I've got nothing against always-online as long as it's utilised correctly and there is a feature that I would love to see in Dirt Rally 2.0: the driver rating system. It could work similarly to the ones found in GT Sport or Project Cars 2. It would take into account your pace, car repair costs, number of terminal crashes and number of stage restarts. All the data would be calculated into your driver rating (or rally licence or whatever). Players with the high rating would get higher rewards (to simulate sponsorships), they could also start online events with different stage degradation conditions (to simulate going earlier/later in the running order). There would be special events that require a specific driver rating/ licence to enter etc.
I think it would help make the game more popular among the players, especially if esports is important for Codemasters. The motivation to actually finish the stage would be higher, as retiring or disconnecting from a game would take a big impact on your driver rating. There would also be fewer complaints about always-online requirement.
What do you think?