The ending of Far Cry 5 was a big decision for Ubisoft, and it’s one that will forever change the canon of the series. It set up Far Cry New Dawn to be a bright and colorful post-apocalyptic experience, but it also means the studio essentially blew up all of the franchise’s previous settings as a result.
Ubisoft confirmed that Russia, China, USA, and Europe essentially entered a global nuclear conflict, though Far Cry New Dawn retains its focus on the familiar setting of Hope County. While it’s unclear how the rest of the world is coping, Hope County has experienced a period of drastic regrowth some 17 years after the bombs first dropped.
Of course, before this super-bloom of life came death. Ubisoft was pretty blunt about it, too: one of the first things the studio confirmed was that Boomer the dog is dead.
When fielded with the inevitable question on why Boomer was canonically killed, Far Cry New Dawn Creative Director Jean-Sébastien Decant had the unfortunate task of explaining the studio’s canine conundrum:
You know, it’s 17 years after Far Cry 5. We considered for a while having maybe a descendant of Boomer at the new pet, but we wanted to go for something fresh. But no, 17 years…if he was a baby or a pup in 2018, 17 years later he would be old. It was a rough world for 17 years.
The studio refrained from explicitly saying how Boomer died, with a best-case scenario being that he was able to live the rest of his life inside a silo. This could have opened the door to have a descendant of Boomer existing within Far Cry New Dawn, but this timeline wasn’t meant to be.
Of course, Boomer’s passing doesn’t mean that there aren’t any four-legged friends around to help the player in New Dawn. In post-apocalyptic Hope County, a new pup named Timber will be at the player’s side – and the dog is just as useful as Boomer was in Far Cry 5. In fact, a new game mechanic will help gamers take their canine companions all around the map. Timber can get in vehicles with the player, allowing for them to join the commute as the player puts the pedal to the metal. There’s a motorcycle with a sidecar in the game, and we found that to be the absolute perfect vessel when inviting Timber for a ride-along.
Just as Timber will play the role of Boomer’s successor, Cheeseburger the Diabetic Bear has a replacement, too. In New Dawn, players can bring along a gigantic boar named Horatio, and he’s been hailed as both cute and disgusting by various Ubisoft employees. The spotted boar is essentially a living tank, firmly capable of wrecking vehicles and taking on entire squads of highwaymen at once. That being said, he’s always excited for a good pat from his owner, so gamers should prepare themselves for the cuteness that is delighted pig squeals.
The ending of Far Cry 5 is a big game-changer for the franchise, and it means that many beloved characters will likely have met a similar fate as Boomer. There’s still no news on if Cheeseburger ended up just as melted as his name might imply, but for now we can hold up hope that a slider-sized cub descendant of his might show up in New Dawn. He probably won’t, but one can always hope. It’s what the county was named for, after all.
Far Cry New Dawn will release on February 15, 2019 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.