Post-apocalyptic worlds in video games are usually wasted and barren stretches of land are as far as the eyes can see. Plain dead land, the only features being ruins of buildings, statues, cities, and other structures that show what is left of humanity. Ubisoft’s Far Cry New Dawn flips that script, then flips the table that the script was on, then proceeds to spill some coffee on that repetitive element.
Far Cry: New Dawn is an open-world FPS game. It is a rainbow from the harsh aftermath of nuclear warfare taking place 17 years after Far Cry 5. After the radiation, blood, and dust has settled, the player is shown this beautiful landscape of blossoming plants, brightly pink flowers, and albino animals.
This reborn world is taken over by the Highwaymen who ravage the community for goods and resources. In this new world, just as much as people help each other out, there are those that reap it of its beauty. Your job is to take it back from the Highwaymen.
The main baddies are sisters Lou and Mickey, leaders of the highwaymen. They are the type of duo that do mean things for fun. Their bright yet explosive character is what makes them pop.Hopping into the game, there will be some familiar characters from Far Cry 5. All of which you can interact with. Joseph Seed, the main antagonist in Far Cry 5 now makes a reappearance in Far Cry: New Dawn not as an enemy, but as your supernatural mentor and advisor like Yoda is to Luke.
Unlike Ubisoft’s other open-world games, New Dawn removes the minimap on the player hud encouraging players to navigate more, and to appreciate the beauty of the world.
You play as a fully customizable deputy which you can shape to your liking from your appearance to your playstyle. New Dawn has a reward system that gives you a selection of unique abilities that you can give to your character. Wanna be a silent and tactical sniper? Go ahead! Wanna be a cunning ninja that sneaks in and out like a cat in the night? Be my guest. Wanna be a heavy weapons dude that goes out with a bang? Shoot ‘em up!
The weapons in this game are diverse ranging from cold and tactical, to goofy and slapstick. Apparently, you can select from an assortment of snipers, rifles, bows, arrows, and shovels too. Throwing melee weapons is a thing in this game which happens to be as effective as actually swinging them with it. The effect is more cartoon-y than it is gruesome which gives this game one of its quirky appeals. The sound of the impact after cracking a baddie in the head with a shovel is so satisfying. Besides the video-game generic gun fights that happen here and there, later on, you’ll discover supernatural abilities that give you heightened mobility, sneak factor, hard-hitting impact, and surprise that transforms you from a regular field officer to a final form boss ravaging everything in his path.
Throughout the story, you’ll meet companions who you could choose to aid you in battle and be there by your side. This is New Dawn’s companion system. Each companion has their own unique weapon, abilities, and skillsets that could compensate on your weaknesses, or amplify your already existing skillsets. These companions could also be leveled up increasing their damage, adding other character-unique abilities, and interaction dialogue. Much like Fallout 4’s companions. The companions include a sniper, a warfighter, a sneaky hunter, a pyromaniac, an explosive pyromaniac, a machine gunner, and some animals.
On the topic on vehicles, in this game, there are a lot. You’ll see a giant rig which seems to be modeled after Optimus Prime, a gatling-gun-mounted muscle car, a machinegun turret-mounted pick-up, a machinegun turret-mounted AUV, a machinegun turret-mounted 4×4, a machinegun turret-mounted boat, a fighter plane, a helicopter, and the list goes on and on. Each of these vehicles have their unique stats so each one is good for a certain type of terrain and purpose.Another cool thing about the companions is that these NPCs can actually drive for you provided you place a waypoint. Having this implemented, you can finally choose to blow up tailing enemies instead of having your eyes on the road. Nothing like riding shotgun with an actual shotgun in hand. Oh, and you can throw cans outside the car. With these vehicles, there are a lot to try with your companion.
Across New Dawn’s world are outposts you must liberate from the Highwaymen. All of which are designed differently, so no encounter is the same. There are so many ways to do it – silently take out everyone, snipe out everyone from a higher vantage point, go in guns blazing, drive-by with a machinegun-mounted pickup truck, blow it up with an apache helicopter, goomba stomp everyone Mario-style, the possibilities are endless. Your NPC companion can do the same as well. But be careful because a lot of these outposts are guarded with alarms that once triggered, calls in enemy reinforcements making your job much harder. You get extra points for not triggering any alarms.The community and environment in the game are something you also get attached to. The story although short, compensates in quality. You’ll be emotionally connected to some of the characters, you’ll uncover things that Far Cry 5 had left unanswered, and despite not having any player dialogue, the game doesn’t fail to involve the player in the story.
As if that isn’t exhilarating enough, the game is 2 player co-op so you can bring your friend in and take out the highwaymen together. Unlike the previous Far Crys, the whole story can be played on co-op so you can have your friend as air support while you go in smoke and bullets, or maybe just have him as your getaway driver. With a wide range of weapons, companions, and weapon-modified vehicles, the possibilities are endless with you and your friend.
But the true Far Cry experience is to actually play it. Not watch a Twitch stream or a YouTube let’s play, nor read articles and reviews. Actually play it! An FPS open-world sounds good on paper, but playing it turns out to be much more fun than it sounds. Discover it yourself, and you’ll find yourself constantly at the edge of your seat having the time of your life.