I’m not gonna lie, rallying is a pretty slept-on discipline of motorsports. Unlike many series, where the car is the one doing the actual driving and the driver just tells it what to do, rallying is a sport where the person behind the wheel is the one doing all the hard work.

To put it simply, it’s a motorsport that involves throwing yourself down a narrow gravel road at ludicrous speeds whilst trying not wrap yourself around a Finnish conifer, whilst an incredibly brave man in the passenger seat shouts at you a mysterious language of numbers and letters they’ve written down in biro on a notepad they stole from Home Bargains. Safe to say, it’s a little bit mad.

EA Sports WRC is the first game in the long-running series of officially-licensed games by the World Rally Championship to come from Codemasters, longtime racing game experts most famous for the widely-beloved Colin McRae Rally series and the officially-licensed Formula One games, and is the first new IP to ship from the company since its acquisition by Electronic Arts back in 2020.

Graphically, EASWRC (As I shall now call it from this point on) is nothing to write home about. That’s not too surprising considering this is the first big-budget project from Codemasters since TOCA Race Driver 3 to not use their in-house EGO engine (At least for visuals, physics and sound design still seem to be handled by Codemasters’ own technology), instead attempting to harness the power of Unreal Engine 4 to produce a more visually pleasing experience than its ancient predecessor. Instead, what you get is a game that actually looks worse than DiRT Rally 2.0, especially if you’re playing on console or don’t have the horsepower to crank up the graphics to Ultra or Epic.

Reviewed on Nov 24, 2023