|Far Cry 5|
|release date||March 2018|
With the release of Far Cry 3, Ubisoft hit upon the perfect formula to take the series forward. Further, the developers made minimal changes to their concept of an open world shooter. The constant change of scenery and the atmosphere of a bright exotic adventure made each new game interesting and memorable in its own way. We saw Blood Dragon in the style of retro VHS action movies, got a full-fledged big game Far Cry 4 with references to the Himalayas, and then went on a primal adventure in Far Cry Primal. In the new game, the authors refused to travel to wild countries, offering to visit the no less wild outback of the United States. Far Cry 5 sends us to the state of Montana, where sectarians are rampaging in Hope County, arranging a small local war.
Unlike past games, we are offered a faceless assistant to the federal marshal as a hero. The story begins with the fact that our detachment arrives at the main village of fanatics in order to take into custody the leader of the sectarians. Further, everything is expected to go according to plan. The helicopter with the prisoner is not allowed to take off, the hunt for the servants of the law begins.
All this becomes a sign of the beginning of the Apocalypse, which the local distraught flock is looking forward to. So the district is covered by an orgy of madness and terror. And the nameless hero is forced to join the ranks of the resistance in order to save his comrades from captivity.
Far Cry 5 follows a familiar pattern. You need to win back control over different zones, gradually knock out the bosses and get close to the main villain. The whole story is built on characters and confrontation with them. Each villain is a bright type with an aura of mystery, cockroaches in the head and strange abilities. Flirting with the theme of drug delirium here resulted in protracted parishes, when the line between reality and hallucinations is completely erased. Moreover, such madness is a frequent attribute of the main story, and not some individual situations.
Strange things happen to us from time to time. We are captured time after time, experiencing some kind of feverish delirium and plunging into a world of strange dreams. But all this is inscribed in a certain general concept with exposure through narcotic mixtures and brainwashing. Through such scenes move the main plot. That’s just outrageous and pathos in them more than any sense. And a series of repetitive moments frankly annoying, despite the cunning plot move that justifies them.
The sharpness is given by the socio-political overtones, played out in the usual style for Ubisoft — with irony and jokes. The game reflects some social phobias and stereotypes, presenting a caricature image of the American outback. Some farmers, men with guns and just weirdos suddenly come to the fore, becoming heroes. Most of the local characters traditionally do not like the federal government, some are obvious conspiracy theorists. There is even an amateur ufologist who scours the fields in search of traces of aliens. It can be seen that the rude local peasants are being teased, but these cute eccentrics with their conservatism are clearly prettier than the distraught sectarians who are ready to plunge the world into chaos.
On the other hand, there are bright extraordinary personalities. And their Father looks like a decent guy in general — with tattoos, in fashionable glasses and only from a barber shop. This is not a shame to go to a demonstration for a shining democracy or the rights of minorities. However, it is he who embodies the image of fanatical radicalism.
Among other things, the authors trampled a little on one notorious president with tousled hair, especially since in some circles this is a fashionable topic. A separate mission was devoted to hiding the presidential secret and even did without equivocations and vague wording, so that it was immediately clear who they were talking about.
On such eccentricity and bright characters, the story rests. Sometimes it’s funny, but often the story acts as a kind of backdrop for running around the open world. And if we talk directly about the gameplay, then Far Cry 5 is not much different from the fourth part. There are no changes to the basic mechanics. This is the same shooter with elements of stealth and many additional features.
Some tactical freedom within the open world is essential. You can act aggressively or covertly and quietly. To destroy the checkpoint with enemies, you can throw grenades at them or take them by storm, pouring fire from a machine gun on everything. And you can sneak up in the grass, knock out your neighbors with a quiet technique, and neutralize others with throwing knives or a bow.
The list of weapons is quite familiar — pistols, rifles, machine guns, bow, grenade launcher. Along the way, you can carry grenades and Molotov cocktails, dynamite and remote-controlled explosives. In terms of special tricks, you won’t see anything new either. In addition to a banal blow from the back, you can jump on the enemy from the roof or attack from below. Under the right circumstances, you can perform a series of quick kills at once.
The game offers many large and small missions. There are few large-scale tasks with a written history that pushes for certain actions. And bright original situations do not indulge us. Everything is built according to the standard scheme, when we find ourselves in the arena with enemies, and then act in accordance with our style of passing.
There is a feeling that Far Cry 5 has leaned towards a rich world, where there are few large thought-out missions, but many small adventures. The game constantly generates random events. Cars with sectarians ply along the highway, and a group of fighters may appear in the bushes. Yes, animals can be annoying. As a result, a run around the neighborhood can turn into a protracted fight. For example, you encountered an animal, a patrol ran up to the sound of shots, then new forces pulled up — and so on up to the helicopter in the air. The game can slide into chaos from scratch, and it’s annoying. But we must admit that after all the updates, this happens much less frequently.
The aggressive world is associated with the presence of satellites and the possibility of cooperative passage. Partners open as you progress through the story. Completing individual missions expands the list of available comrades, after which they can be drafted into the team. Each participant has his own characteristics and unique abilities. A big guy with a grenade launcher is good for wreaking havoc over a large area. However, with his shooting style, you yourself can become a victim. There is a partner who will provide air cover and allow you to use a helicopter for fast movement. If you prefer stealth, then a tame puma will be a good helper, allowing you to act without too much attention. The dog will bring the weapon of the killed enemy, which saves in case of rapid consumption of ammunition.
Partners in their own way enliven the gameplay. Giving them simple commands, we resort to some kind of planning and act more thoughtfully. In my personal opinion, the best companions are those who allow you to remain stealthy. Otherwise, any approach to the enemy will immediately roll into chaotic shooting. Sabotage tactics remain the optimal solution, but if it fails, then the intensity of the confrontation quickly increases.
Far Cry 5 already feels like a collection of similar missions and standard actions. But the combination of all the elements also gives rise to a feeling of rich adventure — they ran through the grove, killed an aggressive beast, freed a random hostage from fanatics, found a cache, destroyed a checkpoint, and then suddenly decided to go to the task mark on the map. Any initiative to explore the world leads to the fact that you are drawn into a series of gunfights and small skirmishes.
Among the pleasant changes is the search for caches. It used to be about exploring the landscape looking for a hidden cave or something. Now there are fewer caches, but each one is connected with a small story. First, we get information and a mark on the map, and then we try to get inside. In one case, you need to pump out water from the basement, in another situation, the door opens with a secret device, somewhere it is a mini-maze with obstacles. That is, in each case it turns out a small adventure, and some of them are furnished in a very interesting way.
Small pleasures include fishing. It allows you to relax well, watching the beautiful landscapes. Fighting fish can also be difficult if a large specimen comes across. But in general, the process itself is a little easier than fishing in Final Fantasy XV, where you had to combine lures and buy new rods.
The game world is divided into three large provinces, which are dissected by rivers, and in the center they are separated by a lake. Therefore, not only land transport is traditionally available, but also means of water transportation. It does not do without flights by planes and helicopters. The hero can also parachute jump and use a gliding wingsuit to quickly descend from mountains and high points. But all this must be unlocked for experience points, as well as the ability to climb rocks with a grappling hook.
Vehicles are rarely used in large missions. And although the game starts with a bright chase with explosions and shooting, then we are not happy with such rides. There are some chases or surveillance using vehicles, but they happen extremely rarely. But in the open world, every situation is unpredictable, so an attempt to destroy a random convoy or a truck with fuel can also turn into a mass brawl with sudden pursuit.
Fans of fast driving can try their hand at a series of racing challenges — race over potholes in a burning car or drive through an ornate track with jumps on a quad bike.
Pumping is implemented according to the usual scheme. We earn special points and spend them on new abilities or improving old ones. What’s new is that points can now also be earned by searching for caches, and this encourages exploration of the world. By purchasing new perks, you can increase your health, carry more ammo, improve your weapon skills, unlock your wingsuit, and more. But the need for hunting actually disappeared. Now we do not collect items of equipment from animal skins, such trophies are needed only for trade. But the components for the creation of explosives and bottles with a combustible mixture are in demand. From the herbs in the quick inventory, you can combine useful stimulants to increase survivability and more.
An addition to the main game is the Arcade mode. This is both a series of individual missions, a network game and a constructor in which the user himself can create new cards. Far Cry Arcade has maps for multiplayer battles and co-op, plus separate adventures for solo play. Some stealth missions can be exciting, someone will like shooting zombies on a special map, someone will be fascinated by confrontation with real players in multiplayer. Ubisoft’s starter pack of maps allows you to try out all the modes. But in essence, Arcade is left to users, who will constantly fill the library with new mini-adventures.
All this will be a good addition for those for whom the main game is not enough. Although among the abundance of maps and mini-missions, there are not enough sensible ones. Yes, and the multiplayer is simple, will not captivate for a long time. Much more interesting is the editor itself, which allows you to experiment with the game and create something of your own.
Far Cry 5 uses an updated version of the Dunia Engine 2. The picture is pretty, although in visual terms the game did not show a technological breakthrough compared to previous parts.
The new game is prettier than Far Cry 4 mainly due to the lighting. In the new part, there is no effect of detailed rays of light, but there is an effect of dense volumetric light. It is especially beautiful during sunrise or sunset, although dense haze and fog sometimes spoil the experience. On the other hand, large panoramas with backgrounds smoothly dissolving into haze look more natural.
Better detailed grass and vegetation. The surface of the earth and stones look embossed, in places the use of tessellation is noticeable to create complex convex surfaces.
The water has changed dramatically. Light waves on the surface and reliable reflections make it more alive. Here even the transparency depends on the viewing angle and lighting.
The default anti-aliasing mode is always TAA. It provides good results at low system load, but can also give a slight blurring effect along the way. It is complemented by the motion blur effect, which can be safely turned off. If the picture is still fuzzy for you, switch to FXAA anti-aliasing.
The game lost support for all NVIDIA technologies that were the fourth part. But Far Cry 5 uses a special water simulation system using Rapid Packed Math technology, which accelerates calculations on AMD Radeon graphics accelerators, all based on DirectX 11 without switching to other APIs. We will talk more about performance in a separate article. A comparison of different AMD and NVIDIA video cards is presented in a special test.
You can appreciate the graphics potential at Ultra settings by watching a video demonstrating the game in 4K on the Radeon RX Vega 64.
By the fifth installment, the Far Cry series has begun to deflate, but has not yet lost its grip. Despite the change of scenery, there is a sense of secondary nature and a certain crisis of ideas. The plot is torn, an attempt to touch on sensitive topics melts under the onslaught of senseless pathos and outrageous dialogues. However, Far Cry 5 is still a peppy open-world action game that entertains the player much better than other games of the same genre. There are interesting innovations — from the system of mercenaries to penetration into secret shelters. In general, a bet was made on the abundance of content. There is a co-op, a lot of random events are generated, plus there is a Far Cry Arcade with additional missions and multiplayer. For an experienced player, all this will not cause delight, but it can captivate for many hours. If the previous games in the series went with a bang, then Far Cry 5 will not disappoint.