Get It? Rock, Like Stone Age? No? Ugh, Forget It.
Warning: This post contains explicit language. Oh s***!
Far Cry 4 was rubbish. You know it, I know it and I imagine even Ubisoft knows it despite their penchant for putting out broken bullshit. While Far Cry 4 wasn’t broken to quite the same level as, say, Watch_Dogs or Assassin’s Creed Unity, it still had some atrocious issues with running on PC platforms from launch. Not only that, but the story was incredibly trite with a captivating antagonist that was woefully under-used and filler missions that proved to only aggravate more than captivate.
The problems were many, but one of the main reasons that I found Far Cry 4 such a painful slog was the constant nonsensical missions, the gathering resources, the scouting towers. In a modern world none of this makes any sense, and for a computer game, it makes even less. There is an odd affection for perceived “realism” in games as of late, and by “realism” I mean the inclusion of frustratingly convoluted game mechanics to masquerade as immersion.
Gathering skins, plants and other such crafting items to create pouches, bags and wallets are some of the most mind numbing quests in any game because it detracts from the world around you. In Far Cry 3, your friends and family are kidnapped so your first mission is to… collect flowers? In the context of the game it is completely out of place and unnecessary, but what if the context was different?
Jean-Sebastien Decant (Far Cry Primal’s narrative director) put it best; “All Far Cry games are about survival… going from being the hunted to the hunter.” All the way back to the original Far Cry (and its several spinoffs), this notion has held true: one man against insurmountable odds discovering their inner warrior. Far Cry has always focused on the evil dwelling inside of man (aside from a few dances with aliens) but had to resort to (admittedly captivating) bombastic and flamboyant antagonists to drive this point home. The simple evil acts were no longer enough to convey the true darkness and fear needed, and this is a problem.
Far Cry Primal excites me because the familiar is taken away. I feel joyful anticipation akin to when Call of Duty first made its steps into the Modern Warfare series; the familiar gameplay in a new and exciting environment. There is no greater era of survival for the human race than the primordial, and introducing the tip of my spear to the face of a rival tribesman gives me carnal pleasure like I haven’t felt for quite some time.
In this setting, the foraging all makes sense. The desperate struggle for survival and to band together with others to take on the giant prey that marauds the land. By stripping back the weapons and capabilities you are forced to think and realise that you are no longer the apex predator you were in previous games. Danger is hungry and you’re on the menu.
I give Ubisoft a lot of stick and for the most part at least it is completely deserved, but between Far Cry Primal and Blood Dragon we know that they aren’t afraid of taking a risk at something new and exciting, which in my book earns them a large swathe of respect. Blood Dragon was insane and amazing even when people thought it looked too stupid, and a similar knee-jerk reaction is occurring with Far Cry Primal. Many are complaining that Far Cry has always been about guns and explosions and that this is a wrong turn for the series. These people are fucking morons who should stick to jingling keys in front of their eyes for entertainment. Far Cry has always been about one man (or hopefully woman someday) against the odds regardless of wingsuits, guns or explosions.
Could the game turn out to be a big old pile of arse? Possibly, and we’re pretty much guaranteed it’s going to run like a legless Helen Keller on PC platforms initially, so there’s honestly no way in hell I’m going to pre-order Far Cry Primal (unless it promises to dispense cocaine and high-class hookers upon every crash). That being said, I am excited to play and find out more, because really any innovation or break from the mould should be applauded with reckless abandon. Of course there’s a chance that I’ll have my heart broken and I’ll be left with nought but disappointment, but that’s no different from my daily life in general. I think I’m finally ready to fall in love with the first-person shooter all over again.
Once more into the fray, my friends.
Where else should ‘Far Cry’ go? What other franchises could do with a change in era? Tweet me @StrifeDarko. And be sure to follow us @YouNerded.
The Night Of: “The Call of the Wild” Review
Vice Principals: “The Foundation of Learning” Review
The Night Of: “Ordinary Death” Review
Joe Hill’s ‘The Fireman’ Review
How Speedrunning Changed My Perception of Games
Vice Principals: “Circles” Review
The Night Of: “Samson and Delilah” Review
‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ Review
Vice Principals: “Run for the Money” Review
The Night Of: “The Season of the Witch” Review