In another break from the numbered franchise, DiRT Rally was made with one sole purpose: to provide the most authentic representation of real-life off-road racing out there. The game arrived as a happy surprise to the DiRT community in April 2015, when the game was announced and launched on Steam Early Access on the same day.
Road-tested over 80 million miles by the DiRT PC community, the game was lauded for capturing the essence of what makes rally unique: that white knuckle feeling of racing on the edge; trying to remain in control of your emotions as you hurtle along dangerous, undulating roads at breakneck speed, aiming to squeeze everything out of your car whilst knowing that one crash could irreparably harm your stage time.
DiRT Rally launched fully in April 2016 onto PS4 and Xbox One, to both critical and commercial acclaim. The title was nominated for the Best Sports Game BAFTA Award, and won the 2016 MCV Award for Sales Triumph. The game also signified Codemasters’ first foray into VR: the title was made compatible with Oculus Rift, and in February 2017, DiRT Rally PS VR launched on PS4.
IGN praised the title as “more than just the best Codemasters rally game to date; it’s arguably the best racing game Codemasters has produced in at least a decade. Perhaps ever.”