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Once I was looking at some concept arts for Far Cry, and I've found something interesting...

I could not pass by these two screenshots:



Look at them. Can you see something?
Alright, let's take a closer look:



So, you may ask me: what the hell is this?

If you are a mapper, a modder or you have opened the Sandbox editor at least once, you should probably know the "REPLACE ME" texture and it's purpose.

So what am I talking about?

The "REPLACE ME" texture is present on some concept arts, which means that those concept arts are based on actual screenshots of the game.

So, I opened the editor and began to compare retail level "Dam" and it's concept.

The first thing which I noticed immediately was the garage or entrance to Krieger's office.

I have found similarities between the concept and the final version: the form of terrain in the final version.


Second.

I don't know what is this, maybe complex, maybe something else, whatever, but look at the form of landscape:



So, finally I compared the screenshot and the concept, and I found them 85-90% similar:



After I started to remake the level's old version, I noticed one more thing:



Underground, behind the building there is some kind of a stand, most likely meant to hold the pipes behind this building, which are depicted on the concept.

And finally, a small detail on another concept of Dam:

So, what's the point of this article?

I just wanna say that, first of all, it became interesting for me to compare beta and final version and I wanted to share my discoveries with you. Secondly, it means that we can restore the old level from it's concepts so it could be played in the final version of Far Cry.

Thanks for reading!!!

by sw.peach

Comments  (0 - 10 of 20)
Marek33
Marek33

I found an interesting website where are some images from the early days of the Far Cry 1 and also images from the X-Isle demo. It's here: Unseen64.net and also a link to the website which is mentioned in the comments: Web.archive.org I add it here too because the link in the comments is not available.

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

Thanks, but I've already seen it!

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Cellulo
Cellulo

Interesting project, i don't know if it's can help, maybe you don't know but Woulter, the one of the creators of Cube 2 Engine has worked on Farcry engine maybe he have some treasure to share or explain some things related to the Farcry engine i don't know, here his homepage, Strlen.com, good luck for your project.

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

Wow, that may be helpful, thank you!

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Szczekus
Szczekus

Make sure you look up the FC demo. There should be a lot of leftovers from the earlier dev stage.

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

I've done it some weeks ago, and thank you for your advice as I've found some very interesting content!

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

Yep, I thought about doing it before, but I still haven't done it.

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pvcf
pvcf

hmmmmmmm, the first thing i noticed on the "concept" art, that they are editor shots which was then afterworked with a painttool or paint filter in a paintprogramm.

the second thing i noticed, is the extrem good looking vegetation, which is more level crysis or didjays fc2010 work.

both points together lead to the question: are you totally sure this concept art is from 2003 or earlier ?
because the playable x-isle demos from 2002 have had a much worse looking vegetation in comparison to this "concept" art.

but you must maybe know, there are early crysis concept's (editor builded) which have the nice vegetation and the farcry look, and the concept above really reminds me on early crysis prototypes and concept mapping from 2004 -2005.
if you intrested about, i have somewhere laying around a PDF from a leveldesigner from crysis which shows exact this types of concept mapping.

edit: i didnt find the PDF anymore, so you may believe me or not :D

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

As for me, I'm not sure this is a really early concept. Dam is not an old level, judging by the dialogue files and screenshots. Also Far Cry has changed its main concept at some points of the development.

At Gamer's hell Far Cry screenshots gallery some of the similar concept arts appeared quite late -- in late 2003 or so.

"Playable X-Isle demos" -- which exactly? If you are talking about the ones only with dinosaurs, they must be ones from 2001. Far Cry also had title "X-Isle" for some time during the early stages of development (later 2002) and after your comment I thought there could be some demos of that time left.

And are you really sure that the vegetation could not be added when editing the screenshot?

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pvcf
pvcf

> And are you really sure that the vegetation could not be added when editing the screenshot?

let me point to another thing: did you know the first crysis trailer, the one from the jungle where a tank drives through? this is exact the vegetation from this "concept".
note also that this vegetation later was NOT (!) used in crysis (which also totally looked different to this trailer :D :D ).

about x-isle:
yeah, there are tons of videos of states from developing from 2001-2004:
one of the first officially farcrcy release trailers from 2003
www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmZ-LGgmXDs&t=2s
look carefully the distance renderer and worldshader. its muuuch worser than on your screenshot, also the tree vegetation and texturing. (and that is the final farcry one, check the one year earlier which was called x-isle ;D )
rumors say, they quick added AI and weapon to X-isle for a game convention (E3 i think) so they can show something new.
i have seen a video which shows then really the farcry mercs on the old x-isle standart map with a preview of the editor.

btw.: watch this farcry preview which shows a real old hud :

note also that the crytek stuff surely doesnt know about the future "deal" with ubisoft, which then got the brand farcry (crytek was very very angry about that).
so, the teams which work on the next part of farcry, surely used the assets of farcry together with the better cryengine2 world and terrain renderer and the new vegetation.

also the helispot which is a upper terrain part is a typically crysis mapping style, so i would say it's the art fingerprint of this special mapper :D

so and now: farcry: history of trailers
Youtube.com

unfortunately this is not the collection with all the x-isle captures and x-isle to farcry transitions :(

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

I noticed that. I have a couple more GameStar pre-release reviews of Far Cry (of 2002 and 2003).

There were several different versions of the HUD. The one you mentioned is really the first one. The one I am remaking was implemented some time later.

Edit: Some of the assets might have been used in the Instincts series.

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pvcf
pvcf

damn i search since hours the PDF with this exact kind of screenshots you have (bot not "paited") from a early "crysis" pre-production.
i downloaded this pdf some years ago from a private site from one of the old crytek core team -.-

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

Good luck in your search!

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pvcf
pvcf

nope , nothing -.-

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changeroftheways Creator
changeroftheways

That's quite sad. Pre-release Crysis should be influenced by Far Cry and its pre-release assets pretty heavily and those screenshots might have told us about Far Cry's development.

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sw.peach Creator
sw.peach

About first thing I already write in article :)
I don't know, but I'm sure that is from 2003, or maybe from 2004
I think those screenshoots was taken, than afterworked in any photoeditor (maybe photoshop) by designers. We can't know, what is real source and point this arts, but anyway, if we can restore some levels, like dam, why not? :D

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