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The year was 2013 and I had just gotten a computer. I intended to use it for "educational" purposes, however I discovered a platform called Steam through some friends. At the time I decided to get Gmod to get past the $5 Steam restriction. It was a fun game and one I still play to this day but in early 2014 I was on the prowl for a cheap substitute for GTA V since it wasn't around on PC yet.
That's when I discovered Just Cause 2.
It was on sale for a reasonable £4.99 and came with all the DLC which is something I appreciated due to the rising greed of game developers feeling it was necessary to separate their game into DLC in the name of profit.
I was itching to delve into the world of Panau but it was getting late so I decided to get some rest; little did I know that was the last good nights sleep I would have. The next day was a blur, but I do remember staying up late and staying in causing chaos in this open world sandbox. I spent the next 2 years roaming as Rico, freeing the oppressed inhabitants of Panau from the vicious regime of baby Panay, although the story didn't matter much.
I was perfectly content driving around and occasionally liberating settlements but it was 100 hours in I realised that there was a bottom half to the map. I failed to notice that there were cities and a huge area with a desert. I had spent most of my time in the north helping the three factions dominate the military.
If you are not familiar with Just Cause 2, the map is given to different factions during the game. The default map is shows that the Panau military own every inch of the country, whereas by the end of the game the map will be divided over the three factions you work with. It is important to note that the factions do not fight but instead they all attack the military. The game takes place in a fictional country called Panau (located somewhere in Asia). The citizens are oppressed by a harsh dictator called baby Panay and Rico Rodriguez is sent in by the US government to try and restore peace.
At the time of writing, I have 204 hours clocked in. Since then my Steam library has expanded to 403 games. Just Cause 2 truly opened my eyes to video games and transformed me into what I am today, a geek, and I wouldn't have it any other way.