Against A Tyrannous Gentleman
Warning : Spoiler ahead
“Did I ever tell you the definition of insanity?”. When I saw Vaas Montenegro looming over me after the helicopter crash in FarCry 3, I was dumbstruck. This was insane. There was this unpredictable psychopath trying to kill me throughout the game and it felt like I was powerless despite all the weapons in my holster. The story was really amazing and made FarCry 3 one of my all time favorites. Another reason why I loved FarCry 3 was that the world didn’t feel scripted. It felt like I was dropped into a self-sustaining ecosystem in which I was an invading species and almost everything in it was trying to kill me. I enjoyed every bit of the game and that set high expectations for the new FarCry 4.
When I started playing FarCry 4, I was expecting the same chemistry I enjoyed in Farcry 3. The unpredictability, the ferocity and the brutality. I found all these in the country of Kyrat but the king of Kyrat, Pagan Min, failed me. The game introduced me to a villian who was not villainous. He greeted me (Ajay Ghale) like a prodigal son and served me crab rangoon. Then all the hell broke loose and the rest is history…or game. I was preparing myself to fight against a bloody psychopath and not against a gentleman with an unorthodox fashion sense. Yes, he killed royalty, tyrannized Kyrat and destroyed the lives of people of Kyrat. Yes, you can call him a psychopath for all the crazy shit he does in the opening scenes.Yet unlike Vaas, Pagan is more human and more sincere. Pagan had the chance to kill Ajay and he didn’t do it.
The end game shows us the naked truth and made me truly feel terrible. The guy actually wanted to hand over the country to me and help scatter the ashes in Lakshmana’s shrine. By the end of the game, the player himself has a reputation of being brutal and has blood of countless on his hands.
“Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster… for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche
Pagan doesn’t fail to point this out and even asks if he is facing the monster or human. The ending of FarCry 4 didn’t give me feeling of achievement or satisfaction. It left me looking at myself in a mirror to see if I could see a monster staring back at me.
Now you might be thinking this is a rant against the game. No. At first I felt disappointed but the more I thought about it, I saw the other side of the story and how it backlashes at the player for all the murder he has committed throughout the game. There aren’t a lot of games which has an antagonist who questions the morality of the killing spree of protagonist in the game. The story of FarCry 4 get even darker after the defeat of Pagan when we see Sabal/Amita trying to step into the shoes of the tyrant of Kyrat. I had chosen to follow Amita because she sounded like she had vision for Kyrat and cared for her sister. But after the defeat of Pagan I saw her dark vision for Kyrat. I didn’t kill Pagan in the game because he was a gentleman but when my own friends turned out to be the real tyrants, it didn’t stop me from blowing them up with C4.
FarCry 4 failed to pit me against a brutal psychopath but it did pit me against a series of crazy messed up lives. FarCry 4 is somehow more deeper in meaning and is more emotional. There are characters like Noore whose story makes you feel sad and character like Paul ‘De Pleur’ Harmon who had a crumbling family. Perhaps I just miss Vaas Montenegro. He is the definition of insanity.