Far Cry Primal is a tricky one for me. On the one hand, the game is beautiful to look at and packed full of content. To the point where sometimes I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between side missions and story missions. I’ve sunk many hours into this game and I have to say, it’s not time I regret spending. On the other hand, the game as a whole is a bit lacking, particularly in the story and replay-ability.
In the previous Far Cry games you have wildly entertaining things like land, sea and air vehicles to toy around with, as well as co-op/multiplayer and a map editor. In Primal, you don’t have any of those. Sure you have the ability to tame and ride some pretty bad-ass animals like bears and tigers, but some of the most fun I’ve had in previous Far Cry games involved me just flying a helicopter around or jumping off something high with the wing suit. I also enjoyed the jet ski. Most importantly though, I enjoyed the co-op, online versus mode and the map editor, especially because of the crazy amount of user-created maps. I remember this awesome level that someone had made in Far Cry 4 and it was just wave after wave of bears attacking you and a few friends, with the only available weapon being a rocket launcher. It was chaos, but it was a lot of fun.
Far Cry Primal doesn’t have any of that charm unfortunately. With that said, Far Cry Primal is still a fair bit of fun, although not the kind of fun you’re used to getting from Far Cry.
One thing I will say about Primal is that it is absolutely gorgeous to look at. I spent a good amount of time just wandering around and looking at the forests, wildlife and mountains. I genuinely could get lost in the world that Ubisoft has made. I did enjoy the whole ‘Man Vs Wild’ thing where I would have to hunt for food and materials for things like making and upgrading my weapons, as well as making various concoctions. The open world felt real and although it was sometimes a bit tedious having to hoof it, it’s still captivating enough that you don’t really mind the journey.
The story is less than amazing and while I won’t go into details because of potential spoilers, I will say that I wasn’t exactly blown away by the ending but I wasn’t disappointed either. It’s pretty much what you would expect from a setting like this and I would have loved to see something completely different rather than playing it safe. The main gripe I have is that in previous Far Cry games, the story has been rather compelling, weird and sometimes even a little bit scary. Primal’s story is none of those things, which is a real shame.
While Far Cry Primal doesn’t have the same edgy vibe as previous Far Cry games, I still found some things to enjoy. The world itself is somewhere I would happily visit again, hunting and gathering is quite fun, upgrading weapons is satisfying and taming wild animals is an absolute blast. But a lacking story experience as well as no multiplayer, co-op or map editor make Primal a bit of a miss for me.
If you’re into Far Cry then you’ll definitely enjoy Primal, but it probably won’t be one that you pick up again after the credits roll. For newcomers to the series, Primal is a cool take on the classic Far Cry formula and while it’s a fun game to play, I would suggest checking out Far Cry 3 or 4 to get a better taste for what the game can be.
What did you think of the game? Let me know on Twitter @pikalew or in the comments below.