Dirt 3 digging in 2011

Codemasters' rally racing franchise returns next year; first trailer shows diverse weather, explosions.

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ESPN's X-Games 16 descended upon Los Angeles over the weekend, bringing with it four days of gravity-defying tricks on skateboards and bikes, plus rally cross racing, motocross, and more. The X-Games also ushered in the first trailer for Codemasters Dirt 3, a minute-long teaser that culminated in the publisher revealing a 2011 release window.

Dirt 3 will apparently feature a stunt mode...with exploding trucks.
Dirt 3 will apparently feature a stunt mode...with exploding trucks.

Rally racing is again the name of the game in Dirt 3, where physics-based car tuning is paired with exotic environments ranging from arid desertscapes to winding snow-steeped mountainous byways. And judging by Codemasters' first trailer for the game, the studio will be staying true to those principles.

Opening shots show a rally car zipping through a dry, dusty environment at dusk, catching air off of uneven surfaces in its path. The car then transitions to cruising through a torrential downpour along a highway by a lake, with dense forest and brooding skies overhead. It's then on to the northern climates, as the same car is shown skidding through a blizzard up in the mountains, with evergreens lining the treacherous roadway.

More cars are then shown joining the race, through what looks like a coastal European town on a bright, sun-drenched morning. As the cars weave in and around one another, a background shot shows a vehicle catching massive air off of a large dirt ramp. The trailer then appears to take a page out of Disney Interactive's Split/Second, showing a tractor trailer's bed exploding while the car drifts around and under it.

Beyond a release window, Codemasters offered no additional details about the title.

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