Just Cause 3: A World (open) apart

Released on December 1, Just Cause 3 is the newest of the family now extensive open world games. But through its production, Avalanche Studios says its difference by offering a unique and crazy vision of this kind expanding.

Shaping an open world game, it holds today more than the exception. The grandiloquence of such projects would tend to think that they are rare. But it is not. Witness the outputs since September 2015 Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, Mad Max, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate or Fallout 4. At this concert ambitious titles, offering great freedom of movement for players, came s added on December 1 Just Cause 3.

The third episode of the series initiated in 2006, conceived as his elders by Avalanche Studios, made turbulent child appears in the table of major competing for the favors of a public eager exploration and large spaces. Because the new adventure of Rico Rodriguez belongs to a subgenre that Saints Row was heavily involved in democratization: that of the eccentric open world in which the player comes to itself and its main limit his imagination. The scenario, Swedish developers have left the closet. And they do not hide. dialogues without any depth, hollow secondary characters that fact was soon to forget the name, a left side story after less than an hour, the picture is clear.

Avalanche Studios pulling its bias and prefer to avoid other affectations productions that do not know how to choose and succeed in the end that needlessly divide their forces. So here we are in the shoes of a hero who abhors dictatorships and those who install them. Now to Medici, a fictional nation showing partially inspired by landscapes of Provence, the cruel reign Di Ravello, a nasty caricature who likes to terrorize the local population free. This is pretty good for the only goal of the game turns out to be the following: the militia oust the tyrant – and the latter, at the same time – outside the areas it occupies. And for this, Just Cause 3 leaves plenty of choice.

Supplied with tools without notice

The outstanding feature of the last scion of Avalanche Studios comes precisely from this desire to abandon any idea of ​​history and even narration. Title and provides almost all the tools players from the first minutes. And after a few missions in the form of explanation, they are left completely free to move in a vast open world composed of several islands. An environment that can be explored aboard a wide variety of vehicles, allowing to move in the air, on water bodies or soil. But the most interesting way of moving remains linked to Rico Rodriguez equipment that constantly carries with him a grappling hook, a parachute and a wingsuit.

This is not one of those tools, but the combination of the three gives the ability to move at high speed and with great precision in the scenery. Both horizontally and vertically. The grapple helps catch items away and climb up them, the parachute to glide over long distances and wingsuit splitting the wind speed. After a mandatory training period, navigation is smooth and natural.

This training, the game you not. And this is one of its shortcomings. Aside from the basics, the player must himself understand the advanced operation of this it has. What is not obvious if one does not have a significant passive video game. The discretion of the principal missions, releasable at any time by going to a specific point on the map, only matched their inability to show teachers at that level. Perseverance and leadership are all essential qualities for better assessment of Just Cause 3 and get a result that reflects the real potential of the title.

A world upside down

The other great singularity of the game regarding its level design. The developers have chosen, as for previous parts, to overcome any consistency. The open world of Just Cause 3 is not the reproduction of a real environment. It is the fantasy vision of many parts of the world, the atmosphere “landscapes of Provence” giving way to the snowy scenery, more mountainous north of the map, less than ten kilometers away. Unlike games like GTA or Assassin’s Creed – to name a few – the cities are not a special place. They are on the one hand, relatively empty and does not constitute, on the other, “hubs” around which the play revolves, in that they are not central to the operation of the world and does not give access to any secondary activities. They are actually regain territories, like the scalable databases that players are encouraged to discover as and when they peregrination. A bit like the latest Far Cry, the goal is to take one by one the areas under the yoke of dictator sowing on site the most complete disorder. In practice this means detonate a list of vital elements: branches, police stations, speakers, statues, transformers, etc.

Those who have played the first two episodes knows better than anyone, it is in these companies mass destruction lies all the salt of the Swedish production. The developers have obviously aware and they, therefore, particularly well the level design bases and other camps to negate. The focus is on the vertical environments that offer different levels consistently at the heart of which evolve. Developers play much with the natural elements, such as caves, with buildings, like the huge towers that players are regularly invited to drop. This successful construction arises largely the pleasure of navigation and the desire to show imaginative in how to approach objectives.

The destruction engine, which does not apply to all elements of the decor but some identifiable with a color code that leaves no room for doubt, gives another dimension to this open world. It offers the player a sense of control over their surroundings. As if it were brought to remodel at will.

Its strength is also its greatest weakness

This concept of absolute sandbox leaving complete freedom to the players turns out to be the greatest strength of Just Cause 3. Because it allows an immediate pleasure that few other productions are capable of providing. However, this is also where his most glaring weakness insofar as he experiences a terrible time to renew itself after a few hours of play. It should then invite his imagination in the game, set its own goals, to prolong the adventure. It’s obvious limitation of the series that does not have this thread to hold on when the urge to continue his journey wanes naturally. And, despite some optional challenges – speed races, wingsuit courses, etc. – And a number of changes to unlock to change equipment or improve travel.

A problem even more important that the grounds for release Just Cause 3 exist. The few technical problems are especially able to get the most obstinate. Starting with incredibly long load times on PlayStation 4 at least. Numerous delays also can test the patience of the most demanding players, as no mini map to locate itself in the environment, forcing it to go through the menus to display the map of the place.

There remains this vast expanse that is full of places to discover, areas to explore, destroy bases. An open world apart offering a different approach to giants of the genre. An alternative anyway welcome in these times of standardization of AAA.

PC Games Just Cause 3

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Just Cause 3

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Auchan

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One Xbox Just Cause 3

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Edited on 12/11/2015 at 6:19 p.m.

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