Review by jparis09

"The True Definition of Insanity"

Far Cry 3 is the third main title in the highly acclaimed Far Cry series. While it isn't a direct sequel to 2008's Far Cry 2 it still has the same premise that made the series so popular. Far Cry has been known for its open world gameplay and action. With that said, Far Cry 3 has a lot to live up to in order to be considered a worthy entry to the series. Has Far Cry 3 stood up tall or has it fallen on its face? Let's find out.

Story 9/10

Far Cry takes place on Rook Island. You are in the shoes of Jason Brody. You and your friends are all on vacation enjoying the good life on the island. Nothing can go wrong right? Well of course it does. You are captured by a psychopath named Vaas. Vaas is one of the leaders of the island and is absolutely crazy. He answers to nobody beside Hoyt, his boss. Anyways you quickly escape his prison and are initially set on a quest to save your friends and get the hell of the island. Unfortunately for Jason, his quest isn't as simple as that. At the start of the game, Jason is not a killer by any means. He's just your average guy. Wrong place, wrong time. This is what makes Far Cry 3 story so great. It doesn't just place focus on saving your friends but Far Cry focuses more on Jason transformation from who he is initially to becoming a part of something bigger than himself as well as his friends. Jason encounters people on the island who are at war with Vaas. In order for him to save his friends he has to take part in the war. Jason slowly learns to become a killer and a vicious one at that. He learns to hunt and survive. As you play you will see him go from being scared to harm anyone, to actually enjoying and having fun as he disposes of his adversaries. Jason's relentless quest to free the Rook Islands of Vaas and Hoyt's control as well as save his friends is a great one as well as an immersive one but his evolution from being simply Jason Brody to becoming a great fierce warrior makes Far Cry 3's story stand out above anything else.

Gameplay 9/10

As I stated earlier Far Cry is known for its huge open world. This is no different. Far Cry 3 is enormous. There are plenty of things to do and explore on Rook Island. The gameplay is very engaging. There are different ways to approach how you play as well. For example there are outposts you can take over to help bring areas of the map under your control. When you take over these outposts you can go in gun-blazing and blow your enemies to smithereens or play the silent assassins role and stealthily pick those pesky island pirates out one by one. This brings me to another great aspect of the game, the skill tree. The skill tree that you have also gives you different ways to play. You can upgrade your weapon abilities such as accuracy or you can improve on other things that will help you survive such as increased health or different stealthy takedowns, and there are a lot. Takedowns are really fun and gruesome. It's always fun sneaking up on a guy, stabbing him in his back then snatching his knife and launching it at another unaware enemy's skull. If that isn't your style you can always throw some C4 in the back of a truck and use the truck as a bomb. I like to stir up trouble with a few cheetahs and lead them into enemy territory to handle my opponents, but hey that's just me. This never gets old.

Hunting also plays a huge aspect in the gameplay. There are tons, and I do mean tons of different animals walking the island. Tigers, lions, bears, leopards, and even sharks are all lurking the island just waiting to get a taste of your human flesh. Those are just a few of the vicious animals there are many others. There are Path of the Hunter quest. These quests send you through the island in search for rare animals to kill. All animals can be killed in order for you to skin them and use their skin to craft materials. Ammo pouches, weapons slots, syringe slots, etc. are just a few things you can use animal skins for. Exploration is highly encouraged for the simple fact without upgrades you're a dead man walking. Far Cry keeps pushing you to explore this world and you are rewarded greatly the more you discover. There are tons of things to find such as memory cards, runes, and letters. Each time you find a certain amount of them you are rewarded with guns, experience and skill points. The weapons are also great as well. Of course you have your typical FPS guns such as RPG's, assault rifles, etc. There is also a bow and arrow that can shoot fire arrows and explosive tip arrows, flamethrowers to rein havoc on just about everything. These weapons are extremely fun to play around with because at the end of the day deep down we all want to see the world burn right? Well at least Rook Island.

The multiplayer in Far Cry isn't as alluring as the singleplayer itself unfortunately. It basically is what you would expect it to be. All basic game modes we see in usual FPS games such as deathmatch or objective based modes. You have a progression system as well. Leveling up allows you to unlock attachments for you weapons and so forth. There is a map editor. The map editor is actually pretty well done. You can change terrain, add animals to the maps as well as other objects. The normal maps are otherwise forgettable. Overall there is nothing too special multiplayer wise. There is also a co-op mode. You and up to 3 other friends can team up and play through a side story. In co-op the world isn't open to explore as it is in singleplayer. Ubisoft ditched that formula and went with the linear approach instead. You play through each mission basically going from beginning to end with your friends killing everyone in your path. After a while it can sometimes get tedious and repetitive especially since the game is based on open world exploration. Both multiplayer and co-op are here for a different crowd which isn't a bad thing at all. Whether you're running for life with a crocodile hot on your tail, jumping from a hang glider and landing your knife in a pirate's neck, or going head to head online, Far Cry 3 gameplay is always entertaining and will surely keep you on your toes. Oh did I mention this game also looks absolutely spectacular?

Graphics & Sound 10/10

Gorgeous. Far Cry 3 is gorgeous. Colors are bright. As soon as you step foot onto Rook Island your eyes will widen. The island looks phenomenal. The environment is very tropical. The ocean is bright blue, grass and trees are bright green. Character models are top notch as well as lip syncing. Explosions look extremely realistic and are a sight to watch. Just about everything in this game is visual jaw dropping. It's eye candy. I didn't run into any graphical hiccups at all such as framerate issues, screen tearing, or freezes. The sounds are just as good as the visuals. Voice acting is great. Michael Mando (Vaas voice actor) deserves and Oscar. The characters in this game feel like they are more than just game characters. Vaas is an unforgettable villain. Great voice acting. Explosions and gunshots also have that bang we all like to hear. They all sound amazing. The score isn't a classic or anything but it gets the job done and gets you immersed into the action. The visuals and sounds are some of the best this generation has to offer without a doubt.

Length and Replayability 9/10

Far Cry 3 is roughly a 40-60 hour game. There are so many things to do. Path of the Hunter Quest, Wanted Quest, Side Quest, collectibles etc. You will find yourself exploring the island for hours before you realize you haven't even done the main quest yet. Unlocking everything takes a long time to do but it is very fun. There isn't much reason to replay the game over though after it's beaten unless you want to try to play on a harder difficulty setting. There isn't really any perks for replaying it unfortunately. Overall expect to spend countless hours in this world. Just don't stand still too long because you'll more than likely get eaten by a rabid dog or something. It happens believe me.

Verdict 9/10

Pros

+ Jason's Transformation
+ Voice Acting
+ Stunning Visuals
+ Vaas

Cons

- Bland Multiplayer
- Linear Co-op

Closing Comments

Far Cry 3 is nothing short of amazing. This game has tons to offer any fan of the FPS genre. Mouthwatering visuals and gameplay to compliment a great story is becoming a rare breed nowadays. Ubisoft has gone above and beyond to make sure they delivered on this game. Without question Far Cry 3 has proven it is more than a worthy installment to this franchise and will surely go down as one of the best FPS games to come out this year.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 12/17/12

Game Release: Far Cry 3 (US, 12/04/12)


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