Far Cry 3 | Gaming reviews, news & interviews
Far Cry 3
When you cross the line between knowing your enemy and becoming him, paradise isn’t the only thing lost for Jason Brody
If there’s one thing that can ruin the tropical thrill-seeking holiday of a lifetime, it’s got to be waking up, bound and gagged, in the cage of a nasty organisation of modern day pirates who trade in the ransom and murder of yuppie tourists. And so the nightmare begins for young Jason Brody, as he attempts to escape, track down and rescue the rest of his captive yuppie friends and family who are scattered around the mysterious and beautiful Rook Islands.
But if you thought fighting pirates in a tropical paradise was going to be all yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum, think again. Under the command of the mysterious Hoyt Volker, pirate leader Vaas Montenegro is on your trail from the start, and he ain’t no Captain Jack Sparrow. Using motion capture to perfection, actor Michael Mando (pictured below) has created one of the most terrifyingly charismatic bad guys ever. Vaas is this jungle’s welcoming committee, but he isn’t going to offer you fun and games. He’s going to stick you in your heart of darkness and make you squeal like a pig.
The world is so rich that finding your friends becomes an afterthought
Luckily, you are not along in your battle against Vaas and his hearties. Leading the resistance is the native Rakyat tribe, whose ways you must learn (via a collection of mystical tattoos) if you are to survive. And it is this character development - from a wussy little rich kid stumbling clumsily through the jungle, to a hardened hunter who is, unsettlingly, as proficient a killer as Vaas - that is one of the most engrossing elements of the game.
And then there’s the world itself, which is so open and rich in detail and opportunity, that finding your friends and family becomes an afterthought. Designed with detailed finesse, the island is full of animals to hunt (and that hunt you back, so watch out!), chests to raid, cliffs to scale and enemies to snuff out. Even its history is scattered about for you to discover, from WW2 gun turrets and skeletons to ruined colonial mansions. There are also plenty of vehicles lying around if you fancy a joyride on a jet-ski or a gun-boat or a hang glider or a motorbike.
Your camera allows you to zoom and mark enemies and animals so that you can keep an eye on where they are, whether you’re tracking them or avoiding them. Luckily these baddies are no rocket scientists; throw a stone to distract them and they’re yours for the slaughtering. And you will be throwing a lot of stones, because the best way to succeed in this jungle is to crouch, distract, divide and take down. And if necessary mow down everyone in your path with an AK47.
This incredible world on its own is enough to earn the game full marks, but couple it with an antagonist as magnetic as Vaas, and Far Cry 3 becomes outstanding. So, even though you know that what Vaas has planned for you will make you wish your parachute had failed to open, you will still play this game with the niggling hope that at some point you’ll meet him again.
- Far Cry 3 developed and published by Ubisoft. Platform: PS3, XBOX, PC
- Read more games reviews on theartsdesk
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