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Far Cry (Windows)

88
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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.9
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5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  *Katakis* (37691)
Written on  :  Sep 03, 2010
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars

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Summary

A must buy for die-hard FPS gamers

The Good

Players take control of Jack Carver, a charter-boat businessman in Micronesia, who is asked to escort CIA agent Valerie Constantine to an uncharted island. It isn't long before Carver's boat is attacked by a group of mercenaries. Why they did this to him isn't explained. Jack escapes unharmed but finds Val missing. The only way that he can locate Val is through a man named Doyle who guides him throughout the game.

When I loaded up Far Cry, I enjoyed watching the demo loop that plays at the main menu, as it shows the player what to expect earlier in the game, to walk around lush jungles and rain forests. I also enjoyed the other locations that you find yourself walking through, such as factories, labs, rivers, swamps, and volcano. The lush jungles are great for lying low and hiding from the mercs as you crawl up to them.

My favorite enemies are the mercs themselves. Mostly all of them wear crew-cuts, and they are very smart. When the mercs see you, your stealth meter rises. Then they will pump bullets into you while saying corny lines like “How do you like those apples?”, “I'm gonna lay the smack-down on you”, and “You want more of this? I've got more of this”. I enjoyed listening to the action music that plays when your stealth meter reaches its maximum; it blends in with what happens in a movie while an action scene is shown.

Each island is surrounded by water, and it is so crystal clear that you can actually see the bottom of the ocean floor. Swimming in water – toward the bottom of the floor - is a great way not to be seen by enemies that drive around in a patrol boat. Sure, this is a much slower way of going to another island, but at least you won't risk having bullets being pumped into you. You need to make sure that you don't run out of oxygen.

There are heaps of weapons that you can pick up, but you can only carry four at a time. You start off with a pistol, but you can get access to heavy arsenal such as sub-machine guns, assault weapons, sniper rifles, and rocket launchers. The best part is if you run out of ammo for a weapon you're using, you can always get a weapon that was dropped by one of the mercs, and more often than not, that weapon would have a full capacity of ammo. Mostly during the game, I didn't need anything other than assault weapons, and used the rocket launchers only to take out choppers and patrol boats.

You can use a variety of transport to help you get to your destinations much quicker. There are patrol boats and jeeps; but I like using the hang gliders since it gives you spectacular views of the island and it is easy to control once you get used to it. I normally avoided going out too far into the horizon, for fear it would send unwanted choppers to my location. I also liked driving the jeeps as it allows you to mow down any merc that happens to get in your way. The highlight of this game is using the binoculars that you pick up earlier to not only look at distant areas close-up but to eavesdrop on the enemy's conversations. The conversations are interesting, with some talking about Carver. You can also haul a grenade in their direction, and they become alerted, actually trying to hone in on your location.

The enemy's AI is amazing. They can sense that you are nearby, even if you're not in the same room as them, and as I just mentioned, they can even go to where you just launched a grenade at a distance. You can even see them get into each transport the game has to offer.

The best thing about Far Cry that it comes with its own sandbox editor, to allow players to create their own levels. As a result, there are plenty of mods out there for other players to have a go at. The best mod out there is “First Contact”, a mission that has you exploring the planet Hestia evaluating its possible risk/benefit to humanity. It feature a beautiful alien world and contains a story well worth diving into. There are even total conversions that upgrade the game to today's standards.

The Bad

I didn't like how the action turns to dark red when the mercs are shooting at you from all directions. This, combined with the flashes their bullets produce, is enough to hurt your eyes. Also, when you attempt to take out an enemy using the sniper rifle, the crosshair jumps around even if you don't move the mouse, making it difficult to get a clear shot.

The Bottom Line

In conclusion, Far Cry is so much better than any first-person shooters before its time. It basically has you walking through breathtaking locations, shooting down mercs that get in your way and completing a set of mission objectives given to you. You can use binoculars to spy on enemies and overhear their conversation, and throw grenades at them occasionally and watch them hunt you down. You can use any weapon you like to take them out, with the basic weapons ideal for taking out enemies earlier in the game. (Too bad about the sniper rifle.) The more heavier weapons are effective against enemy vehicles.

As I mentioned before, users can create their own maps and distribute them freely on the Internet. To be fair, Far Cry isn't the first game to be shipped with a sandbox editor of its kind. Half-Life came out a lot earlier and shipped with the WorldCraft editor.

For their first game, Crytek did an excellent job on making Far Cry reflect real-life situations and introducing features that were unusual for a first-person shooter before its time. The graphics and sound are great, and any FPS gamer should have purchase this.