I’ll be honest, I’ve been getting bored of Far Cry. I don’t know if it’s the constant re-use of borrowed mechanics across the industry or the over-reliance on psychotic villains to keep the player listening to an otherwise mediocre plot. Whatever the reason, the series just doesn’t grab me like it once did.
However, Far Cry Primal may just be the significant change that Far Cry needs to breathe new life into the series.
For the past two games Far Cry has been about embracing the wild, the hunt, or some sort of tribal spiritualism to conquer and kill your enemies. But with Far Cry primal the development team at Ubisoft Montreal is “embracing the wild”. Sure you can’t blow things up but that doesn’t mean that your methods in Far Cry primal will be tame.
Gone are the guns and the rehashed militias under evil dictators. Instead, Ubsioft is taking Far Cry back to the Stone Age bringing more survival elements to the game and just a twist of fantasy to keep it interesting.
This is enough to get me interested in the series once again; despite the usual tools of Far Cry being missing (except the bow which is now a staple in any Far Cry it seems). Ubisoft is still providing a wide variety of interesting ways to kill your enemies, ranging from riding mammoths to throwing a bomb full of bees.
In addition to more traditional tools, like spears and axes, you have animal companions, such as your trusty owl, which can scout out areas, mark enemies, and even attack them.
Survival mechanics are also more of a big deal in Far Cry Primal cold areas require you to keep warm to survive with Ubisoft focusing on making night time exploration more dangerous than ever. I’m a sucker for punishment in video games, and if these elements provide more challenges to the game and make hunting more interesting, then I’m sold.
Another change I’m happy to see that will add to the challenge and survival element of the game is the lack of regenerating health with health healed by eating meat. How readily this meat is available may be linked to how much you hunt, but it’s also possible we will see a shop system or trading in some way as in previous games.
One thing is for certain: Far Cry Primal looks to be Far Cry in its freshest coat of paint yet.