Diaries From Yara: The Vaas DLC

Go inside the mind of a madman.

Far Cry 6 has a number of free and paid updates on the horizon, and the latest content drop to hit the game is the Vaas Insanity DLC. I spent the last couple of days in the mode and I’m ready to make my report on how the game has progressed since launch. This is that report.

Post-launch Far Cry content so far has been weekly insurgencies. You log in once a week and complete some objectives with the resulting reward being Monedas to buy newly cycled weapons and gear at the black market. You also get some pretty neat guns for completing the missions like a submachine gun that fires incendiary rounds. One of my new favorites.

The Vaas DLC is part of the season pass that puts the player in the role of villains from past games. The two other packs will bring back Pagan Min and Joseph Seed. For this release you play as none other than Vaas, voiced by Michael Mando once again, in a game that takes place completely within his head. Vaas Insanity took me a lot longer than I expected, and mostly because I stopped playing the game a few times out of frustration. The latest update has reintroduced a recurring bug in Far Cry 6 where the Uplay screenshot function straight up crashes out the game.

Vaas Insanity is a roguelike inspired game mode situated within Vaas’ head. For some reason the antagonist is trapped in his own mind, and in order to escape must reassemble the three pieces of the sword and defeat his greatest foe; his sister Citra. In case you were wondering there’s a lot of incest commentary of Vaas banging Citra, who are siblings. You start out with a simple pistol and have to work your way through a small island modeled after Far Cry 3’s environment.

Of course this is a Far Cry game and that means a lot of chorin’ to do. The most important of these is in the form of weapon challenges where you simply kill a number of enemies to unlock a list of better guns. Chests around the map provide currency as well as power-ups, while safe houses allow you to safely (somewhat) log out and keep your stuff. As is standard with roguelikes, if you die you lose your weapons and money and start back at the safe house.

One thing I felt Vaas Insanity suffered from is the fact that it is effectively still condensed Far Cry 6. If you’re not particularly skilled at shooters and thought Far Cry 6’s AI presented a challenge, you’ll be impressed by Vaas Insanity’s difficulty. Enemies still have their dial-up speed reaction times, and I’m still not sure what exactly the difficulty modes do to improve enemies. You get perhaps a solid 15 guns to play with, but I almost never had a reason to switch from the starter pistol once I had fully upgraded it. As with my chosen rifle in the main game I had no reason to bother using more cumbersome guns when this thing could pop any enemy in the head with a single shot.

But it’s fun playing as Vaas and getting a look into his psyche. Vaas was a criminally underplayed enemy in Far Cry 3, a minor antagonist that was never meant to be a big part of the story but thanks to Ubisoft marketing got way too big of a spotlight. There’s a lot of story here to play out and I found it more engaging than Far Cry 6 where I eventually started skipping some of the cutscenes.

Normally in a roguelike you start off very underpowered and through progressive upgrades and learning game mechanics you become more powerful. In Vaas Insanity I felt the player starts out overpowered and eventually becomes more overpowered. You wind up with more health and healing items than you could ever need and a constant supply of them coming in.

The only “difficulty” in Vaas Insanity is that the game doesn’t like you taking a break. While you can kick off while hiding in a safe room to keep your equipped gear and money, your progress on obtaining the three knife pieces resets regardless. Every time you complete the mode you unlock the next of five difficulty modes, and I couldn’t tell you what is different in these modes other than the occasional appearance of named enemies that can also be popped with one headshot.

The environments look great however, and spending more time with Vaas was admittedly an enjoyable experience. I never died to enemies, just had my game reset due to crashes. The best way I can describe Vaas DLC is imagine Far Cry 6 was a spaghetti carbonara, and Vaas Insanity is a plate of scrambled eggs and bacon. Some of the ingredients used to make a different but familiar dish.

If you’ve finished Far Cry 6 and want some more breakfast, go ahead and check out Vaas Insanity.

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