Far Cry : Reception
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.
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.
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.”
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.”
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.
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”