Considering most games’ narratives are razor focused and tied to a series of gameplay experiences, it’s no surprise that we see very little room for experimentation within the confines of a story. Designing just one extra level could mean the difference between releasing in the fall and releasing in the winter.
That being said, there is plenty of room for secret alternate endings, which have the potential of altering the narrative’s conclusion with some slight chances. According to Ubisoft‘s Alex Hutchison, Far Cry 4 has such an alternate ending, but it’s up to players to find it.
Hutchison broke the news of Far Cry 4‘s alternate ending on Twitter saying that in order to trigger it players have to make a “snap decision” which in turn “creates a whole new mini-location.” Having not played Far Cry 4 yet it’s hard to say what that snap decision might be, but the prospect of a new location is really intriguing.
It’s unclear, though, how drastically this alternate ending differs from the main conclusion for Far Cry 4 and whether it’s more or less satisfying. Far Cry 3, for example, had some genuine strengths, but its ending was not one of them. However, if it had an alternate ending that rolled right into Far Cry: Blood Dragon – that would have been something.
Some will also point that this newly revealed alternate ending is one of two known instances. The other alternate ending occurs much earlier in the game and can be triggered by indulging villain Pagan Min.
In addition to word of these alternate endings, Hutchison also confirms that there are a number of branching points in Far Cry 4 that lead to “mini moments.” They apparently don’t fork off the story in any new direction, but they do add a little flavor to the narrative. But again, he wouldn’t say how exactly to find them.
Although gamers might be a little gun shy when talk of multiple endings surfaces (thanks Mass Effect 3!), the prospect of creating a story that caters to one’s own choices is always intriguing. Better yet, when a game uses false endings to subvert a player’s expectations it’s always a clever little treat. Just this year both South Park: The Stick of Truth (another Ubisoft release) and Sunset Overdrive played around with the idea of alternate endings, and both got a good chuckle. Hopefully, this Far Cry 4 alternate ending can do the same.
Have you found the second alternate ending in Far Cry 4? Do you wish more games included alternate endings?
Far Cry 4 is out now for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.