Far Cry 5: INSANE Fan Theory
"You believe you are on the righteous path, you believe you're a force for good. But you're not." - John Seed This article contains SPOILERS for many plot points in Far Cry 5. The Game Infinite team is working on thoroughly finishing the beautiful world that is Far Cry 5 so that we can give our fans a full review of this game. Stay tuned for our full review and also check out "Top 5 Reason Far Cry 5 is Amazing" by Mike. I don't want this theory to detract from the game; as it is truly remarkable and worth your time. We already see how this can be a 2018 top ten contender! I you don't think it will ruin it for you, care to stay for a crazy fan theory? It is completely Bioshock, Old Republic, Darth Jar Jar, M Night Shamalayn, levels of crazy...
You are actually the villain the entire time... Now, stay with me... Far Cry 5 is based on a simple premise. Crazy cultists called "Eden's Gate" have risen to power and have taken complete control of an obscure American midwest setting called Hope County, a fictional county located in Montana. They impose their will on the country folk and have set up their own little kingdom under the rule of "The Father" Joseph Seed. While this is the first game in the US, it is a pretty standard premise for a Far Cry game in that you are a lone wolf facing an group of others, evil oppressors of the natives. However, something just feels really off about this game partially because of this setting and how it is set up. Something doesn't feel quite right from the very beginning. The game starts off with you as "The Rookie" a deputy and a US Marshal flying into the county in a helicopter to arrest Joseph Seed for "kidnapping". It isn't explained where that information comes from or how much the government actually knew about what was going on there. On the surface, it seems very odd that the government sends in TWO guys. They were already in contact with a local sheriff who is completely aware of the depth of the situation. Isn't it odd or unreasonable that the sheriff would have failed to advise the incoming Marshall of the full situation. Within minutes you see that the cultists are heavily armed with machine guns and have significant numbers. The reason this seems odd is, if the government had ANY idea the level of control this cult had over this area, the government would deem them a domestic terrorist group and sent in some kind of response. It would have sent in dozens of specialized troops to arrest the terrorists. National Guard? CIA? Homeland Security? The Sheriff aside; it is hard to believe in age of cell phones, computers, and aviation the government had zero idea what was going on in the county. Something feels weird about this premise; it just wouldn't go down that way. Here is how the theory goes... The cultists don't actually exist. Some of the people do, but the Cult does not. The people are simply town folk with simple religious aspects like what wouldn't be unreasonable to find in a midwest Montana country side setting. Joseph Seed is a simple and harmless small town pastor. The Cult, the evil acts, the oppression of the "Eden's Gate" members is all a fiction, an illusion created in the mind of a depraved and insane crooked cop who hates religion and religious people. The entire game is a skewed perception of the villain who doesn't see his acts as evil or what is truly happening. The entire game has you go about killing innocent people who you see as evil. In reality, there is no oppression, kidnapping, or cult. YOU are the evil invader. Here are 8 reason why I don't believe what the game is telling me...
The Story's Premise: The premise of two guys showing up to stop a domestic terrorist group who've already taken over an entire town doesn't really fit. What would fit, is a crooked cop and two of his crooked buddies showing up at a church late at night to arrest an innocent man on false charges. Now this is just a start. One could easily say the government just simply didn't know. The sheriff wasn't clear on the information; and maybe, just maybe the Edens gates cultists were simply really good at hiding what they did, and destroyed all methods of communicating with the outside world. We don't really see that though; in fact, we see the opposite. No one, including the deputy, goes for help: Throughout the entire game we see functional radios and aircraft. Not to mention, the area is so vast that a small army of cultists would still be insufficient to stop someone from just driving out of town. In reality, there is no oppressed regime, simply a single crazy deputy running from the locals, post a helicopter crash and on a rampage. This is definitely cause for concern, but not enough to cause wide spread panic to drive hundreds of locals out of the county. Based on what the game tells us, we should see dozens or hundreds of locals trying to escape. So far I've only come across one person who tried to leave, but they decided to stay because it was "their home." It is important to note, they only decide to leave when YOU show up, and decide to stay when you leave. That is because you are what they were actually afraid of. Further, there is no explanation for why "The Rookie" stays? At the first chance to access an aircraft, the outgunned and outnumbered deputy should have gone for help.
The Rookie Deputy receives access to a airplane very early in the game. How does it make more sense for a single rookie deputy marshal to stay and help "build a resistance" to fight an established army of cultists, over getting help from the government? I fail to see how this would even have made for an inferior game. It would have been fun to go get help and work with a team of special forces with the government instead of locals. It wouldn't break the story or gameplay. Even if we chalk this up this to gameplay mechanics, suspension of disbelief, or just poor story explanation, there is much more. Perhaps this is just meant to ask for a suspension of disbelief. That Opening Scene and the "alternate ending"
Aside from the oddity of sending two cops alone to arrest a domestic terrorist, and no one having interest in escape or getting help; there is something else about the opening scene that tells us we are seeing an altered reality of what is happening. From everything we know about this Joseph Seed: he is an evil tyrannical dictator, oppressing and killing hundreds of people. Yet, he just comes peacefully and without any resistance? He only says the words "God won't let you take me." The player stands there with the choice of putting handcuffs on or not. Now seeing this with the theory that the cop is a corrupt and insane, and Joseph is in reality a simple small town preacher, it makes sense why the Pastor puts up no fight. He is out gunned and more importantly has no combat training. The people in the church don't "actually" have machine guns. He is out gunned and a simple pastor. The helicopter doesn't go down because his followers turning into weird climbing zombies, it goes down due to mechanical failure. Understanding what is actually happening explains that part of the scene.
More importantly, we see the option for the "good ending" for the game. The player is given the unusual option in this moment to hesitate and not arrest the preacher. Why? From the perspective of a deputy there to arrest a evil suspect, it makes absoutlely no sense why the character would choose to not arrest them. It is out of character for the information we have. That option doesn't fit what we are told. However, if you see it from the perspective of a corrupt and crazy cop arresting an innocent man who is not putting up a fight, the idea of having a moment of clarity and hesitation makes sense. If the player chooses to not arrest Seed, you walk out, leave, and the game ends... Why is that? If Joseph is actually evil, why does not arresting him end the game? Doesn't the oppressed town still exist? Shouldn't you return with more help and continue with the game as normal? No, the game is telling us that by not arresting the innocent preacher you don't start the chain of events that begin your rampage through the county.
The Government knew the entire time: One NPC who claims to be a government agent actually mentions getting help from the government and got in contact with someone and makes it seem as if the government doesn't think it is that big of a deal. This starts a minor side mission where you help the agent chase a fugitive.
HOLD UP ... Someone in the government knows and doesn't care... ?
The player is told the member in government wants something in order to intervene and send a little bit of help? If an army of radicals had actually taken over an entire county in the U.S. that seems like an odd reaction from the US government. Now, what would garner a reaction like that? Perhaps only a single person causing some trouble? A single fugitive would garner help from maybe state police, but the feds? Maybe that would cause beuracratic foot dragging by the Feds. At the end of the mission the NPC trivializes the situation in Hope County and stiffs you on the deal. He offers no help and no one is coming. I shot him...
So many aspects feel like a dream: Why do so many parts of the game feel like a dream? Between the dreamy music, the eerie sounds and voices, the glowing white church, the hallucinogenic flowers petals floating in the air, so much of the game feels...off, Like you are still dreaming and need to find the spinning top to wake up. There are so many parts of the game that makes you feel like you are seeing a altered reality, like a dream sequence. I think it is because we as the player are not seeing the events as they are but as the heavily scewed perceptions of a mad person.
Especially the part after the helicopter crashes and you are being "chased by locals" when in reality they are probably just search crews trying to find survivors. You are not being hunted by cultists, you are being searched for after a helicopter accident and begin your rampage to start killing locals. Maybe you were even hurt in the crash which caused brain damage, further adding to your delusion. Many of the people you meet in the game who help you are hallucinations of your own mind. There is a dream like sequence, where you meet a woman family member of the Seed family, "Faith". The illusionary people who are telling you as the player that what you are doing is correct; they paint this very ominous picture of her before you even meet her. The game goes out of its way to tell you that she is evil and everything she says is a lie. We see no evidence of her doing anything specifically. She simply repsrents the deputy’s subconscious distaste for religion. I think she may represent someone real who is actually trying to help you and convince you what you are seeing isn't real. That is why she appears less real than anything else in the game. What follows is very odd. She is portrayed as some kind of angelic apparition. You are in this extremely dreamlike state.
No official explanation is given for her unusual dream like hallucinogenic abilities, other than an implication of her using drugs. However she has these abilities even when you are nowhere near the flowers or have any way of being affected by drugs. This is a game set in a normal real life universe, so her flying around like an angel feels very out of place. While it is implied she is using some kind of drug called "bliss", what if this is merely a part of the delusion? I think Faith represents something the character hates deeply in religion. She tells the player a story about how religion has saved her and how it could "save you too". Many characters seems focused on saving you specifically, not the town, you as the player. Almost as if there is something soecial about you that “needs saving”. Perhaps Faith is a local who is trying to convince a mad person to stop from their murderous insanity. It is interested that every time a character is trying to convince you what you are doing is wrong you feel trapped and restricted. Faith convinces you to "jump off a cliff" and after doing, so nothing happens. You stand up unharmed. Drugs wouldn't cause you to survive a fall, perhaps alter the perception of the fall, but I don't think the experience is real or the cliff was real. What was the point if this mission? Was it an pointless story arc that goes no where or was Faith trying to get you to realize the delusion by showing you something impossible. Throughout the game, faith mysteriously appears in random places, (even outside her land or away from the supposed drug flowers) and can talk to you like voices in your head. She periodically abducts you in a way that feels nothing short of a dream or illusion. The Unusual Focus on You: The cultists have an unusual focus on you. There is a supposed resistance (of which you are not the "leader") filled with dozens of dozens of members, and yet the gameplay has an unusual focus on hurting you. Often times locals (who strangely all look the same, kind of like how in a dream faces of unimportant members seem vague or the same) constantly stop or ambush you the player to attack you. Everyone drops what they are doing to attack you. Anytime a major attack is occurring you are present. Again this could be chalked up to a suspension of disbelief based on gameplay needs, but it doesnt explain why story wise everything seems to oddly revolve around you and all the cultists look the same. We see the Cultists holding locals hostage, but what if the hostages represent the insane protagonists perception of religion oppression and restricting people. There is a mission where you are locked up in a facility and have to sneak away and escape. There are other locals there, and all the guards look the same? What if you were captured and put in a mental hospital, and all the guards look the same because they are nurses in similar uniforms? Some of the members of the cult are in a zombie like state: unusal and perhaps a representation of the players opinion of religious people being slaves to religion. Sometimes even allies are exposed to the "bliss". The religion is treated like a mind controlling disease much like it would be viewed in the mind of crazed anti-religion mind. The Television Broadcast:
The senior US Marshall who goes with you to arrest Joseph Seed at the beginning of the game is captured in the beginning of the game. At some point you may come across a television where Faith and him are broadcasting. He apologizes for their arrival. The game makes it seem like he is drugged. What is interesting though, is even though he would have been a "ranking officer", he doesn't take personal responsibility, but says that the deputy is "disturbed" and that they were wrong for coming to Hope County. Even under drugs, it doesn't make sense that the Marshal blames the deputy, unless viewed through this theory. It would make sense if the Marshall was only there because it was the Deputy's idea to falsely accuse the local preacher. What if what we are seeing is a skewed version of a real event. The crooked co-conspirator is with local authority's and is condemning the crooked actions of the rampaging deputy. It is strange he doesn't use the same "sinner" language as the religious members, but uses the verbiage "disturbed" which would fit this theory. The marshal is caught by authorities, and is now publically blaiming the deputy. The deputy is actually disturbed, and the Marshall clearly says as much.
The Game tells us it isn't real:
This theory brings up an interesting conversation around "how do we know what is real in a game’s story?” In this "Inception", the entire game is a skewed reality. It takes for granted the assumption that you are always the protagonist in video games. We don't question if what we are seeing is the reality of the story. We don't question if we are the good guy. What happens if the antagonist is crazy to a point that they think their actions are good and see their actions as good. [spoiler] Other games have secretly hidden the fact that you were the bad guy the entire time like Star Wars KOTOR, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Bioshock Infinite, and Heavy Rain. This is nothing new. What happens if they take it one step further and make it so the entire premise is an illusion and the game is a lie. What if all these clues and plot holes are left to help us realize the irrationality of the illusion. You know how often times weird and strange dreams make total sense to us when we are dreaming but feel odd and irrational when we awake? What if the game is leaving us clues the entire time that we are evil and not seeing what is actually happening. I'll leave you with this quote from John Seed that pops up frequently when you die, "You believe you are on the righteous path, you believe you're a force for good. But you're not." What if John is right?