Far Cry Primal

Far Cry Primal
Developer(s) Ubisoft Montreal
Publisher(s) Ubisoft
  • Jean-Christophe Guyot
  • Maxime Béland
Producer(s) Vincent Pontbriand
Designer(s) Thomas Simon
Artist(s) Mickael Labat
Writer(s) Kevin Shortt
Composer(s) Jason Graves
Series Far Cry
Engine Dunia Engine 2

Release date(s)

PlayStation 4, Xbox One‹See Tfd›

  • WW: February 23, 2016

Microsoft Windows ‹See Tfd›

  • WW: March 1, 2016
Genre(s) Action-adventure
Mode(s) Single-player

Far Cry Primal is an action-adventure video game developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. It was released for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows in 2016. The game is a prequel to the Far Cry series, it is the first game set in the Stone Age. It revolves around the story of Takkar, who starts off as an unarmed hunter and rises to become the leader of a tribe.

Far Cry Primal received a generally positive reception from critics, who mostly praised the concept and setting, as well as the animal-taming mechanic and world design. Some reviewers felt there was a lack of weapons for the player to utilize, leading to repetitive gameplay design, while others felt the story and characters were not on par with the previous Far Cry games.


In Far Cry Primal, the player has the ability to tame animals for use in combat.

Far Cry Primal is an open world action-adventure video game. As the game is set in prehistoric times, the traditional gunplay and vehicle gameplay featured in the Far Cry series were removed,[1] and players can only get access to melee weapons like spears, clubs, axes, and ranged weapons like bows and slings.[2] Players cannot purchase weapons, and must craft them using the materials scavenged in the world such as wood and stone. As players progress, they can craft more lethal weapons with a larger variety of resources. Besides facing natural predators, players must also compete with other hostile tribes occupying the area. By attacking and seizing bonfires and camps, the Wenja tribe will move in and begin patrolling the nearby region, and the player will gain fast travel points as well as camps to rest in. Non-player characters (NPCs) will also task the player to rescue tribe-mates and perform other tasks which improve the village, as well as provide free crafting materials. The game also features a day-night cycle, which affects the gameplay.[3] At night, more predators are present, and many become more aggressive and dangerous, whereas at the day, players can gather food and scavenge other resources such as tools for hunting. Players can also make use of fire as a tool for personal protection or hunting at night.[2][4]

Players can bait different wildlife in the game using lures, and can also tame predators while they're feeding on the bait. These animals serve as a companion for players and assist them in combating enemies after being tamed, and can be summoned remotely and issued basic commands. Larger animals can be used as mounts. Takkar has an owl, his spirit animal which can be directly controlled. Through the owl's vision, players can scout enemies' outposts and highlight enemies. Through skill improvements, the owl can be upgraded to have various abilities added to his owl, such as diving to kill an enemy[5] or dropping bombs. In a post-launch update, a survival mode, which drastically increases the game's difficulty, was introduced.[6]



The game is set in 10,000 BC during the beginning of the Mesolithic period in Europe.[7] It takes place in the fictional Oros valley in Central Europe, an open world filled with different types of flora and fauna. Unlike previous games, there is prehistoric wildlife such as mammoths, dire wolves, cave bear, cave lions, woolly rhinos, Irish elk and saber-toothed cats along with ancestors of modern creatures like brown bears, badgers, and deer. Survival is a daily challenge as tribes come into conflict with one another and nature.[8]

Players take on the role of a Wenja tribesman named Takkar (Elias Toufexis),[9] who is stranded in Oros with no weapons after his hunting party is ambushed.[2] Takkar, using his newfound skill of taming animals,[5] will eventually rise to power and lead his own tribe.[10]


Takkar, a hunter from the Wenja tribe, barely survives after his hunting party is ambushed and killed by a sabretooth tiger as they travel to the land of Oros. Resigned to proceed alone, Takkar meets Sayla, a woman also from the Wenja, and once they arrive at Oros, Sayla informs Takkar that the Wenja are scattered and homeless across the land after their village was destroyed by Ull, leader of the Neanderthal-like Udam tribe who live in the northern mountains, and hunt down the Wenja to cannibalize them. Takkar then starts gathering the Wenja he meets around his cave, eventually encountering the shaman Tensay, who helps him to learn the ability to tame the local animals.

After repelling an attack from Ull to his newly established village, Takkar enlists the help of three other skilled Wenja: Jayma, a veteran huntress, Wogah, a one-armed craftsman, and Karoosh, a one-eyed warrior with his own vendetta against the Udam. With the help of Tensay, Takkar also discovers that the Udam are eating Wenja flesh in hopes of gaining immunity from a terminal disease that is wiping out their tribe, then tracks down and apprehends the Udam commander Dah to learn more about the Udam's techniques. The Wenja reject Takkar's decision to give shelter to a member of the enemy tribe at first, and attempt to execute Dah behind his back, until Takkar himself arrives in time to rescue Dah and chastise the tribe for performing the execution without his permission, earning Dah's gratitude and help. When the agrarian and Aztec-like Izila, another, more advanced tribe that lives in the marshlands of southern Oros, begin capturing some Wenja prisoners for slavery and human sacrifice to their Sun god, Takkar invades their domains to rescue them, coming face to face with their leader Batari. After he refuses to become Batari's slave, a war begins between the Wenja and Izila. Takkar then infiltrates the camp of an Izila commander named Roshani and captures him, allowing him to live in exchange for some Izila technology in both warfare and agriculture.

After preparing himself enough to face Ull and Batari, Takkar storms the Udam and Izila's main fortresses, passing by all opposition before confronting and killing their commanders. While Batari is burned alive during a solar eclipse, Ull urges Takkar to take care of his two children with his dying breath, which Takkar accepts, taking them with him to his village in safety. With both rival tribes defeated and Wenja's dominance secured, Roshani agrees to stay with the Wenja and teach them how to grow food, while Takkar reluctantly agrees to mercifully kill Dah, ending his suffering from the Udam's disease. Takkar then celebrates his victory with the other villagers.

In the post-credits, Ull's daughter appears taming a cave bear, implying that she has acquired the same skill to tame animals as Takkar.


The development of Far Cry Primal was led by Ubisoft Montreal, with assistance provided by Ubisoft Toronto, Ubisoft Kiev and Ubisoft Shanghai.[8] When asked about whether Far Cry 4 would feature standalone content like Far Cry 3 with Blood Dragon, creative director Alex Hutchinson declared that a sequel to the game would not be happening, however they are planning something that can "surprise" players.[11] On January 5, 2015, Ubisoft released a survey and asked players about their favorite Far Cry setting. The survey includes themes like vampires, zombies, dinosaurs, a post-apocalyptic world, historical warfare and modern days locations like Peru and Alaska.[12][13]

It was first added to the Steam database under its codename Far Cry Sigma on October 2, 2015, causing confusion for both fans and press.[14] However, on October 6, 2015, Ubisoft held a stream revealing their next project.[15] It was announced a day later, though it was leaked by IGN Turkey several hours before the official announcement.[16] The game's creative director is Jean-Christophe Guyot, who has worked on several Prince of Persia games.[1] On December 3, 2015, creative director Maxime Béland stated that Far Cry Primal was as big as Far Cry 4.[17] The game does not feature a multiplayer mode. The decision was made during the early stages of the game's development as they wanted to focus on the game's core gameplay instead.[18]

Far Cry Primal released for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on February 23, 2016.[19] The Microsoft Windows version was released shortly afterwards on March 1, 2016.[20] The game has two different special editions, both of which cost more than the base game. The Collector's Edition features additional physical items such as a steelbook, a collector's book, a map of Oros, the game's original soundtrack and a Wenja phrasebook, which serves as a guide for players to learn the language used in the game. The Digital Apex Edition, which can only be purchased digitally, and the Collector's Edition contain digital content such as extra in-game missions, weapons and additional packs.[21]


The characters speak a fictional language with a defined syntax and structure. It is based on the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European language,[22] which is the hypothesised common ancestor of most modern European languages and some languages in Asia and the Middle-east. Linguists constructed three dialects - Wenja, Udam and Izila - one for each of the three featured tribes. Each dialect was designed to have a distinct sound conveying the culture of its tribe.[23] Lead writer Kevin Shortt said that players are able to understand Wenja vocabulary, and finish the game with "a real sense of it". Mexican vocalist and composer Malukah was among the voice actors providing war cries and other vocal effects to the game.[24]


The soundtrack of Far Cry Primal was created with percussion instruments, stone, clay, and an Aztec death whistle.[25] The soundtrack was composed by Jason Graves. The tribes the player encounters have their own distinct music profiles. The Wenja tribe features ram's horn and solo flute, while the Izilia features Aztec death whistles, female vocals and ritualistic percussion.[26]


Aggregate score
Metacritic(PC) 74/100[27]
(PS4) 76/100[28]
(XOne) 77/100[29]
Review scores
Game Informer8.75/10[32]
Game Revolution[33]

According to the review aggregation website Metacritic, the Microsoft Windows version of Far Cry Primal received "mixed or average" reviews from critics upon release, while the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions received "generally favorable" reviews.[27][28][29]

Destructoid's Kyle MacGregor spoke positively about how the game depicts violence towards animals and the survival aspects in general, saying that they were designed with realism in mind. He also felt that the animal companion mechanic was one of the game's strongest elements, saying that it has "limitless potential". In regard to the choice of setting, he felt it was a welcome and natural evolution in the Far Cry series. However, he described the story as being familiar and predictable, and said that, even with the drastic change of setting, the Far Cry formula isn't as innovative as it once was.[30]

Matt Buchholtz of Electronic Gaming Monthly wrote, "The graphics are stunning—Ubisoft has truly mastered facial animations and lighting effects." He added, "The game feels like a full-priced reskin of Far Cry 4, without the engaging storyline", finishing with, "Far Cry Primal really wants you to know that there are tons of things you can do in its prehistoric, open world. Unfortunately, you may not want to do any of them."[31]

Jeff Cork from Game Informer praised the setting for allowing for gameplay and story elements with more realism, specifically in regard to the protagonist not being a stereotype young male who inexplicably has advanced combat knowledge. He called the visuals and world design "beautiful", and said that the decision to use a primitive language made specifically for the game was "effective". Lastly, Cork wrote: "Players who associate Far Cry with explosions and massive gunfights might find the setting disappointing, but it's one of my favorite entries in the series yet."[32]

Matt Utley of Game Revolution called Far Cry Primal a "breath of fresh air for both the franchise and first-person action games in general". He praised the decision to remove guns and motorized vehicles for enabling more dynamic gameplay, called the graphics "lush" and "evocative", and, like others, commended the bold setting change. Utley's critiques were minor; he disliked some aspects of the control scheme, found that the quieter moments of the game were drowned-out by aggressive enemies, and felt that not enough improvements and fixes were made to the basic Far Cry formula.[33]

GameSpot's Mike Mahardy gave the game a mostly positive review, calling the setting its greatest strength. He praised the open world for being "cohesive" and "foreboding", enjoyed the "tense" focus on survival, and called the beast-taming mechanics "creative". Mahardy did feel as though there was a limited amount of weapons given to the player and disliked some of the gameplay for being "repetitive".[34]

Joe Skrebels from GamesRadar was more critical of the game, summarizing his thoughts with: "Primal takes the great structure of the Far Cry series, but little of its character. No clear goal and a limited arsenal end up making this feel a little prehistoric itself." Skrebels too praised the taming mechanic and the open world design.[35]

Luke Reilly of IGN summarized his review with: "Far Cry Primal comes to the table with a quiver of neat ideas but it forgot to bring much of a story with it." Reilly thought the game's strongest aspects were created by its twist on the series' formula, highlighting the scavenging elements and the animal-taming mechanics. However, Reilly felt the drastic change for the series wasn't without its flaws, saying that the characters, quests, and overall story were a step back from the memorable moments of the previous games.[36]

Polygon's Justin McElroy particularly praised the open world environment, calling it the "most immersive" in the series. He summarized his review by writing: "I don't want every Far Cry game from here on to trade bullets for arrows, motorcycles for tigers, but Primal is an invigorating example of how to reimagine a tired franchise while keeping its soul intact."[37]

Even though he described the game as being "very fun" and felt that the decision to develop a spin-off-type game in the series was a great one, Simon Miller from VideoGamer.com recognized that Far Cry Primal "doesn't do anything drastically new" for the series. He too praised the animal taming mechanic and the visuals.[38]


The game's retail version was the best selling game in its week of release in the UK, debuting at No. 1 in the UK retail software sales chart.[39] The game was also the best-selling game in the United States in February 2016.[40] According to Ubisoft, the game performed better than they had expected, and that its release became the biggest launch of a game in February.[41]


  1. 1 2 Kietzmann, Ludwig (October 7, 2015). "Far Cry Primal ditches guns for prehistoric arms". GamesRadar. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  2. 1 2 3 Cork, Jeff (October 6, 2015). "Far Cry's Creators Take The Series Back To The Stone Age". Game Informer. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  3. Chalk, Andy (October 7, 2015). "Far Cry Primal officially unveiled, coming in early 2016". PC Gamer. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  4. Hussain, Tamoor (October 6, 2015). "Far Cry Primal Trailer, Release Date, Gameplay Details Officially Released". GameSpot. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Far Cry Primal gameplay - you can tame animals!". Eurogamer. December 4, 2015. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
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  7. "We decided to settle on the Mesolithic time period" Jean-Christophe Guyot, Far Cry Primal - Behind-the-Scenes Development Video, IGN, October 6, 2015.
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  10. Frank, Allegra (October 6, 2015). "Far Cry Primal revealed for 2016 release, watch the first trailer here". Polygon. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  11. Crossley, Rob (November 10, 2014). "Blood Dragon 2 Not Happening, Says Far Cry 4 Dev". GameSpot. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  12. Phillips, Tom (January 5, 2015). "Ubisoft polls public on future Far Cry settings". Eurogamer. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  13. Savage, Phil (January 5, 2015). "Ubisoft poll hints at future Far Cry settings". PC Gamer. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  14. Perez, Daniel (October 2, 2015). "Far Cry Sigma spotted on Steam Database; Could be Far Cry Remastered". Shacknews. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  15. Makedonski137, Brett (October 6, 2015). "Ubisoft has a mystery stream going to tease its next project". Destructoid. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  16. Meer, Alec (October 6, 2015). "Far Cry Primal Trailer: Fight Mammoths With Spears". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  17. Pereira, Chris (December 3, 2015). "Far Cry Primal Is as Big and as Long as Far Cry 4, Ubisoft Says". GameSpot. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  18. Jones, Gary (January 7, 2016). "Far Cry Primal bringing the Stone Age to life on Xbox One, PS4 and PC without friends". Express.co.uk. Retrieved January 7, 2016.
  19. Scammell, David (October 6, 2015). "Far Cry Primal sends the series to the Stone Age in February 2016". VideoGamer.com. Retrieved October 7, 2015.
  20. Scammell, David (December 4, 2015). "Far Cry Primal releases on PC one week after PS4 & Xbox One". VideoGamer.com. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  21. Saed, Sherif (December 4, 2015). "Far Cry Primal gets two collector's editions, PC release date pushed". VG247. Retrieved December 5, 2015.
  22. Zorine Te (January 26, 2016). "Far Cry Primal Developers Talk About Uncovering History". GameSpot. Retrieved February 8, 2016.
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  24. http://www.malukah.com/2016/02/27/far-cry-primal/
  25. "Music of far cry primal". Ubisoft.
  26. "Far Cry primal Soundtrack by jason graves". Vg247.
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  29. 1 2 "Far Cry Primal for Xbox One Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
  30. 1 2 MacGregor, Kyle (February 22, 2016). "Review: Far Cry Primal". Destructoid. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
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  32. 1 2 Cork, Jeff (February 22, 2016). "Far Cry Primal Review". Game Informer. Retrieved March 24, 2016.
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  41. Sarker, Samit (May 12, 2016). "The Division hits 9.5M players while Far Cry Primal sets a February sales record (update)". Polygon. Retrieved September 25, 2016.

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