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DiRT 2 Review

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Developer: Codemasters Publisher: Codemasters
Release Date: September 08, 2009 Available On: PC, PS3 and Xbox 360

Following up on the successful racing game DiRT from 2007 is Codemasters’ sequel DiRT 2. Actually the franchise has existed much longer than that, but with a different name. The Colin McRae racing games always had a hardcore following with its ultra realistic rally car racing niche, yet failed to catch on to a broader audience. Codemasters let go of the Colin McRae name (sadly he passed away in a helicopter accident) and created DiRT in its place.

That is not to say that Codemasters ditched a more authentic racing experience. This is certainly not a Need for Speed. DiRT 2 is a tough game to play and even more so to master. While it is not on the same level of realism as say Gran Turismo, it comes fairly close. Besides the vehicles in DiRT 2 are rally cars, trucks and buggies – an under-served segment of racing. Rally fans may feel like they were left behind a bit by the franchise, though, as there is a pretty good mix of racing modes other than pure rally racing.

The game takes place on a number of different tracks throughout the world. Lesser visited countries like Mexico, Morocco and Croatia are among more frequented locations such as Japan and London, England. Overall, the mix of courses, both geographically and in setting (i.e. city vs. jungle) is quite satisfying. Your cars will be speeding along the oil pipelines of Croatia, going offroad in Baja California and through the jungles of Malaysia.

The single player story revolves around racing various events across the globe. The menu system is extremely slick as you start off after each match inside of a trailer that your racing crew owns. From here you can look at the map and decide on what events you want to race. Eventually you will make it to X Games tournaments where you will make big bucks that can go into purchasing new vehicles. All of these events need to be unlocked through experience points that you earn from completing races. You can probably beat all of the races in about ten hours, but to finish first in all of them will take much longer.

Racing fans have probably been pretty disappointed with 2009. DiRT 2 gives you a reason to celebrate. It is a solid more simulation-style racing game with an emphasis on offroad and rally races. The rides are cool, the physics are among the best in racing and the graphical style is ultra sleek. There’s no doubt that fans of the first should purchase this, as well as anyone itching for a good racing game this holiday season.

Graphics: 9.5
Sound: 7
Gameplay: 8.5
Creativity: 8.5
Replay Value/Game Length: 8
Final: 8.5 out of 10
Written by Kyle Bell Write a User Review