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Far Cry Primal Review



For a game released in 2016, one would expect Far Cry Primal to be a good looking title using several modern technologies to create a beautiful appearance. Sadly, that is not quite the case. It is still a good looking game, but there are definitely some areas that could use improvement.

The main area I think could be better is the textures, especially facial textures. For many characters, the faces have a flat and smooth look to them because the textures are lacking in definition. I have actually checked the options to make sure I have the highest texture option selected, because I would believe it if there was an option above what I was seeing.

Fortunately the character models I found to be good throughout and truly have no issue with them. The fur could be better, especially as the overlapping layers of partially transparent textures can create an almost aliased or rippled appearance. I am not sure how well it comes through in some of the screenshots, but considering just how many entities have some amount of fur on them, I was really hoping for something better than this. Practically every beast you encounter has fur and many NPCs are wearing furs.



Like the character models, the environment looks quite good and I can only think of two places where I found any graphical issues with the environment. Both of these places are somewhat out of the way, so I would not be surprised if very few people ever encounter them.

The lighting is definitely very good with beautiful volumetric fog capturing streaks of light from the Sun and Moon. One issue with the fog is that there are times it feels too close, like it is being used to limit how far you can see. When it is not there, you can see quite far, so that is not what is happening. It just made me step back a little and wonder why so much was hidden at times.

Water is not uncommon in Oros, but is not very reactive. When I tested to see if ripples were produced as the player swims through it, I could not see any. (The test is simply swimming backwards in a body of water, in case you were curious.) The fire is a little bland to me, with the flames seeming to blur together, losing definition and character. In some situations, like when you are igniting campfires, roots obstructing your path, and some beasts, the flames can look like they are just an added layer and do not conform or respond to the shape of the object being consumed. Granted, that is something that would not be easy to achieve, but becomes more apparent to me at least, when the flames lack definition as I said above.



Time to get to performance, so here are my specs:

  • Processor: AMD A10-5800K @ 4.40 GHz (44.0x100)
  • Cooling: Corsair H110
  • Motherboard: ASUS F2A85-M PRO
  • GPU: NVIDIA GTX 980 4 GB
  • PhysX: EVGA GTX 770 2 GB
  • Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws 4x8 GB (32 GB total) at 1866 MHz 10-10-10-27
  • PSU: OCZ Fata1ty 750 W
  • OS: Windows 7 - Professional 64-bit

With the singular exception of motion blur, I played with every setting at its maximum and the performance was quite good, typically hanging around the mid-40s and into the 50s. I am confident I could maintain 60 FPS by turning down some settings, but I found the performance quite comfortable, and always prefer to provide you with media of the game looking its best. For a game with just its Day One patch, this is a pretty good starting point.



While playing I encountered no truly serious bugs, but there was one issue that does need to be fixed, and an issue that I am guessing was fixed, but the fix is pretty funny. The issue still in need of a fix is that some cinematics will lose sync between the visuals and voice work. It is not too serious, especially since the subtitles are on, but does break the experience to see lips moving without words and words spoken without the appropriate non-verbal cues.

The fixed but amusing issue concerns the beasts you can tame and have come with you on your adventures. These beasts are meant to follow you closely, but there are situations when you can go somewhere or do something they cannot. Not wanting the player to arbitrarily lose their beasts, a system is in place to destroy the original beast and spawn a new one for the player. For times the beast gets stuck and the player runs ahead, everything is fine and right with the virtual world, because you do not see any of this take place. For some reason, if the beast falls from a ledge, this system will be triggered and the player can see it in action. The first time I saw this happen (and I do have video of it I can include in the Additional Gameplay Media Section) I had a tamed black lion with me and I went down a cliff. Shortly after I reached the bottom, the limp body of black lion fell at my feet, and I immediately assumed my beast had been killed trying to follow me down the mountain. Then I stepped back and saw a new black lion next to me. Later something similar happened with a sabertooth tiger later on. I am not sure why falling triggers this system, but the result is not harmful, and is rather amusing.

Overall I would say the graphics are good, but below what I was expecting, mainly because of the textures. Everything else looked at least okay and the performance was steady at a comfortable mid-40s to 50s framerate. With some patching that performance should definitely improve, and I would welcome a higher-resolution texture pack, if that is possible.


  1. Far Cry Primal Review - Introduction
  2. Far Cry Primal Review - Graphics
  3. Far Cry Primal Review - Story
  4. Far Cry Primal Review - Gameplay
  5. Far Cry Primal Review - Additional Gameplay Media
  6. Far Cry Primal Review - Conclusion
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