I’ve got to say, out of all the games I’ve played, Just Cause 3 takes the award for being the most stunning in visuals…with its crystal blue oceans and its vast terrain that are pretty much all destructible! I’ve heard great things about the Just Cause series, so I wanted to see what all the hype was about.
So this is our review of Just Cause 3. Now bear in mind, I haven’t played any of the previous titles in the Just Cause franchise and because of that, I feel like I’m missing out on a lot of stories here. I’m left at a loss for much that happens in the game and don’t fully understand what is going on. I get that the main hero is named Rico Rodriguez; the most gentlemanly character I’ve ever seen in a game (and possibly one of the best and most well-written characters I have ever seen in a fictional universe). But despite getting to know the characters, I still feel like I am losing out on the overall story. That makes it a bit uncomfortable for me, as the title isn’t a good starting point for anyone wanting to get into the series.
That being said, the story for this game is amazing, and right from the start, you are grappled onto the back of a biplane flying over the cities as they fire anti-air guns at you. You fire rockets at them as they try to shoot you down…all before you jump and parachute off into a ravine. Suddenly you get a call from a friend; he needs help. So you grapple your way over to him, cruising on the breeze as you shoot attacking enemies…and that’s just the first three minutes of gameplay!
The entire game is completely void of subtlety no matter where you go. You will always be doing the most insane things to combat the enemies in the nation of Medici. At one point you even grapple onto the back of a giant missile that is supposedly more deadly than a nuclear warhead, and use your grapple hook to move the fin and make it change course!
Now despite riding a missile as in the movie Armageddon, the game bothers me. I get that the title is really popular among fans and is indeed enjoyable. But it also feels like someone took a real-time strategy (RTS) game, made one NPC playable, gave him unique abilities, and put it all into a third-person view.
In games like Dead Space, your main hero can duck and cover and fight among the enemies. In Just Cause 3 there is no way to duck. I tried for an hour and nothing is there that let me. It is either grappling onto an enemy structure/vehicle or grappling out of the way of bullets which I find highly redundant. If bullets are coming at me I would very much like to duck behind something and shoot back.
The world is open and vast, but because of this not many buildings are able to be explored; making it feel even more out of place. Do not misunderstand me though. Despite feeling out of place, the overall quality of the game is solid and the lack of accessible buildings has zero impact on the overall story and plot.
Another issue I found with the game is the controls. You can glide around flying overhead or you can parachute and just loft around the map. You can even mix it up if you want and do both but it feels clunky. I know the wingsuit was a new addition to the Just Cause series and I like it. I only wish it acted more like the gliding mechanic of the Batman Arkham franchise. I try to glide from area to area but am constantly pressing the wrong controls and falling to my death. If you have experience playing the Just Cause franchise this may come easier to you. But as a newcomer, it’s confusing and hard to understand.
The game also feels like it has elements of Grand Theft Auto V, where you can go around stealing cars, boats, planes, and even helicopters to use in your rebellion against Medici’s fascist dictator. This I like because of the detail they put into the vehicles (at least visually). Not to mention, if you complete various in-game challenges you can unlock new bonuses for your sweet rides, like adding nitro to your helicopter because, why not?
Now the game’s musical score is pretty on-point. The environment feels a lot like Portugal and the music feels like it too. When I enter a town and a band starts to play, it gives me the urge to start dancing and eating strange foods that I wouldn’t normally find where I live.
But in conclusion, is Just Cause 3 worth the investment? I think so. The controls may have issues for me and you may be missing out on a lot of stories if you haven’t played the first two games. But let’s be honest. If you saw the trailers and you watched the gameplay, you are probably more interested in the Easter eggs like Cloud’s Buster Sword or Thor’s Hammer and the insane stunts you can pull off, than you are about the story.
I highly recommend investing in this title if you get the chance. It is totally worth it.
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