Tuesday, January 26, 2016

An explosion of quality

It took about twenty five hours but Just Cause 3 finally threw an interesting base at me. Yes, I was still blowing up the same things to the same effect, but the base itself was so well laid out that I wandered around it after it was liberated, pondering the mad genius that put it together.

Let me see if I can come close to describing it. The base was an airport built into a deep ravine between two mountains. Planes were stored in underground hangers and their runways jutted out, perpendicular to one another, and at different heights. The ends of the runways were lined with radar and gun emplacements. There were support building below the runways, and by below I mean way below, that housed all of the fuel tanks and electrical facilities.

The whole thing just worked. While I was trying to take it over planes would taxi out of their hidden hangers and speed down the runway, then turn around for strafing runs. This was a problem until I hacked the SAM sites and enemy planes were blown to pieces as soon as they left the ground. Tanks would roll up zig zag roads, trying to line up a shot on the one man army tearing the place apart. For about thirty minutes Just Cause 3 delivered on every single thing I had hoped for. The action was organic and evolving. The explosions were silly huge, throwing parts across the base that changed the flow of battle.

At one point I took down a huge radio tower. As it fell it left a few chunks on a runway, which a plane then hit, which made me laugh.

It is too much to expect this level of quality in every part of a game as huge as Just Cause 3. Most bases and towns are the same because there are so many of them and the man hours required to make them all different and interesting would have bankrupted the studio. This one base may have been worth it, though. It was that good.

Now to finish the game in time to at least start Fallout 4 before I am completely distracted by something else.

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