Far Cry 3 • Page 3

No manís an island.

"Because it asks you this question: what if your boat got blown up and you were cast away on this island, how would you do? Would you make it? We want to know, we want to test ourselves in that way."

We might want to, but we're not that used to it, after a few years in which the scripted fairground-ride shooter has reigned. How will Ubisoft Montreal encourage players to enjoy the freedom Far Cry 3 offers?

"It turns out that there's this weird psychological trick," Vandenberghe says. "You take away their communication. If you put a guidepost out there and say, here's where you should go first, everyone will go there. But if you have no marker, then it puts the player in a mindset where they are looking for the information that they will use to derive their own decision.

"The best way to do it is to create randomness in front of the player - and a clear objective. You do need to say, 'You need to get to the helicopter.' But between here and there, there's not a path. What happens in players' minds is that they look at it, they don't see a clear path, and then their style of play takes over."

Beyond confirmation that the game will have vehicles, that's about as nitty-gritty as Vandenberghe is prepared to get. But there's one critical question he hasn't answered yet. Far Cry 2 is regarded as a flawed classic, a game with great potential that was hobbled by a number of frustrating design oversights. What about Far Cry 2 would the team most like to fix?

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Far Cry 3's currently shooting for a 2012 release.

"Actually, this is an easy question to answer. All you have to do is go online and search Far Cry 2 and examine the discussions, and four or five key points pop out as areas for improvement. It's unanimous.

"I had the same response. I would really like... to have some kind of fast travel, that would be great. It would be great if when I destroy a checkpoint, it doesn't come back. It would be nice if the checkpointing system was more friendly. I think it would be cool if I could hide and not be seen from a distance, if the enemy detection felt fair.

"Now, I'm really not supposed to use that language when I talk about it, but honestly, it's the elephant in the room, right? The list you have in your head for Far Cry 2 is the same list that every other journalist has. We all are carrying it. It was a great game, it was a fantastic game. Where we want to improve is the stuff that you want to improve.

"If we take away the pieces that were frustrating I think it's going to be great."

We'll cautiously agree, although we only have those seven minutes to go on. But for now, at the very least, it's new - and for that, we and E3 are eternally grateful.

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