Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon (Game) Review
Available on: Playstation 3, XBOX 360
Rating: PEGI 18
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Six months ago I wrote a review for Far Cry 3 calling it 'an exceptional game'. Since that review I carried on playing through the massive campaign, revelling in the superb graphics, the beautifully rendered forests, liberating villages from psychopathic pirates, hunting wild animals and levelling up my character. Far Cry 3 really was a game to get lost in - you could spend hours roaming that glorious jungle setting and never get tired of it.
You can imagine my delight then, and surprise, when Ubisoft announced that it was bringing out a standalone game in the Far Cry series as download only, Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon. So what can you expect from this new entry into the Far Cry franchise? More of the same jungle action? Kill a few more pirates, save a few more stranded tourists? Oh no. Apart from the same basic shooting and driving mechanics, Blood Dragon looks and plays like a completely different game.
Imagine every action movie you saw in the 80s - Predator, Commando, Terminator, Aliens, Die Hard, The Running Man, Robocop, etc. Now imagine taking all the best bits from those films (the corny one-liners, the buff action hero killing everyone in sight, the unabashed silliness of the story) and putting them into a game. Far Cry Blood Dragon is THAT game and man is it good.
You play as Rex Power Colt, a bad-ass half human, half cyborg killing machine, voiced by 80s action legend Michael Biehn. Your character is super strong from the get-go, allowing you to sprint for vast distances, do amazing take down moves and you even get a special enemy spotting mode that makes the screen go red in a nod to the famous Terminator vision. The game starts with you doing a fly-by of a robot military base on a kitted out futuristic attack helicopter complete with laser Gatling gun. Your mission: blow up everything in sight, kill about 50 bad guys and stop a nuclear detonation from going off by punching the reactor. This random coolness sets the scene for the rest of the game. Once out in the wilderness, the wild boars and tigers of the Far Cry 3 game have been replaced by huge neon coloured dragon-lizards that shoot lasers out of their heads. The lush landscapes of Far Cry 3 have been replaced by a kaleidoscope of neon not too dissimilar to the Tron universe. The game really is that nuts!
Don't worry though. Hardcore fans of the series might be instantly put off by this new direction taken by Ubisoft but you needn't be. Blood Dragon is a game that will put a huge, beaming, Cheshire Cat grin on your face from the second you start playing to the final boss fight at the end. It is completely over the top and totally unrealistic, but it's exactly these points that make the game so good to play. Yes the awkward driving mechanics are still here, the story is near nonexistent, the AI is a little dumb, but I honestly don't care. Blood Dragon is all about having fun and it delivers it in spades. It's easily the most fun I've had on my Xbox in years and at 1200 MS points, it's also an absolute steel. Throw in a selection of super cool futuristic weapons, a thumping Daft Punk-esque soundtrack and over 7 hours of gameplay, and Blood Dragon offers one of the most unique, exciting and enjoyable gaming experiences of this generation.
Don't even think about passing this one by. Buy it! Buy it now!!