Preview

Just Cause 3

Just Cause 3’s Chaotic Sandbox Is All About Making Physics Fun
by Mike Futter on Oct 09, 2015 at 09:01 AM
Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Avalanche Studios
Release:
Rating: Mature
Platform: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC

Just Cause 3 has an enormous, open world. The destruction looks fantastic, and the traversal systems have been refined and polished to make Rico feel even better to control. So why did I stand in one place for 10 minutes giggling?

Yesterday, I had the chance to play around in Avalanche’s sandbox largely unfettered. I was able to move around one segment of the 400 square mile open world (about the same size as Just Cause 2, but more densely packed with activities), and there were plenty of challenges to undertake and towns to liberate.

Instead, I found a new friend. I named him Giuseppe. When I first met the kindly, old man, he was sweeping his porch. He waved to me and told me how grateful he was that I was helping his country.

I suspect he felt differently in his final moments. One of the extremely cool parts of Just Cause 3’s physics-based destruction is the ability to tether one object to another. While fighting soldiers I was able to bonk their heads together using the grappling hook.

I swung an explosive canister into a gas station and sent it up in flames. I even got a statue of the game’s antagonist, General Di Ravello, to punch itself in a terribly uncomfortable place.

But Giuseppe, well, he was my greatest triumph. Just attaching a tether to someone won’t hurt them. They’ll try to wriggle out and, eventually, will get free.

When I tagged the poor old man with the grappling hook, he was confused. “Oh no!” he exclaimed. “I’m being attacked by a snake.” Unfortunately for Giuseppe, a snake would have been kinder.

You see, tethering things together gives you a measure of control. You can increase the tension and reel the lighter thing toward the heavier thing. You can also release the tether at will.

I don’t know what happened to Giuseppe. The last I saw of him, I had managed (after the third or fourth try) to slingshot him over the mountain and into the sea. I assume he was grateful for the view. Bon voyage, Giuseppe. You were always my favorite.

After leaving the seaside villa, I blew up a bridge, sailed through the clouds on my wingsuit, and hijacked a helicopter in midair before crashing it into a base as a “hello” for the soldiers stationed there.

All the while, it was Giuseppe in my thoughts. We’ll meet again, though. Just Cause 3 is out on December 1 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. For more, check out our coverage hub from December 2014