Far Cry Primal, is the most fun I’ve had connected to electricity yet this year. It’s better than the sum of it’s parts for a million reasons, but mostly it succeeds where other games fail because it sticks a premise, bordering on obsession.
FAR CRY PRIMAL VIDEO REVIEW
Far Cry Primal transports the players into the word of TAKKAR, a pre-historic member of the Wenja tribe who has to discover a lost land, find a lost people and kill everything that crosses his path. This distraction is precipitated by a disaster involving members of your previous tribe that have since been reduced to kitty litter.
Like any Far Cry game there are trillions of things to do- all neatly and efficiently outlined on the main map, like saving tribe members- helping to build up your base or the always favorite tame and raise beasts for your devious aims. If you’re familiar even tacitly with the franchise then this process will seem warm and cozy like the inside of a freshly harvested yak.
Like previous iteration in the series, the land of Oros is one of the most narrative convincing world Ubisoft has ever made. I lost hours in my arduous quest for ever illusive Red Leafs (little did I know they don’t grow near water) near a river basin to subsequently discover a mammoth Massacre, two bears fighting…and something I couldn’t explain in words.
It feels more alive than any other game world I’ve been explored in – because it’s truly alive. The link between Narrative expression and gameplay is captured simply due to a world that is a reflection of an experience and dedication to a premise.
As for how Takkar will be navigating and murderizing in the world, there are always new and exciting ways to kill from the traditional; bow and arrow, upgrading to spears and clubs and then eventually bee hives, since that is the common ladder for success. Most of the items claim to have utility for different situations, but likely you’ll just settle into one camp and refuse to diversify.
There is a robust upgrades system that ties into the meta element of world building. Sticking with a trend popularized by titles like Metal Gear Solid V and Fallout 4 every new game with a numeral attached seems to be required to include world building. It’s a lazy way for game makers to railroad in compelling features that cause players to clean up your mess, the mess in this case random items you normally would have no inclination to gather (or kill) save for the love of such roll play….but I digress.
If you’re not a fan of the aforementioned trend, have no fear! It’s easy to develop and doesn’t derail the main story in fact if you play quickly enough you might not even notice it’s there.
As for your main impetus for killing Neanderthals and hunting monsters- it’s pretty flimsy. I really had high hopes after meeting with the team- they did they best they could and even went above and beyond, bringing in experts- developing different methods of capturing character expressions.
In the end though, the translation is broken English that you always have to read. I’m not one to complain about such things but after 12 hours with no precised banter to enjoy as we kill, it has an affect.
One of the high points though of this cast of characters.
Is Tensay the Shaman– not only does he channel Sulik for Fallout 2- he precipitates these incredibly compelling, Spirit Quests that transport the hero to an unknown world sometimes fighting the perils of evil while hallucinating or perhaps learning more about himself. These moments are the most compelling of the main narrative, they give an insight into tribal woes in a way that’s funny and penetrating(classic to the Far Cry brand) .
Still this title does something very few games have ever done. The universe wants you to feel like you don’t possess a contemporary mind.
Your only drive is that of a prehistoric man, terror is around every corner, the weapons sometimes feel sluggish and brutish along with the combat volleys, but it’s meant to, in order to serve the premise. I am a prehistoric man, meandering through different environments not because X character said so…but because that’s all I can conceive.
The exquisite rush when a whisper of noise flutters behind your back at the dead of night as you hunt, only to catch a whiff of a Saber-tooth tiger and the soft growls of your loyal wolf as the only refugee. I am a prehistoric man.
The cut scenes don’t matter or the simple character motivations of other games. I have to survive, I have to explore.
You play as a man 12 thousand years in the past and somehow the folks at Ubisoft have been able to create an experience that makes me thankful for the stresses of modern life.
Pairing an innovative premise, to brilliant mechanics and most importantly- the most immersive world I’ve ever been dropped in.