Hello Player One and welcome to One Up Level Up! Luke here, this time with a review on the brand new Farcry 5. So let’s begin!
The various games in the Farcry series have each had unique settings, we witnessed the previous games taking us to a remote country in the himalayan mountains ruled by a tyrant and even the Mesolithic Age in Farcry Primal.
This time, however, Farcry takes us to a somewhat less remote location. Farcry 5 is set within America. Somewhere in the state of Montana there is a community known as Hope County which is currently governed by a cult organization called Project at Eden’s Gate, which is run by the cult’s leader, Father Joseph Seed.
The map itself does not seem to be a carbon copy of a previous Farcry game *cough cough*, so that’s at least a step up from Primal. As far as the rural setting of Hope County, Montana, Ubisoft seems to have pulled it off quite well, making Montana a pretty great sandbox for the players.
Farcry 5 does offer some new ideas to the series, but the game isn’t groundbreaking in many ways. In other words, it’s a Farcry game. If you really enjoy that style of gameplay, that’s great news for you, but don’t go into this expecting Ubisoft to be very adventurous with one of their major franchises. They’re not the Nintendo team behind Breath of the Wild afterall.
That being said, Farcry 5 creates a fun and rather immersive sandbox world to explore and cause destruction. There is a decent amount of weaponry to wield, and many vehicles to allow for ease of travel. If you have not previously played a Farcry game, the general concept for the gameplay is that you gather weapons, traverse the game’s open world, and take out camps of henchmen that work for the main villain. There is usually a resistance force that you can join up with to topple the corrupt tyrant’s government. The same rings true, more or less in this game.
Farcry 5 is the first game in the series to allow for the player to access and operate aircraft during gameplay, which is pretty much always a great thing to attract players, as flying around an open world map is simply a great feeling. Especially for the players with a more destructive side that wish to unleash hell on the unexpecting henchmen below.
One of the biggest innovations to the series that Farcry 5 provides, however, is the addition of drop-in drop-out co-op multiplayer! Imagine running around a destructible open world, then imagine twice the mayhem as you and a buddy are let loose in the sandbox that is Farcry 5! This paired with the heavier focus on NPC companion characters will allow far greater options over how you want to play. If you prefer playing solo, you can do that. If you’d rather have an ally, but still prefer a more single player experience, you can do that with the NPC allies. Want to pal around with your best friend? Yup, you can also do that.
From a design perspective, I can admire that Ubisoft has attempted to reduce the HUD, which allows for a more immersive experience.
Story & Characters
The main character of Farcry 5 marks the first time in the series that you can customize your character with their gender and other small features, like what they wear and hairstyles. The customization is a welcome addition, as it can allow for players to really step into the shoes of their character more than any previous Farcry character before. Although I would argue that having a well written and pre-defined character can be beneficial for the sake of story and immersion. Look at Geralt in the Witcher games.
Next up we have the villains. Joseph Seed is a pretty good villain, although his performance in the story does not shine as bright as Pagan Min’s from Farcry 4. Ultimately his character simply does not seem as fleshed out as other Farcry villains. Joseph Seed believes that he is a disciple chosen by God to be a visionary that would lead the righteous to safety during the end of the world, the safety that he calls Eden’s Gate. Seed can be seen with a man bun, sporting his favorite yellow lensed glasses. He can be seen in the game shirtless, which revelas a multitude of tattoos and scars from carvings he has made on his body. These scars form the words of the seven deadly sins most notably, but he also has many other scars all over his body.
The game does show the power of his influence, however, as we must go and bring down each of his siblings in order to get through to him.
These siblings are devoted to Joseph Seed and his zealous vision. The first is Jacob Seed, who is a veteran and the eldest, making the cult leader Joseph the second born. Jacob is the guy who controls the Whitetail Mountains region, acting as the head of security and also doing the job of recruiting people to the cult.
The next sibling is John Seed, a lawyer who has been tasked with controlling the Holland Valley region. Being a trained lawyer, John Seed is the cult’s legal head who works to protect the cult from the government and other matters of questionable legality.
The youngest sibling is Faith Seed, who is only a half-sister. She has been given control over the Henbane River and is a persuasive voice for the cult’s vision. Her role in the game is a rather interesting one, as she utilizes a gas drug that provides you with an interesting set of visions, also known as hallucinations.
There are also plenty of NPC companions that you can interact with, which is a nice addition to the cast of characters.
Another new addition to the Farcry series that has been implemented with this game is the map editor. While I have not personally meddled with the editor, it seems like it provides devent tools that will help the community create awesome custom experiences. Using the Arcade mode, players can also play levels you’ve made in the editor and you’ll certainly be able to play theirs. I think that the inclusion of the editor will help Farcry 5 have a longer lifespan than it otherwise would have, as it allows the community to interact with each other on a wider scale. As of right now, however, the creations that I have seen have been rather subpar, though I imagine that quality will come in time.
While Farcry 5 is absolutely a good game, I don’t know if I would go so far as to say that it is a great game. It improves on the Farcry formula in some neat ways, but it still clings to a formula that some players would argue is getting stale. With the plot revolving around a cult in an American setting, it reminds me of Bioshock Infinite and Outlast 2, which means that perhaps Farcry 5 is just a little too late to ride the cult train, and some have claimed the game of plagerism. I do not know if I would go that far, but I still think that sometimes trends in gaming can outstay their welcome.
In general, it’s a Farcry game. If you like the other games, you should probably buy it. If you’re getting tired of the same old formula, probably stay away. Finally, if you’ve never played a Farcry game before, you might want to pick this one up, or at least rent it, just to give it a shot.
Anyways, hope you enjoyed this review and I do hope that you come back for more reviews, news, and game dev discussions! Happy gaming!