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‘Far Cry 4’ director says co-op in ‘Far Cry 3’ was a ‘missed-opportunity’

Honey badger!
Honey badger!
Photo courtesy of Ubisoft, used with permission.

Far Cry 3 sported the usual trifecta of gameplay modes: single player campaign, co-operative missions, and competitive multiplayer. While the campaign was elaborate, intricate, and beautiful, its other two companions were a little lacking. The co-op was uninspired and lacked fun elements and the multiplayer just wasn't on par with the rest of the experience.

Narrative director Mark Thompson admits that despite its success, Far Cry 3 was a missed opportunity for Ubisoft.

"It’s just two players. The whole idea was that Far Cry 3’s open-world was a lot of fun. We knew we were going to rebuild that design philosophy in Far Cry 4’s open-world," Thompson continues, "but we realized at the end of Far Cry 3, open-world co-op was a missed opportunity."

Instead Ubisoft decided to create an independent cooperative experience with an isolated storyline, something that Thompson knows was a mistake, but the team simply didn't realize their underestimation of its potential until it was way too late.

"In Far Cry 3’s, we decided really early in production to do a separate co-op mode and that was before we knew just how powerful the open-world experience would be. Obviously, it was too late by the end [to implement co-op]. For Far Cry 4, one of the first things we started thinking about was how hard is it technically? So we [built a prototype] and then started building on it and building on it.

As a result, the entirety of Far Cry 4 will be completely traversal with another friend.

Remember all those high jinks that were had previously? Assaulting enemy bases from various approaches. Exploring every nook and cranny of the world. Tracking rare animals. Now all of this can be done with the help of another, opening up an many new doors for those that frequent the franchise.