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Far Cry 6’s free Stranger Things crossover, The Vanishing, available now

Get a visual preview of season 4’s more horrifying vibes

Owen S. Good is a longtime veteran of video games writing, well known for his coverage of sports and racing games.

Far Cry 6’s crossover mission with Stranger Things, “The Vanishing,” is now available to owners, and the whole game (with the mission) is free for anyone to play from 2 p.m. EDT on Thursday until Sunday.

If you’re wondering how Stranger Things, in which a small Indiana town is beset by supernatural phenomena, fits into Far Cry 6, which takes its one-person army inside a fictional Caribbean dictatorship, well, maybe it’s best if you don’t. But taken at face value, it’s a chance to explore the Upside-Down and take on its hideous, evil forces in a third-person shooter, on a console, which isn’t nothing. As tenuous as the premise might be, visually, the adaptation looks rather strong.

“Players will be able to explore recreations of iconic locations inspired by the Stranger Things series,” said a statement from Ubisoft, “including a hidden bunker and an abandoned laboratory.” Dani Rojas’ priorities are to find Chorizo, the happy scrappy hero pup, and the Yarans abducted into the frightening alternate dimension, apparently in that order.

Stranger Things’ fourth season will premiere — in two distinct “volumes” — on Netflix on May 27 and July 1. On Wednesday, Netflix offered seven production stills to whet fans’ appetite for the series’ return, which comes after three long years.

Creators Ross Duffer and Matt Duffer have said that season 4 will take on much darker tones, leaning harder into horror-movie themes. In that sense, Far Cry 6’s “The Vanishing” might serve as a kind of visual preview. Far Cry 6 is available on Google Stadia, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X, as well as Windows PC via the Epic Games Store and Ubisoft Store.

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