The latest in Ubisoft’s open-world Far Cry series, set in modern-day Montana. Far Cry has always gone to exotic locations, but this game is set in the heart of the USA – if the teasers are to be believed. It takes place in modern times too, which isn’t all that unusual, but that does mean you’ll be fighting against some politically sensitive groups. Home-grown terrorists? Isolationists? Gangs gone rogue? The setting and time period are likely to land this game in the midst of real-world political tensions, which could make it one of the most talked-about games of the year. Expect a full reveal, real soon.
Ubi’s latest take on Far Cry 5 brings its familiar open world town liberating to the USA. There are cults to kill, towns to save and, while you might think it looks a bit like the previous games, there’s loads of new little details you might have missed. The latest of all in the game is Boomer is immediately the best video game dog. The goodest of good boys. He snuffles in the grass, barks at distant cows and, when you press the ‘pet’ button, jumps up into your face, basically licking the camera with excitement. I press the ‘pet’ button a lot. Sure, I’m meant to be rescuing the town from extremist cultists currently executing people with a baseball bat right now, but… priorities. The other thing Boomer’s good at is tearing out throats, something I order him to do when I finally attack. As he creeps around a car to take down a periphery guard pointed out to him, I open fire from a flanking position when soldiers run in to investigate. It’s almost unfair – as the dog causes panic, one torn throat at a time, I bounce from truck yard to garden, vaulting picket fences and rattling gunfire off at the bad guys.
Boomer also tags enemies as he moves about, meaning I just follow his lead and in minutes it’s all over. There was a lot of discussion with other people, post hands on, about whether ‘it just felt like another Far Cry.’ It does, but it also nails what the series does so well: problem solving, reactionary gunfights that unfold as enemies and situations present themselves. I just sort of tumbled from one encounter to the next until it was over, loving every minute of it. And it’s that world, with the new game play that shakes up what could otherwise feel familiar. Animal attacks, random patrol encounters, and more all feel very Far Cry, but vaulting a chain link fence and slamming into cover behind a dumpster near a dive bar is quite an eye opener for the series. There’s no strange island or Nepalese mountains this time. Those more exotic locational twists are replaced by neon signs for domestic beer, grocery store fronts and rolling fields that conjure up images of a hardworking Joe in a plaid shirt taking off a baseball cap to wipe his brow. Every time you look around there’s something closer to home that stops you for a second when you realise. However the release date is sanctioned on 27th of February 2018.