After playing Just Cause 3, I’ve decided more games need a grapple with a tether system.
Not because it makes the game easier, mind you, but just because it’s so much more enjoyable with an open world.
Just Cause 3 has a story. I remember hearing about it. It revolves around Rico Rodriguez trying to take out a dictator and liberate a country by freeing the settlements in it. The cast of characters backing up Rico are also entertaining, from his friend that’s part of the liberation team to the doctor trying to make amends for her past.
Overall, while the story and voice acting are good, most people checking this game out are interested in the action and explosions, and believe me, there’s plenty of those. Most of the game revolves around explosions, actually, blowing up different things in a city to liberate it, or taking over a power plant by blowing everything up. No matter where you turn, explosions will be plentiful.
Thankfully, as you take out objects in the city, the map will start showing the final objects on the map, letting you know exactly where your explosives need to go to finish a liberation.
However, the explosions aren’t nearly as fun as the grappling hook. Besides being used to fling yourself from place to place quicker, it can only link two items together and pull them toward each other. As you get upgrades, eventually you can have up to six grappling hooks at a time, making it easy to pull down towers, statues and more. If you hook the wrong thing, a grapple can be easily canceled and rehooked elsewhere.
Getting around from location to location is also enjoyable. I rarely used a vehicle, opting instead to switch between parachuting, grappling and the new wing suit. The wing suit will take you down to the ground quicker, but can be a great way to move around a lot faster before switching to your parachute to float along.
Outside of the liberation of the country, there are challenges to do that can give you various upgrades, collectibles that can unlock new weapons or vehicles, and random events that give some money or other benefits. There aren’t a lot of random events, but they are short distractions while you’re flying around from point A to point B.
Challenges range from driving a car bomb to a certain location to blow it up as quick as possible, to just causing random destruction, to trying to fly between rings or just racing around. They’re simple enough, but are key to getting upgrades to making you even more efficient.
At the heart of the game, Just Cause 3 is still an open world adventure. As much fun as it may be to liberate settlements and countries, it can also be fun just to create your own destruction. Tying enemies to a tank, shooting it and watching them fly off in the distance is a blast, as is hijacking a helicopter, setting a crash course and jumping out to enjoy the mayhem. Personally, I felt the story is just an excuse to connect chains of destruction across the world together. There’s nothing wrong with that, but destruction is definitely the high point here.
Helping you out with the destruction are Rebel Drops, which are drops where you can select vehicles, weapons and explosives that can be dropped right in front of you. The drops are limited to what you’ve unlocked, but it can help refill your ammo or give you new weapons for a change it the gameplay.
There are a few issues to point out though. One is with the Square Enix servers. They’ve gotten better since launch, but there are still some small connections issues here and there. You can play the game offline, so that’s not a problem. However, the game constantly tries to reconnect whenever the game is paused or you try and check the map.
The other issue isn’t so much of an issue, but of something I found surprising it was missing. After seeing the multiplayer fun on PC of JC2, I fully expected the next entry to have multiplayer, especially considering you normally have rebels near you fighting anyway. However, JC3 is fully single player. Maybe an update in the future will add some multiplayer fun.
Overall, the longevity of Just cause 3 will depend on how much destruction you want to cause. If the repetition of liberating villages doesn’t bother you, and you enjoy gliding along the countryside, JC3 will give you a lot of play time. However, if you’re looking for a deep, involving story, you may want to check out a different open world title. Still, make sure to stop by and give the grapple a chance before you do.