Far Cry 2 – No Green Grass in Africa

*UPDATED 10/27/08* Ok, so by now you’ve all heard how wonderful and awesome Far Cry 2 is, you should all be having it’s babies given how much press has been gushed upon this. Guess what?  While it is a nice looking game and does try to bring a few new things to the genre, there’s a mess of a problems underneath the hood and Ubisoft needs to get in there with a socket wrench and fix it.

So what are the show stopping problems?  The first one is hit to death ratio. Bad guys in t-shirts take 6 or more shots to successfully die.  Why?  This does not make it any more realistic, it makes it frustrating. Also head shots seem damn near impossible sans the sniper rifle. Reading some of the Far Cry 2 forums I’ve found, for whatever reason, using any pistol I can get a head shot within the first 2 or 3 rounds I fire off. Since I typically play this way with a pistol I did try a single shot at a time and was hitting around 75% but I had to be fairly close. Using an assault rifle no matter how I lined up or timed my shot, a head shot would happen not even 10% of the time. So again they should instantly drop from any damage to the head or neck region. Also, why is it games get upgraded graphics but things like location specific damage stay behind?  They don’t have to go all out like Soldier of Fortune with removable limbs but something close is good.  Another thing about the bad guys, the AI is all or nothing – either the whole town knows you’re there or no one gives a shit, and with the bullet spread and damage needed, silence ends up wasting more ammo than helping. Speaking of bullet spread, why do all mounted machine guns in games have a spread larger than anything else? They are mounted for a reason and the spread grouping should be tighter unless you’re full auto all the time.

Next up we have the god awful respawn of enemy camps, why did I just get an achievement that I cleared a road block when it’s going to be restocked in 6 minutes when I drive back through? And how come no matter what faction I’m doing a mission for, everyone knows I’m their target from 500 yards away? How about some friendlies or maybe the ability to bride <blind? -ed.>  the road block guards, or maybe they should just start shooting when either I shoot them or I’m close enough for the to realize who I am. Oh and let’s not forget about the jeeps that continuously hunt you down, I know this Jackel guy has everyone in his pocket but I didn’t know the population never goes down on this island, no matter how much carnage I cause. I know it’s fun to blow up shit and not look at some burned out hut but when I did all the damage driving back through it, it should be fucked up, just like I left it, not rebuilt magically by the gods.

The last thing is the travel and way points, too much travel and not enough way points. I know this is supposed to be an open ended, do anything type game but I would like some guidance as to where to go and who to see. After a mission is over its like hey, do whatever and guess where to go using your piece of the map and some colored road signs. I couldn’t find a way to see where I was globally in the world, I could only see where I was on the section of map I was holding at that point, passed the imaginary boundary and you got another map. Also you have a GPS but it doesn’t tell you how to get there, only a colored arrow on the edge of the unit that tells you the general direction you need to take. And couldn’t the game get progressively wider, start out doing missions in this section then start branching out to new parts of the world. Instead I’m trucking it all over Africa, killing respawnable guard posts, to do mission #385 that involves me killing some guy or blowing up some crate and then trekking back to god knows where, killing the same guard posts I just drove past, now freshly stocked of course, and hopefully not getting stuck on the world and blown to bits by guys jacked up on some much cocaine that they take bullets like Robocop.

I won’t even mention the widescreen issue which is all over the place, I will say until some of these things are fixed it makes a pretty looking game not much fun and not worth playing. If all you can do is marvel at the surroundings that doesn’t make a good video game, I could go to the zoo for that shit.

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