Far Cry

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Far Cry
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Developer(s) Crytek
Publisher(s) Ubisoft
Release date(s) March 23, 2004
Genre First-person shooter
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer
Rating(s) ESRB: Mature (M)
Platform(s) PC (Windows)

Far Cry is a first-person shooter computer game developed by Crytek Studios and published by Ubisoft on March 23, 2004. The game received attention for comparatively striking graphics and environments, but less so for gameplay and other aspects. The game's story follows an ex-Special Forces man named Jack Carver, who is stranded on a mysterious Pacific archipelago. He is searching for a female journalist he was escorting after she went missing when their sailboat was destroyed by mercenaries.

On April 7, 2004, CryTek announced Far Cry: Instincts for video game console systems.

Contents

Graphics

Crytek developed a new game engine called "CryENGINE" for Far Cry. Reportedly, the game was born out of a technology demo made by Crytek to showcase the capabilities of the nVidia GeForce 3. The game featured relatively long view or "draw" distances, similar to Operation Flashpoint, but had a better rendering system for vegetation. Also, most of the level territory was accessible to the player without loading pauses. The game engine featured seamless transitions between indoor and outdoor areas (that utilised slightly different lighting and rendering models).

Graphically, the game made extensive use of pixel shaders. For example, water shaders were frequently used throughout the levels and had a significant effect on visual quality.

Character detail was also improved thanks to Cryteks Polybump normal mapping technology. These effects were used extensively in both indoor and outdoor levels.
Standing on a beach area with a M4 Carbine
Enlarge
Standing on a beach area with a M4 Carbine

Artificial intelligence

Human enemies in the game had advanced artificial intelligence (AI), which favourably compared with other 2004 shooters (though its capabilities made minor glitches more apparent). The enemies were capable of navigating the large levels, using vehicles to travel, when necessary. They were frequently visible patrolling, chatting with each other (CryTek wrote a lot of funny dialog for mercenaries that provided a backstory, showing how player's actions affected the archipelago population, although some people complained about the quality of the voice acting), idling, fishing, fixing equipment, etc. They could call for reinforcements and execute coordinated attacks, outflanking and surrounding the player.

The tropical jungle provided a lot of cover and the game allowed the player to use it to hide from the enemies. These enemies didn't know the position of the player unless they saw or heard him, but notably, they could remember his last known position and go there to investigate. The enemy's actions were generally not scripted, although scripts were to time sequences, spawning enemies to populate a base when the player entered the area, for instance. After the start of a sequence, every enemy would be driven by its AI.

Gameplay

The game was notable for its open ended structure, providing a multitude of ways to complete a given objective. It incorporated a good mix of arcade-like and realistic gameplay, forcing to the player to effectively use cover while still allowing an upfront approach. For instance, there were no forced stealth segments and setting off an alarm would not result in mission failure.

Several vehicles exists that can be used in the levels. Some of them are:

  • Buggy
  • Rocket jeep
  • Inflatable boat
  • Cannon boat
  • Large truck

The ambient sounds of the game definitely need a mention. The score is variegated from a quite melody (when exploring large landscapes) to high tempo beats (while at close encounters). The transformation from one mood to another is smooth.

However, many found Far Cry to be poorly balanced. The difficulty increased sharply in the later levels, causing much frustration when combined with the game's "checkpoint" saving system, which eliminated manual saving. An update patch released for Far Cry later added a quicksave feature found in most single player FPS games.

The multiplayer part consists of three game types:

  • Free For All (FFA) - score points by killing other opponents
  • Team Death Match (TDM) - score points by killing opponents in the other team
  • Assault - a "Capture The Flag" type of game, where one team is defending flags, and the other is attacking. 3 types of player classes can be selected for this type of game: sniper , engineer and soldier/grunt. The sniper has a sniper rifle and binoculars, and can hit targets at great distances. The engineer has a wrench to build walls, towers, guns etc. and also has bombs to be placed to destruct the same if on attacking team.

Level Editor

The game engine had a built-in real-time editor that made creating large outdoor levels easier, circumventing the need to load the game to test a custom level, or to see the in-game effects of any changes. This enabled CryTek designers to add much detail to levels, creating many different paths while reducing the time spent on level design. This allowed the player to choose more approaches to solving goals, providing a more open and non-linear experience.

Crytek offices raided

A month before its release, a former CryTek employee told the German criminal police (Kripo) that the studio was using unlicensed copies of Maya and 3D Studio Max for developing Far Cry. CryTek denied that anyone had been arrested, but admitted that the police had raided their offices. If CryTek did perform such actions, UbiSoft were not legally responsible for CryTek's actions. A senior staffer at Ubisoft's Paris, headquarters was quoted as saying, "What we've read in published reports is that Crytek had not paid for the sufficient number of licenses."

System Requirements

Minimum:

Recommended:

Weapons

External links

fr:Far Cry he:Far Cry

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