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Just Cause 2 Preview

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Scheduled release date:

March 23, 2010

Publisher:

Square-Enix

Developer:

Avalanche Studios

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Action

The original Just Cause seemed to be little more than a Grand Theft Auto wannabe that could be entertaining but suffered from a lack of tightness. Perhaps fans will chastise me for summarizing that first effort in this way, but it’s just how I remember my first experience controlling Rico Rodriguez. However, after reading up on the additions and enhancements one can expect from the sequel, I’ve become quite intrigued…with such insane, over-the-top stunts and ceaseless action, it just has to deliver something in the way of satisfaction. Therefore, I downloaded the mammoth demo (it clocks in at nearly 1.5GB) and set out to wreak havoc with Rico once again, hoping to experiment with as many of the additions and improvements as humanly possible. I only had 25 minutes to do it – didn’t realize this could be bypassed by being all tricky – but I crammed a large amount of experimentation into that span of time. The good news is that the potential for this game remains sky-high; the bad news is that some of that aforementioned looseness remains.

Creating chaos is apparently at the core of Just Cause 2. You get points for stringing together acts of destruction – for some reason, I’m reminded of the crash events in Burnout – and occasionally, this requires a bit of observation and strategy. “Okay, if I blow that up, it should cause that to explode…” Taking down a variety of structures is always fun and another game quickly shot to the forefront of my mind: Red Faction: Guerrilla. There may be more strategy in the latter title but it’s a similar idea, in that you can use anything from regular ammunition to vehicles to cause wave after wave of destruction and ruin. For instance, you can easily take out the gas station by simply firing at the gas pumps with any ol’ weapon, but you might need a grenade launcher (or something bigger) for the water tower. Then there’s the attack helicopter…the flight controls are terrible in my eyes, but I got used to them after a bit and then kamikaze’d a target just for the fun of it. Of course, I ejected with my trusty parachute before committing suicide.

Ah, the parachute. Combined with your handy-dandy grappling hook, these two tools often take the limelight, and rightfully so. You can affix the grappling hook to just about anything; it allows you to move faster across the landscape in addition to launching yourself up walls and cliffs. You can even use it to grab enemies and yank them off their feet. Obviously, the possibilities are almost limitless, and then you factor in the parachute, which can be deployed at any time with the X button provided you’ve got enough momentum. So if you’re standing astride a vehicle flying down the road – yeah, you can do that, too – you can just let the parachute fly whenever you wish to embark without getting hurt. Learning to utilize the grappling hook and parachute effectively will be crucial for both your survival and your ultimate effectiveness. In addition, you can carry either one rifle (or other large weapon) or two handguns, along with some explosives and/or grenades. You can also sprint and dodge, skills which are also necessary during tricky situations.

Really, the unbridled explosiveness of this game is mighty impressive. And the world is absolutely gigantic. Many of the actions are quite streamlined, too, but my biggest problem lies in the looseness of the control. You really have to tone down the sensitivity of your movement and aiming (this game could so use a lock-on feature), and even then, Rico doesn’t always move so smoothly. In fact, I encountered quite a bit of jerking and hitching when using the grappling hook in various parts of the environment. I also found it a little disconcerting that he could fall from just about anywhere without being hurt, but certain “impacts” on the ground could still cause damage. The whole thing just seems a little lacking in the polish and refinement department; it’s almost as if the focus on insanity is almost too out-of-control because I never really felt I had a firm grasp of everything. But even so, the size and scope of your surroundings, the sheer amount of absurd stunt possibilities, and the pervading sense of chaos could be enough to override the technical shortcomings. I leave that for you to decide.

The demo is definitely worth a try. The control issues may not hinder you so much and if you really get into it, Just Cause 2 could become the perfect title while we wait for the announcement of GTAV.

3/8/2010 Ben Dutka

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More Previews Of This Game
Date
Game
Reviewer
02/07/08 Just Cause 2 Ben Dutka

Comments (38 posts)

LimitedVertigo
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:02:39 PM
Reply

I was anticipating this article since you mentioned it yesterday.

I LOVE the helicopter controls, especially the fact that it hovers automatically so you can just focus on aiming the turrets/missiles.

After using the trick to disable the 30min timer I was able to find plenty of upgrades for the weapons and vehicles and FYI, the upgrades for the vehicles improve the controls.

The game clearly doesn't take itself too serious (which is a good thing IMO). I'm glad you enjoyed the demo and hopefully some of the control issues you noticed get worked out before it's release in a few weeks.

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Origami_Killer
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:28:40 PM

Trick? Did you play it on the PC?

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LimitedVertigo
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:38:58 PM

No, on PS3. It can be found on gamefaqs. Just search for JustCause2 then read the MSG Board, look for the words "Timer Glitch".

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Naztycuts
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:40:03 PM

This quickly became a day 1 purchase for me, especially thanks to LV for the timer trick he taught me.

@Ben Don't forget you can use the grappling hook to tether two objects together and dual wield 1 handed weapons. :P

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Origami_Killer
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:42:36 PM

@LimitedVertigo I didn't know that, thanks.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:48:13 AM

You've been playing this demo nonstop man! I have yet to try it myself.

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 1:44:33 AM

Ya, I have haha...lots and lots. BUT it will be ending tomorrow for obvious reasons.

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Qubex
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 2:58:48 AM

I can't play it on my PS3, after installing it and getting to the start menu... when it indicates to press the "O" button on the controller, I do so but to no avail... for some strange reason the demo doesn't work for me...

How did you guys start the demo in the first place... pressing my controller button doesn't do anything even though everything else works fine with it, including BFC2...

It feels like the same problem I had with the Dante's Inferno demo...

World, i still never got passed Death :(

Q!

"speak to the droid"

Last edited by Qubex on 3/9/2010 2:59:15 AM

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:43:14 AM

Q,

When I load up the demo at the screen where it says SquareEnix I press (Start) to skip to the main menu.

At the main menu simply press (X) to start the game. I don't understand why you're asked/are pressing (O).

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WigSplasher
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:15:52 PM
Reply

i was planning on being disappointed -- after all, the game has some pretty grandiose goals -- but the demo won me over. first-day buy.

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WolfCrimson
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 2:09:02 AM

Full Throttle!

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Bloodysilence19
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:33:24 PM
Reply

i downloaded it last night it wasn't to bad of game. the controls are still lil hard for me to get use to. i did realize though certain things you do in the demo actually addes time to your demo like, i blew up alot of buildings and it added like 2 mins to my time.

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LimitedVertigo
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 10:39:42 PM

Just do the timer glitch and you can play as long as you want (as long as you don't die)without ending the demo.

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Superman915
Monday, March 08, 2010 @ 11:15:38 PM
Reply

it was kind of meh for me. Diving off a cliff was fun though.

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kraygen
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:00:49 AM
Reply

One thing that I found a little disconcerting was that I could zoom really fast with my grapple but a couple of times I jumped off a second story building, shouldn't have hurt me, but rico went into that freefall as if he was uber high, and when he face planted on the ground I died from that tiny fall, even tho I'd had full health.

On the other hand the demo was extremely fun and I look forward to getting it at some point. When I get it will depend on funds.

@Ben will you be reviewing this game and if so do you think the full review will be available before release date?

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bOnEs
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:19:47 AM
Reply

there's a lot of fun to be had out there... i had a good time with the demo trying to hook enemies to moving cars, or taking a vehicle off of a high cliff and parachuting out... yea, there's a lot of things that make this an outrageously over the top action game... but, it has it's issues...

i too agree there should of been an auto-aim function... at times there's just too many enemies... it'd be nice to have a sense of priority that auto-aim offers...

the controls are a little... off?? i'm not quite sure what it is, maybe i just needed to play around with it more... but, the helicopters were tough as hell to control and the weapon selection process was too confusing to worry about in a 30 minute demo...

you can't shoot from a moving vehicle unless you jump on the hood and shot back... which means, no one is driving... which means, you come to a complete stop if you don't jump back into the driver's seat... not being able to return fire is just retarded...

and the biggest stinker about this game is NO COVER... there were quite a few times during the demo where i was getting shot at but, couldn't hunker down to return fire... i basically had to just run out there and put some lead into enemies while i was being shot at...

i actually managed to make it through the demo without dying, which for a few moments, didn't seem possible... i don't know, it looks and plays like there's a lot of fun to be had in this sandbox but, something about it just doesn't feel right...

Last edited by bOnEs on 3/9/2010 12:22:27 AM

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___________
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:26:39 AM
Reply

production values aside i really enjoyed the demo, i just hope they have the destruction levels of red faction gorilla.
its so much fun moving a petrol tank next to a larger petrol tank, stacking a few of them up to explode and ignite a petrol station than the whole screen goes orange from the massive explosion.

though the looseness off the controls, the graphics and the physics engine really destroyed what was there.
never have i played a game that has color saturation so high my eyes felt like they were going to burst.
i even turned the color settings along with the contrast and such down on my tv and that helped but only slightly.

the physics engine is totally out of wack!
drive a car off a cliff the car goes flying.
drive a motorcycle off a cliff it drives off the cliff clinging to the ground than goes bouncing around like the cliff is made of rubber bands.
WTF?
ive even ended up flipping a car just driving around like a nut.
last time i checked cars are pretty fu**ing heavy so driving around like your pants are on fire aint going to flip them.

why is it every single game i really anticipate lets me down?
ive been dying for this game ever since it was released following it like the chick from high school, and here it is all mediocre.

oh well looks like i will have to wait for mafia 2 to get my open world fix, now 2K HURRY THE FU** UP!
jesus christ how long does it take to make 1 freaking game?
mafia 2 has been in development for like over 5 fu**ing years!


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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:31:19 AM

I don't recall ever reading a positive opinion about a game from you. JustCause2 is stupid fun, nothing more. I doubt you'll enjoy MafiaII with the gaming attitude you seem to have.

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Break_The_Mould
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:35:41 AM

Not to mention the fact that he referred to Red Faction: Guerilla as 'Red Faction Gorilla'.
Perhaps he read this article: http://bit.ly/arLl1O

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kraygen
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 4:28:16 AM

I have to agree with limited on this one.

Also I've never played a sandbox game that had any basis in reality as far as physics go. That's kinda why they're fun, you can't do those things in real life.

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___________
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:35:33 AM

GTAIV actually had very realistic physics.
im sorry but how am i suppose to enjoy a open world game when i can drive up a mountain but can not drive off and take a leap of faith?
that is the best part of open world games, thats all i do in them.
i can find this really bugging me in the game too no matter what you do the cops follow you like a bad smell.

tonight i started the demo, blew up 1 water tank and the cops came running so i hopped in a car drove for 10 minutes got out and there were the cops shooting me.
so i said fu** it there dead, so i killed them all and more turn up.
how am i suppose to complete a mission if i have a million cops trying to kill me?

the game forces you to destroy things to gain chaos but than punishes you for doing what your suppose to.

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:45:21 AM

^

I too played tonight and was able to drive off cliffs, and roofs (the fact that you can put a vehicle with a helicopter onto a roof is amazing), and jump out of the vehicle with it exploding below me.

As for the cops/troops in this game. I find the game pretty damn easy. After I kill the first wave of them if I want to lower my "heat" I simply drive a few miles outside of town (preferably the mountains) and I lose them in under a minute.

The way you talk about this game I'm surprised we're playing the same demo. I'm sorry you're not having the same experience I'm having.

GTAIV was the 2nd biggest letdown (RE5 being the first) this generation of gaming for me.

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___________
Wednesday, March 10, 2010 @ 5:49:23 AM

maybe its because i have not removed the timer.
because i cant go too far otherwise it comes up with a message saying leaving demo area and gives me 10 seconds to move back.
its a sh*tload of fun ill admit that, all they needed to do is spend a little more time refining the game and it would be perfect.
add the graphics of bad company 2, and the physics engine and you got the perfect open world game.

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Alienange
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 1:17:07 AM
Reply

This game is highly intriguing. I loved Mercenaries 2 and the demo makes me believe that this will be very similar but with a higher production value. Not a day one because of the money, but definitely going to get this one.

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Qubex
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:06:44 AM
Reply

Don't think I will be purchasing this. I still have a few to purchase to complete the collection... I still don't own my own copy of MGS4 - the one I had was borrowed.

So I need to concentrate on the few AAA's that are coming out.

Looking at Red Dead Redemption. Going to trade in Dirt 1, will give me about $10 bucks off the price...

GoWIII will come but later.

Q!

"speak to the droid"

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:44:02 AM

Red Dead is a Day1 for me, the setting and the gameplay look fantastic.

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kraygen
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 4:33:14 AM
Reply

I'd just like to note that, tonite I used the time glitch and managed to play and stay alive for just shy of 6 hours.

What did I do for 6 hours on that demo, I had a blast that's what.

Did you know u can fly around on ur parachute and using ur grapple, you never have to hit the ground? I parachuted around a military base blasting them with machine gun fire, whilst I used my grappler to keep me flying high on my parachute.

I stole a helicopter that had machine gun and rockets, blew up another military facility. I found a car that drove so fast that you could get stunt driver points just for driving it.

This game has me excited, oh and someone posted that after time glitch you could leave the regular demo map. This is true but after a short while the roads aren't finished and you drive off a cliff. Take the airplane and past a certain point if you get close to the ground, its water even where land should be.

Totally fun, look forward to it, when I can afford it. Definite buy.

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tridon
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 5:32:34 AM

What's the time glitch and how do you get it to work?

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:04:06 AM

Haha, I've been doing the same. Since finding the time glitch Friday I've been spending every night/day playing this game (as World has noticed). Tonight I kept playing around with the tank in the base located in the NE. Also once you upgrade the black market to the 3rd phase you're able to buy the Armored vehicle with a turret.

If you want some laughs I suggest taking the most north western road till it all of a sudden ends at what seems like the end of the world, you'll get to watch people in cars keep driving off the road and into the ocean and drowning.


tridon as I previously mentioned in this thread (shame on you for not reading my comments) go to gamefaqs and look for "time glitch".

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kraygen
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:24:44 PM

Do you mean tank in NW military base? If not then I will have to check out the other base. Maybe same kind of tank tho. Has machine gun and explosive shells.

You can still rocket shooting helicopter from NW military base too. The car I found was a sports car with no top. It was a gas station in the middle of nowhere around northern central area. It's next to a road obviously since gas station. Car goes so fast it's ridiculous.

I love it when attack helicopters come, I just grapple them, and steal them. Game has been a blast. Today I'm going to focus on maxing out weapons and vehicles. I haven't tried the helicopter that you can purchase yet, but the motorcycle is the best one in the demo, especially when upgraded.

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Darth Koth
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:19:19 AM
Reply

Ive had this game on pre order for quite some time, the demo had me laughing so bad at times, like when on a bike I pulled a woman of hers and jumped on, I was going to ride off but decided to get off and tether her to the bike and then rode off dragging her behind lmao.

I don't care if the campaign isn't that good, theres too much fun to be had here

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LegendaryWolfeh
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:35:36 AM
Reply

Eh, for a game to pass the time, it'd be great, but without some type of multiplayer-ness, this sandbox feels a bit boring =\ but that's just my opinion. I enjoyed the demo, land hopping via hook+parachute over and over is easily the best way to travel =P but it just seems like i'd get tired of doing it by myself. Also anyone else hook a guy and then hang him from a tall tower or tree? made me feel like a predator =P LOL

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LimitedVertigo
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 6:47:52 AM

From a tree? I need to try that! Have you snagged a person to an air canister and shot it, sending them hundreds of feet into the air?

It's funny as hell, I assure you.


Honestly this is the most fun I've ever had with a demo. The game offers so many things to do I don't think I personally will ever feel the need for multiplayer. When it comes to sandbox games I prefer to do things on my own and get lost in the environment.

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kraygen
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 3:26:24 PM

I'm with you on this one Limited and thanks for the air canister tip, haven't done that yet.

Brilliant idea.

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LegendaryWolfeh
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 4:50:34 PM

Yeah I know what you mean, but for something like GTA4, the story was lackluster to me and the only reason I continue playing it is because of the multiplayer aspect of playing with my friends and fighting the cops, or helicopter fighting, which is all something that could be done in this game, jumping out and breaking into your friends heli and tossing him out, racing eachother on canisters and such, it'd be fun. I'm just saying, I have no idea how great the story will be so I don't know if i'll be immersed or anything but yeah, just all opinion =)

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tlpn99
Tuesday, March 09, 2010 @ 12:37:42 PM
Reply

Played the demo and loved it for the sheer fun with the grappling hook thingy. Gonna get this day 1 probably :)

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BikerSaint
Thursday, March 11, 2010 @ 6:05:31 PM
Reply

After the game's out, I'm sure we can expect tons of YouTube videos, showing off some wild crazy mad skills.

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Darthvintage
Friday, March 12, 2010 @ 11:50:11 PM
Reply

Downloaded the demo and had the most fun i had in a video game for a while.

One thing i always found myself doing was taking the helicopter and flying to the highest point it can go and jumping out. The whole 5 minutes of falling im trying to use the hook to try to get back into the helo. although i failed it was soo much fun

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