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Far Cry 5

Platform(s): PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Genre: Action/Adventure
Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Release Date: March 27, 2018


PS4/XOne/PC Preview - 'Far Cry 5'

by Adam Pavlacka on March 13, 2018 @ 1:00 a.m. PDT

As the new junior deputy of fictional Hope County, Montana, players will find that their arrival accelerates a years-long silent coup by a fanatical doomsday cult, the Project at Eden's Gate, igniting a violent takeover of the county.

Pre-order Far Cry 5

When it comes to big-name franchises, Far Cry is a personal favorite. The original game set a standard for lush tropical graphics when it debuted, while Far Cry 2 provided a solid desert sandbox to play in. Far Cry 3 once again pushed the bar forward, both in visuals and in the open-world gameplay, while Far Cry 4 was a refinement of the previous game's mechanics for the current generation of systems.

Of course, you can't forget Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon, one of the most insanely cool standalone expansion packs to ship in recent memory. If you've never played a single Far Cry game, start with Blood Dragon. It's one of the best fun-per-dollar experiences available in gaming.

We've seen bits and pieces of Far Cry 5 over the past year, and every time Ubisoft reveals something new, it piques my interest more. Now only does it sound like a solid game, but all of the announced extra features and season pass elements are also substantial.

The core gameplay in Far Cry 5 builds on what we've seen before, with the most intriguing new element being the Guns for Hire. You've got a veteran sharpshooter, two pilots (one flies a plane, the other a chopper), a hunter, a pyro, Hurk (returning from Far Cry 3 and Far Cry 4), and Boomer, the dog. Each offers a different skill set, which promises to change the way you approach scenarios in Far Cry 5. Attacking with Hurk at your side is going to be different than facing off against enemies with Boomer helping you out. And who doesn't want to jump into the fight with a kickass doggo at your side? Seriously though, if Boomer gets distracted by a squeaker toy, we're going to be having words.

Unlike other Far Cry games that have been set in foreign lands, Far Cry 5 is set in the U.S. state of Montana. Hope County is fictional, but it's real enough to seem familiar. The underlying story of a religious cult leader taking over a town and fighting against law and order is entirely fictional, but from what we've seen, it sounds like it could've been inspired by real-life events.

Honestly, the big draw for the story is actor Greg Bryk, who plays cult leader and general fanatic, Joseph Seed. Bryk is probably best known for his roles of Jeremy Danvers in "Bitten" and more recently, the sociopathic "clean-up man" Cobbs Pond, on the Netflix show "Frontier." If he can bring half of Pond's personality to the role of Seed, it'll be an amazing performance. (Side note: If you haven't yet seen "Frontier," check it out.)

Outside of the single-player campaign, Far Cry Arcade also piqued my interest. In what promises to be the most full-featured map editor for an open-world console game, players will be able to create and share custom levels, as well as play levels designed by the team at Ubi. It features more than 9,000 items from Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, Assassin's Creed Unity, Far Cry 4, Far Cry 5, Far Cry Primal and Watch Dogs, so you can expect some pretty creative mash-ups. Items will be added to Arcade after launch, with at least six different themed additions. Three of those will be items from the three DLC missions, with the other three still unknown (I would be shocked and disappointed if one of those "unknown" drops isn't Blood Dragon-themed).

Speaking of Blood Dragon, it was the inspiration behind each of the three DLC adventures included in the season pass. The add-on missions have absolutely nothing to do with the main game. One has you fighting in Vietnam, another drops you onto Mars (complete with gnarly aliens), and the third has zombies. The zombie DLC features "wave after wave" of zombies, so I'm expecting that one to have some sort of survival mode. If these are half as inspired as Blood Dragon, they'll be brilliant.

Finally, there is Far Cry 3. While this isn't nearly as appealing for PC players as a bonus, getting a remaster of one of the older games on current-gen consoles is a big plus. Far Cry 3 is included with the season pass.

Ubisoft has promised a lot with Far Cry 5, and if it can't deliver, there's going to be plenty of crow to eat. Assuming that Far Cry 5 lives up to the hype, this is a title that is likely to land on quite a few "must buy" lists. We'll have the final verdict in a few weeks, so check back then.

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