Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon [Review]
Hobbs | On 26, Mar 2015
Hey, do you like fun? Good. You’ve come to the right place.
After a very pleasant experience with Far Cry 3 I decided to try out its stand alone DLC, Blood Dragon. I was immediately blown away by the fact that it freakin’ rocks. It’s full of action, tongue-in-cheek humor, and it’s got some great visuals and music. Just look at the damn trailer! Look at it!
Are you convinced yet? Because if not you better keep reading this review or seriously re-think your life.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is a stand alone DLC for Far Cry 3. You do not need to own Far Cry 3 to play the game, but as you can see from my review of the game, I recommend you get it anyway. Blood Dragon is available for PC, Xbox 360, and Playstation 3. There is also a deal on Steam where you can get both Blood Dragon and Call of Juarez: Gunslinger for five dollars off (which makes sense when you consider the nature and overall feels of the games). This review covers the PC edition which is currently selling for fifteen dollars on Steam.
Blood Dragon (now would be a good time to start reading this in a macho film trailer narrator voice) is set in the distant, far off future of the year 2007, where nuclear war has ravaged the earth and rogue groups of elite cyber-commandos threaten humanity, and more importantly the american way of life. You play as Sergeant Rex ‘Power’ Colt (voiced by Michael Biehn), a cyber commando whose cybernetically-augmented lethality is surpassed only by his massive pool of one liners. You’re sent to a distant island to stop the evil colonel Sloan and ruthless army of Omega-force cyber-soldiers from destroying the world. The player is dropped onto a grim vaguely-cyberpunk themed island where they are forced to confront Omega force, the island’s cybernetically-augmented wildlife, and the titular blood dragons (massive lizards that shoot lasers out of their eyes).
So, Blood Dragon’s gameplay has been more or less copy-pasted from Far Cry 3. Ubisoft was clearly operation on the philosophy of ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’. Unfortunately, to compensate with the smaller scope of Blood Dragon, Ubisoft had to remove crafting and skill trees from the game. While I don’t really give a damn about the latter, I am rather upset that I don’t get a reward for hunting, like in Far Cry 3 (other than the joy I get imaging the look on a PETA member’s face as I gun down a chrome panther that got a little too close to the business end of my shotgun). So in a nutshell, the combat boils down to good ole Far Cry 3 style stealth and gunplay, complete with scoping out enemy installations before taking them down silently, exciting fire-fights, and self surgery animations that have absolutely no connection to whatever hurt you in the first place!
Next up, we have the story, which Ubisoft describes as “an 80’s VHS vision of the future”. All I have to say about it is that it ain’t no Macbeth, but it’s funny as hell. It makes fun of a lot of tropes in the sci-fi and action film genres and its overall very entertaining. Michael Biehn does an excellent job of self-parody and almost all of the dialogue, loading screen hints, and flavor text is worth a good laugh or two. It’s all manages to provide a nice, humorous experience.
I would also like to acknowledge Blood Dragon’s aesthetic, which I found delightful; just like Molly Ringwald. It’s got this cyber-punk feel with it’s dark environments illuminated solely by neon. Yeah, at this point I’ll say that anything that isn’t set in ‘bombed out middle eastern city number N’ has some great aesthetics, but I think Ubisoft really did a good job here. They captured that cyberpunk feel that everybody loved in the 80s; and then eventually stopped caring about once the 80s ended (just like Molly Ringwald).
For me, the entire experience rounded out to ten hours for me and that’s with completing all of the optional side quests and finding all of the collectables. For the average player that run-time would probably be shorter. I think that the length is long enough when you consider the price and the quality of the experience.
One thing that needs to be noted about Blood Dragon (or at least the PC edition) is that it is very glitchy. I occasionally fell out of the gameworld in a way that required a rather annoying restart, but the most infuriating bit of the game was entering and exiting rooms. I’m not talking about loading screens or doors here. It’s just that when I would enter a room through a doorway I would frequently be stopped by a invisible wall. Then I would have to stand there, jumping and crouching like an idiot for a couple of minutes just to be able to pass through. This problem was so common that I had to mentally prepare myself before passing through a doorway. ‘Okay, am I going to get stuck this time?’ I would think. Still, this was only a small problem in a very fine experience.
So if you’re asking yourself whether or not to buy Blood Dragon, I guess all that I can tell you is; if you liked the combat in Far Cry 3 and have some money lying around then it’s a good idea. I strongly recommend it.
TagsFar Cry 3 Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon First Person Shooter Micheal Biehn open world The 1980s Ubisoft
4511 Views // March 26, 2015