27th December
2012
written by admin

Far Cry 3 is a beautiful large game that I have heard described as Skyrim with guns.  Does it live up to its predecessors and could it possibly be the best game of 2012?

farcry3_1

STORY

You start the game as Jason Brody where you and your friends are vacationing on an exotic island.  Long story short, you and your friends are captured and its up to you to save them.  In the process Jason’s character changes from one of uncertainty to downright hardcore.  The story of the game might not be the strongest point of the game, but it does not detract at all from the epic scale of the game.  Each character you encounter as part of your quest line will be very memorable, and even though the transition that Jason goes through may happen a little quick, its completely forgivable.  I want to stress how much work was put into the voice acting, and writing for each character you encounter.  The presentation of the quests is infinitely more superior to any open world game that I have played.  I don’t want to spoil the main story, but I will say that its very simple to follow and is only a small fraction of what actually makes up Far Cry 3.

GAMEPLAY

The gameplay of Far Cry 3 is by far the strongest part of the game.  Starting off you literally have nothing, and you earn and unlock everything in the game from a bigger wallet to the best gun in the game.  The watch towers open up vision on the map, and outposts can be taken over and turned into friendly territory.  There is one mechanic although minor that really sticks out in my head, reloading.  When you reload you lose the ammo in your clip.  I did not realize this until a few hours into the game, when I found myself constantly out of ammo.  I reload way too much in first person shooters, and this game actually taught me to play differently.  I really enjoyed the diversity of gameplay including freeing an animal to distract an enemy outpost, using stealth, or going in like a madman killing everything on site.  I feel stealth is done exactly right for this type of game, its not overly complicated, and once an enemy is tagged its very easy to find the right path for the silent take down.

This is the first time I can remember where hunting actually matters.  Everything you craft needs some sort of plant or animal skin that you have to collect.  I found hunting very enjoyable, although some of the scopes of the weapons are a bit too bright for aligning the perfect shot.  I actually found the bow to be my favorite hunting weapon.  I have so many memory’s of jumping into the water and getting attacked by a crocodile, or sneaking up on an outpost only to be attacked by a bear.

The difficulty of the game felt perfect, I died a lot when I didn’t disable outpost alarms in time, but I never felt like I had to replay large sections of game.  The checkpoint system felt very forgiving, and although I didn’t really like not being able to manually save during a mission, it really does work good.  Also did I mention there are a bunch of different vehicles you can drive which can change how you strategically take on a certain area.

The game is not without its flaws though.  I encountered several bugs including losing all my weapons and camera, luckily I had a backup save that fixed the problem.  I also had several issues towards the end of the game where characters were not mounted inside vehicles correctly instead they were in the middle of the ground.  It looks like mount node for that character some how got misaligned.

GRAPHICS

The game is beautiful, and really pushes the PC to the limit.  I unfortunately had to turn the settings slightly down from the highest, but I still was very impressed.  I really like how they have objects fade into view, with a sorta materializing effect that elegantly hides the pop you get from other games.  The other thing that really stands out to me is the first person view effects that you get when sliding, or climbing.  I like how they show your limbs at the right times, and it always feels so natural.  If you have a beast of a computer then you should crank it up and enjoy the beautiful world.

OVERALL

This is my favorite game of 2012, although XCOM is very very close.  I highly recommend trying this game out as long as language and gore doesn’t bother you, because there is a lot of scenes that are not safe if you have kids around.  Skyrim while an amazing game always feels dark and gritty and almost makes it feel like a world you don’t want to be in, where Far Cry 3 is the complete opposite colorful and vibrant, and the world actually improves as you complete various tasks.

If I had to rate this game I wouldn’t be able to give it a 10 because of the few gameplay issues and bugs I encountered, and also the lack of being able to save at anytime.  I would give it a

9.5

And I would put this as one of the top contenders for game of the year.