Disability Game Review: Just Cause 3
Just Cause 3 offers players the experience of being a super hero in the form of Rico Rodriguez as he fights to take down the corrupt dictator of Medici. The game is incredibly fun with a chaotic open world vibe that lets players wreck havoc in all kinds of imaginative ways. From the standpoint of accessibility Just Cause 3 will pose no barriers to some gamers and serious barriers to others.
From the standpoint of visual accessibility Just Cause 3 seems to be relatively barrier free. In several hours of play there was little that relied on the ability to distinguish between colors and while the font of certain HUD elements can be hard to read the generally forgiving nature of this game offsets this barrier nicely. In other words if a player makes a mistake in choosing a weapons load out they won’t have much trouble retrying the scenario with a better set of tools. This title makes a point of encouraging experimentation in game play so knowing the specifics of things like weapon load out aren’t integral to the experience. Furthermore much of what Rico is tasked with doing is destroying objects and most of these objects clearly stand out from the surrounding environment due to their positioning, size, or shape so much so that if a player can’t see the bright red paint job these objects are given it is doubtful that this would be a hindrance.
The only real problem arises for players with fine motor disabilities. This is because although the gameplay within Just Cause 3 is mostly very flexible the controller layout is not. There is no controller customization what so ever and every button is used in multiple ways depending on Rico’s current environment. To make matters worse I encountered several timed sequences that are integral to the experience and cannot be avoided by the player. In fact the only thing that keeps Just Cause 3 from being completely inaccessible for gamers with impairments in their hands is its incredible flexibility and forgiving nature. Players will not have to retread much of the same ground when they die and in most situations there’re multiple ways to accomplish an objective. While it is true that most systems now days have fully remapable controls built into the hardware it is unreasonable to expect gamers to design a different controller layout for every game they play.
However the news turns good again for players with auditory disabilities. Not only does Just Cause 3 not use sound to communicate anything vital outside of the story but the story itself features full subtitles that are on before the game even starts so players with hearing disabilities should not have any problems enjoying this game.
In closing, Just Cause 3 is an incredibly fun and wacky game that offers a barrier free experience for both players with visual and auditory impairments. It is just a shame that the games core flexibility does not extend farther to include more fine motor impaired gamers.
Overall Rating: Thoroughly Accessible
Visual Rating: Barrier Free
Fine-Motor Rating: Partially Accessible
Auditory Rating: Barrier Free
Released For: PS4, Xbox One, PC
ESRB Rating: M
GameInformer Score: 8