DiRT: Showdown - PC

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Also for: PS3, Xbox 360
Viewed: 3D First-person / Third-person Genre:
Racing: Car
Racing: Off-Road
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Codemasters Soft. Co.: Codemasters
Publishers: Codemasters (GB/GB)
Released: 25 May 2012 (GB)
Unknown (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 7+
Accessories: Mouse, Keyboard, Steering Wheel


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The DiRT series is back, with more focus than ever put on all-out action and balls to the wall thrills.

This time out, the races fall into three categories, with an emphasis put on Demolition Derby style smash-'em-up action. As well as the smash-'em-up game style, there are conventional track races, and the Hoonigan Gymkhana stunt driving event too. You'll need to excel in all three in order to progress, since you have to gain podium places to unlock new events, and use prize money won to buy car upgrades in order to remain competitive with the field.

The courses are of the purpose-built variety, rather than "real world" recreations, and as a result, quite incredible features are possible, which don't add to the realism but do ramp up the action and excitement. One course has a Demolition competition on an elevated platform. You can imagine the carnage that emerges... There are points awarded for knocking an opponent off the platform, and eight giant ramps to enable you to jump back onto the platform if you are unfortunate (or unskilled enough) to get rammed off.

Even the race circuits have had the nitrous treatment, and rather than the straightforward track designs of many racing games, ramps, barriers, roadblocks and chicanes are all thrown in the make the racing line more tricky to stick to. The tracks used for Demolition race events have crossovers which are perfect fro T-boning your opponents. Unfortunately, they are just as good for opponents to T-bone you too!

As you would expect, there are a selection of vehicles for you to race in. Some are licensed models of real cars, especially those used in the Hoonigan sections, others are clearly real world inspired but have had the hot-rod treatment and others are chop-shop creations, specifically aimed at the Demolition game modes in which they are most used. Each vehicle has a Speed, Power and Strength rating, and you'll want the former for racing, and the latter for Destruction stages. Each car is available in a selection of outrageous paint-jobs.

The game also has challenges to complete, which not only give you a chance to laud it over your mates, but also offer more in game currency to blow on vehicle upgrades. You can upload your best performances to YouTube, and go online to race in solo or team based multiplayer events for up to eight players. Throw in two-player split-screen and there are plenty of ways earn bragging rights.