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Far Cry 2

version: pal (it), collector edition - year: 2008 - developer: ubisoft montreal - publisher: ubisoft - format: ps3, blu-ray disk - condition: mint - rarity: slight

Expect at least 25 hours worth of gameplay in FarCry2 although you can easily increase that amount if you undertake all side missions available.

 

The collector edition comes in a wooden box and includes an artbook, a map, a making of DVD and a t-shirt.

 

Character models are well done and their animation is convincing. Also, they manage to create a tense atmosphere throughout the adventure.

 

There are a few cease-fire zones in which you are safe.

 

Fire behavior is probably the most realistic yet ever seen.

 

Wound an enemy and wait for his comrade to rescue him to eliminate them both.

 

Either you control the boat, or you fire the mounted cannon. Not exactly convenient when chased...

 

You'll be driving a lot in FarCry 2. Running over enemies at road blocks can be very effective.

 

The dynamic day/night, weather cycles are memorable.

 

Never underestimate the power of the machete. At close range, it is deadly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review - If you enjoyed Crytek’s tropical PC FPS Far Cry, there is no guarantee at all that you will enjoy this sequel, simply because it has been developed by another team whose mandate was to “re-invent” the brand.

So what is left of the original Far Cry is the name, the exotic location and the slightly slow-paced gameplay. Other than that, Far Cry 2 is different in each and every way.

The adventure takes place into a fictional east-Africa state, where the government crumbled and drugs warlords are fighting each other in an attempt to take control of what’s left. You can take missions from different sides, while still following your own agenda which would be to rid the country of the Jackal, the arms dealer who armed both sides.

Throughout your missions, you’ll come in contact with mercenaries who can become your friends and who will also offer their help, or extra missions.

Far Cry 2 attempts to offer a more realistic gaming experience than other FPSs, and to a certain extent, it succeeds.

After landing in the country, you soon start feeling sick. Your vision blurs, you contracted Malaria. From that moment onward, you’ll be stuck with the disease which will force you to depend on pills to overcome the symptoms. Running out of pills will require you to undertake “Undergound Missions” in which you will trade passports to citizens to flee the country in exchange of medication.

Other elements which go towards a more realistic gameplay approach include weapons jamming (as seen in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. before), bullets removal from your body when you get critically shot and vehicles repair. Weapons you grab from defeated soldier are generally old, rusty, and not very reliable, with a nasty tendency of jamming in the most heated situations. To remedy to that, you can purchase weapons at a shop. Not all weapons are available from the start though, so you’ll have to unlock them gradually by undertaking “Convoy Missions” which usually require you to get rid of the arms dealer competition. Once new weapons are unlocked, you can buy weapons and ammo upgrades which increase accuracy, reliability and the amount of ammo you can carry for that weapon. New weapons are effective, although they get unreliable with use, and you can see they get dirtier and older the more you fire them. This is such a great touch, and I don’t think I have ever seen it anywhere else.

Far Cry 2 also offers a huge “Open World” gaming universe, which stretches across different regions from the deep jungle to the savanna, the marshes and the desert. The powerful beauty and variety of the African Nature is in stark contrast with the dilapidated, crumbling cities and roads. Modern constructions are ugly and fall apart, with a few exceptions like the pipeline. Older, colonial-era buildings still retain some kind of beauty, although they are left rotting, like everything else. This combination captures the essence of many countries in Africa, where failing states rich in natural resources struggle to contain corruption and social unrest, within the frame of nature’s most primal beauty.

Wildlife can be spotted on the more remotes parts of the country, and it won’t be long before you accidentally run over a buffalo, a zebra or something else. Once, after ridding a village of a militia, I was running around and a chicken saw me, got scared and ran right into my parked truck, killing himself! That was the funniest thing I have ever seen and probably even the most stupid, even for a chicken!! I then stood there, looking at that fat little body on the floor, laughing in tears!

The attention to detail is pervasive, and I ended up enjoying spending time just looking around in awe at the world around me. In particular, at the bus station south of Mosate Selao, I walked around an ugly grey concrete wall which was hiding a stretch of water surrounded by mountains. Depending of the time of the day, you could see bird flocks flying around a very busy sky bursting with life. But at different times, maybe if it's raining or at night, the sky will just be empty.

Far Cry 2 doesn’t shove anything in your face, it leaves you free to explore and enjoy all the little nuances it has to offer. I even remember being completely amazed by Mike’s Bar insects activity, with all kinds of gross roaches crawling around, or by the soldiers in the cease fire zones, who might be sitting on a crate full of beers drinking, or puffing on a cigarette.

Fire is also very impressive, and propagates differently according to the terrain, the winds and whatever is close to it. If an ammo warehouse catches on fire, the gunpowder will literally explode and wound or kill enemies in direct proximity. There are many ways to kill in Far Cry 2, which are really limited only by your imagination.

Far Cry 2 world is vast, and to move around you’ll end up either driving a lot or using the bus. On one hand, the bus will take you from one point of the map to another instantaneously, allowing you to save your progress in the process while on the other, the car will take you to places the bus can’t get to, and will also allow you to scour the land for hidden diamonds. When in proximity of diamonds, a green light will start flashing faster and faster on your GPS until you will hear a sound which will give you the exact position of a suitcase with the precious stones inside. Diamonds are very important because they are the currency with which you’ll be able to purchase weapons and upgrades. This represents a great incentive to explore the huge areas around, deviating from the beaten paths to go diamonds hunting!

One particular memorable experience I had was when I realized there was a diamond suit-case on the ledges of a mountain, but there was no path leading to it. After several minutes, I realized I had to travel to another mountain which was facing the one I was trying to get to. Then when I reached the top, I grabbed a glider which was conveniently sitting there and I flew across until I successfully landed by the suitcase.

Far Cry 2 attention to detail is staggering, but for all the good things it manages to achieve, there are still some rough edges.

The first and gravest problem the game had was a bug which could corrupt all save files, preventing you from finishing the game. That’s nasty. Eventually, this got fixed with a 32 megs patch which the game automatically retrieves from PSN before the installation process begins. After playing the game through and reaching 96% completion, I have never experienced any problems with the save files, so for me the patch worked.

Also, I should mention I came across a couple of odd glitches which surprised me. Sometimes, characters will be sitting at a table, but there is no table in sight. Or they will be resting with their hand on a wall, except that...there is no wall! But these awkward things only happened a couple of times, and the game freezed on me just once, so it is entirely acceptable considering how huge the game is.

Another thing which is a bit of a let down is the infinite respawn of enemies at checkpoints which is not realistic at all and the repetitive nature of most missions. It is unfortunate that with such a big and varied world, you’ll end up doing the same things over and over. Variety in the mission types would have probably benefitted the game greatly, but it seems Ubisoft Montreal aimed at quantity over variety in this case.

Finally, the story starts out as being interesting, dealing with adult themes but it soon turns into a free-for-all, let’s betray everybody affair, which was probably the only way to conclude such a chaotic mess of a story in the first place. References to Heart of Darkness proved to be more than welcome though, with the final stretch of the game emphasizing a one-way trip into “the horror”.

Bottom line: despite its flaws, Far Cry 2 is like nothing else on the market and it brings some fresh air and some groundbreaking technology to the FPS world. I will sure stick around for the inevitable Far Cry 3. 8,5/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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