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Just Cause
Just Cause cover (Windows)
Developer(s) Avalanche Studios
Publisher(s) Eidos Interactive
Valve Corporation (steam)
Engine Avalanche
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360
Release date(s) EU September 22, 2006

NA September 27, 2006

Genre(s) Action, Third-person shooter
Mode(s) Single-player
Rating(s) ESRB: M
PEGI: 16+
Media DVD, Steam download
System requirements See System Requirements
Input methods Gamepad

Just Cause is a third-person sandbox video game developed by Avalanche Studios and published by Eidos Interactive. It was released on September 22, 2006 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360 in Europe. It arrived to North America on September 27, 2006. The fictional area explored during the game is described as being over 250,000 acres (1,012 km2; 391 sq mi) in size, with 21 story missions and over 300 side missions to complete.[1] As of April 23rd 2009, it has sold more than 1 million copies.

A sequel to the game developed by Avalanche Studios and Eidos Interactive and published by Square Enix titled, Just Cause 2, will be released in 2010.[2]



Just Cause is set on a fictional Caribbean tropical island called "San Esperito", where the player works as CIA black ops agent Rico Rodriguez in a guerrilla war to overthrow San Esperito's dictator, Salvador Mendoza, who may be in possession of weapons of mass destruction.[3] The game draws its premise (and name) from the real-life United States invasion of Panama, code-named "Operation Just Cause", which involved United States military action to overthrow military leader Manuel Noriega.

Rodriguez has been described by developers as being "the child of one thousand comic books and action movies peoples. He is James Bond, Mad Max, Jason Bourne, El Mariachi, Wolverine, Punisher, Rambo, Tony Montana and Han Solo, Che Guevara all rolled into one. With a touch of Enrique Iglesias to top it all off!".[4]


The core gameplay consists of elements of a third-person shooter and a driving game, with a large, open world environment to move around in. On foot, the player's character is capable of walking, swimming, and jumping, as well as utilizing weapons and basic hand to hand combat. Players can take control of a variety of vehicles, including cars, boats, airplanes, helicopters, and motorcycles. Players can also perform stunts with their cars in which they can stand on the roof and jump to another car, or choose to open their parachute while still in motion on the roof. Other key features of the game include skydiving, base jumping, and parasailing (by latching onto a moving car while one's parachute is deployed).

The open, non-linear environment allows players to explore and choose how they wish to play the game. Although storyline missions are necessary to progress through the game, players can complete them at their own leisure. When not taking on a storyline mission, players can free-roam. However, doing so can attract unwanted and potentially fatal attention from the authorities.

The player can also partake in a variety of optional side missions, for example, liberating a village or taking over a drug cartel hideout. These are generally (as indicated by most critics) quite repetitive but are necessary to gain points with certain factions.


A demo of the Xbox 360 game was released on August 24, 2006 on Xbox Live Marketplace. The PC demo followed in a premiere release at GameSpot.[5]


Review scores
Publication Score
Game Informer 7.25/10
IGN 6.8/10
Official Xbox Magazine 8.5/10

Just Cause received mixed reviews on release, with the average score varying by platform, from around 68% (PlayStation 2 version) to 76% (PC version).[6]

In an online review, IGN gave Just Cause a score of 6.8 out of 10. They noted that the gameplay lacked depth and that the side quests are boring and repetitive.[7] However, IGN UK awarded the game a score of 8.8, and the Official Xbox Magazine UK gave Just Cause a score of 9 out of 10, praising it for "varied, consistent, imaginative gameplay".[8]

The game suffers from its share of bug-related issues though, as noted by many reviewers, who feel the game may have been "rushed" to market without sufficient time to fix certain problems.[9] The PlayStation 2 version, in particular, suffers from a number of 'game-killing' bugs that render certain missions impossible to complete, or the entire game unplayable until it is reset. As of 2009, more than three years after the game's release, Eidos has not released a patch for the PC or Xbox 360 versions of the game.

GamerNode rated the game 6.7 out of 10,[10] while GameBrite gave it 51%.[11]

PC Gamer (UK) rated the game an 85% must buy (PCG 167). PC Gamer US rated it 93% in their December 2006 issue.

The Xbox 360 version was well received, scoring 9/10 in Play Magazine (US) and 360 Gamer Magazine UK. The 360 version also stayed on top of the Xbox 360 sales chart in the UK for three weeks in a row. [12]

System Requirements

The minimum requirements of Just Cause (PC version):

The recommended requirements of Just Cause:

  • Operating system: Windows 2000/XP/Vista
  • CPU: Pentium 4 2.8GHz or AMD Athlon equivalent
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Graphics: DirectX 9.0c-compatible 256MB 3D Accelerated Card (GeForce 7 Series/ATI Radeon X1800)
  • Sound: DirectX 9.0c-compatible
  • DVD-ROM: 4x Quad-Speed DVD-ROM drive
  • HDD: 7990MB free disk space
  • Input devices: Keyboard and Mouse


UK, August 10, 2009 - Eidos Interactive's Just Cause is set to become a movie, according to trade paper Variety. Producer Adrian Askarieh, who also set up the Hitman and Kane & Lynch films, has landed the rights to the game, although the property is with a studio yet. Variety has the developers describing Rodriguez as a mix of Bourne, Bond, Wolverine Rambo and apparently a "touch of Enrique Iglesias." Askarieh is looking for around $30m in independent financing for the project, and is also now searching for acting talent.[13]


  1. ^ Douglass C. Perry, Just Cause Hands-on, IGN, August 22, 2006
  2. ^ [1], SCI Financial Report 24 Jan 2007, 4/17/2007
  3. ^ Ricardo Torres,E3 06: Just Cause First Look, GameSpot, 4/26/2006
  4. ^ Odd Ahlgren, Just Cause Interview, Pro-G, 03/08/2006
  5. ^ Just Cause demo, GameSpot, 8/24/2006
  6. ^ Metacritic, [2], Metacritic
  7. ^ Erik Brudvig, Just Cause Review, IGN, September 18, 2006
  8. ^ [3], Official Xbox Magazine UK, October 2006, p.64
  9. ^ Kristan Reed, Just Cause Review, Eurogamer, 09/25/06
  10. ^ Chris Pereira, Just Cause Review, GamerNode, October 2006
  11. ^ Chad Abshire, Just Cause (Xbox 360) Review, GameBrite, October 2006
  12. ^ Chart Track,Just Cause Sales w.39 2006
  13. ^

External links

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