Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is going free for the month on Nov. 9

In keeping with this week's theme of "brilliant shooters that only found a niche audience", the next Ubisoft game to go free as part of the publisher's "Ubi 30" 30th anniversary celebration is Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon

It's camp and silly, but underneath all that neon and disco, Blood Dragon is a fundamentally straightforward shooter. It's one of my favourite Ubi games because it's utterly committed to its own ridiculousness, and that makes it a blast to play, especially if you're old enough to remember a time when this style of thing was taken semi-seriously. 

"Far Cry is one of the first open worlds Ubisoft created. The game was first introduced to the public at E3 2001 as X-Isle. At that time, Ubisoft showed an impressive open-world of forest inhabited by dinosaurs, supported by the powerful Cry-engine from Crytek," Ubisoft wrote, explaining the game's significance in the Ubi pantheon. "The co-developed game by Ubisoft and Crytek changed name and adapted its context to become Far Cry in March 2004. From the beginning the game offered the root of an open world: large playground, freedom of choice and initiative to the player, emerging gameplays." 

Blood Dragon is a stand-alone expansion to Far Cry 3, and at first glance looks like a throwaway gag. When it first came to light, in fact, some people thought it was an April Fool's joke. But it's a top-notch shooter—it's Far Cry underneath, after all—and the over-the-top '80s parody is executed so well that, for my money, it's better than the original. 

Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon will go free as of November 9; until then. Beyond Good and Evil is the Ubi freebie of the month. Get them at the Ubisoft Club website.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.