Just Cause 2: Demo Review

Mar 10, 2010

Just Cause” is one of those games that people either forget, ignore or completely reject because “it’s a Grand Theft Auto rip off”. This is really sad because I’ve always loved the first Just Cause, it’s one of those games that every time you play it, you do something amazingly cool. For example? Well I used to play that game with my friends, while generally lazing about on a day off. One of these times, I was flying a plane and decided, “You know what, I don’t want this anymore” and I stepped out in mid air. On the way down I spotted another plane ready to cross paths with me… “You can’t jump on that can you?” My friend said with wide eyes. “I don’t know… but it can’t hurt to try, surely”. You know what? I did it, I jumped on that plane and earned myself the “Cool among your pals award” even though about 8 billion people have probably done it too. That game was ideal for endless messing about after you complete it.

Now I’ll get to the point of why I’m writing this. “Just Cause 2” just popped it’s head up for all of us to see, I downloaded the Demo from the Playstation store because I seriously had not heard anything about what it was going to be like – no initial thoughts = Good for review. So without further ado, here are my completely new thoughts on a Demo for a game I didn’t know existed.

The menu is very clean cut first of all, it looks kind of Sci-Fi. That’s not a bad thing, it’s very pretty to look at and there are many options to fiddle about with – This is promising, lots of options means lots of things to do. Okay, so starting up the Demo, our slick haired protagonist is greeted by a strange lady called “Bolo” Leader of the “Reapers”. I think this is like a rebel army from the way she talks in this terribly annoying, dramatic voice, like a world leader reading a statement. She asks if our guy is “Scorpio”, he responds positively and then IMMEDIATELY jumps out of a plane – That’s Just Cause for you *Ding*

The cutscene ends abruptly after he’s in mid air, then you are on the ground. Before I go any further, holy handrails it’s great to look at. The graphics and textures are very detailed, like I said, I’m not fussy but it’s very bright, very colourful and the view off of the mountain you start on is just… wow. The draw distance impresses me so much, from this height you can basically see the curvature of the Earth, that’s how far you can see, the detail is astonishing. Also, when you look up you actually have a sky! It’s a realistic blue sky with white, fluffy clouds and none of those merging colour problems you usually see when you look up in a game – I’m referring to the dark circle above you in like 80% of game skies.

So 76 hours later, I stopped admiring the landscape and got on with it. The aim of the Demo is to Cause Chaos by destroying Government property, certain amounts unlock Black Market items, 4000 Chaos allows you to proceed – *Rubs hands together* Right, don’t mind if I do!
Equipping weapons is pretty straight forward, you just walk over them and hold Triangle if you want to replace the weapon you have. I did, I got myself an SMG because Pistols aren’t really my cup of tea – Big mistake! I ran out of ammo in the time it took me to close the weapon crate, there weren’t any enemies either.

Chaos isn’t hard to achieve, honestly. You shoot an explosive barrel, CHAOS, Shoot a power transformer, CHAOS, knock over a crate so it gets a little misshapen, CHAOS. It’s very satisfying doing so little, but getting quite highly acknowledged for it. I’d like to point out that I’ve not even left the mountain starting point yet and I already have around 1000 Chaos.

Time to leave! You have to BASE Jump off the mountain to get down below – actually there is a road down but if you take that you obviously have no imagination. BASE jumping is amazing, you enter free fall but you can open and close your parachute at any time to increase or slow your descent. Once in parachute mode you can shoot your Grappling hook. I love this thing, Shoot anything with this and you can grapple it, if you shoot a car then you are dragged along giving your chute extra speed. You can also make it drag you into the car, so you are able to commandeer it for you own marvellous fun. I’m not kidding about the hook, grapple anything! It makes you like Spiderman, grapple any ledge or building to pull yourself up onto it, grapple any vehicle to enter stunt mode, grapple enemies to make them say, “Argh, he’s got me with his wire thing”, endlessly useful. You can also string your wire from one place to another, choosing where to place the connectors. I’ve yet to find a use for it but I feel a death slide might be imminent in the actual game? – That’s Just Cause for you *Ding*

Once on the ground I immediately spotted a “Propaganda van” from the loading screen hints. “Destroy these for maximum Chaos” it says… Okay I can do that with a swift grenade to the underside, there we g-*shot from every single direction*- It turns out the guys in hats with AK-47s are the police… who knew? So after running away like a wuss, I brought my total Chaos to 2000 – Nice, not bad for about 5 minutes work. I’ll say at this point that the controls are great, you can modify them how you wish, but any way you choose to set them, you’re still going to have easy to get used to, flowing controls. They need to be, believe me, it’s a fast paced game.

On accessing the PDA, GPS, whatever you want to name it, you can see your remaining play time. It’s only 30 minutes but it’s not like you can never play it again after. It’s an impressive looking GPS, it looks 2D but then as you move it, it looks more like a satellite surveillance display, very easy to follow too. You have objectives and safe places marked clearly, so if you are afraid of getting owned like me, it’s easy to find your way to a place where you can cower in peace.

There seems to be no solid story built into this Demo, either that or I didn’t get that far – which is more likely. I can’t believe that they won’t have a decent one in the actual game though because the original game’s plot was great, and very difficult to finish too.

So there’s not much more to say really apart from the fact that I love the car action. If you grapple to a car, you immediately enter, “Stunt mode”, where you stand on top of the car and surf it. From here you can steal the car, open your parachute, or jump / grapple to another vehicle. This is why the game will take so long for me to complete, because I will lose myself in the stunt sequences – That’s a good thing by the way. The car damage when you are driving is epic. If you hit a jump wonky and land on your side, the car does a cartwheel and bits fly off all over the place leaving you with a crumpled mess, it’s very realistic and I adore it for that. Finally of course where would we be without the explosions, all of them are brilliant to watch, that might be why I jumped out of my cars so many times and watched them smash into chasms, they are so pretty! – That’s Just Cause for you *Ding*

Summing up, I would have to say that the full game is surely going to be great, I can’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be. Sure we will have our Nay Sayers giving us the old, ”GTA is better” speech, but I still have Just Cause on my PC, and I still play it after all these years. I’m certain this new one will be just as addictive and easy to pick up and play again at any time. Download the Demo and look out for it on March 26th I reckon it will be totally worth the money.


  1. ll DarKShinE ll /

    Awesome post bro.i played the demo till my eyes where sore haha i love it and my pre-order is in there hands

  2. Randy /

    Grappling hook is the best / most satisfying game mechanic I’ve ever experienced and would pay the $60 for that alone.

    BUT there doesn’t seem to be a cover mechanic; you can stand behind something but can’t “hug’ it and/or pop out and shoot – strange that this would be left out.

    Also I actually think the graphics are kinda of weak when compared to UC2 or even EIDOS’ Arkhum Asylum which had both more depth, detail and color richness.


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