Say whatever you want about Ubisoft — while most of the criticism against them might be justified, the fact of the matter is that they've still developed some of the best and most iconic video games of all time. The Assassin's Creed, Prince Of Persia, and Rayman series are just a few of the many glorious IPs under their belt that they've — well, for the most part — done justice to with a litany of quality titles that have stood the test of time as some of the best video games around.
Speaking of excellent video game series by Ubisoft, it's time to address the elephant in the room — which might be quite unnecessary since you've already read the title of this article. Yep, we're talking about none other than the Far Cry series. It absolutely needs to be said that this storied gaming franchise has witnessed runaway success with gamers all over the world. This is mainly in part due to the trademark Far Cry formula that's a mix of bombastic action, excellent antagonists, and some unique elements that Far Cry has made a niche for itself in.
However, that's not to say that the series doesn't have its fair share of faults — in fact, a section of the fanbase has been pretty vocal when it comes to the changes they want to this tried-and-tested formula. So, without further ado, let's talk about five innovations that the series needs to bring to the table — coupled with five things from Far Cry 5 that shouldn't be replicated.
10 INNOVATION: More Interesting Side-Content
One of the best aspects of Far Cry 5 was its environmental storytelling, which really went above and beyond the call of duty by making what seemed like mundane side-content into something actually worth giving a crap about.
Far Cry 6 should take this game design and expand it further, making the side content interesting and worth our time.
9 DROP: Stupidly High Enemy Spawn Rates
The Far Cry series is a game that prides itself on amazing gunplay and action sequences, depending on how one goes about with their loadout and approach. However, in a bid to recreate this age-old mechanic, it seems that Far Cry 5 went a tad bit too far.
The spawn rate was — and to an extent, still is — ridiculous in this game. Enemies would pop out of thin air to lay waste to you, making the experience less entertaining and more annoying. Ubisoft really needs to fix this problem for Far Cry 6.
8 INNOVATION: Lower Predictability
One thing that most open-world games hinge on too much nowadays is cookie-cutter events that should ideally be random but are anything but. Copy-pasting the same template on most events across the map leads to a rather mundane and empty gaming experience in the long run.
Instead, what Far Cry 6 can benefit from is dropping these pre-set events and trying to add a unique spin to every random encounter, no matter how mundane it might be. This might be in the vein of what CD Projekt Red and Rockstar do with their games.
7 DROP: Useless Mundane Collectathons
Oh dear, it's time to talk about the bane of Far Cry games — and Ubisoft games in general. Even if many players are completionists who want to do everything available in a video game, adding 100 collectible bullet casings — or whatever else developers thing is worth collecting — is definitely not the way to go.
Instead — as discussed before — maybe these collectathons can be integrated better into the overarching storyline so it doesn't feel like mindless filler.
6 INNOVATION: Player Reactivity
Reactivity is one of the biggest aspects that any video game developer would try and nail down in an open-world game. It helps a player feel like their actions actually matter, as opposed to them ticking off the usual tasks on a checklist.
Far Cry already has this system integrated somewhat, and what the sixth iteration can do is completely go to town on it. After all, more reactive worlds are what entice players to explore the game further and see how much they can impact the world.
5 DROP: Lackluster Weapon Variety
Far Cry 5 did a lot of things right when it came to the action, but one thing that they kind of faltered on was the weapon variety — or lack thereof, in this case.
Thankfully, this is easily solvable. Far Cry 6 needs to have distinct weaponry, with each gun being useful in a particular situation. After all, there's no point in having two different rifles if they do the exact same thing. There needs to be a tangible difference.
4 INNOVATION: Less Handholding
Ah, this fault is something that most AAA games nowadays tend to suffer from. In a bid to promote the notion of player inclusivity, games tend to explain each and every aspect of the game while someone's playing it.
Instead of doing this, games like Far Cry 6 can build a sense of mystery around their game mechanics and make players take the initiative in learning the ropes themselves, which is infinitely more rewarding.
After all, From Software's games are popular because of — among other things — this reason!
3 DROP: Last-Minute Story-Changing Decisions
Far Cry 5 isn't the only instance of this occurrence. Ubisoft has done this time and time again, where the decisions that impact a story's ending are jam-packed near the end of a game as opposed to being spaced out properly. Again, this plays into the point of player reactivity — a gamer might feel like nothing they did throughout the game matters if a direct impact on the game's story happens near the end.
In this context, Ubisoft should take a page out of AAA RPG developers and space out their decisions to invoke a more powerful sense of player urgency while making these decisions.
2 INNOVATION: Higher Immersion
Now, it's not like we're saying that Far Cry games aren't immersive because they certainly are. However, these games also have an abundance of UI notifiers, handholding segments, and whatnot.
Far Cry 6 can maybe try something along the lines of what Metro Exodus did — and even what they've done themselves in Far Cry 2 — and integrate certain gameplay elements into a realistic context. Instead of menus for checking the map and crafting, maybe these aspects of the game can be interwoven into the player's actions itself!
1 DROP: Cookie-Cutter Antagonists
Whoo boy, here we go. Ever since Vaas in Far Cry 3, Ubisoft has developed a hard-on for charismatic yet psychotic antagonists in their video games, which is completely unnecessary.
Far Cry 5 completely went off the rails with a stupidly high number of four antagonists, who - for the most part - were all similar. Far Cry 6 needs to drop this trope and come up with a fresh antagonist because people are definitely getting tired of this.