Just Cause 2
is a game that knows what it wants to be, angles everything towards being that, and blows up the target. Panau is huge, the action is awesome, graphics are crisp, and the controls are surprisingly easy to understand. The only way it could be more over-the-top is if you could Leap And Fire
in Bullet Time
or the game enabled free-climbing all over any vehicle.
There are a massive range of locations over Panau, and many seem to be tailored to an action movie sensibility. The first base you enter is mounted on a cliffside, with cable cars, bridges, and big buildings. One island base has a main road running through it and explosive silos on either side; it's basically begging you to drop a tank at one end and drive to the other, blowing up everything you can on the way. Not every place is as memorable, but they largely avoid feeling repetitive.
The acrobatics in the game are perfectly designed to enable planesurfing without you falling off or the controls being too obtuse. At the touch of a button, you can jump onto a passing car, and not fall off until it slams into a wall or you hijack it. Some vehicles even enable you to hang from the front or back of them. Surprisingly, this is handled in a kinda-sorta-semi-realistic fashion: military vehicles have ridges or bars that would be easy to hold on to, while civilian vehicles are much smoother, offering no handholds.
Missions are nicely varied, and cover just about every part of the spectrum you can think of, from escorting a boat through a series of military floodgates to hijacking a traitor's plane to rescuing a hostage from a convoy to stealing an armored car to storming fortresses. They vary in length from less than ten minutes to over half an hour, and a select few have their own partially-developed mini-story. However, some of the story missions skimp on checkpoints, particularly when you need to destroy several things in a row; there can be ten minutes between checkpoints.
If you somehow get bored of all the action, optional races provide an easy diversion, whether they're skydiving, flying, or driving. Even these come sometimes get crazy, such as driving at high speeds inside a massive satellite dish or weaving between supports and departing planes at an airport in a sports car.
Just Cause 2
might be cheesy, but it's some of the best cheese I've tasted.