November 10, 2020 (Xbox Series X|S)
November 19, 2020 (PS5)
For those of you with a fancy new console who are keen to get in on the action with DIRT 5, I doubt many of you will be disappointed. I’m a huge fan of Codemasters’ latest entry in the DIRT franchise, and after playing DIRT 5 on PS5, there’s very little to pick fault with. Purchasing it on the PS4 offers a free upgrade to the next generation, so it’s a no-brainer when it comes to which version everyone should be playing. Load times are minimal, the visuals are sharper, and the handling has been refined to allow complete control of almost every vehicle. What’s also fantastic is how Codemasters has taken advantage of the haptic feedback on the Dualsense controller, bringing you closer to the action and making you feel as though you are in the driver’s seat.
If you wanted to know how it plays in comparison to the last-gen, the first thing I noticed was how fluid the gameplay feels. If you’re playing for performance, the cars drift around corners sublimely. It feels as though everything’s a lot tighter, and thanks to the Dualsense controller you feel like every decision you make is fully realised, whether turning or drifting, using a rival in a corner as leverage to get ahead, or speeding through tough terrain. You feel the power of the PS5 in the horsepower of your car, giving an unrivalled racing experience. The framerate is super smooth, too. The performance never dipped or struggled, which is a good sign of things to come.
The haptic feedback is noticeable regardless of the terrain. You feel the gravel being kicked up by the tires, the rain thrashing down on your car, and the mud spitting out across the track from underneath your wheels. Before playing, this was the one feature I was excited to try out, and although some terrains feel similar, it is noticeable in almost every race.
DIRT 5 on PS5 looks amazing. Even if you opt for visual quality over performance, it’s still a sight to behold. Lighting radiates through the sky and onto your windows, the visual effects like fireworks and confetti offer those minor details that help to elevate the overall look, and the range of courses and countries on offer all have their individual personalities brought to life. The diverse range of cars that can be unlocked all look wonderful, and when you’re witnessing what they can do on the track, it can be hard to know which one to pick.
The 3D audio is another nice addition to DIRT 5 on PS5. Listening through headphones allows you to hear every effect in detail, all in balance with one another. Rival cars’ engines, rain on the roof, the game’s epic soundtrack, and all the other noises all work together in harmony, meaning no sound is drowned out. When you throw all these factors together, there really is nothing like it.
Whilst all the modes are the same, it became a lot easier to progress through the Career mode thanks to the quick load times. Little in the way of content has changed, so you’ll still get great value for money if you’re playing on PS4 and Xbox One, but the improvements to the handling, visuals, and sound make DIRT 5 on next-gen the ultimate version of the game. Make sure you buckle up because you’ll be spending a lot of time with Codemasters’ stellar entry into the DIRT franchise.
Handling feels tighter
Haptic feedback is great
No noticeable changes to modes
The improvements to the handling, performance, visuals, and sound make DIRT 5 on PS5 the ultimate version of the game. If you're still on the fence about getting it, you're missing out.