A few people on the Far Cry 3 development team held an IAmA on Reddit today, which has now ended. After wading through what seemed like a never ending amount of comments, we’ve compiled some of the more interesting tidbits below, in a question and answer format.
*Since many of the questions were worded poorly or went on forever, we edited them down for cohesion, but the answers were left un-edited.
Why were there no vehicles in the multiplayer like there were in Far Cry 2?
We wanted to focus on the ”shoulder to shoulder” fighting experience and built a lot of the core loop around that with booster shots, reviving, battle cries etc. Also, without armored cars it’s hard to build great maps where the driving is satisfying but you aren’t owned by snipers and RPGs. Anyway, excuses excuses. Of course we would have loved to give you the chance to find that out for yourself in MP through the map editor, but there was no time, and for this I apologize.
Is the island in Far Cry 3 based on a real island?
No it isn’t a real island. We did base everything on a lot of research though. We wanted it to feel like a real place, so we had to look at how mountains are formed, how vegetation grows, how rivers and coastlines are formed, etc. etc.
Is it weird planning/designing sex scenes/nudity?
No, but the research was awesome.
Was it a conscious decision to fix elements you didn’t like about Far Cry 2?
Without getting into the specifics of why we chose one feature over another, the decisions we took as a team aren’t just coloured by one approach or another, but it’s a balance of personal opinions on the team about the game we want to make (a bunch of those, I can tell you) and feedback from what people did and didn’t like from the previous games. There was something special with FC2 that we wanted to hang on to, and we often asked the question “if we change this will we lose that?” Ultimately, it’s about the game we wanted to make with FC3 – the main thing for us in this game was creating a living world where you decide how the action unfolds; hopefully you enjoy that experience for its own merits.
Were the outpost liberations and radio tower aspects inspired by Assassin’s Creed?
We’re always looking for mechanics and systems that work well – I don’t think there’s a designer in the industry who doesn’t. It’s one of the great things about working at a studio like Ubi Montreal, is that you’re surrounded by people that have made some amazing games, and have solutions for some of the gameplay problems you’re likely to run into. That said, you want to make it your own as well, make sure it fits into the world you’re making – I’d say that making the outposts was probably one of my favourite parts of developing the game.
How do you balance the game in a way that it is still fun and exciting, but at the same time remaining realistic?
It’s a really delicate balance to draw, and actually one we spent a lot of time on. It’s a realistic experience, but actually nothing like real life. The most important thing is that you never say “I don’t believe this”, that you buy into the world’s ‘rules’, and are carried along by the fiction that’s created. At the end of the day though, we listened a lot to playtesting, and iteration is king. Trying to tweak different values and numbers, seeing how they play and then updating based on that feedback.
What was a part of the game you had fun working on? Any part that was a chore? Any hilarious bugs during alpha or beta?
For me, the outposts was probably the most fun – they’re pretty pure in terms of multiple game systems working together, and the variety of approaches meant you never saw the same approach twice. No part of making the game was a chore (there’s a marketing guy here with a gun to my head, I have to say that, sorry) My favourite bug was with a bear doing something unspeakable to a dead pirate, but it’s a kid’s show, right? Can’t go into that any more…
When can we expect fixes for the bugs within Far Cry 3?
We’re aware of some of the issues people are encountering and we’re looking in to improving it. Its a bit difficult for me to give hard dates for when things will digitally reach your console because of production timelines, back-end fixes that can be done, and he submission process to 1st parties. We’re adjusting, though, and appreciate the patients you guys have shown us this far.
Why was co-op limited to linear missions instead of free roam?
Good question. We actually tried this and while it’s a lot of fun to wreak havoc in an open world (as you’ve noticed in the campaign), it’s really hard to get MULTIPLE people to focus on even remotely the same thing. People run off in different directions and die 4km away, or ruin each other’s plans and you end up yelling and hating the people you should be cooperating with! So we focused on, well, more focused action bubbles where we test the gunplay to its limits as you turn up the difficulty. I’m sure some clever modder will find a way to spawn more than one player into the campaign world at some point. 🙂
Did you play with the idea of having the player wake up in the Animus (from Assassin’s Creed) at the end of the game?
In regards to the Animus, while we`d love to give the fans that kind of cross-over, we try to maintain the integrity of the properties by keeping them seperate. If we had done a cross-over, it might have been problematic to the already rich mythos of AC.
Who created Vaas? Was he always crazy? Did he get crazier from when he was originally created?
I created the initial Vaas character, but that was based on the tremendous performance of Michael Mando and what he brought to the table. But no, Vaas wasn’t always crazy, but the island tends to breed insanity and nobody survives unscathed. As more whether he grew more or less crazy, I think it vaccilated depending on the demands of the scene. We wanted to see a progression in him during the game, so that affected things, but honestly, we didn’t want to loose sight of what made Vaas Vaas.
Will there be a ‘hardcore mode’ playlist?
If enough people ask we’ll add a playlist that is more… insane.
Were there any elements from Far Cry 2 that you had to bring back with Far Cry 3?
There are a lot of great systems in Far Cry 2, my favourite was the dynamic fire. We knew very early on that we wanted to push that system so we designed some missions around the fire system and also introduced the enemies that throw Molotov cocktails, so the awesome fire system would be more present in Far Cry 3.
Did you mean to make Far Cry 3 ‘like Skyrim with guns’?
I can see why people would make that connection, and I do take it as a complement, but to me the experience is very different in Far Cry 3. It’s not something we set out to achieve but I am a big fan of Bethesda’s open world games. Morrowind is my all time favourite game.
Is your game ‘like Skyrim with guns’?
No Skyrim is like us with an arrow to the knee.
In the web series, Christopher Mintz-Plasse is buried in the sand. Does he appear in the game somewhere?
Do you really think that we wouldn’t include this in the game somewhere?
But it isn’t in the story, you will have to go exploring
How many Easter Eggs are in Far Cry 3?
There are lots of easter eggs, some related to the Far Cry series, lots from other games, and lots of general pop-culture references, there are also some easter eggs about Far Cry 3, in Far Cry 3, which is weird, like Inception almost.
Finally, they were asked why the multiplayer was so limited? Why is there no ‘deathmatch’?
We focused 100% on team play, so a pure “everyone vs. everyone” deathmatch just didn’t feel right!
We’re looking to shake up the playlists a bit with some fresh variations on the existing modes, stay tuned.
Feel free to let us know your thoughts about all these facts in the comments below.