Far Cry 3 Review

Far Cry 3, the best Ubisoft game since Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, can be praised for many reasons, but the most important one is the Rook Island itself. It is because of it that I keep coming back to the game time and time again. Usually, open-world shooters have a lot of empty, unremarkable places, but this gigantic piece of land was created by people who do not tolerate compromises and firmly believe that not a single centimeter should be missed. Even the most talented artist would envy such attention to detail.

The island has 18 radio towers, which you use to navigate through the game’s storyline. They also mark your next objectives and the shops where you can buy new weapons on the map. Additionally, each tower is a kind of unique mountaineering challenge for the player: calmly climbing up the creaking and worn-out steel spiral, you will see an amazing panorama. However, afterwards, you will still have to descend on a trembling zip line.

Island Adventure Begins

In addition, there are about 30 enemy outposts on the island that need to be found and cleared of local scoundrels. In the end, each of them can become your refuge, and the enemy presence and influence in the region will decrease. At the same time, characters with whom you have established friendly relations can be seen literally everywhere: in a ravine at the foot of a mountain surrounded by jungles, or perhaps on a wide mountain approach to the beach, or at the very top of a hill.

The forest is the native home for various species of animals, some of which are just as afraid of you as you are of them. Near every road, you can find an abandoned hut with all sorts of goods, and any cave or fortified military bunker is a good reason to delve into the history of the island. And thanks to that caring stranger who left a hang glider on each mountain peak. The game is played from the perspective of the unlucky tourist Jason Brody, whose plans for a good rest went awry, and you won’t want to leave this paradise place until the credits appear on the screen.

Tropical Paradise

There are two annoying flaws in the game. The first is the way Jason’s story is told. Sometimes it feels like a scripted play, like in corridor shooters or overly linear action games like Uncharted. The second is the burdensome and drawn-out tutorial period at the beginning of the game. But the unpleasant impressions from them are immediately dispelled once you catch the rhythm of Rook Island.

Because for the rest of the game, you feel like the true king of the jungle. There is no worthy opponent to be found on the entire island as long as you’re in action. Need to increase your bag capacity? You dive into the ocean without hesitation and gut the first passing mako shark (blue shark, Isurus oxyrinchus).

My favorite moments in Far Cry 3 are the outpost assaults and Wanted missions, where you have to kill some pirate or mercenary using a ceremonial knife. Approaching the base, you find a convenient vantage point or hide in the nearest bushes, then take out your binoculars and determine the locations of the guards and patrols. And then you attack.

Jungle Exploration

Sneaking through the jungle unnoticed, avoiding vigilant gazes, keeping an eye on unclear enemy silhouettes… outdoor stealth enthusiasts should be among the first to buy this game. Enemies move along a predetermined trajectory and sometimes find themselves alone – a perfect moment to eliminate them. You can also throw a stone somewhere to make them leave their position. By earning experience and unlocking new skills, at a certain stage, you will be able to use a whole series of combat techniques. For example, popping out of cover, slitting one scoundrel’s throat, and then pulling out a knife and stabbing another in the head.

Clearing out outposts is the most exciting thing in the game, but a knife alone won’t be enough for these missions. You can determine the patrol route and then surprise them with a mine, or open the cage with animals to release a bear or a tiger that will do most of the work for you, or sow death and terror with a reliable flamethrower. After clearing the enemy base, it disappears from the map.

No matter how perfect a plan you come up with, it can always go awry. But it doesn’t matter because your arsenal is not limited to just a pistol. There is a convenient shotgun for close-quarters combat. A bow with explosive arrows. But my favorite is the harpoon gun. This weapon comes in handy, for example, if you climb aboard a ship and unexpectedly come across pirates, whom you have already missed during your forest outings. This gun allows you to hit the enemy from a distance, which is extremely useful, especially considering that the number of stealth skills that can be learned is not infinite.

Thrills and Dangers

At the same time, I really love the moments when the local fauna doesn’t ask for an invitation to join the game. Yesterday, as usual, I sneaked through the coastal outpost, saw two guards at the pier, practiced a double takedown on them from below, and was about to sneak through the nearest containers in search of loot. But suddenly I realized that everything went too smoothly and correctly, I saw another enemy nearby who was about to notice me. While I cursed and felt for my silent MP5, the guard straightened up, looked around, and suddenly fell to the ground and started screaming. Peeking around the corner, I discovered that the poor guy was attacked by a leopard. Beware of leopards!

However, the wild nature doesn’t always help you and, on the contrary, is ready to have you for dinner with joy. Once, near another outpost, I noticed a bear and thought it would be nice to use the beast to attack the enemy. I shot it in the rear and then tried to drag it through the crowd of pirates, hoping it would attack them. But my plan went to hell. The pirates sounded the alarm and took away half of my health, and when I finally broke free from them, the bear suddenly jumped out and decided not to be polite with me and finished me off. What can we conclude from this? Use the services of leopards, but fear bears that can catch you off guard with a flank attack.

The ability to crouch (at least on Xbox 360) and drag the bodies of the killed enemies will only become available after you unlock the knife kill skill, and that’s a bit annoying. On the other hand, the detection system is consistent and separate from the story missions, which are more linear and closed, allowing you to disengage from combat by simply running into the nearest bushes.

Wild Island Encounters

Attacking enemy outposts may be very exciting, but the game offers other interesting activities that may not appeal to Greenpeace activists. In the game, you can hunt animals (being part of the local fauna, they also serve as the basis for a complex inventory upgrade system) just for fun, or you can complete hunting missions: shoot a rare panther with a bow or kill several fierce bears with a pistol. To move quickly from place to place, you can use a beaten-up jeep or buggy, which are plentiful on the island of Rook. Moreover, some of them can trigger a new mission. Players with a keen collecting instinct will enjoy the abundance of collectible items. Not to mention the highlight of Far Cry 3 – various story missions in an open world (for example, attacking a pirate ship), in which the game rarely lacks.

It is worth acknowledging that all these interesting features were already implemented in the second part. However, it sometimes focused solely on itself, despite being captivating. Remember the bus trips, enemy respawn points, and other moments that seemed to be in the game only to match the setting. At the expense of things that would be enjoyable for the player. Far Cry 3 strongly opposes this approach: fast travel, absence of enemy respawn points, friendly checkpoints, etc. However, it is not only that the game managed to get rid of the predecessor’s shortcomings, but also that everything here is done at the highest level.

Take the story, for example. At the very beginning, Jason saves his friends from the pirate leader Vaas, who resembles classic villains from Bond movies, who enjoy relishing the details of your horrible demise but rarely just shoot you in the head. However, later on, you will encounter several unexpected villains (a ridiculous old spy, a deviant Aussie with a bare torso, and a crazy German), who will surprise you with unusual plot twists throughout the game. Credit must be given to the scriptwriters, as they clearly distinguish between your personal attraction to the island and Jason’s story, which avoids the misunderstandings that are usually characteristic of open-world games (I’m on a desperate mission to save my friends, but oh, look at this cool thing!). and maintain intrigue.

Survival in Far Cry 3

In addition to the impressive solo campaign in Far Cry 3, there is a 4-player cooperative mode that can be played online or, in the case of Xbox 360, even on one screen divided into four parts. The characters are a quartet assembled from national stereotypes (including a former heroin addict from Scotland who loves to curse), pursuing their former ship captain. The game features various equipment, weapons, explosives, defending various objects, and racing competitions with each other on off-road vehicles.

In addition, there is a multiplayer mode with an impressive list of “capture-anything” modes, which, along with the single-player campaign and cooperative mode, traditionally becomes part of any respectable first-person shooter. As you can see, Far Cry 3 is no exception. However, I was not fortunate enough to try it. And just like in Far Cry 2, you can create your own maps and upload them for other gamers, and the developers subsequently publish a list of the best works. It is safe to assume that this is done to keep people engaged in the game for longer.

Cooperative mode, multiplayer, and level editor are clear examples of how Ubisoft manages to exceed the expected standards. Add Assassin’s Creed 3 to this, and you will have no arguments in a dispute with this French publisher, as it is obvious that they offer an exceptionally optimal price-to-quality ratio in the final stage of this console generation. But there is one thing – Ubisoft Montreal studio simply must have a time machine, even though they already have the Animus. Otherwise, how can they meet the release date if they cram so much content into one game? Far Cry 3 is a great game, but I will still complain loudly about this. Because personally, this additional content is not necessary for me, especially considering that the game itself is the best open-world shooter I have tried this year. It would be enough for me to have just the solo campaign on a DVD disc. Keep this in mind, Ubisoft.

Island Mysteries Unveiled

Well, the reasons why Far Cry 3 is the best open-world game are described above. Among other things, it is a real factory of anecdotes. Pleasant impressions begin immediately after you wake up in the shelter and dive into the jungle. Wonderful landscapes at the foot of the hills, the sun winking through the cracks in the shelter, endless skies, wild nature, green trees, and tall grass… Far Cry 3 is also a unique technical achievement. Difficulties only spur you on, and you are constantly drawn back into the game. You want to feel the rhythm of Rook Island over and over again.

And finally. The developers’ words about how great it is to explore, fight, win, and influence the surrounding space in the game usually look beautiful only on paper, but in reality, they are drastically different from what the game actually is. Far Cry 3 is not from this opera.

Far Cry 3
PC, PS3, Xbox 360
Action, Co-op, Multiplayer
Ubisoft Montreal
Release Date:
Editor's rating:
Is it worth playing? (If the score is more than 70%)



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