54 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Superlative, 1 April 2013
I very rarely feel inspired to write reviews on games, but I feel compelled to with Far Cry 3 as it is simply glorious. I've been feeling incredibly disillusioned with gaming of late, having not purchased a new title since F1 2012 when it was released late last year. For a FPS to pull me out of this doldrum is really something.
Let me be clear here: I've struggled to get excited by action games lately because I feel too many developers are happy to play the easy COD/Battlefield/Gears of War linear cinematic shooter card to score easy points. Frankly, having played the aforementioned games to death, I lost my enthusiasm for scripted shooters and with it my enthusiasm for shooters in general. The last shooter I played that I found genuinely exciting was Red Dead Redemption.
My honest appraisal of FC3's gameplay is that, despite being a FPS, it is much closer to something like RDR or even Skyrim. You get given a mission with a point to go to and something to do there, but how you go about achieving it is up to you. Walk, drive, swim, boat, even zipline to get there, and then take down your enemies by run-and-gun, stealth, sniping or a mixture. Adding to this is a detailed crafting system whereby you can hunt and skin animals or collect plant life and use the spoils to create improved bags and holsters for your weapons and ammo, or syringes of natural drugs that boost your health or abilities. Add this to a levelling-up system that allows Skyrim-style selection of perks (and a small addition to your character's tattoo sleeve, which is a great touch for a tat fan like myself) and you find the gameplay has so much more depth and replay value than a generic modern shooter.
The open-world sandbox nature of the game makes one-off events much more varied and unpredictable. As an example that I experienced recently, parking up at the side of the road at the unexpected sight of some wildlife in the thick jungle off to the side, sneaking off to hunt them, and returning to find that during your absence a carload of pirates have pulled up and are checking out your abandoned car. This sort of thing is what I love to see in action games.
Graphics and sound are excellent too. A lush tropical paradise is an ideal and in some way cliche setting for a game but it's really depicted well here, from the foam forming on waves breaking on the beach, to translucent dirt outside the range of your jeep's windscreen wipers. Guns all have their own unique individual sound which varies depending on your surroundings, and the wet squelch when you run your hunting knife through an adversary's windpipe is cringeworthy in its realism. I love that you hear your own character speak frequently as well; too often nowadays the protagonist is left faceless and characterless.
I've heard the only real downside of this game is that the multiplayer isn't as excellent as the solo game. Unfortunately I can't comment on that as my Xbox isn't online anymore. To be honest I like the fact that a developer has focused more on a good single-player experience than multi as not all of us want to play deathmatches against precocious 12 year old snipers all the time (take note, Infinity Ward and Treyarch). Apparently there is a map creation tool which could be good if implemented properly but as I say, if you're more of a multiplayer gamer I'm not the one to ask.
Overall I can't recommend this game enough. I feel it has re-invigorated my love for games and offers that "just another 10 minutes before bed" factor that I haven't experienced in a long time. If you have been suffering similar reservations about games of late, I suggest you go for it.