[PS4 Review] Far Cry New Dawn Brings Hope Back to Montana

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DEVELOPER:  Ubisoft Montreal
PUBLISHER: Ubisoft
GENRE: FPS, Action
PLATFORM: PC, Xbox One, PS4
PRICE: $39.99(Standard) $49.99 (Deluxe)
RATING: M
RELEASE DATE: February 15th, 2019

Far Cry New Dawn is the follow-up to Far Cry 5 released in 2018 by Ubisoft. This is the first time in franchise history that a Far Cry game has received a sequel. Which if you completed FC5, you probably were hoping for answers to the way it ended. Far Cry New Dawn is a stand-alone sequel, meaning if you didn’t play FC5 you can pick this game up and still have a good time playing it. If you played FC5 though, the whole storyline, characters, and info you find throughout the world will have more of an impact on you the player and your view on the game.

New Dawn takes place 17 years after the Collapse occurred basically wiping out the majority of Hope County, Montana and possibly the whole world. Joseph Seed the Father of Project Eden’s Gate was right all along. The nuclear winter has given Hope County a new look with vibrant colors, a lush landscape, and a change in the wildlife that still inhabits the earth. Survivors of the Collapse have now emerged from their bunkers and are trying to start life anew. For most of these survivors, they not only survived the Collapse but also the ordeal with Joseph Seed and his family. With new hopes and dreams of rebuilding and moving on, they are now faced with a new threat called the Highwaymen and their psychotic leaders, Mickey and Lou.

You play an all new character who is on their way to help Hope County rebuild and get back on its feet. You are riding on a train with the leader of your crew, Thomas Rush and various others who go around the country helping people create new settlements and rebuild for further survival. Your team was contacted by Carmina Rye to help her Mom build a safe haven for the survivors of New Hope. On your way there, your train is attacked by the Highwaymen and you must escape for your own survival. Your boss gets kidnapped by Mickey and Lou, while you barely make it to Prosperity. So begins your adventure of helping the survivors, finding your boss, and hopefully taking out a few Highwaymen along the way.

This time around Ubisoft has added a “Lite RPG” element to the game which offers players new features such as base upgrading, expeditions, weapon tiers and upgrading, and salvaging outposts. Enemies now have four different difficulty levels in which you need to make sure to upgrade the tier of your weapon and possibly upgrade the damage output to defeat ones stronger than you. Upgrading various workshops in Prosperity allow you to make higher level tiers for weapons and vehicles, while also allowing you to upgrade the strength of your Guns for Hire and your Fangs for Hire.

The cast of characters this time around sees the return of a few recognizable faces from Far Cry 5 as well as a few new ones. Prosperity is run by Kim Rye who is trying to bring survivors together in a place where they can feel safe, learn skills, and just live a happy life. Her husband Nick is one of the specialists you need to find and bring back to base, so you can create upgraded vehicles. Retired Gun for Hire Grace Roberts returns as the specialist who will help train your current Gun for Hire lineup and helps you make upgraded weapons. Sharky Boshaw is your explosive specialist this time around and is as wild as ever. Of course what would a Far Cry game be without the return of Hurk Drubman Jr? Hurk is once again a Gun for Hire recruit who is now a father and still believes in doing things his way. Pastor Jerome is now a Gun for Hire who has vowed to once again save Hope County the best way he can. New characters consist of Bean, a late bloomer who owns and runs Bean-a-pedia recruit him for your base to receive maps and intel. Roger Cadoret, the expedition pilot with the Quebec accent that will ask you to supply him with ethanol so he can fuel his helicopter to fly you in and out of the various locations around America. Selene who is a bit of an odd duck, but recruiting her will get your infirmary up and running to help sick and injured survivors, while increasing the benefits of your medkits. Nana is a grandmother who is on helluva a sniper, pass her test and she will join you on your journey. Gina Guerra is an ex-Highwaymen enforcer and mother to Hurk’s son, save her from the Highwaymen and she will repay you with her guns. The Judge is the Joseph Seed’s right hand who passes Judgement in the name of God, silent and always wearing a mask their true identity is for you to find in the game. Horatio is a huge boar that was loved by his family until Highwaymen came to take him away, save him and he will follow you to the ends of the county. Lastly there is Timber, a faithful dog who gets captured by the Highwaymen and sent off to become one of their bomb dogs. Saving him from this fate will net you one of the best Fangs for Hire since Boomer in FC5.

Of course you can’t forget the return of Joseph Seed and his cult now called New Eden. New Eden is now a family of survivors who live off the land by hunting with bows, taking only what they need and training cougars to hunt alongside them. Joseph is now older and possibly wiser than he was 17 years ago. He will force you to prove your worthiness to him if you wish for him to help you defeat the Highwaymen and their leaders.

Our main protagonists this time around are a group called the Highwaymen run by twin girls, Mickey and Lou.Throughout the game you will hear the survivors tell you that the Highwaymen were created by the twins father who was a violent and unforgiving man. He taught his daughters that the world consists of two type of people “Problem Solvers” and “Problem Makers”. The girls consider themselves the former and your character and all of the survivors who oppose them as the latter. The Highwaymen have bases all over the world gathering supplies as seen in the expeditions you do for

The graffiti art used in the game is from the well known Montreal artist Zilon, who has been a leading figure of the underground punk movement since the 1980’s. His work can actually still be seen all around Montreal in alleyways and on the sides of buildings. The music in the game consists of mostly rap music played in any vehicle, outpost, or base inhabited by the Highwaymen, but by finding MP3 players throughout the game you can add music to the Survivor Radio station which consists mainly of classic music from artist such as The Monkees, The Turtles, Gene Chandler, The Cowsills and many more. The main soundtrack of the game which plays during story moments of the game, cutscenes,  and during fights is written and composed by Tyler Bates and John Swihart. All around the music of the game is enjoyable and fits well with the story.

Conclusion

To be honest when I first saw the trailers for New Dawn I wasn’t very impressed by what I saw. I even went as far as thinking that Ubisoft was dragging the Far Cry series down by making this game. After actually playing through the entire game and experiencing everything it has to offer, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Ubisoft did a wonderful job in giving us FC5 players closure to the overall story. The characters in New Dawn are enjoyable and make the game fun. Do yourself a favor and listen to the banter around Prosperity for tidbits of info and talk to them for even more.(Nothing is funnier than Bean asking everyone what an orgasm is!) I enjoyed the story from start to finish. I even had a few times that I cried or even questioned the decisions I made in FC5. Joseph’s test made me remember why I had so much fear and distrust in Joseph. Mickey and Lou were memorable villains and definitely gave me reasons to hate them, but in the overall Far Cry villains list they were a lot less psychotic or evil than their predecessors. I again liked being given the choice to choose the outcome of memorable moments.

The expeditions and outposts gave me a reason to go back and try to complete all challenges, trophies, and outfits. The base building/upgrading was a little lackluster as I was hoping that the upgrades would be visually more appealing as well as a bit more in depth. The RNG for the outfit drops when doing outposts and expeditions is a bit off as I had to salvage the same outpost 10 times just to get the four piece outfit reward.

Overall New Dawn is another great entry in the franchise. It really didn’t do anything groundbreaking from other entries in the series, but it was an enjoyable game that gave Far Cry 5 players closure and the satisfaction of finally seeing what happened to your character and Joseph Seed. (Make sure to read all the tidbits you find for little easter eggs and info about people from Far Cry 5.)

Once again my biggest pet peeve is the co-op mode. I am really glad that Ubisoft once again let us play the story with a friend, but the whole “Host Only” trophy system needs to go. I play co-op to enjoy the experience with someone, but having to play the game through a second time so your friend can get the trophies is bothersome. Luckily the fact that you have to make a choice in parts of the game gives you a reason to replay the story missions just so you can see if the opposite choice will have any effect on the story line. I am hoping that in the next entry they will finally rectify this!

Definitely pick this game up if you played Far Cry 5 or have played any of the others in the franchise. For players unfamiliar with the series this is an enjoyable entry point to the franchise as you can complete the game in around 30 hours.

I feel that Far Cry New Dawn deserves a solid 8/10!

A digital copy of the game was provided by the publisher for the purpose of this review

About Tiffany "CeissaDesiste" Toms
Long time female gamer who has been playing all genres since the Atari 2600 and Commodore 64 days. Freelance Graphic Artist, Web Designer, Beta Tester, and studied one year of Game Design. I play games on PC, PS4, PS3, Wii, Wii U, Nintendo Switch, 3DS, Xbox 360, PSVita, and Android. Freelance Writer, Reviewer, and News Editor/Asst. Director for Anjel Syndicate since the site launched! Part time employee of a major video game retailer.