Far Cry is one of today's biggest gaming franchises, racking up millions of sales in the past decade. Until recently, each game in the series took place in a modern setting (though Blood Dragon, a standalone expansion starring the mighty Michael Biehn, was in a retro-futuristic world inspired by 80s movies), offering a huge variety of high-powered guns, vehicles and explosives to play around with.
Primal challenged this preconception, transferring the series' action to the Stone Age, swapping assault rifles for spears and grenades for the player's deadly owl-companion. It was a bold move, and while many fans would have preferred an adventure more in-keeping with the series' established style, nobody can accuse Ubisoft of refusing to try something new. Giving fans the gameplay they love with fresh twists is essential to a franchise's longevity, and Primal could be the start of a new trend in the series.
So, does Primal's success mean future titles will also be set in other time periods? Assassin's Creed certainly hops between a wide variety of eras, but because Far Cry isn't bound by the same present-day framing device, it can truly go to any time or place without having to tie the action into an ongoing narrative.
This opens up all kinds of possibilities that affect not only the plot and weaponry, but the entire gaming experience...