Review by darkfire9189

"Beautiful on the outside, bland on the inside"

Just Cause 2 is a Third Person shooter released on March 2010. It was developed by Avalanche Studios, and published by Square Enix. Just Cause 2 is a sandbox style third person shooter, similar to Red Faction:guerrilla or Mercenaries. Just cause 2 takes place in modern times in a small fictional island nation of Panau.

Plotline

You see Panau is run by a dictator who has recently decided to cut off contact with us. The good ole US of A doesn't like this and sends you, Rico Rodriguez to take him down and liberate the Panau. Panau is run by 3 criminal factions, The Reapers who are nothing more than terrorists, the Ular Boys who believe in restoring Panau back to a primitive state and the removal of technology, and last the Roaches. Along the way you run into familiar faces from the first game, and discover the three factions are being secretly controlled by 3 nations, China, Japan, and Russia who are all trying to take control of Panaus oil. Honestly, the story is not Just Cause 2's prime feature and is quite terrible, but it's a so bad it's good kind of terrible. It's short too with only 8 very short missions.

Gameplay

Pretty standard stuff, but with a twist Rico has a grappling hook he can use at anytime. The grappling hook can be used with the press of a button and latches onto anything. It can also be used to latch objects onto other objects. Theres nothing quite like hooking a civilian or soldier to a speeding car rigged with explosives heading towards a cliff. Aside from that the main objective is to cause CHAOS by liberating towns and capturing military bases or destroying objects. Liberating towns is quite easy you can liberate them by removing military influence from the area by destroying Panay statues, water towers, propaganda trailers, etc and there are lots of towns in this game and almost as many military bases which are heavily defended. Anyways each Faction has it's own set of missions some range from simple destroy a target, to difficult protection missions or race against the time type missions. This is where the game suffers. Few of the missions are memorable and most can be completed in mere minutes. The main storyline missions are a bit longer and more difficult but still can be done in minutes. The game also offers races you can complete that range from sky diving into rings, to flying a jet through markers as fast as possible.

Graphics

The Graphics are suffice to say among the best on consoles. Panau's environment is incredibly diverse from snowy mountains to busting city's to tropical jungle valleys littered with military bases and ancient ruins. Standing on top of the largest mountain Just Cause 2 and looking at view distance one can only be awed at how far you can see of Panau which to say is one of the largest game worlds ever created. Only in Just Cause 2 can you walk out huge city and find yourself lost in a massive rain forest that opens up into a huge bay that is connected to a giant desert island. the capital city itself does not disappoint as it's beautifully crafted with a living population. The game goes through great lengths to randomize towns and military bases too. Not 2 city or base is alike, some cities are only a few buildings others are massive.

Sound

The voice acting is what really hurts this game. the voice acting is awful that's it. It's as if the developers just hired random people to do the voices. Most of the characters sound so horrid it's hard to take the game seriously. The random soldiers will curse at you and taunt you whole praising their dear leader. The random civilian voices are pretty awful too, almost comical at times. Aside from that the music is so-so, and changes at times from an alert type music to a calm soothing music when entering a town. The sounds of gunfire sound great, and the explosions even better.

Summary

To sum it up Just Cause 2 is a great looking game without much there. On the outside it looks amazing, but when playing it quickly feels like a chore and the game's flaws become apparent. Like walking into a town and randomly getting HEAT (the games version of a military warning level. Higher it is the stronger the soldiers are) or the games crushingly difficulty later on on higher difficulties. Most enemy's are equipped with machine guns or assault rifles that can tear your health down in seconds. Enemy choppers equipped with missiles spawn out of nowhere and are rarely alone. Aside from the flaws the graphics are amazing and the game is okay if you play in short bursts. All in all the game just lacked re-playability, a good plot, and good voice acting and felt like a chore to play or more of the been there done that kinda feeling.


Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 10/27/10

Game Release: Just Cause 2 (US, 03/23/10)


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