A weekend of running, surfing, and sun is not complete without restorative video gaming sessions. J and I recently started co-oping Far Cry 4.
The game is pretty like Assassin's Creed IV
, but trade the Caribbean for the fictitious Himalayan land of Kyrat. And the xbox 360 for ps4. Nicely-detailed, 3d-looking mountains for starters. Water, fire, lighting, and focus effects cannot go without mention.
The game has ample depth elements
for a shooter: xp and leveling, nice guy points, abilities, inventory. Things unlock as you focus efforts on the variety of main and side quests, so if you want the suppressed sniper rifle you can work specifically for it.
I'm not especially impressed with the abilities (other than, of course, riding elephants
). Things like chained takedowns and stimulant injections just don't have much impact unless you're really going for it.
The weapons are varied but pretty standard
. Some can be upgraded with scopes, suppressors, and large mags. There are other fun things like explosive arrows and c4. The map is scattered with gun and mortar emplacements. Mortars are especially fun, similar to UAVs in Call of Duty.
On the plus side, I haven't set a proximity mine since Perfect Dark and... well... WING SUIT!!!
The plot is nothing new
: the protagonist finds out about his father in a world where the peasants are rising up against the evil, murderous, drug trafficking, uber-baddie Pagan Min. Interactions are pretty good even if they don't lend to any particular depth.
The vehicles. Woo
. All the toys you could possibly want to get around the remote environs of not-Nepal. Here's a decent cross section, and I'm maybe at 25% completion:
The co-op is great
. Which is important because it's the reason this game rose to the top of the queue. Your co-op partner plays as Hurk, the redneck fish-out-of-water fighting for a just cause, or just fighting. Together you drive and fly around, capturing bases and getting stuff.
Teamwork can be super-useful
, whether it's marking enemies at an outpost for the ensuing takedown or airlifting your buddy to the top of the tedious-to-climb radio towers.
The fun of working together is somewhat overshadowed by the knowledge that only the game host will collect full rewards from the activities, but the guest does not come away with nothing.
There are one or two glitches
in the game. And I mean more substantive than the above-depicted spoon-driving (can this be a thing?). I've been stuck underneath a hang glider and inside a bridge. More frequently, online play has simply choked. One time J couldn't see the car I was driving.
Random gallery and obligatory elephant outro