In my own review of Far Cry 3, I used words like “the story just isn’t very good” and “Jason Brody is a thoroughly unlikeable character”. I stand by those claims still and maintain that the real strength of the game is in the sandbox gameplay, which is superb.
But now the lead writer of Far Cry 3 has spoken out to the Penny Arcade Report about how he feels that many people have missed the point of the story completely. ““The story is itself something that can be solved, like a riddle. What makes me sad is that people don’t engage with playing the riddle, trying to solve the riddle,” claims writer Jeffrey Yohalem. “It’s like a scavenger hunt where people aren’t collecting the first clue.”
“My expectation that people would discover that framework (the story) on their own has been challenged.”
Yohalem explained that common criticisms of the game, including a white colonialist attitude, come from not really paying attention to just how exaggerated the story is. “What I didn’t expect was the people who half-listen. If you half-listen to the story, it seems like it’s reinforcing tropes that I disagree with,” claims Yohalem.
“People will get 2/3 through the game or halfway through the game, and they’ll think that they know and they stop listening. And it’s like no no no no no, we’re gonna take that and totally loop it back on what you think it is, and we’re agreeing with the critique!”
Without spoiling the storyline, it’s probably safe to say that many people stopped paying attention to it halfway through the game because, well… it’s just not very good.