Towards the end of May, Ubisoft announced the latest (and perhaps most controversial) entry in the Far Cry series, Far Cry 5. The initial announcement gave few details; the game takes place in fictional Hope County, Montana, and the enemies are an extremist religious cult. At Ubisoft’s E3 press conference, more footage was revealed, highlighting several gameplay elements.
Far Cry 5 features the traditional Far Cry gameplay seen in the previous numbered entries while emphasizing taking the adventure with others (AI or human). Most of the mechanics and features are familiar to fans of the series, but there are some new features that make this new entry stand out. Outside of gameplay, Ubisoft has doubled down on the features that make it controversial.
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The trailer starts off with the player’s character, who is customizable, walking through a beautifully rendered field with a pistol in hand and a dog at their side. The player then passes an impaled corpse labeled “Sinner," presumably left there by the aforementioned cult. After going down a dirt road, the player meets up with an ally on a vantage point and they look ahead at one of the cult’s churches. Immediately, the scouting mechanic from previous entries is shown, where players can use their binoculars to tag enemies and track their movements. In this case, there is a hostage situation in the middle of the road.
There is not a huge focus on gunplay and action, but the video does highlight who can help out the player in need. There are Guns for Hire, like previous titles, where AI support can be called on to help fight in an outnumbered situation. There is Boomer, the “Fangs for Hire,” an unkillable dog who can help out as well and Nick Rye, "Death From Above," who can provide air support. Lastly, there are other players. The entire Far Cry 5 campaign is playable in co-op.
From a gameplay perspective, following the formula of Far Cry 3 & 4 is a good move for the franchise. Most of the games in the series have been very well-received, so slight improvements on beloved gameplay can only help an entry that has a large focus on its divisive story.