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Far Cry 3 is a living exercise in dark tourism

This post has been edited by the GamesBeat staff. Opinions by GamesBeat community writers do not necessarily reflect those of the staff.

This article contains mild spoilers about Far Cry 3.


I used to own a Transformers-branded wallet made of synthetic material, complete with Velcro straps, for around three years. It had everything I needed: separate zipped sections for notes and coins, a respectable amount of card pouches, and a transparent sleeve for my photo ID. Oh, did I mention it had the Autobot logo on it? That was probably its greatest feature.

It served me well, until one day when the zipper on the note section jammed. After much searching, my in-laws ended my tireless quest when they gifted me with a genuine Italian-leather wallet.

The new wallet did all the things I needed it to do, but it lacked important features, including the Autobot logo. 

In Far Cry 3, you can't use money to buy pedestrian items like a new wallet to carry greater amounts of money. No. You have to skin a pig, a shark, and some cassowary birds to make one. Even if the game forced you to encounter a crocodile, you couldn't use its leathery hide to fashion a larger billfold. The player has to hunt a range of otherwise endangered animals to make the items required to carry more gear and loot. 

 

Given that you can unlock most weapons without purchase and that you can't buy crafted items, money in Far Cry 3 should only really be used on ammo and weapon attachments. This is absurd, really. When you pick up a fallen enemy's gun, vendors will issue it to you without charge. You don't even have to worry about the dead-body scavenger hunt if you fix enough radio towers. Cash is ostensibly useless.

Poaching rare creatures to afford poorly composed adventure wear strikes me as problematic. Seriously, if an organization such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) have taken issue with Pokémon, why has Far Cry 3 — a game that literally allows you to dispatch Sumatran tigers with C4 explosives — failed to register on their ethical radar? Only 400 of these magnificent beasts live in the wild, yet I've encountered (and, in most cases, subsequently killed) more tigers than goats and pigs. The wildlife of the Rook Islands are walking raw-material sources ready for slaughter.

Far Cry 3 2

Without even considering the "Path of the Hunter" quest line, Far Cry 3 can be difficult to stomach for anyone with a love of animals. 

In addition, while I ventured through the game as Jason Brody, I felt I was treading on sacred ground during multiple occasions. One set of missions tasked me with fighting through ancient Chinese ruins, and they left me a little uncomfortable. How much money would you have to pay to see a sight as rare as a sacred tomb? How much more to tear it apart? This portion of the story also includes a mission set in an abandoned Japanese base and a firefight on a boat amidst a collection of Old World treasures.

Before long, Far Cry 3 becomes an apparent and living exercise in dark tourism

Whether you're photographing dead bodies to rally the locals, spelunking through mass graves, or getting some more ink done, the game tries to steer the player toward moral dilemmas. This culminates with the game's final minutes, but I've no doubt they'll be lost in a stockpile of bear skins and poorly crafted pouches. 


Did you enjoy Far Cry 3? Do you have any issue with dispatching virtual animals?


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