Far Cry 6 — releasing October 7 worldwide — is ready on the fictional Caribbean island of Yara, dominated with an iron hand by dictator Antón Castillo (Giancarlo Esposito). Life is tough, with many Yarans escaping for a greater life. Yara is a spot frozen in time, because of Castillo’s insurance policies which have remoted it from the remainder of the world. Having misplaced his father in a revolution 60 years in the past, Castillo grew up believing that his nation had been stolen from him. As an grownup, he rode a populist wave to energy, by romanticising the pre-revolution Yara. Sound acquainted? It is within the headline.
“It’s heavily based in Cuba,” Far Cry 6 writer-actor Manuel Rodriguez-Saenz mentioned final week. “In terms of the culture, in terms of the music, the way they speak, the games — there’s dominoes, there’s baseball — and there’s palm trees. And obviously that aspect of an island in the Caribbean, frozen in time, with old cars from the 1950s. There’s only one, right? There’s not that many examples that we can use.”
The accents in Ubisoft Toronto’s Far Cry 6 are once more closely based mostly in Cuba, with variations based mostly on socio-economic location, whether or not it is a rural space, or the capital Esperanza that takes a bit after Havana. Even contained in the capital metropolis itself, a working class Yaran will sound totally different from somebody from the higher center class, Rodriguez-Saenz famous.
Far Cry 6 is extra than simply Cuba
“Cuba was a huge inspiration, right from the beginning and I think it evolved over time,” Far Cry 6 narrative director Navid Khavari mentioned. “We spent a lot of time just researching revolutions throughout history. Also, we weren’t just limited to the Cuban Revolution. We were looking at what’s happening in Venezuela right now, Colombia, the Arab Spring.”
“Tonally, we looked at a lot of documentaries about revolution,” Khavari added later. “Style-wise, we wanted it to sometimes feel almost like a newsreel, throwing your right into the action. But elsewhere, I naturally lean on [Quentin] Tarantino and folks like that to keep some of that the Far Cry fun as well.”
“It’s heavily based on Cuba, but it’s not Cuba,” Rodriguez-Saenz chimed in. “You will find differences in terms of like, there’s no flamingos in Cuba. And there’s flamingos in Far Cry 6. There’s people growing like alligators in a swimming pool. People truly do not do that in Cuba. So those are things that I think we have to make sure that it’s clear for everybody, this is not Cuba.”
That additionally goes for the spiritual parts in Far Cry 6. Rodriguez-Saenz famous that the group borrowed actual symbols and actual gods from African and Caribbean roots, but it surely’s a totally fictional faith. Ubisoft Toronto took an analogous blended method to creating Yara’s previous, wanting on the Caribbean, Latin America and South America, world director Benjamin Corridor mentioned.
“Working with the narrative team, we created an entire timeline looking backwards to sort of like the 1400s,” Corridor added. “To really birth the island from its beginning and then tap into those elements of real history that were that part of the world, but then craft our own stories into Yara. So when we came to world-building, we were able to tap into those layers of history as well for our stories.”
Far Cry 6 bakes in Cuba’s resolver philosophy
The Cuban influences additionally seep into Far Cry 6 gameplay. Primarily, the Cuban idea of “resolver” — pronounced “rreh-sohl-BEHR” — meaning to make do with what you could have. In Cuba, this was introduced on as a consequence of commerce embargoes and the collapse of the Soviet Union, forcing Cubans to outlive in shortage. Resolver is a bit like DIY, besides it brings in tenacity, improvisation, and resourcefulness.
“Resolver is really a tradition of approaching life in Cuba, which is what my background is,” Far Cry 6 actor Alex Fernandez, who performs guerrilla mentor Juan Cortez. “There’s examples, all over the place in Cuba, of people saying, you know, ‘I’ve got this car it’s from 1955, I don’t have any gasoline so I’m going to figure out how to turn this paint thinner into fuel.’ In the island of Cuba, and in the game of Far Cry 6 on Yara, resolver really means a triumph of the imagination.”
On Far Cry 6, resolver weapons are not like something you have seen, comprised of a wide range of sources akin to drills, paint cans, bicycle grips, turbocharger, automobile batteries, bike engine, petrol pump handles, and — in what’s my private favorite — CD gamers.
“I think the real difference maker is, you see all the mechanics and the pieces working together, and it feels just so grounded and real,” Khavari mentioned. “It feels handcrafted and organic.”
After which there’s resolver backpacks — dubbed Supremos. Some are like a flamethrower. Some have a fireplace extinguisher full of jet gas, your individual private mini-jetpack. And a few have a bunch of metallic tubes with auto-targeting missiles. These ultra-powerful Supremos are time-limited and therefore have a cooldown interval, making certain that you do not maintain utilizing them each few seconds.
“In Far Cry 6, resolver is all about turning the player into a one-guerrilla army, and inflicting the maximum amount of chaos with what they have,” Far Cry 6 lead recreation designer David Grivel mentioned.
Guerrilla revolution in Far Cry 6
Talking of guerrillas, Far Cry 6 finds you within the sneakers of Dani Rajos (Sean Rey/ Nisa Gunduz who spent two years with the character), a neighborhood Yaran who simply desires to get away. However after witnessing a horrific crime, Dani is pushed into waging guerrilla warfare towards Castillo.
“With Far Cry, it’s always a story about rebellion, it’s sort of part of the brand,” Khavari famous. “But what got us really excited was transitioning from rebellion to the idea of revolution because it’s sweeping, it’s epic. It involves liberating an entire country, but at the same time, there’s sort of an ideology behind the guerrilla that fights a revolution. An ideology that is very purpose driven, it’s personal. Making a character-driven narrative that pushes forward those notions and the intensity of experiencing a revolution felt really powerful to us.”
Ubisoft Toronto went to Cuba to expertise the tradition, and to talk with former guerrillas and their descendants. Fernandez’s father fought Fidel Castro’s regime in Cuba and frolicked in jail, the Far Cry 6 actor famous: “When I was first cast, I said to Navid, ‘I’m just going to play my father.’ My father had a scorched earth policy when it came to a lot of things. And so, I felt like that really fit with Juan Cortez. Cortez literally wrote the book on how to be a guerrilla. If you find the thing [in Far Cry 6], there are a series of rules.”
Being a guerrilla warrior, you possibly can’t overtly roam round in Far Cry 6. Castillo not solely has navy checkpoints on all main roads, however he additionally controls the skies (with anti-aircraft cannons) and the seas (with navy patrols). Should you want to keep away from fixed battle, you are higher off avoiding the crushed path.
“That’s where the notion of guerrilla paths was crafted from,” Corridor mentioned. “These woven pathways through the landscapes that allow guerrilla to move invisibly around the country without the threat of the military that are controlling the roads.”
“These are small hidden paths in the jungle that allow you to safely navigate the open world,” Far Cry 6 recreation content material director Omar Bouali mentioned. “They can also help you ambush military. You can find a bunch of things in the guerrilla paths like weapons or pieces of gear that will help you survive. And yes, Far Cry 6 brings back the horse which is cool to use in guerrilla paths because it helps you go super-fast.”
Far Cry 6 is a political recreation
Given the failures of Far Cry 5 in dealing with political materials and Ubisoft’s tone-deaf response to it, many are naturally apprehensive if Far Cry 6 is setting foot in a quagmire. On the floor, Ubisoft appears to be dealing with it higher this time round. Khavari has gotten forward of the questioning, publicly acknowledging that Far Cry 6 is a political recreation. Although he will reserve judgement to followers.
“What was important was not to think so much about what we can or cannot say in the narrative, but rather what is the story that we’re trying to tell, and try and be fearless in that,” Khavari mentioned. “One of the main things I’ve sort of tried to put out there as well, with the statement I released a few months ago and now, is we tend to see revolutions and any conflict is black and white. As one side is right, one side is wrong. But these are unbelievably complicated conflicts, and anyone who studies revolution will tell you that.
“So, rather than try and tell a simple story with a very binary point of view, we embrace that complexity. The beauty of telling a narrative that’s about revolution is you see that within a revolutionary group. There are all sorts of motivations, ideologies, perspectives that you have the opportunity to capture. We didn’t want to shy away from talking about the rise of fascism both within that era, and what we’ve been seeing in the last 5-10 years around the world.
“We wanted to talk about the effects of imperialism on an island like Yara, and have folks on the island have an opinion about the effects of a blockade on an island such as Yara. And we wanted to talk about LGBTQ+ rights within the context of our stories. So these were all incredibly important topics that we just didn’t feel right to shy away from. At the end of the day, players will decide for themselves how we did, and I encourage them to share their own opinion.”
Far Cry 6 is out October 7 on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Collection S/X, Stadia, and Amazon Luna.