Dirt 3 is a rally racing game. Just like expected, most time is spent in races which, at least in most scenarios, are set in offroad environments. The main difference to other racing events is, that the player drives not alone, but has a front-seat passenger with him, who announces when to turn. The game features overall 98 courses, but some of those are just variations of the same. Also on board is the iconic ability to turn back time after screwing up.
In contrast to Dirt 2, in this installment there are other playing modes than the career available, e.g. a single race. But the career is still the heart of the game; here the player tunes his car, participates in races and earns experience points, which are used to unlock new cars. There are six different race modes to solve during the career; e.g. regular races and “trailblazer” (no passenger available). Two of those are newly introduced: drift tournaments and Gymkhana, which are basically confined areas with a lot of stunt opportunities – the goal is to perform as many as possible in a limited time. Additionally every mode has special tricky bonus goals which reward more experience when fulfilled.