The newest game in the series unfortunately picks up the title as the second worst game in the series. I can’t remember the last time I had the feeling of “I wish I had a trial for this game before I bought it, because I wouldn’t have bought it”. It’s hard to pinpoint what makes Dirt 5 such a bad experience, as it just seems to be loads of small points that build up to a giant point. When you start the game up for the first time, it gives you the option of either running the game for suit the frame-rate better (but the graphics really, really suffer, as headlights are hexagons), or suit the graphics better (but the game chugs badly, and feels like a choppy 15 FPS game.)
The graphics and performance aren’t the only low points of the new game, the AI is pretty dreadful too, in so many races I’ve been in, they all follow their own strict path, not overtaking each other just racing in a line, making the story extremely boring to try and work through. Also, don’t get me started on the online mode, it’s so incredibly poor. you can’t race alongside or close to someone because their car is too busy twitching, and that’s when the connection is stable enough to allow you into the game, then when you’re finished, it doesn’t keep the lobby going as you have to start searching for another game again — a long and boring process. The handling model isn’t too much better either, as every car seems to feel the same, and it feels extremely light and weightless.
Dirt 5 feels like a misstep, it feels like it’s a really badly optimized port, but it’s not all doom and gloom, there is a large number of tracks and different race types on offer. I played this on Xbox One X, and it feels like it was made for the Xbox Series X and Ps5, and then ported backwards, unfortunately, Dirt 5 isn’t one I’ve enjoyed, so I can’t see it staying installed for too long.