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Far Cry Primal Hands-On Preview – Prehistoric Paradise

Surviving the Stone Age one day at a time.

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Last October, Ubisoft surprised Far Cry fans everywhere when they revealed the next installment in their highly popular action-adventure series during an intriguing livestream event. With a prehistoric setting and Ubisoft Montreal firmly in the driver’s seat, Far Cry Primal is already impressing the masses and accurately portraying the true essence of survival.

With the spinoff currently scheduled to launch worldwide on February 23rd for both PS4 and Xbox One, I had an opportunity try out the first three hours of the game at a live preview event in San Francisco last week. Here are a few of my thoughts on the overall experience and why this is one title that should definitely be on your radar.

Far Cry Primal takes place in the fictional land of Oros during the start of the Mesolithic period. Players take on the role of the lead protagonist Takkar, a hunter who is left to fend for himself after his hunting party is ambushed within the first few minutes of the game. As expected, guns and other traditional weapons have been stripped away entirely and replaced by spears, bows and arrows, clubs, axes, and other primitive weapons. The main objective of the game is for Takkar to adjust to his surroundings, rebuild the village, and successfully become the leader of his own tribe.

Oros could be best described as an open world oasis filled with danger and excitement. Natural predators such as wolves, saber-toothed tigers, and bears roam the land in search of their next meal and are even more confrontational at night. Rival tribes are located throughout the map and are just as dangerous and unpredictable as most wildlife creatures that you’ll come across. Hunting for food, building fires, and crafting weapons instantly becomes second nature to the player and are absolutely essential to your survival throughout the full 30-hour single player campaign.

One of the other core elements of gameplay that really makes this one of the best Far Cry games in recent memory lies within your ability to become the Beast Master. After completing the second mission, Takkar unlocks the ability to tame an owl and uses the bird to view adversaries from above before taking them down. As you progress through the game and earn skill points, you’ll be able to tame even more animals and tip the scales in your favor.

While this certainly is a game changer, it’s also worth noting that confrontations can still be brutal and you’re guaranteed to be humbled by prey on multiple occasions. What’s even more impressive is that the animals interact with each other and portray believable behaviors within the context of the setting. All of theses elements add to the realism of the game and keep the overall experienced fair and balanced from start to finish.

A beautiful setting filled with sheer brutality instantly makes this a memorable entry in the series.
A beautiful setting filled with sheer brutality instantly makes this a memorable entry in the series.

In terms of graphics, Far Cry Primal looks absolutely stunning on the PlayStation 4. Character close-ups and chaotic showdowns between humans and animals have never looked quite as visceral before. PC owners will undoubtedly see the best that this title has to offer, but they will also have to wait until March 1st to play it. With that said, it still looks breathtaking and is worth playing regardless of whichever platform you ultimately decide to buy it on.

This concludes my brief hands-on preview of Far Cry Primal but the fun doesn’t stop here. Stay tuned for more coverage and thoughts on the title leading up to its retail release late next month.

Are any of you planning on picking up Far Cry Primal? Please feel free to let me know in the comments section below.

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Richard Bailey Jr. Editor-In-Chief
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