Developed by Avalanche Studios and Published by Square Enix Just Cause 3 is an open world sandbox game set on the fictitious Mediterranean Islands of Medici. Taking place after the events of Just Cause 2. The protagonist, Rico Rodriguez returns to his homeland to take on dictator General Di Ravello, who has control over the islands of Medici.
After an awesome intro featuring a superb cover of the Prodigy’s Firestarter by Torre Florim DE STAAT, players are thrown in to all out carnage which sees Rico Rodriguez standing on top of an airplane, rocket launcher in hand players are tasked with taking out anti-air defenses, with flak and gunfire coming from all angles. It definitely starts the way it means to go on.
If you go in to Just Cause 3 expecting seriousness you’ll be surely let down as it is all about blowing stuff up and having fun while you are at it. even the campaign has a touch of tongue in cheek. there are a couple of cut scenes that have a cheap laugh as Rico and his friend give each other a ‘sack tap’ with Rico’s being in the second cut scene respectively and is one step further as a retaliation to being on the receiving end earlier on. This is the tone of Just Cause 3 throughout.
The campaign missions are not very varied, and most consist of escort ‘this’, and protect ‘that’. Which can be forgiven by the sheer amount of fun you will have destroying stuff whilst doing so. Not to mention the different ways in which you can destroy stuff. Thanks to the tether you can approach things quite differently, for example, you are surrounded by enemies in an array of vehicles and a helicopter turns up. you can attach the tether to the helicopter and another vehicle and reel the two together ending in an almighty explosion. Or on the other hand you could just tether yourself to the helicopter, hijack it and go hell for leather with its rockets and/or mini gun and destroy everything in sight.
This is the big draw for Just Cause 3, the freedom to do what you want, how you want. With a vast array of weapons and vehicles at your disposal and free reign over the islands. With the addition of the wingsuit travelling around the island is a breeze, combining it’s use with the parachute and tether you can get from A to B without ever touching the ground. Or grab yourself an MG mounted 4×4, or any other vehicle for that matter, and go on a ground level tour of the islands. should you happen to come across an oppressed town or military base (which you will, and need to) you can liberate them, this is needed to unlock campaign missions as well as different vehicles and weapons.
Liberating towns and bases consist of completing a ‘checklist’ of things from taking over police stations, blowing up fuel tanks and pulling down billboards and statues. These can start to feel repetitive after a while, but they do add more to the game along with the above mentioned unlockables you also gain access to challenges. These mainly consist of checkpoint races in cars, airplanes and even in the wingsuit. There is also frenzy, which sets you against the clock to destroy as much as you can. these all lead to unlocking Gears, which are used to unlock Gear Mods. Essentially upgrades for Rico’s weapons and vehicles which can be toggled on and off to create different combinations that best suit you.
Visually, the game looks fantastic. a very well laid out map produces some jaw dropping moments, parachuting over the crest of a hill to be met by a view of scrolling fields and trees sitting in the shadow of a mountain, with the sunset giving off a warm glow over the stunningly clear sea. all of which is teaming with life from Birds, deer and cattle to coral and fish. It’s all there if you can bring yourself to taking a break from blowing holes in everything and admire the beauty of it all. The audio is pretty spot on too. with the clatter of distant gunfire as the rebels clash with Di Ravello’s troops. A good soundtrack that seamlessly changes as you travel around and encounter different scenarios, and the explosions really do go boom…