An image found on the backend of the Xbox online store seems to reveal that Ubisoft is gearing up to launch a “Game Of The Year Upgrade Pass” for Far Cry 6. That’s…fine, I guess, but it raises the question: Which site out there thought it was the best game of 2021 and awarded it such an accolade?
Last year’s Far Cry 6 was a good game. I said as much in my review. It’s a solid open-world shooter with some neat ideas, a wonderfully detailed tropical island to explore, and some floppy bits that don’t quite work. Hey, it’s a Ubisoft game, that last part is legally required. While I liked it, we here at Kotaku didn’t call it our Game of the Year or anything like that, and no other sites did, either. Or so I thought.
As first spotted by data miner Aggiornamenti Lumia on Twitter, a leaked image from Microsoft’s Xbox store appears to reveal a new, upcoming digital upgrade of Far Cry 6, dubbed the “Game Of The Year Upgrade Pass.” This is likely just a rebranded “Ultimate Edition,” possibly including some new content, but mostly made up of old DLC and updates all bundled together into one big package.
Kotaku has reached out to Ubisoft about this leaked DLC content.
But, whatever, I’m not here to dig into what could be in this new, still-unconfirmed GOTY upgrade of Far Cry 6. Instead, like others online, I’m here to question its very name. Seriously? Who out there in 2021 was calling Far Cry 6 the game of the year? Of course, I imagine some diehard fans online felt that way but that doesn’t seem like enough to warrant a full GOTY Edition or upgrade or whatever. Were there really any websites that also felt that way? Well, yes, it turns out. At least two, but I have some questions for them.
First up, on its list of the best games of 2021, gadget and gaming website BGR gave Far Cry 6 its top spot. This isn’t quite the same as a game of the year, but it is the site calling it the best game of 2021 and that’s close enough, especially when so few other outlets did anything similar. However, the blurb attached to Far Cry 6 is a bit odd, calling the Far Cry franchise a “legacy game series” that most folks feel “obliged to play.” It then mentions that the latest sequel has a great storyline “like all the other games in the series,” and says that some might even call it the best entry yet. It sounds, though, as if BGR isn’t as certain.
Looking around, another site that gave Far Cry 6 its game of the year was EFTM, a lifestyle website about tech and cars. It formally declared Far Cry 6 the best game of 2021. Oddly, the blog announcing this news starts by saying Call of Duty is fantastic. It then pivots into a barely-related thought about how, when a new Far Cry game releases, it’s time to “drop everything and play” it. What if I’m holding a drink like a buffoon at the exact moment a new Far Cry game comes out? Can I hold onto that?
EFTM writer Trevor Long explains that Far Cry 6 has a great storyline that also can be ignored but also he hasn’t even finished it yet, and might never finish it. And while I don’t think you need to finish a game to review it or have critical thoughts about it, I do think you should probably finish it before calling it your official game of the year. But hey, you do you, Trevor.
Finally, I found one other site that thought Far Cry 6 might be the best game of 2021. It’s a high school website called Tstorm Media and in a 2021 review of Far Cry 6, the author suggests it could be the best game of the year, but doesn’t commit. Sorry, Ubisoft.
So yes, technically, Ubisoft’s Far Cry 6 did receive a few official Game Of The Year awards or mentions online. Sure, it wasn’t from IGN or GameSpot or Kotaku or Polygon or PC Gamer or RPS or VGC or The Gamer or Gamerant or Game Informer or…