Review: Just Cause 2

Jun 29, 2011

by

Just Cause 2 is an open world game set on the fictional island of Panau, located in southeastern Asia. You, Rico Rodriguez, first come to Panau to look for your mentor, who is also an American agency operative. You are given intel he went off the grid and to track him down using any means necessary. As you enter the airspace above Panau, you find yourself jumping out of an airplane above a military facility high in the mountains. After this point the game is whatever you make it.

I found the game refreshing as I could explore anything, pick up almost any weapon and go to work with it. I began by blowing up several structures from an anti-aircraft gun and swiveled from side to side shelling enemy troops, gas tanks, vehicles and satelitte dishes.

There are two basic sections of the game; story mode and mercenary mode. The first is self explanatory and will require you to “cause chaos” to open more story content. This is simply done by doing what Rico does best, disrupt the local dictatorship by blowing up just about anything from a gas station to grenading a proaganda stand or an oil rig a few miles off shore. The second is basically a continuation of your current game with the story already taken care of… seems your work on Panau isn’t done until you say it is!

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Eventually you will unlock the black market, which I felt was a great addition to this game. You are given a device and you can use it to call a black market agent to upgrade your guns, buy vehicles and even an extraction to a previously discovered location. Given the setting, this was a realistic way to add deeper gameplay for those looking to expand their arsenal and enjoy the huge and beautifully crafted island.

As an Agency gun, you become a local legend as you befriend local gangs and freedom fighters to overthrow the government and bring honor and respect back to the people of Panau. Of course this is not your true objective but as it seems everyone is against the government, it doesn’t hurt to do as many of these missions as you can.

I literally I have been able to do just about anything I wanted, being creative and resourceful in combat, using the grappling hook for more than just getting around and looking for quick ways to ambush a patrol, board a zeppelin flying high above or dragging a car through the air with a plane I jacked from a local government airport.

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You are in the business to cause problems and the sky is the limit. The gameplay is good, the story was well done and at times is humorous. The only mechanic that put a sour taste in my mouth is the response time of enemy troops and the frequency of the onslaught they bring. For those that have played GTA or a similar game you will feel at home here, the troops seem to spawn out of no where and depending on what you did, may just hunt you down to your death. I felt that this could have been done differently, but with such a complex game, it did not ruin the experience for me.

Did Well: Game mechanics fit the setting well and character models and the voice acting make you feel close to the action. For those looking for a lengthy game with too much to do, the adventure is worth your time.

Did Poorly: At times enemies spawned too quickly and in places so remote, it isn’t realistic. Would have liked to see more covert game mechanics.

Would my wife watch?: She was indifferent about it, but commented that it had as much and more action as a movie.

Purchase @ $40

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