Far Cry 4 can be a very silly game. It's hard to keep a straight face when playing anything with exploding animals launching every which way. But that's not all Far Cry is. Placed in the right hands, the shooter can be downright terrifying.
Thanks to the latest game's robust new level editor (particularly on PC), some Far Cry 4 players have been tinkering with Ubisoft's shooter to turn it into a much more menacing, tense experience than the one offered in the main single-player campaign. My two favourites come from a relatively small YouTube account YOGames. The one up top, "Devil in the Swamp", looks like the first shot at some nail-biting first-person survival horror adventure like Outlast or the Amnesia games.
The creator explained on Reddit that he got the otherwordly-looking animations to work by playing around with friendly AI and animation options in the PC version of Far Cry 4's level editor.
He also has this earlier attempt, "Reaper", which is more on the campy side but also very cool:
As for full-on playable horror maps, YouTuber ezzyoffthewall has done a few videos showing his progress playing through a custom map known as "Butchers Lair":
Or a custom extraction mission called "Kidnapped":
Dwarfing all of these gameplay logs in sheer popularity is rockstar YouTuber PewDiePie's Far Cry 4 playthrough, which is fittingly titled "Far Cry 4 is TERRIFYING!"
PewDiePie brings his trademark oddball humour to the shooter in the video. But even at the silliest moments in that video, he gets at a peculiar aspect of the Far Cry series. We laugh at these games for the same reason that we're scared by others. Humour and fear both stem from a realisation that a situation is patently absurd.
Cackling at the fact that you're being hunted by some giant vicious animal doesn't mean that it's also pretty fucking terrifying to feel like you've been turned into a target for some dangerous predator. It would be cool if Ubisoft takes ideas like these to heart when contemplating the future of Far Cry, given how tonally dissonant the last two games in this remarkable but deeply flawed series have been.