iReview – FAR CRY 4 – Missing Things Are Missing

Walk with me
Walk with me
Just like we should’ve done right from the start

Walk with me
Walk with me
Don’t let this f***ing world tear you apart

Title: Far Cry 4 – 2014
Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Platform: Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, PC
Publisher: Ubisoft
Reviewed on: Xbox One

Far Cry 4 stars Ajay Ghale, a young Kyrati-American returned to his birthplace to bury his Mother’s ashes. What follows is a quick introduction to the Kyrati setting: its sprawling country side, mountains, lakes, and jungle, its people and villages, before the big reveal of Pagan Min.

Our caravan is unceremoniously stopped on the way to our Mother’s resting place by the Kyrat Royal Army, a routine identification stop. Things go sideways with the arrival of Pagan Min via helicopter, and we know suddenly something is not right. Speechless, we get a quick glimpse into King Min’s psychosis as he guns down his own Officers to make an impression, taking a selfie with Ajay.


We’re then brusquely escorted off to Pagan’s palace and asked to dine with the Glorious Leader himself. Everything seems to be going smoothly – aside from some questionable torture-screams in the other room – but our host is interrupted and leaves, asking us to sit tight.


Not wanting the game to end before it’s begun, we obviously don’t tight and instead sneak off to locate the investigation chamber, we find our Caravan Guide being painfully questioned. Enter The Golden Path Fighters stage right, and we’re suddenly whisked away again, this time from the clutches of Pagan Min, to begin our tale – The Piece of Resistance – caught dead in the middle of this Himilayan country’s civil war.


Far Cry 4 at its foundation is a story of war. Warring factions between North and South Kyrat: the rebellious Golden Path vs. The Kyrat Royal Army under King Pagan Min’s rule. However, it also foretells of the division between the Golden Path group that Ajay has become the symbol of hope for.

The main purpose behind Ajay being in Kyrat is to do right by his Mother, and lay her to rest, but The Golden Path’s rebel movement was established by Ajay’s Father, and he is therefore compelled to set things right in the land.


As we start the rebellion, eliminating Min’s rule from the South Province, one outpost and communication tower at a time, we start to see the rift between the two Golden Path member develop, as one favours the traditional values and history of Kyrat, while the other argues for progress and modernization. This split path is evident throughout the entire story, as we have to make influential decisions, which will favour one side over the other, ultimately deciding the fate of Pagan Min, and The Golden Path.

At the end of the story, in our final meet-up with Pagan Min, he references the start of our story, and asks why we didn’t just sit tight, await his return. Instead opting to proceed along our murderous path we currently find ourselves on.

“Which Ajay is sitting before me at the table now? Can we have a do over? Dine with me and let us return your Mother’s ashes like you originally intended.”


Far Cry The Fourth plays exactly like its predecessor, only with a little more verticality, as it takes place, after all, atop a Himilayan mountainous region. To help with this we’re equipped with a wing suit and grappling hook to scale some of the cliff faces.

There’s more wildlife this time around with eagles, rhinos, and even ride-able elephants. The wildlife is also just as aggressive as ever.


Returned are the outposts needing capturing, and the communication towers needing climbing. New this time around are the retaliation parties that will be sent to a newly acquired outpost, if it’s still within a danger region. These parties are not a force to be taken idly, and can be quite aggressive in their response. It is however, an optional task, as I did not lose any outposts to the enemy when opting  to not defend, but instead driving away in search of loftier objectives.


New and similar side-quests have bolstered the country’s activity list, as different types of races are available, as well as hunting missions, hostage rescue missions, bomb defusing, and supply runs litter the map. Collectibles have returned as well.

New navigational options have been added as well, with new vehicle types, previously mentioned wing suit and para-glider, Elephants and a nifty gyro copter. Shooting while driving is also now an option, and with that, auto-pilot. Motion-sickness medication not included.


Far Cry 4 succeeds on many points, but stumbles and inevitably falls over many others.

Its research and dedication to the Himilayan lands and culture are incredible, and because of this, the game is gorgeous, and beautifully realized. It also did better by the antagonist, Pagan Min and his 3 Lieutenants. Pagan Min is unfortunately kept at a distance throughout the majority of the game, relegated to informative and sarcastic radio messages, but we do kill his double at one point. The main world is a blast to explore, as well as the separated snowy mountain location and Durgesh Prison.


Besides all its positive, the game is a retread of Far Cry 3 in a lot of ways. Its reliance on an eccentric, violent villain feels similar to 3’s Vaz. And the game’s heavy dependence on the drug-like hypnotic missions become a chore. It seems that the favourited Far Cry 3 marijuana farm mission was taken and spread far too thin to pad the game’s length by adding unnecessary characters and map out the chemical factory and Shangri-La missions, colourful as they may be.


The game also, somehow, feels less immersive, and the story less fun. Aside from the patrolling wildlife, the landscape doesn’t feel as alive as 3 did, with its stormy jungle rainfalls. And Ajay Ghale is a pawn in this civil war, and not the tragic hero that Jason Brody was.


All said, the game is still very good, good-looking, and worth playing if you liked Far Cry 3. The achievements are standard story key-mission completion, collectibles, liberating outposts and unique murdering methods involving vehicular manslaughter and Elephant jousting.

The added co-op element is a fun addition, but note that the co-op’ee will not unlock anything in their own campaign.

Notable Achievements:
Tusker (Kill 30 enemies with an Elephant) – 10G
The Sky is Falling (Perform a takedown from a Buzzer) – 15G


IDL SHORT – Truth and Justice

The following is a short recap of the events that took place during the Truth and Justice campaign mission in Far Cry 4 – and how not to play the mission.

Truth and Justice

Today I killed Pagan Min, which was neither what I wanted to do, nor expected to do. I resent Pagan Min, don’t get me wrong; he has done many terrible things to the people of Kyrat, but I was not wholly ready for this task.

This very evening I had been summoned to a sizable village called Utkarsh to meet with some of the rebel leaders. I enter one of the larger houses and make my way towards the hidden stairwell, past a misaligned bookshelf. The family upstairs is a front, and the basement has a hidden staging area where some of the higher-ups are meeting. After the bookshelf has been secured and stairs hidden, I start downward to the sounds of voice chatter and know a meeting is already underway.

Mon_Apr_20_20-47-50_PDT_2015It wasn’t long after joining the meeting that I hear the screech of halting tires, followed by feet crunching through gravel and the front door of the house upstairs being kicked in.

The flamboyant and unmistakable Pagan Min brazenly enters, flanked by two soldiers and immediately starts questioning the scouts who live here. I hear the commotion, as do my comrades, and our dialogue stops. Creeping under the false floor, I lift a trap door to watch the confusion unfold.

Min’s discomposure is evident, roiling underneath his calm, perfectly groomed exterior as he compliments the family’s home, commenting on their hospitality. His words are muffled so I don’t pick up exactly what he’s saying, but clearly he is leading them to a false sense of security. In a flash of smug satisfaction he storms out, and his falseness is proved true by his twin guards and the muzzles of their assault rifles. In a burst of gunfire, our stand-ins are downed and the guards leave in a huff.

Disgust and anger flood over me as I witness this all-to-common Kyrat atrocity first hand, and vault up through the floor and out the door, scarcely looking at the fallen family. Min is already in his jeep driving down the nearby hill, but his guards are still patrolling. Or were, as I quickly gun them down in my haste to reach the edge of the slope to see where King Min is off to.

My fellow rebellioneers are yelling something at me as I spy the gyro-copter nearby. I don’t hear them though as I jump in the two-man vessel, and spin up the propeller blades; no one can stop me; I’m only seeing red. Exhaust chokes me as the engines come to life. The chopper lifts slightly off the ground, hovering as the blades reach optimal velocity, but I just sit there. How do I go up?

Wrestling the stick between my legs, encouraging altitude, the chopper tilts left and right as the jeep speeds away. “Go UP!” I urge. Spying what I think is the collective lever, I pitch the helicopter forward and up, and up, and up. Soon enough I’m enjoying the breeze of the open-style cockpit, and sit happily above the trees, briefly forgetting my mission.

Sun_Apr_19_18-31-15_PDT_2015This is as far as my little bird takes me though. As I reach an altitude of about twenty-five feet, I’m eloquently jettisoned from my seat, shortly followed by a plummet to the ground. The explosion of the gyro meeting a Fir rocks me back, and I clutch my face, shying from the heat wave. The world losses all colour for a moment as I catch my breath.

What happened? Did I forget how to descend and instead jump out? Did my little aircraft really just fail so dramatically? Is this mission over before it has begun?

The questions hit me, wave after wave, but the true purpose of my ill-attempted flight is still real. Pagan Min is very much getting away. Struggling to my feet and limping down the grassy hill, I clamber into a Tut Tut and drive off in the general direction of where Pagan Min was heading. I decide against following the road, and quickly find my piecemeal vehicle careening over ridges and down slopes, dodging trees left and right, straining to hold together. The Tut Tut’s exterior doesn’t add a lot of protection against the incoming branches that pelt my face or kicked-up dirt and dust that chokes me, but soon enough I find a dry path, and agree with the struggling vehicle – the smoother route down the mountain is safer.

I can hear Pagan’s rumbling jeep, so I know I’m at least traveling in the right direction. I’ll just keep an eye on the road and see if I can spot any tire tracks that would betray his path.


As my narrowing route winds around mountainous cliffs and snakes downward along a river, I catch the tail end of Pagan’s dusty trail and slide around the next bend into an inviting village and awaiting soldiers. Min has stopped to bark off a few commands to his Lieutenants but doesn’t stay, instead opting to speed off. He wouldn’t have liked the scene that played out either way.

A handful of soldiers start a patrol and the rest setup a human barricade. Neither slow me as my three-wheeled Tut Tut barrels through the wall of flesh. The surprised group didn’t know how to react when they saw my little blue juggernaut skid into the town, and instead of yielding, saw fit to stand in the way like soccer players and get bounced off the hood. Leaving behind two piles of slightly bruised humans resenting the Tut Tut’s metal frame, I continue my chase after Min.

Mon_Apr_20_20-53-48_PDT_2015Coaxing all the speed from my little heap, I read the distance between myself and Min as narrowing – I am more maneuverable after all. One hand on the wheel, I bring out my automatic pistol and start firing at Pagan’s jeep, aiming for anything within range. Maybe he’ll scare and miss a turn, or maybe I’ll catch a tire and turn him over.

Neither happens as a rhino inappropriately interrupts our chase with his very large body and sharp horn, completely removing Pagan’s presence from the road, mangled jeep included. King Min’s body glides out through the windshield, into the air, hitting the ground in a tangled mess of limbs, and slides to a stop against a tree, face down.

My reaction is immediate, extreme, and entirely common in this predicament. “Holy Fuck!” I jerk the van’s steering wheel to the left to avoid the hazardous spike-adorned monster, incidentally turning the Tut Tut on its side.

Before the scene gets any more ugly, I scramble out with arms raised, and nod towards the rhino, signalling my thanks for his service. “I … I unfortunately cannot repay you,” I stutter. Testing the newly forged but fragile peace treaty, I walk around the rhino towards Pagan Min’s lifeless body to see the damage.

The pink and purple clothes, and blond hair – Pagan Min is a sore sight – but the blood, dirt and grass that now make up his face is unbearable. Pagan Min is dead, and Kyrat is better for it. Long Live the King.

I bring up my radio to call my colleagues, but instead receive a call from none other than Pagan Min. “Hello! Did you miss me? Oh wait, I guess you did. Ha! … And you ruined a perfectly good body double I might add. An expensive one at that.”

Pagan Min lives? How can this be. I had come so close to finishing this tale, freeing the people of Kyrat from their torment. Now what will I do, how will I ever get this close to Pagan Min again.

Pagan is still chirping away as I focus again on the radio and interrupt his monologue. “Next time Min, it’ll just be you and me!” I promise him, and clip the radio back on my belt.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t hear you. What did you say?” He replies, goading a response. I am, however, done talking. After a brief silence he finally grows bored, ” … Strong silent type. I like it.” He hangs up.

I bring out my map and stare blankly.

Now I’m lost…


“At least there’s a silver lining. You didn’t completely fuck it up.”

WHAT I’M PLAYING – Far Cry, and what I’d rather be playing…

Far Cry 4 seems to be pulling the same maneuver that Far Cry 3 did, and that’s keep the main antagonist from us. 3’s Vaas was great, he was intriguing, and psychotic. By far the best part of the game, and we saw him so infrequently and then sadly did away with him half way through the game.

Far Cry 4 gives us an amazing introduction to the new world Kyrat, and to our antagonist Pagan Min, the reclusive glorious leader of the region. And like the Far Cry predecessor, it appears that they enjoy keeping the antagonist from us. We get introduced at the start, a reminder half way through, and then a final interaction at the end where we’re given a choice in Pagan Min’s fate.


Throughout the game we’re graced with voice messages from Min, as he checks in on us during our journey, but these aren’t enough. The character is so weird and intriguing, we’re driven through the game to get as many interactions as possible with Min. But he’s kept from us, as we’re left with the squabbling pair of Golden Path leaders, and told Min is the bad guy.

Is it the absence of these antagonists that make them so appealing? Would more interactions or appearances ruin their fascination? Or is it that all the work is put into their introduction, that the antagonist’s character isn’t actually as fleshed out as we think?

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