DiRT 4 (Xbox One) Review

By Josh Di Falco 04.10.2017 2

Review for DiRT 4 on Xbox One

The Colin McRae racing games have long been a staple of the rally cars mark on consoles. Like all the other major racing titles and how far they have evolved, Codemasters dirt-driving series has too evolved into a remarkable one. DiRT 4 (check out our PS4 review here) brings innovation to the series like never before, thanks in part to the new procedurally generated track creator that keeps every rally fresh and new. Furthermore, Rallycross and Landrush modes are back again to round out this complete package of a racer.

The key showpiece of DiRT 4 is the track creator, which procedurally generates rally tracks based on a set of parameters, meaning that rarely will the same track be used twice. Filled with endless possibilities, every single rally feels different, and it keeps the game challenging and fresh. With five different countries to rally through, each location has its own unique feel to it as well as the quality of the tracks. Australia is dirt-based and rough with lots of loose gravel, while Spain combines the beautiful views of the towns and roads with winding and dangerous turns through the mountains. The snow-covered Sweden adds an additional challenge of sliding and easy spin-outs, while Wales has the pretty countryside setting and Michigan rounds it out with the dirt-filled tracks.

Screenshot for DiRT 4 on Xbox One

For player-created rally tracks, sliders can be manipulated to specify how long or short the track will be, as well as how many sharp turns and troughs there will be based on the difficulty slider. The game then randomly pieces together a track in the specified country using the track models to generate a new track. While some countries tracks have their general motifs that pop up in almost every track, when and where these are situated will always be a surprise for newcomers, while racing veterans will always be kept on their toes.

Driving is pretty easy to grasp once the initial learning curve is passed. Series veterans will have no trouble quickly adjusting, while newcomers unfamiliar with realistic driving simulators may have to spend a few hours figuring out all the nuances of keeping a car on the road. They tend to spin out quite easily should they overturn, while the terrain also plays a part. Each car also controls differently too, and braking in order to turn tight corners at high speeds depends on knowing how to perform it effectively. For instance, some cars need to brake before they begin the turn into the corner while other cars perform better when braking while in the turn. Figuring it out may not be much fun when the car is constantly spinning out, but after the first few hours, DiRT 4 gets a lot better.

Screenshot for DiRT 4 on Xbox One

While the on-road career is fun and takes the cake, beneath the hood lays all sorts of options for decking out a personal team. Hire engineers to work in the repair shop, while a good PR person can grab some really good sponsors. Each member of the staff has their own attributes, and better ones will become available as career mode progresses further. While early on, only a handful of engineers can be hired, more spots in the team open up provided the facilities are being bought.

Hiring sponsors is highly rewarding as well, because they pay up quite a bit of money for each event. Prior to the races, a list of objectives will appear on-screen from each sponsor, and how much they will pay upon completing it. Of course, these are optional objectives and they don't need to be adhered to, but in order to maximise the profits from them and keep them happy, complete these objectives. They offer varying degrees of challenges, but it adds another layer to each race, as focusing on completing the objectives as well as trying to win the rally's is rewarding and lots of fun.

Screenshot for DiRT 4 on Xbox One

The prize money can be used to upgrade facilities, and there are a heap of different choices to upgrade. They each affect the team in different ways. As previously established, one option allows for more engineers to join it, while other options cheapen the repair costs for damages to the car, or even allow for the car to be upgraded increasing performance. The scope of this entire section, coupled with the team creation suite brings the rally racing series to a personal level. Players can now feel invested, and each race does feel like progression to eventually being the best rally driver on the planet.

Landrush mode sees the buggies and trucks make their mark on the game, but they have an even steeper learning curve than the conventional rally cars. While it would have been handy to have a tutorial lesson on driving the buggy's especially, it is just as much trying to figure it out while constantly spinning out at the first corner. Coupled with the rallycross mode, these frenetic races are plentiful with hours of fun.

Screenshot for DiRT 4 on Xbox One

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

DiRT 4 is a racer that purists need to get. Simply put, the rally driving is incredible to control, as every little movement can derail control of the car. The mechanics feel so realistic, and the vibrations and roar of the engines make every single drive a harrowing yet exhilarating experience. Put together a team of engineers, with public relations officers to find sponsors, while winning the rally courses and climbing the ladder to the World Championships. The tracks are procedurally generated meaning that every single rally track will feel fresh, with new challenges steeping into every race that will keep even the most hardcore of drivers on edge.

Developer

Codemasters

Publisher

Codemasters

Genre

Driving

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Brilliant review! 

The track generator is amazing. You've reminded me I need to revisit DiRT 4 again! Smilie 

Thank you Tom! Smilie

I had heaps of fun with the track generator, and can't wait to see how it's improved upon for the next game.

Also, the controller rumbles/vibrations were as intense as I've ever played before and added to the experience of driving a rally car.

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