It’s story time! Everyone loves stories.
Once upon a time there was a small two-man company called Crytek. Crytek went to E3 with an engine that displayed the most realistic graphics ever seen. What they showed was a lush realistic looking jungle. In a time when polygon style graphics was so common Crytek showed there was another way. Crytek wanted to sell the engine, what they got was something very different.
Ubisoft came forward and said they want them to build a game that features these lush jungles and open world setting.
And so Far Cry was born. This game was released in 2004 for the PC. The specs for this game at the time were so high that no console could run it.
So it was only released for PC and despite this it sold over 700,000 copies making it Ubisoft’s most profitable game at the time.
So since this game it’s important to note not to judge this game for innovations that simply did not exist at the time, like regenerating health points.
Far Cry was a game changer for it’s time.
But the real question is, is it worth buying today.
Certainly things have changed and Far Cry no longer looks as amazing as it did:
But the sad thing is that it still looks better than a lot of the shooters out today. This game in 2004 has slightly better graphics than Modern Warfare 3 and about the same graphics as Battlefield 3.
It’s amazing how nine years have passed and really not too much has changed eh?
What really wins this game over are the lush atmospheres including some great underwater bits
And rich forests of course
The game also has some weird things to it that try to get you into the mood of the game. Here for example is a copy of RedNeck Today:
Also don’t forget your copy of Play Merc:
Little things like this add to the cool factor of the game. But chances are 99% of people did not find either of these magazines.
This game comes in a year or two before the fad of cover based combat. This is the Max Paynes, the Mass Effects, The Grand Theft Autos, and the Saints Rows. All of those games were top performing games and seemingly the entire industry was shifting to some sort of cover based system. Cover based systems are not always bad, but these run and gun games definitely hold far more fun factor.
So you have four weapons slots and you can pick up and drop weapons as you go. Also ammunition is rather scarce leading to the survival aspect of the game.
For most of the game I used an assault rifle, it was accurate, long range and most importantly if I was in a panic I could just hold down the left click button and spin it around hoping to hit people.
The game’s hardest difficulty is still quite relevant as it took probably twice as long to finish the hardest difficulty as it might have taken the easiest one.
The story of Far Cry is by far one of the dumbest ones. Oddly enough this story has persevered throughout all of the Far Cry games and continues to repeat the same thing over and over. So a man and a woman are on a vacation and their boat gets close to an island in which an evil scientist is doing experiments. They attempt to capture the tourists only to find that one of them is a little harder to catch.
One of the nice things about Far Cry is an obvious homage to Doom.
In fact a lot of the game looks like Doom and it is obvious at least at this point in Crytek’s life that they were huge fans of Doom.
A little disappointing is how little options you had for moving around however.
I found this little vent:
As I walked towards it I realized it was purely aesthetic and that I could not enter the vent. Walking through vents of course was synonymous with older games allowing for multiple ways to get around.
The interior of the game is just entirely linear. There are some loops but you will go one linear path or another. There’s nothing really clever about it.
The outside world however is giant and allows for multiple playstyles. You can find positions to snipe, launch rockets, close quarters for shotguns and some venues for running and gunning to cover.
This is a really odd design choice as you are constantly bouncing between one of the most linear games to one of the most open world games.
The game was so obviously designed for the outside and the inside levels were an after thought. This is even more obvious by the option to “Run Demo” on the title screen that allows you to continuous loop a screen saver of the beautiful jungles and waterfalls.
On the hardest difficulty this game took me 18 hours to beat, a better person might be able to beat it in 14-16.
This game for what it is, is actually really good and definitely worth picking up at $10. On sale it is a steal.
Before ending this I should note exactly what this game is.
Every single publisher on the planet needs to have one title that shows the pinnacle of what they can do. It is important that it is a beautiful game that they can show at a trade show. Usually this game is a racing game. But in this case Ubisoft (who really don’t do racing games) has gone for a first person shooter as their trade show piece.
Ubisoft since the release of Farcry has skyrocketed to being one of the most successful publishers in the world with successful franchises like Assassins Creed, Trackmania, Heroes of Might and Magic, Trials, Splint Cell, Ghost Recon, Rainbow Six, Rayman, Anno, and The Settlers.
Their success has been based on taking risks on games like this one.