Two Ubisoft developers journeyed to Nepal to research the inspiration for Kyrat, the fictitious Himalayan setting for Far Cry 4, and while there they ended up observing the ritual sacrifice of a goat.
The scene plays out in this, part one of a documentary filmed by Vice Media and shown at a Far Cry 4 panel at Comic-Con 2014. It happens off camera at 4:05 but it might make some uncomfortable. Mark Thompson, the game's narrative director, and Phil Fournier, the associate producer, made the journey with Vice's Krishna Andavolu. (Vice and Ubisoft also collaborated on a pirate-history documentary to promote Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag.)
When they arrived in Kathmandu, they caught a rumor there was to be an animal sacrifice, and they found the event. It was a sacrifice of thanks a man was making on behalf of his family to Kali, the Hindu goddess of change and destruction.
The video is the first of a three-part series covering the source material and inspiration for Far Cry 4. Creative Director Alex Hutchinson told the Comic-Con panel audience that another Vice documentary, "The Vice Guide to Liberia," served up another inspiration, this one for the game's deranged villain, Pagan Min.
"General Butt Naked," the nom de guerre of Liberia's Joshua Milton Blahyi, featured prominently in the documentary on the African nation torn apart by civil war in the 1990s. Hutchinson sent the documentary around to his staff.
Blahyi got his name because he and his army fought nude (except for shoes). "They would fight naked, because he believed if he was naked, the bullets wouldn't hit him," Hutchinson told the audience. Not that Pagan Min will appear in the nude.
"It was this idea that there were these extreme characters who, in their universe, they seem sane," Hutchinson said, "but if you take them out of context, and put them in our world, they seem very insane."
Asked to elaborate after the panel, Hutchinson expanded on Min's personality.
"We wanted someone incredibly charismatic," Hutchinson said. "You saw the video [shown at E3], he doesn't realize all this blood is on him. There's all this death and destruction around him. But he's like, ‘Yeah, we have people to clean that up. There are people who take the bodies away — let's have lunch! Let's ride elephants!'"
Far Cry 4 is scheduled to launch Nov. 18 for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. For more on the game, see Polygon's E3 2014 preview.