Far Cry Rite of Passage #1 Featured Reviews 

“Far Cry: Rite of Passage” #1

By | May 20th, 2021
Posted in Reviews | % Comments

Acting as both a vague summary of an earlier game’s antagonist and a look into the interactions between father and son of an upcoming one, ‘Rite of Passage’ is a good jumping-on point for newcomers!

Cover by Matt Taylor
Written by Bryan Edward Hill
Illustrated by Geraldo Borges
Colored by Michael Atiyeh
Lettered by Richard Starkings and Jimmy Betancourt

President Anton Castillo’s only son, Diego, has just turned thirteen, but this birthday is more than a celebration–it’s a rite of passage. By telling his son about Vaas Montenegro’s inner struggles, Anton wishes to teach Diego the importance of harnessing the power of chaos.

Features fan-favorite villains from Far Cry 3, Far Cry 4, and Far Cry 5!

Bryan Edward Hill does a good job of slow, creeping monologues amongst his works, even when he can also delve into violence. A key example of this ability would be Image Comics’ “Romulus,” and he doesn’t shy away from it here either. In the conversation and narration that takes up the vast majority of “Far Cry: Rite of Passage” #1, Hill has plenty of room to stretch his monologuing. However, how does that do for an introduction to this short tale?

All things considered, the overall result of Hill’s process is a fairly good introduction for newcomers and series veterans alike. In order to help flesh out the newest apparent main antagonist, President Anton Castillo of Yara, Hill delves into an iconic, major villain from Far Cry 3. By showcasing his rise and fall (focused more on the latter), Hill examines what can cause someone to descend into madness through the eyes of someone who sees himself as enlightened for having recognized the possibility of failure. Most of the information is from the game itself, but there are a few minor bits of information beyond that. Furthermore, there is an element of the story President Castillo tells possibly being fictitious in-universe, as if each game is distinct from the others, meaning it all can teach a lesson, but is not inherently important, as it would for newcomers.

Nearly the entirety of “Far Cry: Rite of Passage” #1 is taken up by Castillo’s talk with his son Diego, and so, much like the debut trailer of Far Cry 6 several months before the miniseries release, it delves into the personality and beliefs of the game’s apparent villain by way of talking to the thirteen-year-old boy, this time during his eponymous rite of passage upon turning thirteen years old. Although the talk by the President is very similar to that of the trailer, Hill manages to make him more interesting nonetheless, showing his lack of self-awareness in spite of his “enlightened” demeanor, while using his calm, stoic interactions with his apparently beloved son to really showcase, without even requiring any voice acting, the sheer charismatic presence that Giancarlo Esposito, most famous for the likes of Breaking Bad, brings to the fore, to the point that readers can practically hear his words right off of the page. Yes, Diego is technically the focus in terms of how the lessons are about how to teach him to be a “better” ruler through pushing away empathy, but Hill’s writing shows that, much like many Far Cry games before it, including the third numbered game (which is under examination here), it is really the villains who steal the show, earning their place on the box art.

Geraldo Borges really delves into the grit and darkness of Far Cry as a whole with his illustration of “Far Cry: Rite of Passage” #1. While the portions that take place in Yara may be in broad daylight, Borges manages to give President Castillo a sinister air through his lack of facial expression. The framing of scenes helps to show how lonely the teenaged Diego appears to be, surrounded by people working in the house who seem to be practically nonentities, and even when Diego is front and center in the panels themselves, he remains in his father’s shadow, be it figuratively or literally.

Meanwhile, Borges grants a far greater menace to the flashbacks and cautionary tale, with wild expressions and disturbing close-ups. The villains are increasingly manic or controlling, their eyes showing either cold emptiness or a wild fire. With Vaas especially, the way in which he is so clearly drawn as the opposite to Anton Castillo in demeanor helps to distinguish sharply between the two men, overall focusing on him from disturbing angles as Castillo himself presents Vaas in a very unflattering light (though not undeservedly).

Michael Atiyeh is an established veteran of coloring video game adaptations in exploration-based games, as he had done with many “Tomb Raider” series, both ongoing and miniseries. In ‘Rite of Passage,’ he seems to focus in on a rather direct difference between the bright lights of the “present” and the deep shadows of the “past.” There are definitely cooler colors provided for the present day, as compared to the warmer ones for the past. As a result, Castillo is given a more “collected” air even beyond what is actually shown, and the volatility of Vaas is extremely overt, the warm oranges around him making him appear as though he was becoming a demon falling deeper and deeper in the depths of Hell itself, compared to the Castillos on a mortal plane. The overall tone is one of a cautionary tale already from the artwork and script, but the colors really help draw out the “better” situation in the present day, definitely intentional by the characters within.

Final Verdict: 8.0– A calm story and recap of the events around a major villain in a prior video game help to characterize a new villain for the upcoming Far Cry 6 very well for newcomers and veteran players alike.

Gregory Ellner

Greg Ellner hails from New York City. He can be found on Twitter as @GregoryEllner or over on his Tumblr.