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Cause 2’ enough to keep any gamer occupied
Always an attempt, but rarely a success is the drive for video game companies to keep the shooting genre interesting. From first to third person, all sorts of bells and whistles may be thrown in to pretty much sell the same limited set of stories over and over again.
Your mission, to enter said city/jungle/desert or space base and kill specified target for mercenary organization/personal vendetta/for the red white and blue. The latest release by Avalanche Studios and Edios Interactive along with Square Enix is not going to wow you with storytelling either, but all digital blood lust should be within easy reach. “Just Cause 2” for the Xbox 360 is at times irritating, but with just barely the amount of addictive qualities available.
As if the number two wasn’t obvious enough, this is a sequel to a game where you can take as darn long as you want to complete. This is made possible through the free roam feature where you can take on a ridiculous number of side missions in between the main quests.
Like the prequel, you play the part of government agent Rico Rodriguez and the main objective is similar to the last where you must take care of a brutal dictator, this time in a fictional Southeast Asian island instead of the Caribbean. As if taking out Baby Panay on Panau wasn’t enough of a challenge alone, you must also find allies with other thugs as well as take out your former boss. Luckily, you can pretty much take out the enemy forces with a rather impressive arsenal from a handy pistol to the good old rocket launcher.
You are also able to fully take advantage of your environment from the ground to almost as high as you want to go. You can climb to the highest treetop or mountain (then parachute down), fly planes and helicopters or even pick from about a hundred vehicles on land and water.
For the most part, this game handles and looks very nicely, though it can be a pain to operate some of the more difficult aircraft like jets. Third person works for most of these, but some of the planes just frustrated me to the point where I did not want to use them at all. Props though for being able to use your grappling hook as one of the more creative killing devices.
It took me a while to peg what this game most reminded me of and it wasn’t until I’d used the game’s hijacking feature that I realized that this is basically James Bond meets Grand Theft Auto. Like that title, you can cause all sorts of destruction and blow up all sorts of things, but the more you do it, the more attention from the authorities you attract.
Since it features quite a bit of violence and use of things good parents tend to not want their kids to emulate, I’d not recommend it for anyone, but older audiences. That said, most people would have fun playing this as a rental, but once you play through all bits and pieces it may not be a must buy except for the really dedicated. For at least offering a reprieve from the hectic work week, I give “Just Cause 2” for the Xbox 360 four out of six toggles.
Images are copyright of Edios, Square Enix and Avalanche Studios.
Past Entertainment: Review of Wits & Wagers Family and Iron Man 2.