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Game Review

Far Cry 4 takes place in a fictional Himalayan country called Kyrat—a land of mythical spirituality, maslach pushers and Molotov cocktails. As a young American named Ajay Ghale, you arrive in this exotic-looking mountainous and thickly wooded land with an urn of ashes in hand. Ajay's mother's dying wish was that her son would return to their homeland to scatter her ashes at a special shrine.

Of course, things aren't going to be as simple as all that. No sooner does Ajay arrive in the country than his bus is riddled with gunfire and he's snatched up by scene-chewing potentate Pagan Min, a guy with a taste for dire dramatics and a habit of butchering anyone who doesn't please him. But before the flouncing madman can make his desires or his relationship to Ajay fully known, a freedom-fighter group called the Golden Path creates a diversion and sets Ajay free once more—drawing him into its fold and labeling him the "son of the great Mohan."

Who are all these people and what do they want from Ajay? Well, that's what he—and you—must determine while fulfilling scores of quests in this vast open sandbox. Ajay ambles up over mountain highs and down through valley lows, arming himself with machetes, bows and arrows and a variety of high-caliber weaponry, slaughtering scores of local sharp-clawed beasts and hundreds of equally savage humans on his way to the truth.

How Do I Kill Thee? Let Me Count the Ways
There is, without question, quite a bit of compelling adventure and even a dash of heroics mixed into the storyline as you traverse this beautifully rendered and well-defined video game land. But it's quickly apparent that Far Cry 4 isn't trying to give gamers a new cultural perspective or lead them on a path of freedom for the oppressed. No, this is a bloody shooter that merely uses its exotic locale and Far Eastern spirituality as a colorful backdrop for more and more massively maniacal mayhem.

A series of insurgent assassination objectives are given to you as you improvise and strategize the best way to accomplish each task. Do you stealthily slash throats, silently painting the walls around you? Or should you use a block of C4 to blow an elephant to smithereens and start a panic? Or what about jumping up on that elephant's back (before you blow it up!) and mowing down guards with backbone-snapping trunk swings?

The choices are many, but generally deadly.

We see screaming characters tortured, animals and men obliterated with high explosives and dead bodies stacked like cordwood. Ajay can also skin nearly every animal he kills and use their bloody hides as lures or as raw material from which to craft new items (from a nifty holster to a big booty-bearing backpack).

Other Junk on the Journey
Another challenge finds Ajay stripped of clothes, which affords a brief glimpse of his naked genitals. In this condition he's sent in to battle an arena full of heavily armed men and vicious beasts. We encounter some female nudity, too, as digitally well-defined topless women hold Ajay prisoner; they're wearing little more than brief skirts and a few splashes of body paint. Discussions of prostitution, sadism and masochism pop up from time to time.

Ajay encounters a pair of British hop heads named Reggie and Yogi who are constantly offering him a toke or two from whatever blend of weed they're currently puffing, along with a needle full of their latest pharmaceutical concoction—opiate blasts that regularly cause Ajay to keel over into unconsciousness. On one such drugged-out trip, he yomps his way through the mystical land of Shangri-La, a colorful place of pooled gore, deadly killers and a magical tiger.

Then, in the midst of the many references to Far Eastern religions there's one character who claims to be a Christian—a reformed warlord killer who regularly quotes Scripture and states that his past sins are "covered by the blood of the Lamb." Yet none of the religious perspectives seem to curb the game's rampant foul language (including frequent uses of f- and s-words) or nudge the characters off whatever illegal, unethical or murderous path they're currently on.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

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Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

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