I've just played Far Cry 3. In the last 20 minutes I've made love to a woman, killed some tigers, spoken to a TV, had a near-miss with immolation, and I feel like I've just consumed a massive handful of magic mushrooms. I feel like I'm at Disneyland and just got on the Heart of Darkness ride. I have no idea what just happened.
I suspect this is the entire point of the demo I played, which places protagonist Jason Brody on an island in the Indian Ocean that is entirely populated with crazy people. We don't know how he got there, and Jason is so whacked out on local island hallucinogenics I don't think he's spending a great amount of time reflecting on the question either.
The demo opens with the writhing body of a naked woman in front of you. Over you. On you. You get the picture. While I'm willing to concede that this is a perfectly fine, attention-getting opening, you must understand that as a heterosexual female with said image displaying a mere half-metre from her nose, with a crowd of people standing very close behind, breathing heavily... let's just say it was an interesting E3 moment.
The crazy-island-goddess whispers a sweet nothing in my ear, but I can't hear a thing she says, as the dance game a few feet away is busy belting out the B52's Rock Lobster and, although the headphones are cranked to their maximum, there's no way they can compete.
I think she likes me though.
Soon after, I'm up, my tattooed arm reaching out to pull me out of bed. I'm given a waypoint, and I stumble towards it. I wander in that direction, and find myself on the edge of the cliff; glistening blue water below. The waypoint's somewhere across the bay, where a small dock and a group of decrepit shacks huddle. There's no way around it: I throw myself off the cliff, bow and arrow still extended before me, as I'd been messing about with my weapons just a moment earlier.
The water is cool and blue and I take a moment to admire the rendering of my arms as I swim. I haven't said it yet, but this game is beautiful. There are things swimming in the water all around me. The island itself is a paradise.
A dude's on the dock, so I come ashore to the side of him, and then take him out with my one exploding arrow - whoops - and half the dock as well. Fortunately no-one else seems to have noticed, so I continue on my way. I creep up the path and come across a dazed-looking woman, swaying from side to side. She obviously needs immediate medical attention, but as I have no skills in this area I just try not to shoot her as two thugs come upon me.
Research tells me Far Cry 3 makes use of a new multi-takedown mechanic, but I haven't been shown this. The usual point-aim-shoot (this time with my machine gun - hey, who gave me a machine gun?) seems to be sufficient in this case. I continue up the hill, employing my rudimentary tactics, until I reach a bit of a compound, where people immediately, again, start shooting at me.
I am confused: wasn't I just making love to a woman of this island some minutes earlier? Or is this what they really mean by 'killing you with kindness'? In any case, the hospitality of this island leaves a lot to be desired.
I dispatch the rest of the bad guys, mostly by taking cover in a small side building and blasting away.
Someone releases tigers.
I kill them.
I again move towards the waypoint, which leads me to a wooden multi-storeyed building. Inside, there's a pile of TVs facing the doorway. When I come inside they all turn on at once, and the face of Vaas, the mohawked guy who is in charge of all this crazy, is there talking to me. He's laughing. He wants to know why I'm there.
I would like to know this also, but I don't have time to ponder this for long; the building is suddenly on fire. I fight my way up and out of the building, avoiding enemy fire, as I can feel the building shuddering (thanks to the controller's vibration) beneath me. I throw myself off the roof, down on top of a guy I didn't see earlier. My knife plunges down into him. Takedown!
I think I'm free.
But then: Vaas is there, before me. I'm stabbed, with a massive knife that has some green stuff on it and then everything goes really wrong.
Hallucination time: I see myself, making love to that woman from before. Whoops - she's Vaas's sister. Then, while I watch, I turn into Vaas. I turn from the sibling copulation, but then Vaas is before me. My gun is out. I shoot him in the face. In the last second, I see he has turned back into me again. Did I just shoot myself?
Far Cry 3: this thing is one weird ride. It comes out in New Zealand on September 7th.By Jessica Nickelsen