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Review Revisited: Far Cry 2

Far Cry 2 was not only the first game that I reviewed here on Tech Olive, but it was also my very first article on these holy pages (Fun Fact: This also marks my 1,000th post for Tech Olive). Since then, I had felt the need to go back and write a proper review for the game. Well, here we are, two years later to the day and it’s time to revisit and rewrite that review with all the experience points knowledge I have gained over the past two years of writing for Tech Olive. As luck would have it, this also marks the first time I’ve sat down and played the game since that review. Without further introduction, let the show begin.

Far Cry 2‘s main selling point is the massive open world in which it’s based. However, as a result of this massive world, you are required to drive a lot. A lot. Of course, this wouldn’t be such a problem if the missions were entertaining or even something other than needing to kill someone, blow something up, or a combination of both. Adding insult to injury, driving through the dirt roads of Far Cry 2, you’ll run into many guard posts, all of which are unfriendly. The up side is that it allows you to make use of the game’s endlessly dynamic combat choices. You can do anything from sniping to all explosives to silent stealth attacks, and everything in-between.

Far Cry 2‘s story starts abruptly, with your main character being driven from the landing strip you arrived in, to an undisclosed location. All that’s really explained about the game’s core story is that you’re in Africa to kill an arms dealer. Of course, shortly after your arrival, you botch the mission, and spend the remainder of the game tracking down this mysterious arms dealer. That’s where the story progression ends until the game’s ending. Throughout the campaign you’ll take missions from many sources, but these missions fail to offer much actual variety or purpose for reasons mentioned earlier.

To tie up the game’s 18-20 hour campaign, you’re left with a moral choice that will alter the ending of the game, offering two endings. Granted, neither offer much closure or satisfaction, but this is how the game feels throughout. It’s a game to be played for the fun factor of the huge map with freedom of gameplay and combat. Of course, the freedom comes to an end after the game’s finale as you’re not given any choice of free-roaming after the story is complete.

Ultimately, Far Cry 2 is a beautifully flawed game. It manages to do many things right, just in time to shoot itself in the foot. A great game in its own right, but it could have been so much more.

Scores

- Graphics: 9
Even today, two years after the game’s release, Far Cry 2 offers fantastic visuals and polish. Character and facial animations leave a bit to be desired, but they serve their purpose.

- Storyline: 6
Far Cry 2‘s story starts abruptly and fails to deliver much depth or feel of progression. Sadly, it’s a beautiful sandbox first and a story-driven experience second.

- Gameplay: 8
If you can forgive the AI that has a tendency to shoot you through thick brush and foliage, you’ll find a very solid shooting mechanic from sniping to guns-blazing destruction.

- Controls: 8
From running to sneaking to driving, Far Cry 2 offers a very simple and effective control scheme throughout. And there’s even support for an Xbox 360 controller, if you’re aching for something to make all the driving go a bit smoother.

- Lasting Appeal: 6
Despite featuring multiplayer, complete with a great map maker, Far Cry 2‘s multiplayer never quite managed to impress and just fell short of expectations, but if sandbox gameplay is your thing, the game should keep you coming back for more. Though, a lack of free roam after completing the campaign cripples it a bit.

Score: 7 Olives

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