A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Just Cause 3 is an over-the-top action game where players shoot tons of people; blow up numerous buildings, vehicles, and enemies; and generally cause all kinds of mayhem and destruction. There's also a fair amount of blood shed when someone is shot up close, especially when one character uses a gun to commit suicide. Not surprisingly, some characters will yell such curse words as "hell" when angry. But the game also has a cartoony quality about it, typified by its jokey dialogue and how, when standing next to a car that explodes, the player will go flying and bounce along the ground but will probably get up and shake it off. Also, in a game, the main character and his best friend like to hit each other in the crotch.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
In JUST CAUSE 3, series star Rico Rodriguez returns to his homeland, the multi-island Mediterranean nation of Medici, to find that it's now under the thumb of a dictator named General Di Ravello. So, naturally, he does what he can to undermine Di Ravello's control over the country, which he does by taking out the militia and destroying such tools of propaganda as billboards and speaker systems. Naturally, the general does not just let this happen and instead sends more soldiers, tanks, and helicopters to take you out. Hilarity, as they say, ensues.
Is it any good?
In a year that's already seen such fantastic and fantastical open-word games comes a real-world one that screams, "ME, TOO!" As with the Grand Theft Auto series, if it were more influenced by '80s action flicks rather than Scarface, or the Saints Row games, if they were a tad more serious, Just Cause 3 has you overthrowing a dictator by wiping out his loyal militia forces and destroying his stuff. All of which is accomplished by shooting up the place, commandeering vehicles, and using a grappling hook that can pull gas cans toward tanks, statues toward the ground, and players toward trucks and helicopters they can then take control of, even though someone's already in the driver's seat. It also has side missions where you challenge your skills as a driver, a flyer, and a demolitions expert. But though this game is mostly fun, it does have some irritating problems, such as how it takes forever to reload your game after you die or how you can't look down the barrel of your gun for increased accuracy. Even so, the frantic firefights and general mayhem are more than enough to make this a crazy good time.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in video games. Does the violence of a game affect you less when the action is a bit cartoony? What about when it's shown from the third-person perspective instead of the first?
Families also can discuss governments. Why would people put up with an evil dictator? Do you think it's easy for one person to take over a whole country? Who are some of the most notorious dictators in history, and what makes them so notorious?
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One
- Price: $59.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Square Enix
- Release date: December 1, 2015
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Cars and Trucks, Adventures, Friendship
- ESRB rating: M for Blood, Intense Violence, Strong Language
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