Monday, 4 April 2016

Review No. 118 Just Cause 3 - PS4 (18+)

Strong Points:
Fluid movement
Massive open world
Lots of vehicles
Lots of guns
Gear mods add depth and customisation
Grappling hook is great to use
Wingsuit is awesome
Great story
Good voice acting
Great characters
Massive bases have lots to do and explode
Vehicles handle nicely
FOW's are awesome...
Explosions are just nuts
More sanboxy than JC2...

Weak Points:
Learning curve for wingsuit
Some bugs/lag
Not enough missions (side quests)
Environment and bases could be more varied
Can't throw GE-54 unless using the parachute
...but disappear once you complete the story mission
Each act follows the same formula
Wingsuit makes vehicles not needed
Can't shoot while using the wingsuit
Beginning can be slow without gear mods
Could've worked so well with multiplayer
Always online functionallity
...Less of a collectibles game than JC2

In-depth Review:

Release Dates:
World Wide: 1st December, 2015

Analogue sticks: move/control camera
Square: reload/handbrake/turn right
Circle: release tether/nitrous/turbo jump/turn left
X: jump/jump onto vehicle/(hold) open parachute
Triangle: enter vehicle/leave vehicle
D-Pad: change weapon
L1: grapple/(vehicle) shoot
R1: throw grenade/place GE-54/(vehicle) shoot
L2: zoom (when unlocked)/descend/decelerate
R2: shoot/ascend/accelerate
Touch pad: access map/gear mods/rebel drops/leaderboards/progress

After the amazing success of Just Cause 2, Just Cause 3 had a lot to live up to. And it did, for the most part. More colour, humour and explosions makes this the game to just relax with after a hard day of work while still telling a decent enough story to get your tear ducts working.

The movement has been upgraded since Just Cause 2, with your parachute now becoming steadier for shooting at targets and your wingsuit becoming the main source of travel. The wingsuit is great fun to use and really well designed, if a bit difficult to learn at the beginning, you will soon be able to do death-defying tricks, swooping through cars and arching over bullets. It really is a great addition to the game and makes Just Cause 2 seem slow by comparison.

More animations for grappling also helps, making it a lot less fiddly than JC2, with you now being able to jump up over walls and off buildings to get a better angle. Multiple tethers allow you to blow things up in even more 'inspired' ways and killing paratroopers by grappling into them is a highlight. However, you will have to readjust from JC2, with some objects such as water towers taking more hits to destroy and due to there being no HP bar, it does take some time to learn.

Another addition to movement is greater fidelity when jumping on top of a vehicle when moving. I often set a plane off, jump onto the top of it, move to a wing and proceed to take down the enemies. The big carrier planes can even be boarded and jumped out of, although we won't see the full benefit of this until someone makes a multiplayer mod for it.

Moving out of the movement category now and onto the world that you will be traversing in and what a world it is. With beautiful, vibrant colours (we need more games that aren't just grey), an epic draw distance and mostly varied environments (especially in Insula Striate), you will spend a lot of time in the 400km squared world. However, it would've been nice to have seen some more landmarks as while the world is nice to look at it does become forgettable after a while unlike the world of GTA V (the game JC3 draws the most comparisons to besides its predecessors).

The towns are nicely made, if a bit the same, and the big bases are awesome to destroy, with the capitals of each region having an FOW. These FOW's range from nukes to plain old missiles and are great to fly around and try to dodge. That is, until you complete the story and get rid of them forever.

While I normally keep the same primary weapon and secondary weapon for the entire game (rifle and dual pistols), the special weapons is where the craziness appears. From the old, faithful rocket launcher and sniper rifle to a missile that splits off and becomes homing, there are a host of weapons to suit you explosive needs. Just be careful blowing everything up at once as I have encountered frame rate drops when everything blows up.

There are many collectibles scattered round the place (though not nearly as many as JC2) and these, along with liberating all the cities and getting 5-gears on all the challenges will take you quite a long time to beat which is great for the collectors out there.

The story is a backdrop to the explosions but it does a fine job anyhow, even if it is a bit by the books. The characters are instantly memorable and likeable, with Mario getting laughs throughout the story and Di Ravello, the dictator of this fair island, is a great villain, with some real character depth. The Di Ravello tapes scattered around the world add more backstory to this villain and serve as a great prologue if you find them all. However, this, coupled with Rico's backstory as a race car driver/orphan could've been expanded on a lot more and I feel that they reduced the story a bit too much just to focus on the open world.

Conclusion: whatever the weak points of this game are, just remember, games are to be enjoyed and this game is a hell of a lot of fun, with DLC promising even more. One of the only games I've completed twice as well! We have to give a shout out to David Tennant as well, with his great voice acting of the captured celebrity tourist.

Rating: 90%

Thanks for reading, Satamer.

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