Rico Ro­driguez’s new ca­reer: weath­er­man with a vengeance

PlayStation Official Magazine (UK) - - CONTEST -

Rico Ro­driguez has al­ways been a free soul. Af­ter all, he’s the mas­ter of chaos, wreak­ing havoc in each game’s pro­gres­sively more de­tailed sand­boxes as he chases lib­er­a­tion. But in Just Cause 4 he’s able to go where the wind takes him more than in any of its pre­de­ces­sors, thanks to the en­hanced weather of Avalanche’s brand-new Apex en­gine.

And by “en­hanced weather” we don’t just mean some­thing like the aw­ful heat­wave we were forced to deal with in OPM Tow­ers last month (the ef­fects of which are still be­ing felt as we’re still find­ing dis­carded ice-cream wrap­pers around Os­car’s desk). No, we mean the dy­namic weather sys­tems that de­fine the en­vi­ron­ments of Solís, the fic­tional South Amer­i­can coun­try Rico must lib­er­ate this time. On the lighter side of things the en­hanced weather means Rico can more ac­cu­rately high­jack the lit­eral air­waves with his wing-suit as he glides ef­fort­lessly through the canyons, div­ing, ris­ing, and grap­pling to pro­pel him­self fur­ther. For an ac­tion-packed, gun-tot­ing game about full-on con­flict – which is now rep­re­sented con­tex­tu­ally in the space by an ac­tual front line that shifts as you re­take more of the coun­try – these mo­ments of soar­ing can be quite serene. Be­ing play­ful is Just Cause’s forte.

But it isn’t al­ways calm. On the other side of the coin the Apex en­gine al­lows for dev­as­tat­ing acts of nat­u­ral de­struc­tion. Sand­storms, bliz­zards, forked light­ning, tor­na­does – Solís can be dan­ger­ous if you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. The demo we see has Rico tak­ing on a mis­sion re­quir­ing him to herd a tor­nado us­ing weather tech. The wind physics at play are be­yond im­pres­sive, suck­ing up all the lit­tle physics ob­jects and the big ones too – pas­sen­ger air­lin­ers are dragged in, as are any he­li­copters. A rocket is launched at the tor­nado and it swirls up­wards around the out­side be­fore col­lid­ing and ex­plod­ing. Just Cause 4’s weather is wild and un­pre­dictable like noth­ing else be­fore it.


We’re a UK mag, so you can for­give us for blither­ing on about the weather; it’s our na­tional ob­ses­sion. How­ever, while the forces of na­ture are the most bom­bas­tic ad­di­tion, tons of changes have also been made to Rico’s trade­mark grap­ple, let­ting him turn Solís into a bet­ter play­ground than the one that has the big round­about.

Now fully cus­tomis­able, you can mod dif­fer­ent ef­fects to its var­i­ous func­tions – for in­stance, a pulse that oc­curs when you re­tract ob­jects to­gether. The abil­ity to add jet boost­ers to ob­jects makes a re­turn, but now you can fire them from your grap­ple. The new air lift mode al­lows you to float things up in the air per­ma­nently. Add a mod that makes the floats fol­low you, and you have a per­ma­nent air-plat­form that’ll mo­sey on over to you at all times. Whack boost­ers on that bad boy and… well, you can see where we’re go­ing with this. Mak­ing may­hem with the physics and ob­jects lit­tered around the world has never been smoother, and the key to it all is in the palm of Rico’s hand. (On his fore­arm, ac­tu­ally.)


If you want to get re­ally wild, Rico’s arse­nal now sports cus­tomis­able sec­ondary fire func­tions. Ever thought launch­ing grenades one at a time was too slow? What about a func­tion to launch all your grenades at once? Or adding a drone to work with your rail­gun and provide cover from the air?

It’s not just the guns that have been made a lit­tle deeper. Chaos ob­jects re­turn for that ex­tra lit­tle dash of may­hem – things like ex­plod­ing gas can­is­ters. These have all been given sec­ondary func­tions too. Blast just the top of one of the afore­men­tioned gas tanks, and the flames will burst from the tip, pro­pel­ling it over dis­tances (and yes, these get blown into tor­na­does, too – talk about bad wind). The fore­cast for Rico’s re­turn is look­ing pretty good.

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