Codies Racing Line: April 8, 2021
The clocks have gone forward, flowers are beginning to bloom, and we’ve seen blazing sunshine and snow in the space of a week… it must be spring!
Whatever April and the new season throws at us, you can rest easy with one simple constant: more major news, reveals and general fun stuff firing out of the front door of Codemasters HQ. Our fantastic team have kept their foot to the floor as we enter month four of 2021, and the end result is another Racing Line bursting with info for you.
What’s on the agenda this time round, then? Just the small matter of new content drops, big esports action, and revealing our own actual real-life racing team? What?! We better get straight to it…
Turn it up to 11 and bring the noise! Since the last Racing Line, we only went and released DIRT 5’s Uproar Content Pack and Update 4.00 to the world; our latest major content drop of 2021, with new cars, Career events, private race lobbies and so much more. Don’t worry if you’ve missed any of the details on this one – we’ve got all the info here.
The moment we went live with this content drop, our attention turned to your feedback and comments, to see what you’re enjoying and if anything needs addressing. A couple of small, additional patches have rolled out on DIRT 5’s main platforms to tidy up a few things (full details are in our patch notes hub), and we’re already outlining what the new priorities are for additions, fixes and tweaks. So whilst you enjoy the juicy new content, we’ll be kicking on towards the next chapter of DIRT 5. No rest for the wicked, eh?
As often as possible, we’re also updating players on exactly what we’re working on, and what’s on the horizon for DIRT 5. Here’s a community update from earlier this week on Reddit – track us on there for the updates, or hang out with us and other players on DIRT 5’s Discord server.
DIRT RALLY 2.0
Hey everyone, PJ back again with a whole bunch of rally news to catch you all up on.
Introducing the Codemasters DiRT Rally Team
There’s no better place to start than this: We’re racing a real rally car again!
Long-time fans of DiRT Rally will remember Jon Armstrong (who is now a Game Designer here at Codemasters) competing in events like the Galway International Rally as well as Rally Sweden. In 2021 we’re expanding those ambitions even further with an all-new rally team, competing in the 2021 FIA Junior WRC Championship.
The Ford Fiesta’s livery was revealed last week and it’s a stunner, as you can see above. Jon and co-driver Phil Hall have been busy over the weekend, working together with RAF Engineering to get some testing done.
They’ve been using DiRT Rally 2.0 to train during 2020 but as Rally Croatia is only a few weeks away they were itching to get back into a real car and tackle the roads. Jon also had a few interviews (here and here) following the team’s announcement.
WRC Croatia Rally kicks off on April 22, and if you’re watching live keep an eye out for the Junior WRC competitors as they tackle the Stages. We’ll let you know over on @dirtgame how Jon gets on and, if you’re after some team merchandise, you can grab a whole bunch here.
DiRT Rally 2.0 Yuasa Esports Championship
Back in the virtual world, our friends at the British Rally Championship have teamed up with reigning champion Matt Edwards to host a DiRT Rally 2.0 series ahead of the coming season. Edwards will be driving the Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 this year and used the game to reveal his car’s livery, in Yuasa’s typically striking white, red and black.
DiRT Rally 2.0 Official Club – Round 2 Underway
In other news, the Official DiRT Club’s finished its first round, with around 4,000 of the club’s 20,000 competitors braving the high speed Scottish woodlands. Over on the Forums, gedazz (who runs the excellent dr2.today leaderboard fansite) compiled some stats from Scotland that make for interesting reading.
3,738 people took on the opening round – however, the brutal nature of the event (it’s one of the longest and toughest Clubs in the entire game) meant that only 18% of those made it to the end. I was one of those and finished in 169th place despite some serious engine trouble at the end. Chris and Fernando braved it too with varying degrees of success. Round 2 is already underway at Spain. I‘ve gotten my run in and as of last Friday was sitting in 5th overall. If you fancy beating that and calling me out on the Forums, all the info’s here.
That’ll do it for now, so if you’ll excuse me I’m off to play some more DiRTRally.txt; see you all soon.
Who watched the 2021 season opener last weekend? They don’t get much better than that! If it was any indicator as to how the following 22 races are going to pan out, we’re in for an incredibly close season across the field. Still think Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have enough to fend off the likes of Red Bull and Max Verstappen? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Raise Your Game
Thank you to everyone that took part in #F1RaiseYourGame – the Birmingham St Marys Hospice fundraising campaign. It was great seeing everyone’s fast laps on the Bahrain International Circuit in F1® 2020 – we’ll be getting in touch with some of you who took part to send out some merch very soon.
Racing Ahead members SootieLive and Theamusante both contributed with fundraising efforts of their own, helping raise hundreds of pounds after completing dozens of laps on their respective streams. Big shoutout to the both of them and of course everyone who contributed by donating.
If you want to find out more about what Birmingham St Marys Hospice do, and why they’re so important to our F1 Game studio, you can head to the Just Giving page here.
F1® Esports Challengers
This past week saw the fourth event of the F1 Esports Challengers Series on PS4, Xbox and PC, racing at Monza and Suzuka for rounds 7 and round 8, respectively. With the series now approaching its explosive finale, our racers are taking more risks than ever before; late braking, daring overtakes, setting the pace lap after lap to secure a place in the Pro Exhibition event. The highlight of the event has to be this calculated move from Alessio Di Capua, where his methodical approach allowed him to retake the lead on the final lap of the race at Suzuka.
In case you missed any of these action-packed races, head here to watch the PS4 races, here to recap on the Xbox races, and here to see how the battle unfolded on PC over on our YouTube channel. Don’t forget to tune in to twitch.tv/formula1 on the 27th of April from 7pm GMT+1 to watch the final and deciding event of the series that will see who will take part in the Pro Exhibition!
PROJECT CARS 3
Image credit: max_the_ronin (Twitter)
Welcome to the first Racing Line post-holidays entry. I hope you all had a restful break and are now fighting fit to get back to racing action.
Your Vote Matters!
We asked the Project CARS community to vote on our Facebook page for their favourite Classic Team Lotus racing machine. The choice was between three Formula One Championship-winnings cars. The clear winner was the 1967 Lotus Type 49 Cosworth, followed by the 1972 Lotus Type 72D Cosworth, and the 1970 Lotus Type 49C. Legends always win, I guess!
Our next poll will be even tougher, featuring legendary examples of peak German engineering. Look out for that post, don’t forget to vote, and get involved with the discussions in the comments (please be courteous!).
Find Your Rival
With March now over, your total Rivals results and rewards should be available in-game. This, of course, means a fresh batch of challenges are now available, and many more will appear in the Rivals mode tab throughout the month of April. We started the month with one of the greatest motorsport challenges ever known— a hefty and throaty V8 around the legendary Mount Panorama circuit.
You can follow the action and your own progress online with the leaderboards and visit the website to get a schedule of upcoming Rivals challenges.
One of my favourite things to do in the Project CARS community is talking about car photography and share tips on how to capture the best shots in our games. I often collect my personal favourites from across the web and share them with the rest of the team – and now I’m sharing them with you! Here are some of the best shots I’ve seen from the community. Keep them coming, I’m always lurking about and collecting!
Image credit: Don Joewon Song
Image credit: AuditoreAdriano (Twitter)
And with that thought, I’ll say goodbye for this week. Enjoy the racing.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS?
– No more wheels, no more pads. Keyboard. Is King. Last week we ‘revealed’ the trailer for DiRTRally.txt to the world – a text-based adventure that dares you to tackle the world’s toughest rally stages, with nothing but your trusty digits and keys for support. Don’t cut, and whatever you do, don’t break the car! Alas, much like last year’s acclaimed (well, by us) DiRT Rollers, this was our bit of April Fools fun to share with you all – though we wouldn’t mind seeing someone make this for real…