“Dirt 2” by Mazer

I love some racing games, but to be honest I really only picked this game up because I wanted to test out my brand new  Radeon 5870 (mmm, best $450 I’ve spent for a while). Also, yes, I bought this game a while ago.

What I Expected:

I wasn’t expecting much: just a fun racing game that would show me some great eye candy. It looked decently fun from what little I read about it. The game is about an off-road racer who plays through a World Tour of races. Ya, I really didn’t care much about the game except that I was hoping for at least something to have fun with for a few hours.

What We Got:

We got a game about an off-road racer on a World Tour with some of the best driving controls in any racing game I have ever played. I really felt like I was driving a car on those rough ‘roads’; it even helped me drive on ice if you can believe that… The atmosphere of the game itself was amazing as well. I really felt a connection to the AI personality drivers and I loved the friendly competition they provided. The added bonus of the game having spoken nicknames is great too since it makes it even more personal between you and the other drivers. It’s a game that I keep coming back to again and again.

The problem I’m having with reviewing this game is the fact that I love it to death but I have no idea how to convey the game play in words. You drive a car through off-road races. That describes it perfectly: not because it’s obvious, but because that’s what you really feel like you’re doing when you play this game. The environments look fantastic, the people in crowd look real, and the car itself feels like a real car. Everything about driving your car feels exactly like what you would expect if you did it in real life. So if you took a turn too fast, you get a nice bowed turn with some drift mixed in thanks to the dirt you’re probably driving on. Or, if you’re in the middle of a bad turn or drift, you can compensate just like you would be able to do in a real car. Now, I’ve never done any off-road races before so I’m not sure if the speed at which you can do some of these things are spot on or not but the game handles better than any other racing game I have ever played.

In fact, I think the only negative thing I have to say about the game isn’t even all that negative. As you play through the game you can purchase new cars and sometimes you’ll need to purchase a new car or some form of upgrade to an existing one in order to participate in all the different track types. The bad side to all this is that the game basically gives you the best car you can buy straight off the bat. Now, sure, it’s not the best car for every situation but it’s the best for overall performance and being able to do well in any situation. So all this cash that I’m racking up in the game serves no purpose whatsoever. I’m sitting on half a million plus with nothing to spend it on wishing that I could make that much money that easily in real life. A couple of months of amazing performance in these off-road circuits and I could retire. You also unlock all kinds of customization stuff as you level (more on that later) which is cool in a way, but also seems useless for the most part. Oh right, ya, you also gain experience points whenever you complete a race which increases your level. This leads you to unlocking new races and the big tournaments. It’s not nearly as constricting as it sounds either, as long as you’re placing well (1st-3rd) you shouldn’t need to redo any races in order to unlock new ones.


Now, I think the fact that they added all of that extra stuff but didn’t detract from the actual game itself in order to add it is something that a lot of game makers should really look at. It’s nice to see a fully completed, fun, and great game with additional stuff just thrown in for good measures. Ya know, instead of one that seems kind of half done but with some slightly cool extras or a decent game that only gets good once you buy all of its DLC. The game feels amazing in every way: from the experience of driving the cars to the personal touches that the game gives you. So ya, if you want a fun experience with a great racing game I’d say pick this one up.

Overall Rating

Even if you’re aren’t a fan of the racing game genre I’d say you should at least find a way to try this game out. You might be surprised at how fun it really is!

One Response to ““Dirt 2” by Mazer”
  1. Elanor says:

    Visited your blog post through AOL. You know I am subscribing to your rss feed.

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