“After all I've done, and after all we've been through, you've come seeking help from me? You must be truly terrified.”
— Joseph Seed
Far Cry New Dawn
Joseph Seed, also known as "The Father", is the main antagonist of Far Cry 5 , Inside Eden's Gate and the deuteragonist of Far Cry New Dawn. He is a ruthless megalomaniac who is the founder and the leader of the Hope County-based extremist religious terrorist cult organization "Project at Eden's Gate" alongside his brothers and adoptive sister who he dubs "The Heralds"; Jacob, John, and Faith Seed. Eden's Gate has used both coercion and violence to bring the existing residents of Hope County into its cult, as ordered by Seed, and, as of the events depicted in the game, is in direct conflict with The Resistance and its members.
After the nuclear apocalypse, he created a successor religious organization, The New Eden.
Seed truly believes that he was chosen by God and that he was told of the coming end of the world. His goal is to protect his followers, or "children" from the coming end and lead them to "Eden's gate."
Joseph is shown to be a psychopath, having no problem killing, torturing and looting to advance his project. Despite this, he has shown mercy on the player numerous times, even after the player kills his entire family, even offering them the chance to walk away. He is also shown to have some measure of humanity, as he breaks down emotionally following the death of his entire family, and the actor Greg Bryk has himself stated that one of the primary aspects he channeled into the character was empathy. In this sense, one could claim that Joseph Seed has plenty of empathy, albeit very misplaced empathy. He is calm in dire situations, and is very charismatic, leading to his rise to power, convincing numerous people to join him. He may actually have some sort of supernatural powers, as is shown with his prediction of the nuclear explosion (although he may have been at fault) and his quote "sometimes it's best to leave well enough alone" in the secret ending, which was a direct quote from Whitehorse while approaching in the helicopter.
According to The Book of Joseph, Joseph first heard from the Voice while he was being beaten by his father for reading a Spider-Man comic. Afterwards, when his father started beating John too, the teachers in the school took notice of his scars, alerted the authorities, and the Seed family was separated. The siblings were placed into foster care. Joseph passed through several foster families during his adolescence and found it difficult to connect with his classmates and siblings, living life as a lonely orphan. The Voice's message would accompany Joseph during this period.
As a young man, Joseph squatted in an old packing plant in his hometown as he searched for his brothers, working as a bellhop in the meantime. During this time, he would also become deeply interested in religion in an attempt to understand the Voice. Later, he would move to Atlanta in search for John and found work as a garbage collector. In many of his jobs, he was fired for talking about the Voice. Later on, he took on the position as a caretaker in a psychiatric hospital. One night as he went to the hospital for the late shift, he was mugged by three men and it was then that the Voice contacted him for the final time. The Voice gave him a vision of the apocalypse and the "punishment" that would be inflicted upon the world.
After recruiting his two brothers into his Vision, Joseph began to preach out of a former slaughterhouse in Rome, Georgia, eventually building up a considerable congregation of the marginalized in society. However, following the disappearance of a man who had been kicked out of Eden's Gate, the police interrogated and accused the Seeds of being behind the man's disappearance. After that, the Seeds then moved to Hope County with their following.
He had a wife and a daughter, both of which were involved in some type of car accident while travelling to see a friend. During the accident his wife was killed, leaving him with only his infant daughter. When he was in the hospital he says they handed him a pink bundle filled with tubes (his daughter). While in a room alone with his daughter Joseph believes that that's when God told him about the end of the world and to start Eden's Gate. He then killed his daughter by pinching the plastic tube attached to her face; shutting off his daughter's life support to prove his willingness to "serve God no matter what he asks.”
And I saw, and behold... a white horse!
Main Article: The Warrant
In the secret ending, if the Junior Deputy refuses to arrest him for 5 minutes in the beginning of the game, Sheriff Whitehorse will call for his deputies and Marshal Burke to retreat from the church, knowing full well that the cultists would've ambushed them for what they were about to do. However, Burke threatens to arrest both the Junior Deputy and Sheriff Whitehorse for their action; but Whitehorse is content with the outcome and leaves the church, ending the game.
Where It All Began
Main Article: Where It All Began
Main Article: Resist
In the Resist ending, Joseph is fought and defeated, but is revealed to be right after all when a nuclear bomb, followed by two others, ignites and burns the whole county, like a rendering of the Apocalypse. Seed is taken in a truck along with the Deputy and their allies and try to reach Dutch's bunker but they crash which presumably kills everyone but the Father and the Deputy. Eventually, the Father carries the Deputy into the bunker and cuffs them to the bedpost while he kills Dutch. He reveals to the Deputy he should kill them for what he has done but decides to spare them and adds them to the "family." This ending is for now the canon ending.
Main Article: Walk Away
In the Walk Away ending, Joseph thanks the Deputy for their decision, and they leave with Sheriff Whitehorse and the two deputies. While in the car Sheriff Whitehorse turns on the radio which happens to be tuned to a station playing Only You performed by The Platters. As the screen turns red this proves that Jacob Seed's brainwashing of the Junior Deputy using Classical Conditioning was successful. The song, serving as the stimulus, leads to the reflexive response of the Junior Deputy potentially killing all of their police comrades, but as the screen fades to black, the actual final outcome is unknown.
“I led us to the new world, I thought it would be glorious...I was wrong.”
— Joseph Seed
Far Cry: New Dawn - Announcement trailer
Joseph survived the nuclear holocaust and waited out the nuclear fallout in Dutch's Bunker along with the Junior Deputy. At some point, it's revealed that the Deputy started to believe in Joseph and wanted to be cleansed. Joseph later left the bunker and went north of Hope County; and judging by the notes he left behind, the Deputy went with him.
17 years later, Joseph leads his new group, New Eden, who are what remains of his previous flock. New Eden found it very difficult to survive post-apocalyptic America until Joseph discovered their salvation in the form of an Apple tree to the north of Hope County. Joseph empowers his "chosen" with miraculous apples from his mystical tree which grants them superhuman strength and durability. This empowerment allowed Joseph's followers to survive the post-apocalyptic winters, famine, and pestilence. Eventually, the New Edeners thrived and built their own community where they reject everything from the old world and strive to live off the land in peace.
Their peace would not last long however as New Eden came into conflict with the Highwaymen soon after. Joseph began to despair that the world had not become the paradise he had envisioned. During Joseph's stay at Dutch's Bunker, Joseph Seed dreamt of a "shepherd" that would realize the paradise he prophesied. Joseph left New Eden in self-imposed exile to await this "shepherd" who would seek him out, leaving his prideful son, Ethan Seed, the de facto leader of New Eden.
The Captain sees apparitions of Joseph during the mission "The Prophecy". The Judge, a member of New Eden, won't let the Captain inside the New Eden compound until the Captain recovers the book Joseph's Word. The Captain then sees apparitions of Joseph guiding them to the book, which once recovered will grant the Captain access to New Eden and earn the cult's trust.
Eventually the New Edeners sent the Captain to retrieve their father Joseph. When the Captain reaches Joseph's Sanctuary, they find that Joseph has been expecting them for they were the "shepherd" he saw in his dream. Joseph bestowed upon the Captain one of his sacred apples and guided them on how to master its power. When they returned to New Eden, Joseph hailed the Captain as New Eden's "shepherd" and rallied the New Eden cult to wage war on the Highwaymen. Joseph's son Ethan is reluctant to give up leadership of New Eden but Joseph insists he must for it is "God's will." Joseph also gave leave for the Judge to follow the Captain as their Gun for hire, noting their talent for violence will serve the Captain greatly.
New Eden's alliance with Hope County's Scavengers has turned the tide of the war against the Highwaymen. Joseph believes the Security Captain is the one destined to lead the new world back to prosperity and will shepherd Eden when he is gone. Joseph is also aware that his son Ethan covets power and acclaim, and most likely desires the power of their sacred fruit. However, he knows that Ethan's soul is not pure and has tried his best to keep Ethan from partaking of the fruit. Joseph, driven by the will of the Voice, believes it is his destiny to aid the Security Captain and help them unlock the mystical powers hidden inside them; serving as a guide during their time together. Ethan betrays New Eden however and has enticed the Twins -- Mickey and Lou -- to eradicate New Eden. After the Captain defeats the Twins at the ruins of New Eden, Joseph and the Captain found Ethan at the sacred apple tree. Ethan expressed his resentment at being replaced by an outsider and in an act of defiance, Ethan ate an apple and was corrupted by it; forcing the Captain to put him down. Joseph mourns the death of his son, and stated that his only fault was that he was his. Joseph then burns down the mystical apple tree and finally acknowledged that he was not the messiah God had promised, but rather the true "shepherd" was the Captain. Joseph states his soul has become a cancer and knowing he doesn't deserve to live for the monstrous crimes he's committed, asks the Security Captain to kill him.
- If spared, Joseph will fall to his knee's screaming to be released and then the Captain can either put him down or just leave him. Later, if you return to Joseph’s compound, the tree is completely burned, Ethan's body is burned and merged with the tree and Joseph is no longer there and has left for parts unknown. It is likely he realised he has to live with his actions and decided to find a new purpose. It’s unknown what happened to Joseph but it’s likely he officially resigned his leadership of New Eden and exiled himself again for what he did. Ultimately, Joseph realised he had to live with the shame of the atrocities he has committed.
- If killed, Joseph is shot in the chest and dies instantly and falls to the ground dead. If you return to the tree later, Ethan's body is burned and merged with the tree and Joseph's body is gone.
Despite his charismatic nature and psychopathic actions, in conversations Joseph Seed has shown to be a quiet individual with a capacity for mercy. Though he shows no hesitance in inflicting violence on those who might resist him, he has shown that he has a capacity for forgiveness and doesn’t actively seek violence. Even after the Deputy had murdered his siblings, he was willing to allow them to leave Hope County with their friends unarmed to avoid any further bloodshed.
Joseph does display that he cared about his family and followers as he has made it his personal mission in life to protect them from “The Collapse”. When they are murdered, Joseph’s calmness completely erodes and he screams in grief and rage towards the Deputy. Nevertheless, there has shown to be some dominance in Joseph’s interactions with his siblings. He subtly threatened John to make sure the Deputy reaches Atonement or “the Gates of Eden shall be shut [to him]” and Faith seems in fear of whatever punishment Joseph might react to her failures. However, Joseph and Jacob show a more equal relationship due to him being the oldest brother.
Joseph truly believes he was chosen by God to save the world. It’s ambiguous whether this was true or simply a Messiah Complex as a result of his insanity but his premonition did actually come to pass if the Deputy chose to resist him. He had no doubt in the righteousness of his mission but even showed a degree of satisfaction that the world was ending, simply because it was proof he was right all along. His reactionary attitude is firmly placed in how corrupt the world has become, believing that the only way for humanity to survive is to return to the days of Eden. Whilst he was aware that he was not a “perfect man”, Joseph Seed’s every action was ultimately what he believed himself to be the righteous hand of God.
Seed spoke calmly and quietly when he spoke but often enunciated his words in sentences to convey a sense of malice to his enemies.
17 years after the collapse Joseph seems to have become more calm and caring as he no longer wishes to attack the survivors but instead just live in peace with his people. Notes about The Word found in Dutch's Bunker detail his condemnation of humanity for their refusal to use their lives for good. Rather than end poverty, starvation, or disease, humanity has dedicated their lives to the pursuit of the banal or debased their gifts by making war on one another. Joseph advocated that instead humanity should focus on uplifting one another, and building a society that will nourish every body and lift every soul. Further notes about the The Word details he has taken comfort in the companionship of his family, God's love, and in the fact that he has outlived those who sought to exert power over him. According to Joseph's Diary, Joseph regretted being tolerant of his siblings' sinful ways and seeks to be more firmer with his son Ethan Seed. However, with the death of his son and most of his “children”, Joseph finally realized he isn’t God's shepherd but instead a man who caused suffering and death in God's name. Unable to forgive himself for his actions, he tells the Captain to kill him and if he is spared Joseph is left broken and repeatedly yells “Release me!” constantly so the Captain would put him out of his misery. If you spare his life and return to his tree, Joseph is gone now and it’s unknown what kind of state Joseph is in. It’s likely he decided to find a new purpose to maybe try to atone for his actions or maybe exile himself again so no one would see him again.
- Joseph is one of the few known survivors of the nuclear holocaust.
- A charismatic, persuasive and highly manipulative individual, Joseph bears a close resemblance to real-life cult leader David Koresh, who led an armed religious sect called the Branch Davidians, and for which Eden's Gate takes inspiration from.
- He has several scars on his torso, revealing his sins. His sins are Greed, Gluttony, Lust, Pride, and Sloth.
- According to the lyrics of the in-game song Now He's Our Father, Joseph once worked on an orchard, was homeless for a period of time, and was also jailed for reasons related or unrelated to his beliefs.
- Joseph’s prediction on the ‘collapse’ during the ‘Resist’ ending comes to fruition when Hope County is destroyed by nuclear bombs. Although it could simply be a hallucination brought on by the Bliss, it’s possible the world is threatened with nuclear war as evident in-game during the second interaction with Faith and a news announcement from the radio station in vehicles. Modern nuclear doctrine would preclude the deployment of multiple warheads within a vast wilderness area of little military or strategic significance, which lends some credence to the hallucination theory, which is also supported by the fact that once you select the "Resist" option during the final encounter, Joseph tips two Bliss barrels over, and the green Bliss vapor engulfs the player. You can continue playing after the "Resist" ending, but the sunny main menu background image is replaced by its post-apocalyptic version, which may imply that the nuclear holocaust was not a Bliss-induced illusion. However, it is stated in the beginning that no radio signals can go in or out of Hope County, so it is very likely just a bliss induced hallucination. This theory is proven to be false as Far Cry New Dawn confirmed that the nuclear apocapylse is real.
- Joseph has a tattoo of his deceased wife on his arm, with Bliss flowers below her face.
- He most frequently quotes the Book of Revelation.
- It is possible to spawn Joseph as an enemy A.I. in the Far Cry Arcade.
- Joseph is the only antagonist of a Far Cry game to canonically "win," - at least, in Far Cry 5 - as he manages to accomplish his goal of surviving The Collapse while evading justice for his crimes, and capturing/brainwashing the protagonist, although his victory is Pyrrhic at best as most of his followers and Cult bunkers have been wiped out, and Hope County, the place of his future Garden of Eden, is devastated.
- You can kill, or at least attempt to kill Joseph, if you chose the Resist option, when you are running to safety, but you are instantly killed if you do so. This programmed safeguard ensures that Joseph survives the canonical "apocalyptic" ('Resist') ending.
- Joseph Seed's past is revealed in "The Book of Joseph" that was a pre-order item available to those who purchased the Collectors Edition. Strangely, the book does not mention Joseph's wife and claims that the Voice spoke to him only twice - first when he was beaten by his obsessively religious father for reading a Spider-Man comic book, and then when he was mugged by three men. This contradicts his words ("Prayed for wisdom. Prayed for strength… then I knew. I heard God’s plan for me") when he told the captured Deputy that he killed his infant child because he was given guidance by God.
- According to a popular but not generally accepted interpretation of the Bible, the Antichrist will come from Rome. As Joseph Seed and his brothers were born in Rome, Georgia, the inference could be made that he is actually the Antichrist.
- Joseph is often seen carrying an AR-C as his means of personal self defense (albeit only in emergency situations).
- After Update 1.06, Joseph is available as a Special Outfit for the deputy.
- Joseph's response to the Junior Deputy walking away is a paraphrasing of an excerpt from the bible(Luke 6:37): "Judge not, lest you be judged. Condemn not lest you be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven".
- At the end of his boss battle, he says "Forgive them Father...They do not know what they do..." the same words that Jesus said during his execution(Luke 23:34).
- Joseph is the only antagonist to appear in 2 games and that can actually survive both as well (if Joseph wasn’t killed in the ending of New Dawn).
- Joseph is the only antagonist to go from an antagonist to a deuteragonist.
- In Far Cry New Dawn, Joseph left a note at his hideout claiming that Ethan should not get what he points at. He made that fault to Jacob, John and Faith.
- Unlike in Far Cry 5, It is Actually possible to loot Joseph's body if he is killed by the Security captain, though his remains hold nothing significant save for random ammunition.
Main Article: Quotes
- ↑ 2018 May 6, Wikipedia - Only You (And You Alone). Retrieved 2018 May 8.
- ↑ 2018 April 30, Wikipedia - The Platters. Retrieved 2018 May 8.
- ↑ 2018 April 23, Wikipedia - Classical Conditioning. Retrieved 2018 May 8.
- ↑ Far Cry: New Dawn - Announcement trailer Retrieved 2018 Dec 9.
- ↑ 2018 May 2, Wikipedia - David Koresh. Retrieved 2018 May 8.
- ↑ 2018 April 9, YouTube - Far Cry 5 Ending: What if You Shoot Joseph Seed Before the Car Crash?. Retrieved 2018 May 8.