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Dirt 3, Dirt 4 and Forza Horizon 2

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Well finally took the plunge and bought an Xbox - and probably not too surprisingly bought Forza Horizon 2.

Now I like FH2. I like it a lot. But although it has "nominal" rally events the look and feel of those events is very different from Dirt 3. I spent a bit of time thinking about why this is. And I came to the conclusion that it is the lack of borders to the roads. In Dirt 3 because it is not open world, the borders to the roads are often "hard" by this I mean things like ditches, trees, brick walls, that sort of stuff. Stuff that when you hit it, it brings you to a grinding halt, and for example when you go off the road surface and put one set of wheels on the grass and one of the tarmac there is definitely a panic point where the handling goes crazy and you know you have but a short time to rectify stuff before all hell breaks loose.

Now FH2 feels nothing like this. Because often there is much less edge to the road, just a transition to a different type of terrain which may slow you down, but won't necessarily stop you dead. This means you can often take corners at great speed knowing that the consequence will be a short dirt trip rather than smashing into a tree - which of course can happen ocassionally, but happens infrequently enough for you to often take the gamble, and the precision of your driving and the people you are racing suffers as a result.

I'm interested in whether anyone else thinks that maybe openworld might not necessarily be the best format for rally races and that the "hard edge" with ditches/trees/rocks actually makes for a better rally course. 

Does this make any sense ?

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Not a fan of open world driving games full stop. I much prefer defined course with scenery that tries to kill me.

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It's difficult to compare the two, really. As much as DIRT isn't a sim, it still aims much further along that scale than the Horizon series does. For me at least, the ideal would be an open world environment that behaved exactly like the real world, in which case if you drove off track, you'd suffer exactly the same consequences as a real rally driver would... So no unrealistic artificial barriers to avoid, but no getting away with murder when you made a mistake either.

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Just downloaded the Fast and Furious thing from H2. I don't know if it's any different from normal H2, but I thought the physics were terrible. Far too much grip on all surfaces, especially gravel and grass, and the braking is too intense.

I've been having a problem that since I visited Codemasters, I can't seem to be able to play anything else ;)

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That "safe" feeling you have with Horizon is how I usually feel, while playing the DiRT series.

The hazards just aren't as perilous as they are in other games.
I can usually hold the throttle and steer for most of the race because the roads are too wide and smooth.
Even most of the switchbacks have huge overruns available.
I want the feeling that the road is trying to throw me into the trees/rocks/ditches for the entire stage, like I have with Richard Burns Rally, and the WRC series.

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ARCNoOne said:
I want the feeling that the road is trying to throw me into the trees/rocks/ditches for the entire stage, like I have with Richard Burns Rally, and the WRC series.

:)

*points a finger towards the sky and says 'Look, a fat pigeon is hunting down an eagle!' , @justbiglee turns his head away*

You'll like what's next from DiRT.

*Acts as if nothing was said, @justbiglee is confused*

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ARCNoOne said:
That "safe" feeling you have with Horizon is how I usually feel, while playing the DiRT series.

The hazards just aren't as perilous as they are in other games.
I can usually hold the throttle and steer for most of the race because the roads are too wide and smooth.
Even most of the switchbacks have huge overruns available.
I want the feeling that the road is trying to throw me into the trees/rocks/ditches for the entire stage, like I have with Richard Burns Rally, and the WRC series.
Yes, I get what you mean. WRC, its not just more twisty turny than dirt, the roads can have really crazy camber that can tip the car over if you don't drive the correct line. This is more difficult than Dirt 3 and more exciting when things go wrong.

I did one of the "classic rally" events on Forza last night. Again, forza is a great game, but it didn't really hit the spot. It felt like jam the accelerator down and loosely steer in the direction you want to go and everything will come good even if you are well wide of the intended track/best line, a bit like a raid race in dirt3. The open world environment just doesn't suit the rally IMO. A big shame really, because they've got the cars, they've got the graphics and terrain, but it's a driving experience that to me is a bit underwhelming. I think if they did an expansion pack with hard boundaries, ditches trees etc it would be more difficult, but alot more rewarding. I haven't found any timed rally stages either, which maybe is because it is supposed to be online and they think that races are where it has to be, but to not implement timed stages when you have done 90% of the work to get there seems a bit strange.

I do like forza, its just that I liked Dirt more. Could do with some snow as well. Also maybe I did Dirt 3 a bit of a diservice implying it is not open world. Actually it does have some open world bits, like the battersea compound. 

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It's difficult to compare the two, really. As much as DIRT isn't a sim, it still aims much further along that scale than the Horizon series does. For me at least, the ideal would be an open world environment that behaved exactly like the real world, in which case if you drove off track, you'd suffer exactly the same consequences as a real rally driver would... So no unrealistic artificial barriers to avoid, but no getting away with murder when you made a mistake either.
+1

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You'll like what's next from DiRT.
I have no doubts of that.
I like what's already been released in the DiRT series, I just think it's all a bit easier than it should be.
My only big disappointment with the series at all is the extreme overlap in the rally stages of DiRT 3.

I'm still hoping somebody at Codemasters can talk them into slipping in my "modular rally" idea.
I would literally throw away every other racing game I own, to have that one feature.

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I was driving horizon last night and it made me wonder ....

Wouldn't it be great if you could define your own races within the open world environment ? You could have some sort of logger that you turn on and then slowly drive round to define the race track. A button press could be used to plant the flares, and then you could up load the track. If they were more careful in how they constructed the terrain (with ditches/hard edges) then the community could then go about producing more "Dirt like" rally stages. I haven't dug into horizon too closely, but it also looks like that the community can design its own liveries. This is all building on the minecraft type stuff. There are a ton of people out there who want to create stuff for the games - all devs like CM need to do is enable that to happen...

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dirt3joe said:
Wouldn't it be great if you could define your own races within the open world environment ?
That's one of my favorite features in Midnight Club LA.
The races can be as simple as dropping a start and finish point somewhere on the map, then racing to them.
They can also be really complex, with tight weaving through obstacles required to trigger some of the checkpoints.

I kept hoping for a race editor in DiRT 3, that would let us build our own speed runs in the DC Compound.
Those were my favorite part of the game, and I wanted more of them, and longer ones.
Having the ability to dictate when/where certain Gymkhana moves needed to be executed during a run would have been fun too.

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ARCNoOne said:
dirt3joe said:
Wouldn't it be great if you could define your own races within the open world environment ?
That's one of my favorite features in Midnight Club LA.
The races can be as simple as dropping a start and finish point somewhere on the map, then racing to them.
They can also be really complex, with tight weaving through obstacles required to trigger some of the checkpoints.

I kept hoping for a race editor in DiRT 3, that would let us build our own speed runs in the DC Compound.
Those were my favorite part of the game, and I wanted more of them, and longer ones.
Having the ability to dictate when/where certain Gymkhana moves needed to be executed during a run would have been fun too.
I would like this idea,....
BUT
only if you have smaller landscapes where the designers spent a lot of thought on every corner in the game to make it interesting and challenging.

I want to see tracks where every corner is unique and interesting. It is easy to make huge maps if you spent your rescources on quantity instead of quality.

I think its kinda funny, that GRID 2 pretty much had the feature that I expected to appear in future DiRT-Games. Small open maps with changing corners. If you combine it with you idea I think it could be great.

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I've actually been pitching a modular rally idea on the forums here for years.
I got the idea from all the overlap in the DiRT 3 rally stages.

If you look at the longest stage in a location, they are about 5 miles long.
If you divide that 5 mile piece into (10) 1/2 mile pieces, you could arrange those ten pieces into 3.7 million different configurations.
If you allowed the pieces to be swapped end for end, allowed pieces to be repeated within a race, and allowed races longer than 5 miles, the number of unique stages would go up exponentially.

Can you imagine racing a rally game where you never race the same stage twice?

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ARCNoOne said:
I've actually been pitching a modular rally idea on the forums here for years.
I got the idea from all the overlap in the DiRT 3 rally stages.

If you look at the longest stage in a location, they are about 5 miles long.
If you divide that 5 mile piece into (10) 1/2 mile pieces, you could arrange those ten pieces into 3.7 million different configurations.
If you allowed the pieces to be swapped end for end, allowed pieces to be repeated within a race, and allowed races longer than 5 miles, the number of unique stages would go up exponentially.

Can you imagine racing a rally game where you never race the same stage twice?
Well Codemasters pretty much did it already - in GRID 2, great idea in the wrong game if you ask me.

Biggest issue still would be, that it feels cheap, because it all looks the same in the end anyway even wit millions of configurations.

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What felt cheap to me was racing a multi-stage rally, and having back-to-back stages that overlapped by over 50%, and both started from exactly the same spot.
I don't mind racing SIMILAR terrain for a given multi-stage rally.
It racing the EXACT same terrain, multiple times, that bothers me.

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Ah, you mean something like TrackMania where you get like 50 pieces of road and those are puzzled together?

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Similar, but having the pieces get assembled randomly by the game itself, before the race, based on the desired stage length selected.
I want the experience to require the drivers to listen to the pace-notes, rather than remembering the track from the last 100 times they ran it.

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Good thing I don't remember the tracks.

Not sure if the new Ego-Engine can do better, but I don't think the Ego-Engine can handle this kind of idea of yours. The engine focuses heavily on pre-rendered shadows that fade into the real-time-shadows when close. A game-engine needs to be optimized for this stuff. As well you can't do any kind of track anymore. It limits the artistic design and so one.

To get the experience of having to follow pace-notes you need smaller pieces. If you have large chunks you will rember these, too and know what will be coming. I really think only a Trackmania-style setup would do justice to unpredictable Rally-Experience, but you will pretty much not get realistic rally-tracks.

oh well, I don't think you will see your idea come true in any way possible.

Maybe autogenerating a heightmap, with trees and props, and a random route running through it, that might be the only thing that makes sense to come close to your idea, but that would requiere a complete new engine most likely.


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JackKey said:
Good thing I don't remember the tracks.

Not sure if the new Ego-Engine can do better, but I don't think the Ego-Engine can handle this kind of idea of yours. The engine focuses heavily on pre-rendered shadows that fade into the real-time-shadows when close. A game-engine needs to be optimized for this stuff. As well you can't do any kind of track anymore. It limits the artistic design and so one.

To get the experience of having to follow pace-notes you need smaller pieces. If you have large chunks you will rember these, too and know what will be coming. I really think only a Trackmania-style setup would do justice to unpredictable Rally-Experience, but you will pretty much not get realistic rally-tracks.

oh well, I don't think you will see your idea come true in any way possible.

Maybe autogenerating a heightmap, with trees and props, and a random route running through it, that might be the only thing that makes sense to come close to your idea, but that would requiere a complete new engine most likely.


I think its an interesting discussion. ARCNoOne mentioned grid 2 and the auto generator. I never bought grid 2, but I did see that some people found the auto generation of routes very artificial and not so fun to drive.

It makes you think more about what makes a great rally track. Is it just a bunch of corners strung together, or is it something more than that. I feel that the reason the artificial generation might not work so well is because every corner on a "good" track is slightly different, and if all the corners are generated from a limited library then you don't get the feeling of a "natural" track unless the library becomes massive. You also have the issue on games like Dirt3 where elevation comes into play as well, so it makes it a lot more difficult to link track elements together.

I really believe there are a ton of people out there who would want to do track design and create stages. I also look at games like GTAV and the work that has gone into their environment. I was sdriving down some of the backroads there the other day and thought that it would make a great rally track and was a shame that it could not be used in this way. I see the future where environments are created separately from the application (rally, first person shooter, cops and robbers etc) and then people put their game model on top of the environment, but in order to do this you need the appropriate environment designer - I reckon whoever does this will make a ton of money - a bit like minecraft.

Anyway, back to FH2. I did the run into the sun last night with the F40. That was a lot of fun !


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добрый день - вопрос а к кому мне обратится за помощью по игре - дирт 3 - я хочу приобрести у них бесплатный контент - спасибо 

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dirt3joe said:
It makes you think more about what makes a great rally track. Is it just a bunch of corners strung together, or is it something more than that.
For me it's a feeling, more than anything quantifiable.
It's the feeling that you're racing into the abyss, with the road trying to kill you the entire time, that hooks me.
As far as elevation changes and such go, there aren't any huge changes in areas like Finland.

If you look at Dirt 3's Finland, there are only 8 stages available in the game, those overlap heavily, and some are merely the reverse direction of another entire stage, with a little bit added to the end.
Even breaking that map up into 5 huge pieces would give you 120 unique stages that could be run in either direction, plus the 200 shorter ones that could be created using only 2, 3 or 4 pieces, and THEIR reverse stages as well.
Having 640 stages available would be an entirely different experience to the 8 total that's in the game now.

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It's an interesting idea, and it would be great to get it working, but it would be difficult with certain environments. If it's just a plain forest, then fair enough, but think of trying to join up something like monte? The mountains and landscape would be a nightmare to work out

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please tell me in what quarter of this year will play dirt 4

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dfyz said:
please tell me in what quarter of this year will play dirt 4
No one knows when the next rally game will be out.

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