A Far Cry From Far Cry

Far Cry 3, an epic story driven monster that once you started playing you just couldn’t stop. Some of the best writing since Grand Theft Auto IV and some of the best open world fun I’ve had in 23 years. With that in mind I decided to give Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon a chance, assuming that Ubisoft couldn’t catch lightning in a bottle twice in one series surely. To my surprise they have!

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Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon feels like a pure 80’s movie experience from the moment you start it up to the moment you complete it

Set in a dystopian 2007, Mark IV Cyber Commando Sargent Rex ‘Power’ Colt is on a mission to kill the bad guys, save the girl and get back in time for some cyber supper all in an 80’s VHS style. From the tracking loading screens to the 2D retro cut scenes, this game truly screams 80’s. If you have never seen Robocop, go watch it and then play the game and you will see what I I’m talking about.

So the game. You play as all American hero (and cyborg) Rex Colt who is sent to an island to stop (ex-)Colonel Ike Sloan who plans to take over the World. During your island visit you will battle through hundreds of cyborg armies, kill mutated animals (Effectively the same animals from Far Cry 3 only with a little less skin in most cases) and kill dragons, Blood Dragons to be precise.

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Blood Dragons don’t take kindly to being shot.

The music, well what can I say about the music apart from… It’s AMAZING. Power Glove (the band who composed it) hit the nail on the head and the ball out of the park with this one. It’s as retro and 80’s as, well the Nintendo Power Glove. It screams 80’s action, from the subtle drum hits to the synth in the action scenes. Check out some of the tracks on Power Glove’s SoundCloud.

The game plays exactly like Far Cry 3 only without the sunlight. Brief tutorial followed by some killing then your set free in a world full of mutants. My complaint is a small but crucial one, once you complete the game and have done the Far Cry 3 style things like hunted the rare animals, liberated the outposts, assassinated targets and collected all collectables, there isn’t much left. In Far Cry 3 the world was big enough for you still to have most of it to explore but in Blood Dragon you have no reason to explore any more. Omega Force soldiers rarely spawn and Blood Dragons are even rarer so unless you like ‘Hunting Unlimited’ or games like that then chances are you won’t feel the need to fire it up again, until you want to play through the story again which I can almost guarantee you will even if its just to see more of the hints on the loading, sorry ‘’tracking’’ screens.

The Shuriken Takedown skill lets you Ninja their ass with a throwing star. – Loading Screen

Apart from that small problem the game is epic (in that truly 80’s sense of the word) The graphics during game play are enough to make the game feel as if it is a VHS but not enough to distract you from the game or get in the way.Thanks to years of not having a computer capable of playing games I have lost all my mouse&keyboard gaming skill from the Counter Strike days so had to resort back to my trusty DualShock 3 controller (Thanks to Motioninjoy DS3)

All in all this is quite possibly the best game of the year, well it’s the best up until now. I have a sneaking feeling that Grand Theft Auto V will knock it off the top spot, because so far I haven’t been blown away by a Grand Theft Auto game (in the main series).

Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is available for Windows, PlayStation3 (via PSN) and XBox360 (via XBLA) from tomorrow (May 1st) and does not require the original Far Cry 3 to play.

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PaulM
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