Far Cry 6 review

By Tom West,
Coming in as the tenth instalment of the franchise, Far Cry 6 offers the biggest adventure yet, while simultaneously setting itself up as a live-service series going forward. While not specifically stated as of yet, Ubisoft’s plans to slow down the release schedule of its biggest games in favour of free-to-play and live service offerings could easily extend to Far Cry. I certainly hope this isn’t the case and we see a new mainline entry sooner rather than later, because Far Cry 6 is by far the best entry into the series we’ve seen in recent years. Yara is huge, beautiful, filled with the chaotic action that fans have grown to love, and adds many new layers into the gameplay without stepping away from the series’ core mechanics. For those of you that haven’t enjoyed the previous titles, this, unfortunately, won’t be for you. But if the series has a way of tugging at your adventurous side, then you might just want to grab your rifle, befriend a dangerous animal, and book a ticket to the Caribbean island of Yara.

far cry 6 review

It only took me a few minutes of quiet contemplation to decide that I wanted to start this article on the game’s characters... and not just the tyrannical Antón Castillo. I mean, Antón will certainly get a look in just a moment, but it’s the two most prominent members of the rebel group known as Libertad who stand out: Clara and Juan. These two are like chalk and cheese — unless you think both are equally as tasty, in which case this simile sucks — and add a memorable twist to Far Cry 6. I’m not sure about you, but I couldn’t really recall any of the previous game’s characters, bar the infamous villains, of course. Clara and Juan have changed that this time around, offering an awesome mix of serious patriotic influence and ludicrous one-liners respectively. It’s a fresh experience to play through a Far Cry game and feel a connection with your fellow group members. Of course, the game also features plenty of fantastic personalities to interact with, but it’s those two who stand out from the crowd… on the “good guy” side, at least.

The Far Cry series’ bread and butter is without a doubt its dastardly villains, and Far Cry 6 is no different, except for the fact that this time around we’re seeing a familiar face adorning our screens. Antón Castillo — played by the extremely talented Giancarlo Esposito — is an absolutely brutal addition to the franchise, ruling the people of Yara with an iron fist and moulding his son, Diego, into the same tyrannical… leader? Now, there is no doubt that Giancarlo can portray a villainous character with very little effort, but Castillo has to be one of his best performances yet — aside from the animations, which don’t quite capture him in the best possible way. Antón is actually terrifying, and the awful way he treats his people almost left me speechless at certain points. For instance, at one point he gives Diego an ultimatum: shoot a captured rebel or watch him be tortured to death. It’s in these lessons that you can see just how warped Antón’s mind is, and that these behaviours come naturally to him… which explains why the country is caught in the midst of a revolution.

far cry 6 review

Yara is as deadly as it is beautiful, where every gorgeous vista is accompanied either by a pain-in-the-butt soldier attempting to turn you into a human colander with automatic weapons, or a wild mongoose that has decided to have a nibble on your leg. While downtime is a rarity in Far Cry 6 — which is surprising due to the sheer size of the map — the moments you do slow down your pace are filled with scenic Caribbean beaches, lush forest regions, farmlands, and everything else a holidaymaker could ever dream of. This is especially true when traversing the Guerrilla Paths that sprawl across the country. These backroads are generally too slim, winding, and mountainous for vehicles, which is why we have horses for the first time. These mounts are perfect for the treacherous pathways that can get you through regions fairly stealthily and offer a wilder view of Yara from specialist vantage points.

As I said previously, though, Yara is packed with things to do. In fact, you generally can’t walk more than ten metres before something catches your attention, whether that be a cool building, the location of a Libertad crate containing equipment, or any other distraction. Hell, I spent around ten hours scouring the starting area for its hidden secrets. Ubisoft has put quite a bit of work into making the activities less cut-and-paste this time around as well, and that’s not to say the usual stuff has gone. The tried and tested outposts and fortress takeover missions have of course made a return, but they’re accompanied by a smattering of smaller objective-based scenarios that have a purpose other than just being something to do. Taking out surface-to-air missiles rewards you with Depleted Uranium to upgrade your new ‘Supremo’ weapons, Military Checkpoints offer you much-needed fast travel points, Treasure Hunts reward you with unique and powerful weaponry or armour, and there is a pile more that will have you spending hours attempting to make it to an objective. It’s not all overly serious, either, due to Far Cry’s innate ability to make you question your own sanity.

far cry 6 review

Once you pull yourself away from the ludicrous amount of side missions and embark on the game’s main adventure, you’ll find a great story that is brimming with camaraderie and heartbreak. We are thrust into the shoes of Dani Rojas, who can be either male or female. Dani was looking for a quick escape from Yara, but after falling foul of a military incursion, takes on the role of being a guerrilla fighter for Libertad. The story structure is in the classic Far Cry template; take out the enemy in various sections of the map, build up your resistance with new members, and put a bullet between the eyes of the villainous antagonist. It’s a structure that I enjoy wholeheartedly from start to finish, and this time is no different. Bish, bash, bosh, easy… aside from the fact that the enemy force has access to tanks, armoured equipment, and a host of other ways to ruin your day. A lot of your time is spent attempting to stop the production of tobacco, which is sprayed with a chemical that is said to cure cancer… oh, the irony. In reality, this chemical is fairly unstable and causes enemies to go crazy, die, or be blown to smithereens due to its flammable nature.

Ubisoft went down a different route with enemy design in Far Cry 6, giving them a level system, resistances, and other small RPG elements. It’s a great system for offering challenging combat if you’re an all-guns-blazing kind of player. Stealth players like myself, though, will find that taking down the enemy isn’t any different… an armour-piercing bullet to the head is an armour-piercing bullet to the head, no matter how you want to look at it. Theoretically speaking, the enemy soldiers in Far Cry 6 have certain strengths and weaknesses — some are medical personnel, some are extremely armoured, and some are as flimsy as a wet paper bag. The idea is that you need to craft varying ammo types and armour to help you counter the capabilities of the enemies you’re facing — using your mobile to scout and target the area you’re about to assault — but I found that almost everyone goes down without too much of an issue, making the new system almost moot. Of course, this could be bolstered by the armour sets, which give you perks to become more effective at your newfound career as a guerrilla fighter. Armour can be picked up with varying quality levels, which give you additional bonuses when placed in the head, chest, legs, feet, and wrist slots.

That combat system is fairly easy to work with up until Antón’s special forces start to hunt you down, then everything turns into a nightmare. Killing too many enemy soldiers in quick succession will fill up a small gauge in the left-hand corner of your UI. Once the gauge is full, you best get those legs working because the special forces soldiers do not mess around. These bruisers pack on a shedload of armour, heavy weapons, and always bring some choppers along for fun. When I said the system was almost moot, this is the “almost.” You notice very quickly how important it is to have the correct weaponry for the job when ending up in a battle with the special forces, which can escalate extremely quickly into absolute carnage. Throw in a few wild boar, a couple of tanks, rockets, and a Supremo backpack, and you’ve got yourself a scene that would make Michael Bay sweat.

far cry 6 review

Supremos are the latest weaponry addition to the series alongside Resolvers — both created with the intention of aiding you in your mission of death-dealing. Supremos are backpack-style special abilities that have the power to fire missile barrages and knock out security systems, and which come with a multitude of other helpful uses, as well as offering modifications to give you various buffs. Charging the Supremo is as simple as filling enemy soldiers with bullet holes, so the more aggressively you play, the faster you’ll unleash hell upon them. Resolvers are more traditional weapons — in the sense that you hold them in your hands — and offer you powerful firepower with limited ammo reserves that don’t require any form of powering up.

Combat in Far Cry 6 wouldn’t be the same without your Amigos by your side, and this makes the adventure a little less lonely. Whether you’re hanging with Chorizo the wheelchair-bound sausage dog, scaring people with Guapo the crocodile, or stalking your prey with a ghostly panther, you know that everything will be okay. Chorizo is obviously the star of Far Cry 6 and gives the game a small amount of innocence… well, unless you have an older, war-torn variant of him as I chose. The series can apparently no longer operate without some buddies helping you along, and I wouldn’t have it any other way — although, I was most disappointed that Chorizo, at least, doesn’t have any animations to sit in your passenger seat when driving around Yara.

The achievement list for Far Cry 6 is everything you'd expect to see from a new entry into the series. Aside from the main mission challenges, the usual cumulative achievements make an appearance such as collecting various collectables and weapons, alongside various miscellaneous achievements like blowing up sharks. All in all, everything is extremely straightforward and doesn't look to be overly difficult to achieve, only requiring your time.

far cry 6 review


Summary

Far Cry 6 is without a doubt Ubisoft’s most ambitious entry into the series, offering a huge map and more activities than you could possibly want. Giving us a classic Far Cry experience the whole way through, with a smattering of new ideas and fresh takes, Far Cry 6 is perfect for fans of the series. Although some of the newer mechanics don’t seem to have the desired effect, I can still safely say that this is my favourite entry into the series to date, and I recommend you book a trip to Yara as soon as you can. Viva Libertad!
9 / 10
* Tom spent around 30 hours fighting with Antón’s soldiers, unlocking 22 of the game's 53 achievements along the way. A review copy of the game was provided by the publisher and played on an Xbox Series X.
Tom West
Written by Tom West
Tom has been playing video games since he was old enough to hold a controller, experimenting with systems like the Nintendo 64 and Playstation until he eventually fell in love with the Xbox 360. With a passion for the platform, he decided to make a career out of it, and now happily spends his days writing about that which he loves. If he’s not achievement hunting, you’ll likely find him somewhere in The Elder Scrolls Online.