of its soul in the hunt for a wider, more youthful audience." i just think "the guy didn't like it but can't come up with a good reason why"... coz games don't have souls DUDE. also... the car tuning is IDENTICAL to dirt2 so "It’s a pity then that the tuning options are dumbed down to a small collection of sliders." isn't relevant... they are the same settings as dirt2 had.

i agree that the gymkhana (spelt wrong in the review "WHAT WE LIKED" field btw) is a decent time waster once ya get the hang of it.... but i wish the gymkhana missions were taken out of the dirt tour so you didn't have to proceed through them. i am glad they were included but they should just be for recreational stuffing around...not a competitive option.

snow racing (especially in trailblazers) shits me to tears. you can't see clearly which way the track goes coz you get snow-blinded & the edges of the track are so harsh n unforgiving. one touch on most snowy edges n your trailblazer will leap into the air for a massive endo. i like the snowy rallycross & head2head though... good fun.

things i rekn are an improvement over dirt2 :-
* looks nicer, more detail on vehicles.
* awesome new tracks... like.. really awesome. monaco rallycross is the bomb.
* menu. the menu is still shit compared to most other games... but it shits all over the dirt2 menu.
* the pb & wr pop-ups so it's really clear when you've pulled an awesome lap.
* head2head mode
* buggies are now actually fun to drive & no uncontrollable pos as they were in dirt2.


things i rekn are worse than in dirt2 :-
* no comparing stats with your win-live friends... that sux!
* pro tour is even more noobed than dirt2... you can run all assists in pro tour... that's dumb.
* you can't race any car on any track !@#! ... this totally sux.
* cars within a racing type seem generally the same in performance.
* no dallenbach :(


(edit)
things that i was looking forward to...but was disappointed with...
* the youtube uploader. 30seconds of 480p ffs... that's worthless. fraps does a heaps better job.
* no gigantic banked track like there was in the ken block dirt3 gymkhana video.

heh. swoit lookin' skin guvna ;p
a lot of work to go to though for something only you will see :/
The GuVna
Posted 02:56pm 21/6/11
You got to hand to to codemasters, it's pretty impressive to get the most annoying British, American & Australian voice acting all in one title :)

That said it's alot of fun trying to keep up with Dethon's ghosts :P

Also I give props to code masters to silently supporting modders for their title, sure they don't publicly condone it for legal reasons which is highly understandable, but they expose all the graphic content for the users in the games directory.

I've been making a template Photoshop file for skinning the SX4, the amount of detail that goes into the cars is rather insane, there is literally a skin for EVERYTHING on the car, inside & out, even parts you cant even see. & then there is the damage skin for it all also!

I'm nearly at a point where I can just grab a logo & paint design & just plonk it into the PSD & export, As I did with just the Ausgamer Video front title image & logo, but alas while to go yet :)



I've Been distracted on trying to make the gold rims more blingy :P
The GuVna
Posted 03:11pm 21/6/11
haha just alt tabbed back into the game after creating the screenshot, & the crowd were booing me because I wasn't moving. Nice touch :)
Enska
Posted 04:20pm 21/6/11
Wow that's cool Guv, I didn't even realize you could do that.
going to make my own batmobile, yew ;D
qmass
Posted 05:29pm 21/6/11
how do you turn off the voices?
The GuVna
Posted 05:51pm 21/6/11
heh. swoit lookin' skin guvna ;p a lot of work to go to though for something only you will see :/


Not when I do a WR in it & youtube the sucker! Thats the dream anyway :D
Whoop
Posted 07:38pm 21/6/11
* cars within a racing type seem generally the same in performance.

So it's not just me.
Kustom
Posted 10:22pm 21/6/11
Demon are you really complaining that one of the hardest weather types to rally in is....too hard?

i absolutely love how difficult the snow racing is, particularly during a blizzard at night. one slip up and your doing a superman into the trees. its great brown trousers racing
demon
Posted 11:35pm 21/6/11
how do you turn off the voices?

ahh it seems you can't turn them off... just down to 50% volume where they are a lot less noticeable. i musta been thinking of dirt2.
Demon are you really complaining that one of the hardest weather types to rally in is....too hard?

yes! :( i spose it is pretty fun when you nail it in the snow... but there was a couple of norway trailblazer missions that it took me ages to get right without a massive crash.
Kustom
Posted 07:35am 22/6/11
but thats part of the fun though isnt it =P
Dethon
Posted 11:13am 22/6/11
nah - make the tracks as hard and tight as ya like - but I still wanna see where I'm going..
Spock
Posted 11:54am 22/6/11
But thats part of the fun though, isn't it? =P


Thats (the snow racing) almost 80% of why i bought this game... 12% being gymkhana, and the other 8 being replay-ability.

Can someone give me a quick low-down of how to understand the co-driver cornering? Is lower numbers harder corners? Or just lower numbers slower corners... Cause I swear some of the low numbers can be both sharp corners, and no-cut corners while being comparatively easy and hard at the same time...

If only they had the Dirt 2 menu on Dirt 3... I liked the less extravagant changing of options between race types and location.

Whats this fraps thing people keep talking about?
Lol Guvna, what a wanky model :) That said however, I would love to go for a spin in it.

Can't wait to see how badly I drive tomorrow. Putting in the steering wheel yo!

Ed:

nah - make the tracks as hard and tight as ya like - but I still wanna see where I'm going..


You should go watch some real rally again :P They can't see where they're going and still manage.

Grizz says Codies too much. (3 times, one review)

last edited by Spock at 11:54:30 22/Jun/11
demon
Posted 12:15pm 22/6/11
Thats (the snow racing) almost 80% of why i bought this game

so... have you tried the norway trailblazers in dirt3 yet? ;) no assists or turning off particles either.. coz that'd just ruin the fun of being really hard AMIRITE!?!? ;p heheh nah some of the snow racing is fun... but seriously if you are in the back of an 8 car rallyx in the snow you will soon turn particles off or learn to love the barriers.
Can someone give me a quick low-down of how to understand the co-driver cornering?

nope, i never listen to em... have the speech volume turned right down n the engine sound right up.
Whats this fraps thing people keep talking about?

lrn2google spock. http://www.fraps.com/ 3rd party software for capturing video from games or whatever.
Spook
Posted 12:59pm 22/6/11
lower = tighter

i couldnt possibly drive without my co-driver.
Spock
Posted 01:19pm 22/6/11
In reply to demon and Spook
I disagree and agree respectively

No wonder you find it so hard to play, no co-driver for teh lose.

yes, particles give me a challenge... but i still manage to have fun.
Spook
Posted 01:22pm 22/6/11
for the record, the trailblazer snow stages arent my favourite, but they are still great.

i love the gymkhanas, absolutely love rally, and rallyx is cool, just coz they are so easy.

im not a fan of the trucks or buggys particular, love group b and modern rally cars, anything thats either fast or handles and then has to go through lots of corners.

if you're playing without your co-driver, how are you driving the stages? just looking at the maps and learning the hardway? man that would take a long time to get through some of the stages. .. . . .
demon
Posted 01:39pm 22/6/11
i found rally to be the easiest of all the racing types... with no co-driver voices. the rally cars are the slowest of the car types so you've got the most time to predict the upcoming corners. first time around i just drove the rally stages with the driving line assist on... that let me learn the track & an 'ok' racing line with some braking markers. then after i knew the course i'd just drive it without assists... although i still have abs on... still a bit of a lead-foot on the brakes without abs :p

the trailblazers are heaps faster & you got no option of a co-driver telling you where to go so you gotta learn the course... n at night, in the snow... it can be a pain. sure i got through them all eventually but i had to run most norway tb missions several times to get first place. i just don't really see the attraction of staring into a wall of snow when you want to see the next apex... if that's what ya like why not just hold a white card in front of ya face for half the race? ;p
Spock
Posted 01:39pm 22/6/11
Yeah, don't think I'm trying to say I enjoy every minute of snow, I do find it the hardest challenge a computer game has presented me, of all time (I haven't played donkey kong original), but that's exactly why I enjoy it, because it's such a challenge.
Spook
Posted 02:06pm 22/6/11
ah, yer, ive never used any of the assists.

i prefer to pick my own lines!
Whoop
Posted 06:33pm 22/6/11
Can someone give me a quick low-down of how to understand the co-driver cornering? Is lower numbers harder corners? Or just lower numbers slower corners... Cause I swear some of the low numbers can be both sharp corners, and no-cut corners while being comparatively easy and hard at the same time...



The co-drivers in dirt 2/3 are useless though because they don't take into account tuning, or the type of car you're in. It's scripted and it's useless. I just use him to tell me which direction the corner is going to be. I've had him tell me to be in 6th gear when my car only has 5 gears, or if you mess with the gear ratios it throws out which gear he tells you to be in (if its on complex). If you use simple navigation then it doesn't matter so much because they don't mention any gearing, just distance & direction.

I agree with demon about the snow track edges being a pain in the ass, but I've never driven on a real snow covered road so don't know for sure but I imagine smashing into a snow bank at 150km/h would actually send you flying, or possibly just stop you dead depending on the angle?

As for turning off voices, I might try replacing the voice files with 0 byte text files & see if that works like it used to for other games to get rid of cutscenes you couldn't skip.
Spook
Posted 06:52pm 22/6/11
its just a guide.

obviously im not going flat chat in 6th through a left 3.

ive got a fair idea what speed i want to be doing through that corner, compared with no idea if im not using the co-driver.
deadlyf
Posted 08:11pm 22/6/11
I played this for a few hours this morning after buying and downloading last night. When it first started some windows live shit popped up and I just closed it down and it told me I was logged in "offline" and didn't pay it much mind. Fire it back up tonight hoping to continue my campaign and I find out it didn't keep anything I had done from that morning. Have to log in to Windows Live and enter my CD key to be able to save I guess.

After doing that and recreating my profile the voice overs in the menu that I didn't mind the first time were extremely fucking annoying the second time. Especially since you can't skip them, what the fuck is that about?

I bought this game despite hating Dirt 2 because I loved CM Rally and I have to say I feel right at home in this game. If it wasn't for the utterly terrible voice scripted and time wasting menus you'd hardly think you were playing anything related to the previous Dirt game.
Lithium
Posted 10:11pm 22/6/11
just wanted to say, best lan game of the year thus far. capture the flag in rally cars was an awesome idea. and the cat and mouse game, frigan awesome. youtube that shit if you want to know what im talkin about
Dethon
Posted 01:05pm 23/6/11
cat n mouse rules
The GuVna
Posted 03:25pm 23/6/11


Just a test upload video as I'm just learning on how to use the basics of Sony Vegas video editor. So I thought I'd try a replay of my attempted of _barely_ missing the top 10 by 0:00.013 seconds, thus having 11th fastest time on the Paijanne Approach on PC in the world. Though Im the second fastest SX4, so being rather proud if this, here's a replay using the 80% finished "AusGamers" livery, & only containing realistic camera angles. (i.e. no floating dolly cam to ruin the realism.


Things to fix next time i do a replay, video detail, video size, & fix the 1 frame cross fades. Need a Vegas guru me thinks :P
Spook
Posted 04:20pm 23/6/11
that was awesome (and fast!)
Commenting has been locked for this item.
28 Comments
Show
 
Log In
User:  
Pass:  

Advertise with Us | Download Media Kit | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
© Copyright 2001-2014 AusGamers™ Pty Ltd. ACN 093 772 242.
A Mammoth Media web development / Australian VPS Hosting by Mammoth Networks