E3 2017: Far Cry 5 Hand-on Preview – Brutal, Violent and Beautiful

Getting a Far Cry 5 hands-on preview at E3 2017 was like a dream come true. Show attendees and media alike claim Far Cry 5 to be their most anticipated game of the show. Here, we are no different. At first glance, Far Cry 5 may seem like a magnet for controversy, familiar and hardly groundbreaking. However, there are actually extremely notable improvements that make this title not only interesting but much more fun to play than past games in the popular franchise. Far Cry 5 is not to be mistaken for just another shallow and brutal kill-fest; there is depth, understanding and beauty behind the upfront violence.

Having this Far Cry 5 hands-on preview broadened our knowledge about what to expect from Ubisoft’s next big hit. It’s as if the games giant poster, merchandise and themed food truck wasn’t enough to sell us at the show. The gameplay stands up with other greats of the series while distinguished advances place Far Cry 5 on a pedestal above other games of it genre. For the first time in a long time, Far Cry 5 is setting the stage for what it means to be a ‘next-gen’ first-person shooter, open-world, action-adventure game.

Far Cry 5 Hands-on Preview – Story

Far Cry 5 hands-on previewMany fans saw the Far Cry 5 cinematic trailer that introduces the games main villain. This is an area where other Far Cry titled have excelled as well. Far Cry 5 stands with the franchises trend. In the game, the main character bands together with citizens of Hope County in attempts to get their town back. The county is under the control of a mega cult. The are secludes itself from the rest of the nation. In this very remote area of America, a cult recruits members using Fear of “the collapse” as bait. They kidnap, torture and beat their ideas into the unfortunate victims of the area. This is where we find our main character. Someone who actively fights against the cult and staffs others along the way for help.

Unfortunately, our Far Cry 5 hands-on preview demo at E3 2017 didn’t show us a great deal on what the game will present in terms of story. We have yet to experience exciting plot-enhancing cinematics from the game aside from its gruesome trailer.

Our demo did show the recruitment of the character named Nick Rye. This character is important. Anyway, one of our missions is to clear out his camp which makes him friendlier towards us. It is bitter-sweet as the interaction between the characters is left to just chitchat and requests. This happens in gameplay rather than a cinematic. The interaction is vague at this point which made somewhat of a lack in connection between the characters and general plot. It would be nice to see main characters do more than toss requests. To feel importance of a character through gripping interaction is one way to grip an audience and from what we have seen so far, Far Cry 5 does lack that.

Far Cry 5 Hands-on Preview – Gameplay

Far Cry 5 hands-on preview

Far Cry 5’s gameplay is conversant. The game plays, feels and acts like other games in the series. Even healing yourself is accustom. There aren’t any fancy new tricks or differences that will have fans angered or upset. In fact, it’s more than appreciated that the way Far Cry 5 plays is so familiar. This is what keeps the game grounded as a Far Cry game. Because the game plays and feels like past games in the series, changes in other areas are able to take center stage.

The protagonist has the opportunity to play as they feel. You can approach missions stealthy or go in guns blazing; the option is really up to you. This is an area that has always felt free in the series. Far Cry really gives players the freedom to do as they will without punishment or continuance.

If you are approaching the mission stealthy then it is usually smart to take position on an upper ridge or ledge and tag enemies. The new Guns for Hire mechanic introduces characters that can help you based off of the way that you play. For example, if you choose a dog named boomer as your companion then he will help by tagging enemies for you. But Guns for Hire gets more details in one of our below sections.

The cult in the game lead by Joseph Seed preaches on local radio stations for a deeper incite on what they stand for. This also mirrors other Far Cry games when players would hear radio interviews with the games main villain. These little familiarities definitely do their job at reminding us that this is a Far Cry game.

Far Cry 5 Hands-on Preview – Progressive Changes

Far Cry 5 hands-on preview airplane

As much as it’s easy to appreciate similarities through the series, the game does offer great advancement that make Far Cry 5 potentially the best in the series. Players no longer reveal the map via towers. Now, players are forced to interact with characters, collect things and complete missions to reveal areas of the map. This is authentic and realistic compared to series past. It forces players to be more immersed in the game which results in a clean and engaging alternative.

To go along with the elimination of ‘towers’, Far Cry 5 has also eliminated the games mini map. This does raise concern for the collectable lover however it has been replaced. Instead of a mini map, players are to navigate around the world with a compass at the top of the screen. Again, this is concerning but it does give this sense of lingering danger. It goes along with the games setting regardless of how one may feel about its usefulness.

Another change is that the main character is now create a player. While the villains of the game have been the center of controversy since the games reveal. Far Cry 5 is giving the player the opportunity to choose the main characters race, features and gender. This way the idea that the game is just political propaganda can be quickly and easily dismissed.