DiRT Rally 2.0 - Ain't no ordinary Rally, it's evolved!


Is your Golf upgraded?


It’s not upgraded yet, obviously. I just bought it, and you have to drive it a while before it’s upgradable. You think upgrades make that huge a difference? I just figured it was a mild boost.


Grrr, after doing well in the first three rallies of this go at the Clubman championship, I had to retire in Australia due to a puncture at the very end of the second to last stage, and I managed only 6th in Argentina (although I started really bad, the last two stages saw the best pilots so far do really poorly).

I have a good shot of getting a podium, but I have to finish and make some points in the last rally:


I NEED that podium. I want to move on to Pro (likely my skill ceiling) and H3 cars.


I think FWD cars have worse times due to less power and worse coming out of curves than well driven RWD cars (although you are more likely to, well, finish). Maybe that’s it? It’s an H2 competition and the time set expects a RWD car?


Yeah, I was wondering. Though the AI Challenge category said H2 FWD. So I figured they had two separate categories for H2, but maybe not. This is all new stuff. We’ll see over time I guess.

Can I tell you guys an embarrassing secret? I own a weak 2010 Impreza in real life, and it’s nothing like a WRX in terms of power, but it’s nimble, and it gives me enough power when I ask for it. And on a day like today where I went with texted shopping list in hand for my wife, I just have way too much fun in my Impreza just dodging potholes. This winter has been so hard on all the roads here this winter, the potholes develop after 5 days or so, and you have to dodge them for a week, and then the City comes and fills them in, and then we get sub-freezing temperatures and a warm day and freezing temperatures, and the water that gets in there totally destroys whatever the hell they use to fill in these potholes, and you get really deep, really huge potholes again.

It’s not Rallying, but it’s still fun. A lot of people I know had to replace their tires this winter, but fingers crossed, it looks like I made it through the winter without having that huge expense.


One road up to the sportsman’s club I’m a part of is dirt and loose gravel with broad, sweeping curves, the other is narrow, twisting hill-climb asphalt, and the car I drive up there is a 2003 Mini Cooper S, the best entry in the best generation of modern Minis.

I’ve done some … irresponsible things on that drive.


Progress report:

On my career, I came in 25th in Argentina, and I’m now in the last part of the tournament, in New Zealand. But I took a break to go on a buying spree the last couple of days. I had already bought a Ford Escort MKII for H2 RWD, but I found an Alpine, so I couldn’t resist that, so I have two vehicles in that category. I also have a 240 Z for H3 RWD. I have a Lancia Delta S4 for Group B FWD.

I’ve been doing the dailies. And I tried the weekly that ends tomorrow, since I could enter with my Delta S4, and I got terminal damage on it in the third leg. Oops. Yesterday I did an AI daily challenge in the Delta S4 in Poland, and I came in 1st. Not just that, I came in 1st despite going off the track and resetting a bunch of times. So I’m still very perplexed by how the AI challenge gets its times. The Delta S4 has got to be one of the most fun vehicles ever. It’s a little rocket on 4 wheels, I just can’t get enough. Sometimes you get terminal damage, sure, but other times you get first place. That’s just what the Delta S4 gets ya.
I tried that Nissan Z (sorry, Datsun) yesterday in a Daily challenge. After the Porsche, the Datsun was like easy mode when it comes to RWD driving.

I tried the Alpine for the first time this morning (it was added to the first DiRT Rally after I had already gone past the 60s category using a Fulvia and a Mini), since there’s a Daily Challenge today for the H2 RWD category. It’s interesting, the difference between the Escort and the Alpine. The Escort has twice the horse power of the Alpine. However, the Alpine has half the weight of the Escort. So the two should be fairly equivalent. I have to admit, despite the fact that it’s a RWD car, and I should be having lots of trouble, it’s a blast to drive, and even easier to control than the Datsun. The light weight means the car is really nimble. I’m looking forward to driving more of that.

The only car I’ve bought which I haven’t tried yet is the Escort. Honestly, since the Alpine is so good, the Escort might just sit in my garage for a long time.


I managed better times with the Escort than with the Alpine, although I’m using the Opel in my current championship.


Campaign update.

The last rally of the championship was New England, which I thought would be easy enough.

Except 5 of the 6 stages had wet tracks, and the AI times do not really adjust for wet tracks, I think, or at least that’s how it feels (it seems to adjust for weather, I did much better in the heavy rain/night stage than in the good weather but wet track ones).

It was very tense, and I managed to end only 12th or so in the rally.

I ended the championship 3rd with 105, with the 4th place at 103. That’s a photo finish.

But now I’m in Pro difficulty! Yay!

Gonna try the Lancia Stratos H3 next.


Congratulations Pro!

This was your second attempt at a Clubman championship, right? I think I’m going to finish my first Clubman Championship today (2 more stages to go in New Zealand). I’m guessing I’ll finish with 15-20 points this time.

I think next time I’ll try it with the Alpine.


Yeah, second attempt.


I just started my career. First stage is Argentina. I chose the front wheel drive car. I beat it up pretty badly and finished 17th.

I didn’t do too well in the next 2 stages, but I finished first in the last stage! That was pretty cool. I was 23rd in the entire event, so no points for me.

My frame rate felt like it wasn’t consistent so I wonder if I need to turn down some graphics options.


First attempt at Pro:

Retire over New Zealand due to really bad damage and no more restarts.

When I finished stages I was consistently the last.

Discouraging, but then Clubman felt the same at the beginning. Will have to keep practicing.


Progress Update: I did finish my Porsche 911 GT Rally Clubman Championship, and stayed at Clubman, since I didn’t earn many points. I’ll probably not drive the Porsche again until the end of the game, whatever that might be in this game.

So what vehicle to start off the next championship with? Go with the Alpine and do the H2 RWD category? Or the Golf GTI and do the H2 FWD category? What made up my mind was the driving order. When you’re running any rally, you can look at the driving order for all the cars. The last cars to go out the gate are the H1 FWD cars, so they’re the slowest. Right before them are the H2 RWD cars, and before them is the H2 FWD cars. So I guess if I want to go in order, H2 RWD should come before H2 FWD. Decision made!

So my Alpine started off in Argentina. I have to admit, after driving the weekly challenge of Argentina in Group B monster, a RWD is somehow easier to drive in Argentina than a Group B 4WD car. I never thought I’d say that, but there it is. A rear wheel drive car feels more controllable in a rally game than a four wheel drive, but only in Argentina and it’s hairpin turns and rocky bumps.

I went as fast as I could on each track, not making too many mistakes. At first I was pretty discouraged when I started off in 15th place or something. But then I came in 9th and 5th, and 1st place once, and 10th place, and 6th place. But you know where I ended up overall in that? 2nd place. That’s right, with only one 1st place victory, I ended up in 2nd place overall, just because everyone else was shuffling around so much with their times in that Championship.

Now it’s onto Poland. Tackling this in the Alpine is just edge-of-the-seat excitement. The first track had several long sections with a few 6 and 5 turns that I CAN take at nearly full speed. I didn’t have quite the courage to do it at full speed, but I managed it at almost full speed, and it was freakin’ scary as hell. And then at the end I was in 18th place. WHAT WHAT WHAT? I call shenanigans.


Yea! I got third in the 2nd event of my career (New Zealand), moving me up to 7th in the season. I liked NZ better than Argentina. Argentina seemed like I was driving through hallways.


Keep an open mind on Argentina for now. You ran it in a completely non-upgraded Level 1 Fulvia, I’m assuming. Once you get that car a little faster with the engine upgrades, Argentina is a little more interesting, and once you get into faster cars, you start discovering all kinds of ways in which Argentina is not hallways. :)

There are two daily events today that are for a Level 1 FWD car that I used the Fulvia for. I know you can’t use it because it’s in use in the Rally, and you probably can’t afford to buy another one yet (although maybe you have enough money for a Mini? You should check).

I always thought it was crazy that Jeremy Clarkson and James May (formerly Top Gear, currently Grand Tour presenters) thought Lancias were so beautiful. One of many things DiRT Rally games have done is really make me appreciate that these Lancias are in fact very pretty cars. They’re not exactly the regular car designs you see. And you learn to appreciate that.

My favorite part of the Lancia Fulvia is still the pencil on the dashboard.


Could I only use my Fulva in dailies if I am in between career rally seasons?

I can afford a used mini or a used Fulva. The Fulva is actually a little cheaper. Is there reason to get one over the other? They are around $40K each.


If you have your car in the rally seasons, you can’t use them in the daily/weekly/monthly challenges.

If you can afford it, you could buy a Citroen DS 21 or a Mini Cooper, both are H1 FWD cars. You could use either one to do the two dailies today. I’d go with a different car, just because you already own a Lancia Fulvia. Might as well get a different car. Your Lancia is going to be busy for a while.


On a different tangent, with the first week of the Season 1 DLC content being unleashed on the game I spent some time checking out the new “4WD - Upto 2000cc” class that currently contains the Citroen C4 previously seen in DiRT Rally and the debut of the Skoda Fabia (2005 WRC, not to be confused with the R5 car). Gotta say, at least on gravel, the Skoda Fabia (WRC) is a real pleasure to drive. While the Citroen C4 will be the more powerful car the Skoda Fabia drives really nicely out of the box with the default tune\setup. It has a good habit of knowing what you are trying to do and gracefully going along with it.

Through some of those tight, twisty corners in New Zealand it was just a real dream handling wise. Also, can’t complain with having another car that was driven by Colin McRae in real life in the garage, along with associated historic Colin McRae livery.


I started my second championship season earlier, and because I’m a glutton for punishment, decided to do H3 RWD in the Lancia Stratos, a favorite of mine from DiRT Rally the first.

I feel the different FFB more keenly with this car than in the first one—I don’t get nearly as much feel in the wheel when I’m sideways, which is nearly all the time. Still, as I remember to modulate the throttle, I’m getting better, from the high 20s down to the low 20s by the end.