Video Games

Just Cause 3: The Goliath Review Source:

Developer: Avalanche Studios

Publisher: Square Enix
Available On: PS4 (Reviewed), Xbox One, PC
Released: December 1st, 2015

The Just Cause franchise is an interesting one. The second entry in the series was an under-the-radar open world sandbox game, which suddenly became incredibly popular when some independent programmers created a mod that added a multiplayer option to the already chaotic single player experience. The ability to run around an open world with a bunch of people where explosions are as common as blades of grass was irresistible to many, and led to an increased amount of anticipation for the third game, Just Cause 3, which was released this week.

Avalanche Studios, which had a moderate hit earlier this year with Mad Max, brings back the delightful anarchy that has been a trademark of the series, and while there is no multiplayer to speak of (at least until the mod community cobbles one together again), this game is an incredible feast of guns, cars, helicopters, and enough C4 to blow everything up five times over. In addition, Just Cause 3 has seemingly found the perfect form of open world travel, as a combination of a parachute, a wingsuit, and the ability to fire tethers at practically anything to pull yourself along lead to most purely enjoyable flight simulator ever found in a video game, a sensation that, thanks to an extremely generous physics engine, you can feel at a moment’s notice. Trust us, once you start sailing through the environment on your incredibly responsive wingsuit, you’ll never want to walk (or drive) anywhere ever again. Source:

Unfortunately, for all the fun there is to have in this game, the story simply doesn’t measure up. The protagonist, Rico Rodriguez, is suitably action hero-esque, but the characters he meets along the way, from totalitarian dictator Di Ravello to your companions in the resistance movement, are one-dimensional and fairly dull, as is the overall plot. The story missions are shockingly boring and frustrating for a game that feels so free when you’re just running around the world, full of cliche fetch quests and the ever-unpopular escort missions. Don’t get us wrong, flying in and blowing up oil refineries while shooting dozens of people is incredibly fun, but there’s definitely a lack of variety in your options for completing objectives. The developers seem to be relying too heavily on players finding their own creative ways to make the game fun, as opposed to providing any creativity of their own for players to experience.

The game, as has come to be expected when you’re discussing the open world genre, definitely contains its share of bugs and glitches. Some are of the amusing variety, but several are absolutely game-breaking, including problems with some of the story missions, making progress frustrating as players are forced to repeat content due to factors outside their control. In addition, framerate issues on the console versions, particularly the XBox One, seem to be cropping up. They don’t make the game unplayable, but it can be upsetting to have your game slow down during the frequent and massive explosions which are, quite frankly, the best part of playing. Fortunately, the generous auto-aim and incredible ability of Rico to soak up bullets (frankly, if you just don’t stop moving, it’s unlikely you’ll ever die due to enemy gunfire) mean that performance issues won’t drastically affect your ability to complete objectives successfully. Meanwhile, load times, while not generally an issue on the PC, can run the gamut from “near-instant” to “have a book close by” on consoles, and seem to be related to connection issues with online leaderboards. An early patch reportedly has dealt with the worst of that problem, but it’s still something to be aware of. Source:

Overall, for all its very noticeable flaws, the game is fun as hell to play. If you’re not looking for the most complex plot in the world and just want a game where you can shoot enemies, blow up anything and everything, and fly through the air with the greatest of ease, Just Cause 3 is absolutely what you’re looking for. There is hours of ridiculous joy to be had just completing the open world objectives, from freeing towns to wingsuit racing to driving a car strapped with explosives into an enemy stronghold. But don’t go in expecting anything resembling a gripping story or characters that you’ll remember afterwards.


– Any time spent flying is time well spent

– Few things are more satisfying that blowing up an entire power plant with C4 and concentrated gunfire

– A massive open world that is visually breathtaking


– The plot and characters are one-dimensional, cliche, and totally forgettable

– The usual bugs and glitches that come with open world freedom

– It’s a good thing you can fly, because the handling on the vehicles leaves much to be desired




Just Cause 3 is incredibly fun to play, with all sorts of explosions and flight mechanics that are absolutely top-notch. Beyond that, though, the plot is forgettable and the story missions are probably the worst part of the game. An enjoyable ride, but with very definite flaws. Source:

Stephen Randle

Stephen Randle

Stephen Randle is an avid wrestling and film fan. He's been writing about WWE, movies, and video games for Goliath since 2015.