Far Cry 2 set some high standards for a follow up to live up to, but after four years in development Far Cry 3 has turned out exceptionally well. Players assume the role of Jason Brody, a privileged American tourist whose life is hijacked after his latest holiday goes awry. He is inducted into the Rakyatt, a tribe of ancient warriors trying to save their mysterious island from pirates and privateers as he also battles to save his friends.
The first thing anyone notices about the game is the graphics, which are incredibly beautiful both on consoles and PC. From atop a radio tower staring out across the elysian fields and rocky landscapes dotted with roaming wildlife and luscious jungles, down to the crisp cobalt mechanisms of the Desert Eagle in your weathered hands as it dispatches adversaries in a deluge of blood; everything is awe inspiringly rendered. The insurmountable level of detail is astonishing, and more than once players will find themselves gazing across the crimson landscape just as the sun dips beyond the horizon, inundating everything in a serene layer of vermillion. If you have own PC capable of high-performance, this feast of Direct X 11 technology is not to be missed.
The story is also a surprisingly complex and engrossing aspect, which has inauspicious beginnings, but develops into a personal and psychological struggle that surpasses simply saving your friends and escaping the island. Your main objectives are to kill the slave-trader, Hoyte, and his lunatic accomplice Vaas to rescue the island from their anarchic rule. The way you approach your objectives is entirely up to you as the game accommodates stealth, gunplay and explosive pyromania equally enjoyably.
Through a number of psychedelic encounters with phantasmagorical creatures, hallucinogenic mushrooms and absurd landscapes, you symbolically deal with important enemies and progress through your journey. Despite the game’s chaotic open world nature, the tightly woven story is still integral to your every action as you see how your actions affect the people around you and how they perceive your increasingly violent behaviour.
One minor design issue is the constant need to ascend dilapidated radio towers to unlock free weapons and reveal areas of the map. An interesting idea, but very quickly it becomes a chore you’d rather avoid. There is also an issue with running down steep hills, as fall damage is far too punitive and inconsistent, but these are very minor criticisms of an otherwise outstanding game.
Any fan of The Elder Scrolls or Fallout is implored to experience what this game has to offer. It strikes a perfect balance between the RPG and FPS elements which keep gameplay exciting