I’m a sucker for Far Cry’s charismatic bad guys. Since Far Cry 3, Ubisoft has obviously been aiming to write villians that thrill and terrify in equal measure, but with the stone-age Far Cry Primal they weren’t as concerned about handsome, hypnotic lunatics, or superforeigners that were here to save the day via a never-ending stream of bullets.
To my eyes, at least, they wanted to stick Far Cry’s survival of the fittest hunting and gathering in a game where it made sense.
There are still outposts to tackle and weapons to unlock, but given that this is set in 10,000 B.C. and you play a caveman (and not a terrible American 20-something that’s on holiday with his pals), how you deal with the dangerous animals of this world fits more naturally with the story. So, instead of machine guns and rocket launchers, you have spears and clubs. I’m not sure if many people were actually using sabre-toothed tigers as modes of transport back then, but it’s certainly good craic in-game. As is sending your new best friend, a huge fucking bear, after some rival tribesmen.
The crafting is a better fit here than in other entries in the series, too. A large part of me doubts Jason Brody ever changed a lightbulb before he headed to Rook Island, but Far Cry Primal isn’t some fish out of water deal. Of course your character knows what he needs to upgrade his arrow quiver. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t last long in this world.
While the primitive firearms may make for more muted chaos, Far Cry Primal has always had a special place in my heart for its dedication to its theme. Plus, ya know, the befriending bears bit.