“You will fight alongside a mythical tiger.” Sold. Seriously, Ubisoft can quit it with the whole exhausting PR cycle already;Far Cry 4 might have just blown our fragile little minds. Not only is Ubisoft looking to ramp up the beautiful destructibility than its predecessor was so lauded for in every way imaginable, but it’s now asking us to set aside our mundane gaming expectations and embrace wildly insane set of side-quests. Side-quests that, it has to be said, looka hell ton more interesting than the main game’s story of interloper versus the world.

You might recall Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon , the 2012 XBLA standalone spin-off title that injected neon-soaked Eighties action parody into the franchise’s sometimes tiresome jungle stalking. It was pretty radical, revealing that Far Cry (hell, Ubisoft even) wasn’t above cracking a smile and firinga cheeky wink in our direction every now and again. And so we’ve been waiting, waiting to see when Blood Dragon would make a glorious return. Friends, this is Shangri-La,a realm that looks to provide all of the weird and wonderful fun that we’ve been oh so desperate to dive back into.

Ubisoft Toronto, the studio behind Splinter Cell: Blacklist, has been tasked with injecting the crazy into Far Cry 4.

The snow-capped mountains, mountable elephants, and heavily guarded outposts of the Himalayas are being replaced by a vivid imagining of a corrupted utopia inspired by Hindu mythology. This five chapter descent into the spiritual world of Shangri-La isn’t essential to the main storyline, but it sure is tempting.

Supernatural portals hidden across the world as ancient tapestries transport the player to floating islands with grass that grows red, rivers that run thick with blood and enemies that harbour spiritual super-strength.

And, of course,there’s that beautiful spectral white tiger to battle and explore alongside.Far Cry’s established gameplay pattern of P.S.E (that’s Plan. Stalk. Execute, don’t you know) returns, but it comes imbued with a primal edge. As Kalinga warrior of the Shangri-La region, you’re tasked with defeating demons with deadly arrows anda host of spiritual powers. The enemies here are more powerful than anything else you’ll encounter in Far Cry 4 , anda time-altering bowis just one of
the tools bestowed upon you to even the odds.

Drawing back on the bowtriggers arrow-time,a state where time slows to a crawl giving you ample opportunities to line up the perfect headshots. This is especially helpful when some of the more powerful demons begin to make appearances, such as The Scorchers, who warp into view and breath magic flames across the surreal landscape. You’ll need to use everything and your dangerous feline companion to complete Shangri La’s twist on outpost  capture, asking you to instead unchain massive iron prayer bells that can be see perpetually spinning across the landscape. In this world, the rules of reality might not apply, but the consequences seem very real.
    “It’s striking how a couple of weapon and aesthetic changes can impact the entire Far Cry experience”
 It’s striking howa couple of weapon and aesthetic changes can impact the entire Far Cry experience. You’ll feel comfortable here, but utterly engrossed by the beautiful yellow horizon and stunning red rolling hills. Many of the controls and elements of the standard game make the otherworldly leap of course, with the same visual cues, basic commands and slight regenerating health system all present and accounted for.

It’s weird how quickly we’ve been turned around on Far Cry 4. Initially, the X-ONE team was a little disappointed that Ubisoft Montreal wasn’t innovating in the same way it has between every other iteration in the Far Cry franchise. But after witnessing the scope and scale of Kyrat in all of its glory, the  crazy  emergent gameplay that can now be achieved in the open world not to mention the chaos of Shangri La we can’t help but get incredibly excited about  Far Cry’s debut on Xbox One.

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