Far Cry 5 is the latest installment in Ubisoft’s long running Far Cry franchise. This time around the story takes place in an alternate take of a modern day America, in Hope County Montana. After mixed receptions for both Far Cry Primal and Far Cry 4, Ubisoft needed a way to make things right with the Far Cry fans.
Hope County is home to a fanatical cult known as Eden’s Gate where you the player are a rookie deputy who along with your fellow law enforcement colleagues are sent to serve an arrest warrant to their leader Joseph “The Father” Seed. As with other games in the series, things go awry and you are on the run from these fanatics throughout various locations in Montana. What follows is the attempt of Eden’s Gate to control the county and complete “The Reaping”, a movement to kill, control, and enslave the citizens of Hope County.
The new story and setting makes this the most relatable Far Cry to date. From the people you meet to the various locations you visit, Ubisoft makes this feel like a real American ordeal that some of us may recall from our country’s history. The characters you meet range from the preacher looking to protect his flock to a mechanic looking to protect his truck from the cult. Most of the main cast of characters are probably similar to someone you have probably met in your life.
The antagonist this time around is not just one person, but a whole family. In addition to Joseph Seed aka “The Father” you will encounter his siblings John, Jacob, and Faith who all control their own section of the map. Each area has its own set of unique challenges and enemies. Each sibling has their own backstory, personality, position in the cult, and style of engaging the player.
With Far Cry 5 being an open world experience after completing the tutorial, you are free to visit areas in any order you desire. Complete story missions, side missions, hunting, fishing, and exploration when you want and the way you want.
Ubisoft has made a number of improvements to this newest entry in the franchise. From the character customization, map interaction, exploration and combat have been vastly improved upon and make the game much more enjoyable to play. With these improvements you can see that bits and pieces were taken from both the Ghost Recon Wildlands and Rainbow Six Siege games.
Gone are the days of finding towers to unlock new portions of the map. The map now opens up as you explore and finding side quests are just a matter of finding them as you explore. When and how you complete side quests is entirely up to you. To get new skills/perks is just a matter of completing challenges to earn perk points. These perks affect the way you play the game by allowing you to open more weapon slots, increased ammo capacity, grappling hook, wingsuit, or even your fishing and hunting experience. Speaking of which, hunting and fishing is now an added source of income by selling skins and fish.
The companion system has also been improved upon. Their are random civilians that you can recruit to assist you in your fight to survive. These fighters come with basic perks that unlock the more you use them. The real companions you can rely on come in the form of unique named characters and animals that require you to prove your loyalty before they assist you. With this improved companion system there is always someone who has got your back in a fight.
The entire game after the initial tutorial can be played in co-op mode with a friend. The story progresses and saves in the host’s game, wherein the guest player will be able to save their perks, money, and items. On top of playing the story campaign either solo or co-op, Far Cry 5 features Arcade Mode. Arcade mode offers multiplayer PVP with the map editor functionality included. Ubisoft provides the player with various assets across the Ubisoft catalog that you can use to create some of the craziest multiplayer maps you can imagine. I unfortunately was unable to spend much time in Arcade Mode due to my work schedule, but what I did try was a lot of fun.
Far Cry 5 is one of the best games I have played in the franchise. Ubisoft definitely put in a lot of time and effort into the game by improving an already great franchise. With these improvements, not only will this game be appealing to long-time fans, but also fans of other Ubisoft franchises and new players to the series. My only complaints with the game stem from the co-op mode. Why Ubisoft decided to not allow 4 player co-op or story progression for both players like they did in Ghost Recon Wildlands is beyond me? With a story that is relatable, memorable characters, and great combat, Far Cry 5 is definitely worth playing through.
Overall I give this game a 9/10!