Far Cry 5 is right around the corner with just over a week to wait until it is released on Tuesday 27 March 2018. Ubisoft’s latest entry in the open world, first person sandbox shooter is set in Hope County, Montana in the good ole US of A where a fanatical religious cult known as Eden’s Gate have taken over the town and taking people against their will and brainwashing them into their warped beliefs and any who resist are mercilessly slaughtered.
The cult is headed by “The Father” Joseph Seed played peerlessly by actor Greg Bryk who lends his voice and his likeness as he was so right for the developer’s image of what the antagonist should look like they scanned his full body into the game using advanced techniques for creating character models from real people and putting them into the game.
Joseph is aided by his siblings John, Jacob and Faith Seed who he collectively calls “The Heralds” and each will act as under-bosses you must defeat in the game before you can go after Joseph.
Gameplay looks similar to previous Far Cry games with a huge open world to explore, multiple vehicles on land, sea and air you can drive, a multitude of different guns that can be modified and customised to your liking. The cult has dozens of outposts setup around Hope County for you to liberate as you see fit where that’s going in stealthily taking them out one by one or strapping some C4 to the side of a massive truck and creating merry hell. So far so Far Cry.
But the developers have made a number of small changes to the formula which will hopefully shake it up just enough without detracting from what makes a Far Cry game. The long standard radio towers to uncover new areas’ side missions are gone, apart from an early mission where you have to climb one but this is a cheeky nod to past entries as the NPC tells us we won’t have to do that ever again. Instead new side missions unlock by exploring off the main story path and interacting with certain objects or talking with NPCs.
The game also takes a few leads from both Assassin’s Creed: Origins and The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild with a much cleaner looking HUD and far less reliance on looking at the map to figure out where to go next. Outposts are clearly marked by billowing black smoke that can be seen from great distances much like the shrines in Breath Of The Wild and there is no mini-map. There is still the full world map available and you can place markers and have a line guide you to objectives or if you wish just look at which direction you should be heading in and use the Elder Scrolls-esque compass and objectives bar at the top of the screen to navigate your way there.
Of course it wouldn’t be Far Cry without loads of animals, some of which can be tamed and used to help you take out Eden’s Gate. Animals are realistic to the one’s you’ll find in Montana so there’s bears, cougars, ducks and even turkeys just to name a few. Speaking of bears you get your very own pet bear to cause utter chaos with called Cheeseburger from an early mission in the game and a dog by the name of Boomer who can attack enemies and even bring their guns back for you. You can also enlist the help of other NPCs from crackshot snipers to give you some overwatch assistance from afar or pilot Nick Rye who will swoop in with his Bi-plane and drop bombs on demand.
The entire game can be played solo or in online two player co-op with a friend as you take down the cult together. There is also Far Cry Arcade the game’s separate multiplayer co-op and PVP component which has a full level editor where you can create your own maps using assets from all of the Far Cry games and several other Ubisoft games as well. Or play several maps already made for you by the developers or other people’s creations should add dozens of hours of fun to the game even after the credits have rolled on the campaign.
So Far Cry 5 is shaping up to be a great fun open world shooter with a great antagonist and a lot of fun gameplay mechanics to play with, a bigger focus on world exploration it’s all shaping up to be a great game. I’ve been impressed by preview footage of the sort of mission variety on offer and am looking forward to playing the full game on Tuesday 27 March 2018.