Games tend to get compelling villains throughout each year and when a great villain comes along, we can never seem to get enough of him or her. In Far Cry 3, Vaas was an outstanding villain and perhaps one of the most memorable characters in 2012. With Far Cry 4, it was obvious that the villain was going to be looked at under an extreme microscope.
Pagan Min was Far Cry 4’s primary foe and Ubisoft did not fail in bringing us another incredible villain. Depending on who you ask, Pagan was one of the strongest characters in Far Cry 4. The development team did a fantastic job of allowing the world around Pagan accentuate his personality and vice versa.
If there was any complaint most commonly heard about Pagan Min, it’s that he didn’t get enough time onscreen. He surely is deeply connected and visible in the main story, but some still felt Far Cry 4 needed more Pagan Min. In GameInformer’s February issue, Far Cry 4 Creative Director Alex Hutchinson talked about the position the team was in when it came to Pagan Min.
“The hardest part is pacing; after you meet him we wanted to get you to the open world and freedom as fast as possible. The consequence of this is you can run off hunting bears for four hours, and feel like he never speaks to you again, or you can mainline the story missions and see him again faster,” Hutchinson said.
He went on to say Pagan is actually “onscreen for twice as long as Vaas,” who was in Far Cry 3. That may not seem right to some, while it could seem more accurate to others, it all depends on the open-world experience you had in Far Cry 4. With the inherent freedom players are given in an open-game, they have more control over how much they see Pagan Min. The control is ultimately out of Ubisoft’s, which is part of a company giving freedom to the players.
If you’re someone who enjoys engaging with all of the side content immediately, then of course you wouldn’t see Pagan that often. Players should be aware enough to notice this, but then again, not everyone has the wherewithal to grasp that. Hutchinson continued by saying they tried as hard as they could to give people a strong dose of Pagan Min, while still having enough focus on the player’s journey. “It’s a really hard problem to solve.”
Far Cry 4 was one of the best shooters we saw all year and was an exceptional open-world game to boot. Ubisoft made a nice step forward with the game and really showed the series’ transferability from a setting perspective. It’ll be interesting to see where the next Far Cry goes and who our next villain will be.