With the poor response to Far Cry 2, fans of the series would be more than a little sceptical to pick up the latest game in the series, but fans and newbies alike should be impressed with Far Cry 3 because it seems to bring back what made the original so appealing and boasts some impressive new additions.

Story

From the multiple trailers from the official Ubisoft YouTube channel, we can piece together a general idea of what the story is. You play as a young thrill seeker named Jason, visiting the island with your brother and friends; eventually you are attacked by the psychopathic antagonist Vaas. He kills your brother but you manage to escape. Madness seems to be a prominent theme in the game, anyone who watched E3 would undoubtedly remember the catchphrase: “Have I ever told you the definition of insanity?”.  As Jason spends more and more time on the island he seems to descend deeper into madness, plus all those hallucinogenics can’t help either (we’ll get to that).  The story features unique characters, intense scenes and will undoubtedly be something to keep the player invested.

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Gameplay

With the massive open world and wide variety of enemies, the gameplay would have to be rewarding. Choice is what gamers want these days and FC3 has plenty.  The sneaky players can stealth assassinate multiple enemies with a fluid, impressive looking takedown or snipe from afar. While the guns blazing type can drive in guns blazing, zip line in guns blazing, FLY in guns blazing… the list goes on but the guns will blaze! A takedown that really stood out from the rest was when the player stabbed a foe in the shoulder, pulled the pin on the grenade on his belt and kicked him into a crowd of soldiers, destroying the lot. Another impressive feature is the healing system, on taking fall damage your thumb is dislocated, to fix it you simply snap it back into place. The eccentric Dr. Earnhardt also teaches you how to survive on the island by showing you which plants have healing properties. Some of which however contain intense hallucinogenic side effects boasting some impressive surreal visuals.  The game features an impressive arsenal, not Borderlands impressive, but still containing plenty of variety. In order to get the stronger weapons however, you will have to do some side missions, from hunting to deliveries, even poker!

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Map

The huge map is spilt into numerous tropical islands, featuring a lush green terrain. You will utilise a wide variety of vehicles to explore the land, from quad bikes to hang gliders. As you move though you must be weary of the multiple dangers. Wild animals like tigers and bears roam the jungles while sharks rule the waters. Ancient temples riddled the traps and Outposts full of Vaas’ savages are also around the islands. However, after these outposts are taken over you can use them to rest and fast travel (a seriously needed feature in Far Cry 2).

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Co-Op

2 player Splitscreen is seriously neglected in modern gaming, and it is always good to see it implemented. With all this focus on social media, the only true social experience in video games is couch gaming. Far Cry 3 has a separate 4 player co-op campaign with 2 players able to play from one system. You and your friends play as 4 characters set on revenge against a ship captain over 6 replayable missions. Co-op has some unique features that are not in the single player campaign, battle cries for example. Pressing the two thumbsticks will initiate a battle cry, buffing nearby allies with strength and speed boosts. These types of features subtly encourage players to stick together, promoting a rewarding multiplayer experience.

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Multiplayer

The online multiplayer was the thing that made me a fan of the original Far cry, with intense Cat and Mouse gameplay and a brilliant Map Editor, no two games were alike. I actually mentioned Far Cry in an older article about unique multiplayer experiences. Unfortunately, from the early multiplayer footage, it appears to be nothing more than a poor Call Of Duty clone, but small things make it stand out. The feature I most liked is the ability for the winning team to torture or set free the rival teams MVP. Were you ever the last person down in a Gears Of War match? Well think that experience, with unlockable animations.

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While at this point it is too early to see much appeal in the competitiveness of the multiplayer, but, with Far Crys’ renowned Map Editor, you will undoubtedly sink hours into crazy and insanely fun user created content.

Far Cry is due to release on the 360, PS3 and PC on the 30th of November in the EU and the 4th of December in the US. For more updates like the Facebook page, follow @FarCryGame and watch the official YouTube playlist. Be sure to also like and follow the SlimGamer pages!