Looking back, Blood Dragon was a treat of a spin-off. In the spirit of taking the main entry in the franchise to do something weird with it, we get Far Cry: New Dawn. It's less of a strange twist, but actually one that acts as a direct sequel to the fifth main line game. This takes place many years after the bombs dropped, with society trying to rebuild. New factions have formed, yet familiar faces continue to roam the area of Hope County. There's a lot of neat; I know that person, or I've been there! At the same time, there's a lot of, oh I've been there already...
You get a sense of rediscovery that becomes somewhat boring at times if you've played the previous game. You're essentially starting from scratch and almost doing the exact same activities you did last time. Sure, the characters are a bit older. It's still the same general collection of people and quests, just in a smaller capacity. I found some of the quests to be a straight up slog, such as one where you're on a slow boat "trip" ride. That being said, there's a lot of content here for a smaller release. A long campaign, beautifully scripted scenes and some wild moments that only this franchise can provide. I just mostly wish they would have spent more time developing the villains, instead of focusing on people we already know.
Far Cry: New Dawn is a gorgeous, and visually stunning game. It carries forward the style of Far Cry 5 while giving it a fresh coat of apocalypse, and color. Instead of being a bleak Mad Max style world, it's one filled with bright lovely flowers. The landmass is basically the same here, just carved slightly differently. There are still people walking around in the world, animals to hunt and various side activities to take part in. A new system is present for how you level, you'll be collecting Ethanol. You do so by capturing Outposts, it's somewhat of a lame way to progress. You have to do this also, as the enemies will begin to become too powerful which is disappointing.
They have some neat custom scrapped together weapons and vehicles in this. You'll need to find supplies in the world to produce them, this is somewhat hard at the start. You're able to have an assistant again, many colorful new characters to use. The primary leading lady was actually quite great here, narrative and help wise. While the game ran incredibly well on Xbox One X, I did notice that this wasn't as polished as the last entry. Certain AI pathing issues were present, your companions had issues and some of the checkpoints were buggy as well. It wasn't bad by any means, but just noticeable compared to what I'm used to from this franchise.
Far Cry: New Dawn lacks the polish of the main series, but still delivers a quality experience. If you're a fan of the franchise then this is a solid follow-up. It brings a fairly lengthy narrative, though one that will be certainly familiar to those that are just coming from the fifth main entry. I got bored of this at times, but did appreciate the distinct tweak of the landscape and the new enemies that were present.
I just wish they would have focused on the villains more, to develop them further. We got glimpses into who they are, but not enough context to make us care for their perspective. There are a number of main missions, side quests and activities to take part in. I didn't like how they handled the level type setup here with Ethanol, that came across as weak in terms of the influence it had on the story. Still, it's all about weird guns and explosions as you revisit a very different world. It's quite an interesting spin-off being a direct sequel which is unique here.
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Far Cry: New Dawn Review on Xbox One X
Review Code Provided by Ubisoft