Tag Archive: Bavarium Sea Heist

It’s hard to believe it’s been about nine months already since Just Cause 3 launched, but time flies when you’re blowing up parts of an oppressed nation. Because of the episodic release schedule of the Air, Land, & Sea Expansion for the game, we’ve been causing chaos pretty consistently over that period of time. And now, with the release of the Bavarium Sea Heist DLC—the third and final chapter in that expansion—we can say there’s not much of Medici left for us to decimate at this point. Much like the previous chapters in the expansion, however, Bavarium Sea Heist just doesn’t hold a candle to the main game.

The DLC opens with Rico getting a call from Annika (his mercenary buddy from the main game) as she’s planning on putting together the heist of the century. It seems Stingray, an old eDEN research facility in the middle of the ocean that was trying to harness the power of lightning and mysteriously disappeared into a portal after their last experiment went haywire, had amazingly reappeared. Annika wants some Bavarium devices that were being developed there and calls on Rico, Tom Sheldon (Rico’s American handler), and Looch (Medici resistance member) to help her out, as the Black Hand—the evil mercenary group Rico has dealt with countless times before—has already established a base of operations there. With promises of new weapons and a new boat from Looch, Rico can’t refuse.


That new boat just so happens to be the Loochador (named after its creator), a vessel loaded up with machine guns and rocket launchers that’s twice as fast as any other ship already existing in the game. Since release, the sea gameplay for Just Cause 3 was always lacking. I’d often forgo all the boats available to me and use helicopters instead to wreak havoc on the oil refineries that I’d need to obliterate in order to liberate certain regions of mainland Medici. The Loochador finally makes splashing around in the waters of Medici tolerable. It’s a boat that can withstand the offense of most any enemy at sea—a necessary given the DLC adds five new watery outposts along with the Stingray base. And, since you can take it back with you into the main game, I’m sure the Loochador will be a great tool in finally getting all the gears in those pesky water challenges and boat races.

Unfortunately, the Loochador doesn’t solve every problem. It’s still difficult to aim and control the ship, especially in the middle of a firefight with other vehicles or soldiers stationed on the platforms you need to destroy. Bouncing up and down on the waves is not conducive for battles. The worst of it all, however, is that when you’re stuck inside the Loochador, trying to cover the ridiculously huge distances between objectives as quickly as possible, you’re taking me away from one of the best parts of Just Cause: traversing with Rico’s grappling hook and parachute. Just like the other DLCs leading up to this, you’ll spent the majority of your time within the new super vehicle. That’s fun for a little while, but gets tedious rather quickly—which is saying something considering the DLC as a whole should only take two or three hours to beat.


There’s also the new “eDEN Spark” lightning gun that you get at the very end of the DLC. It’s basically a Gears of War Hammer of Dawn rip-off, but with the much clearer sightlines of Just Cause 3, it’s a more viable weapon when trying to eliminate enemies from a distance—even if it does wreck the balance of the main game.

The best thing that Bavarium Sea Heist does do is it adds 18 new audio logs for Rico to discover. These audio logs fill in the backstory for not only this DLC, but the entire expansion pack, detailing the rise and fall of eDEN and fleshing out some of the characters in much the same way Di Ravello’s audio logs did in the main game. Just Cause 3 may never be known for its story, but it’s nice when a little effort is made to round out and give more depth to the characters in this insane, over-the-top universe.


Bavarium Sea Heist looks to bring our time in Medici to an end, but does so not on the best of notes. When compared to the main game, it ran into the same problem as all the other DLC in that it weakened what were some of the game’s strengths. At the very least, though, this one makes my time in the water a bit more palatable.

Developer: Avalanche Studios • Publisher: Square Enix • ESRB: M – Mature • Release Date: 08.18.16
Bavarium Sea Heist runs into a lot of the same problems as the previous DLC packs for Just Cause 3. It confines you to the new super vehicle you acquire, nullifying Rico’s grappling hook and parachute, and is already over by the time you start getting warmed up. At least here there’s a little more story than before, but it’s not enough when comparing this to the main game.
The Good The most fleshed-out DLC in the expansion pack in terms of narrative.
The Bad Just Cause 3’s water combat is one of the weakest aspects of its gameplay, and it only gets slightly better with a tricked-out boat.
The Ugly All that bouncing up and down on the waves made me seasick.
Just Cause 3: Bavarium Sea Heist is available on Xbox One, PS4, and PC. Primary version reviewed was for Xbox One. Review code was provided by Square Enix for the benefit of this review. EGM reviews games on a scale of 1 to 10, with a 5.0 being average.

With the final piece of Just Cause 3‘s three-part DLC expansion, Bavarium Sea Heist, on its way, we took the opportunity to chat with Marcus Andrews, the lead designer on the entire Air, Land, & Sea Pack. We discussed with Marcus what challenges the water theme brought to the dev team, what that meant for Rico Rodriguez, and what new weapons and vehicles he’ll get to use and how they will affect the world of Medici.

EGM: Just Cause 3‘s previous DLCs seem to have been building to this final add-on. What can you tell us about the story of the Bavarium Sea Heist?

Marcus Andrews: While the packs can be enjoyed stand alone, it’s true that the overarching narrative reaches its conclusion in the Sea pack. We even felt we had more to say about eDEN and The Black Hand than would fit in the mission narrative so we included audio logs in this pack. I really recommend finding and listening to them. They conclude the narrative and will hopefully give rise to some theory crafting.

The story revolves around the last of the eDEN stations, “The Stingray” and how the character Annika has a plan to cheat The Black Hand on some valuable tech in a daring heist. Rico is not hard to persuade when he realizes he will get the prototype weapon “eDEN Spark” as a reward for his contribution.

EGM: Will most of the DLC take place in the water? If so, could this be a hindrance to Rico’s grappling hook/wingsuit/movement abilities? 

MA: Water in videogames is notoriously unforgiving. It often sounds great at first when you throw around ideas for water gameplay, but bread and butter stuff like what Rico can do, how enemies move, what you can interact with, and all the explosions and stuff become problematic if you don’t have solid ground. All that led us to take an approach with a combination of sea combat and normal combat in a sea setting. I think the new outposts are a great example of water gameplay in Just Cause. You have a powerful and agile boat to do lots of the heavy lifting, but you get out of it and do some complimentary work on foot/wingsuit/parachute/hanging upside down from your companion drone or what have you. We didn’t want to disqualify that type of gameplay just because this was the “Sea” theme.


EGM: What went into crafting a DLC primarily around the water region of Medici? How difficult was it?

MA: There were a lot of novel challenges to overcome, that’s for sure. One particular headache is that water is flat. If you think about Medici, it has very varied topography with mountains and valleys. Even small hills and buildings will obscure the horizon and hide objects behind them. On the sea there’s none of that; you see everything from everywhere. Part of the reason why the new boat is so insanely fast is because the drive from point A to B on a flat sea becomes quite boring. This is also part of the reason we increased the size of the waves during the driving sections of the mission, to basically create something resembling a landscape.

EGM: What new gameplay will the Sea Heist introduce? New vehicles? Weapons? Gear challenges? 

MA: The pack includes two new missions, 18 audio logs, the Stingray base, five new outposts, and the eDEN Spark, an insane new weapon that brings down a lightning beam from the sky that follows your crosshair around. There’s also the Loochador, the fastest, by far, boat in the game capable of going over a hundred knots for extended periods of time. It’s also equipped with machineguns and homing missiles that target all vehicles and chaos objects. And finally, there’s the new Boat Invaders challenge, which allows you to hone your skills with the eDEN Spark and mod it with gears.

I think this adds primarily two new experiences to the game. The fact that you can be really competent with the boat and defeat air, land, and sea enemies without leaving it is fresh. The eDEN Spark is the obvious new thing though. A giant death beam from the sky!


EGM: Did the team ever consider going underwater with Sea Heist? Like with submarines or other submersibles?

MA: During the concept phase everything was on the table in one way or another, but we decided against underwater for the reasons I brought up earlier. If we ever go underwater, this wasn’t the time or place for it.

EGM: Was there anything that you wanted to include in the DLC but couldn’t fit in?

MA: It’s the nature of making games that you want all the cool things, and each thing will be mind-blowingly awesome. What separates a good team from a bad is the ability to adapt the scope to the realities and pick the right focus.

EGM: The other DLC packs allowed you to bring vehicles and weapons over to the main game. Does Sea Heist do the same? Were there any balancing issues that came up trying to make sure everything could fit properly into Medici? 

MA: Yes, all the things you get in Sea Heist will be useable all over Medici. We decided that the DLC vehicles and equipment would be allowed to be very powerful but HEAT is a very good mechanic in this regard because even if a vehicle is very powerful, you rack up 5-star HEAT and you will eventually be outmanned regardless.

We thought a lot about how the new toys would integrate with Medici, but balancing power was only a part of it. Making sure that main missions didn’t break and that the main game content reacted properly to them was also part of that.