Far Cry has always been a franchise I found hard to get into. From weird mutant monkeys on an island trying to kill you, to gay tyrants seeking your help in taking over a country, the game franchise have always been all over the place. Far Cry Primal breaks from this mould and gives us a truly unique game that gives you a glimpse into what life was actually like thousands of years ago when automation would have been regarded as witchcraft.

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Story

Far Cry Primal takes you back 10000 years, when Mankind was finally starting to settle from their nomadic ways. You, playing as Takkar, finds himself in a strange land and meets up with the Wenja people, and sets out to conquer the Umam who for some strange reason eats the Wenja. The game plays out in the Oros Valley (or Central Europe) just as the Ice Age ended.

In the game you meet quite a number of interesting characters, from the tribal spiritual leader, to a crazy old fellow with one arm. The story is deep and engaging and it truly pulls you in as you try to establish your tribe, and build your settlement.

What I found most pleasant was the way the story was structured. The game gave you the freedom to randomly chose your path in this new world, giving you a tonne of tasks. I played for about 2 – 3 hours before I started actually getting into the story, because traversing this world was so much fun.

Scattered accross the landscape are campsites, outposts and sidequests that requires you to take out the enemy Umam, and save the Wenja so they can become part of your tribe. The setting also lends to the suspense of having to survive. At any moment you can run into a badger, or a pack of wolves and running away isn’t always a good option because they always catch up to you.

Like the Assassins Creed games, the Primal landscape truly sets the mood for the game.

Gameplay

Far Cry Primal was an adjustment to get into, from the controls to adjusting how one should go about doing certain things. The game rips you from the comfort of a sub machine gun, and gives you a club and a crude bow and arrow. It’s quite hard to take down enemies and predators, and it forces you to assess your chances of survival.

In the game you cannot purchase new weapons or upgrades, you have to scour the world looking for resources that can be used in upgrading your settlement and weapons. From wood, skins and types of stone, it gives you hours of gameplay trying to hunt down that rare mountain lion or Black Bear.

What I found most satisfying was being able to tame a Sabretooth tiger. Having a trusty sidekick was great for when you have to take down a number of enemies. What I found strange in this game is that you couldn’t ask your fellow tribes people (who are scattered across the world in numbers) to assist you in doing a certain task. If they used the Assassins Creed model of calling in backup would have helped a lot in taking down outposts, even if it was just to distract the enemies.

The game also creates the nightlife successfully and when you’re walking about during the night your heart races as jaguars and wolves attack animals, and without the Sabretooth tiger chasing them away, I would have been on the dinner menu as well. If a bunch of glowing eyes in the dark scares you, I would suggest you go to camp and sleep until dawn, and sometimes that isn’t even enough.

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Graphics

Words cannot comprehend how beautiful this game is. From the animals roaming the world to how the whole world draws you in with exceptional realism, this game is a stunner. I don’t think I have seen any modern game have this much foliage ever, there is almost no empty patch in this world (except for the snowy bits).

From early morning to late at night, the deep forest to the frozen peaks of the mountains every part of the world has specific foliage and unique animals roaming that part of the world. Even the enemies stick to fires in the cold, as you only have a specific time you can survive in the blizzard.

The game runs at 1080×1440 resolution and what seems to be a solid 30FPS on Xbox One, and you won’t see any jaggies (aliasing) anywhere in the world. Ubisoft truly created the most amazing recreation of Stone Age Europe.

Verdict

Far Cry Primal takes you back to a time when people used crude tools to wipe out the Neanderthal people, and gives you a chance to see Mammoths in the wild before we ate them all. Far Cry Primal is the best looking history lesson you probably will ever see. Besides for the few omissions I would have liked to see, the game never breaks the immersion into the amazing world.

Far Cry Primal is a definite buy.

*Reviewer finished or played the game to such an extent to give an educated opinion on the game and its content.

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