13 Feb 05

I installed Far Cry on my computer over the weekend along with Chronicles of Riddick. I only briefly fired up Riddick, but I’ve been completely immersed in Far Cry for the past couple of days. I can’t believe how much fun this game is. The environment is lush and vibrant, full of foliage, birds, and insects. It may not have all the physics of Half-Life 2 and some of the graphics feel a little cartoony now, but when I play I feel like I’m creeping through a tropical jungle. The gameplay feels very open-ended both in terms of letting me choose my own path and my own style of play. I just completed a stage where I had the option of leaping off a cliff into a pool of water, hang-gliding onto a beach, or simply walking down a mountain road. If I chose to go down the road I could either run down in plain sight, guns blazing, or sneak through the brush, picking off enemies one by one. Every approach seems to have several options although they all eventually guide you to the same destination. The enemy AI is a little rough I’ve found and initially I was frustrated when I died repeatedly on a couple of levels, but that was before I realized that Far Cry is not your typical run-and-gun FPS. The stealth adds a nice level of tension especially on the outdoor maps where if you’re not paying attention to sounds you might find an enemy standing right next to you as you walk through the brush. So far so good. I’m enjoying this game as much as any game I’ve played in the past few years.