It's not often that we see a new game being released that is unlike anything that has come before it. And indeed, FarCry is one of these rare games, blending a decent and suspenseful story with mind-blowing graphics. Of course, eye candy like this comes at a price, and the hardware requirements are steep.
It is the graphics board that bears the brunt of this workload for FarCry. The game's 3D engine, which is designed for DirectX 9 and makes extensive use of PS 2.0 and Vertex Shaders 2.0, practically begs for a DirectX 9 capable graphics accelerator. While older DirectX 8 hardware is also supported, the image quality definitely suffers in this case.
Gamers that want to bask in the full glory of this game by playing at the highest level of detail should have a GeForce FX 5900/5950 or an ATi Radeon 9800 in their system. However, even with such hardware under the hood, expect 1024x768 to be the ceiling. While FSAA and anisotropic filtering are theoretically possible, complex scenes will quickly become jerky.
The ideal graphics hardware for this game would be graphics accelerators of the newest generation, such as the GeForce 6800 series or ATi's X800 family, since they offer greatly improved shader performance compared to their predecessors. As a result, FarCry is playable at higher resolutions and with image quality enhancing features like FSAA and AF activated.