Far Cry Instincts
To be honest, I probably had my expectations too high when I got this game. A friend of mine and I were watching tv, when we saw an ad for it. The ad portrays this man who gets stranded on an island controlled by guerillas and must use his wits and jungle-traps to escape. This was a really cool sounding idea, so we're all impressed and we go look up reviews and video footage and decide to head down to the local used game store to trade in a bunch of old stuff for Far Cry.
We get back with Far Cry, and two other people that we've picked up since seeing the commercial. We start up the game. There's an opening cinema where your boat is destroyed and you dive into the water. After this, you immediately take control of Jack, the protagonist. Under water, in the middle of the ocean, and being shot at by helicopters. I swim toward this island and notice that the beach is crawling with armed thugs, so I decide to try and find an easier way to get onto the island. No. You can't do that. The game forces to enter through Thug Beach.
Fine. I get onto the beach and begin sneaking up behind one of the guerillas. I shank him, steal his gun, and slip away into some bushes. His buddy freaks out and starts patrolling trying to figure out what happened. When Buddy leaves I begin to look around at my surroundings. There's a trail leading off the beach between two mountains. I decide to try and climb one of the mountains to get a look at the trail. No. Invisible Wall. I try a different way. No. Invisible Wall. I continue running into wall after wall until I get to the top of the mountain. It's clear. I try to climb back down. Stuck. I can't move. My friends crack jokes about how ridiculous the game is. I get mad and pass the sticks.
When I first started playing I thought, "This is so linear because it's the begginning. It's like a tutorial." But no. The entire game is linear. You keep getting more and more options for killing people. But you never get any freedom to explore the island or impact the story.
Far Cry's single player has some redeeming features. The enemy AI is good, so combat can be fun. It has a few action movie style chase scenes. But in the end it's far too linear, and the story was too bland to be interesting to me. I wasn't able to finish the game, and I probably won't ever bother with the single player again.
One thing I liked about Far Cry is its level editor. Far Cry has a built-in level editor to create multiplayer maps. The level editor has a lot of features, it's pretty flexible, and very intuitive. You can raise and lower land, add vegetation, add garbage, place building, place ammo, etc. All of this is done using simple on-screen menus and the joysticks. You can look at the map while you edit it, rotate it, and drop Jack anywhere on the map for testing. The standard maps that come with Far Cry Instincts aren't very impressive, but the map editor lets you create some really interesting areas, and adds a lot of longevity to the game.
Far Cry is jungle-themed Quake game, with good AI, an excellent map editor, and the ability to stealth shank people. I expected something more like Seven Cities of Gold, and was disappointed. If you like Quake style games, and want to try the jungle flavour, then you may get something out of this.
Four Out of Ten.