Crysis (Windows)

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Written by  :  Steelysama (106)
Written on  :  Nov 17, 2008
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars

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A Game-Length Tech Demo

The Good

There is no doubt that Crysis was one of the most hyped games in the hobby. Even after it was released, between the media accolades and its use as the new technical benchmark throughout the industry kept it in the spotlight. The primary reason for this is clear the moment you enter the game. No game before this or since (as of this writing in November 2008) has achieved the level of graphical splendor found in Crysis. The visuals and environments are simply breathtaking. So much so that they tax even the most up-to-date gaming rigs.

Game physics are also impressive. The way that objects in the environment react to you and other elements of the world is a pleasure to see and helps immerse the player.

Then the artificial intelligence deserves kudos. While it is not at the level of F.E.A.R.'s eerily competent soldiers, the enemies you face in Crysis are a real challenge and can be relied upon not to fall for simple tricks. They also have a good sense of their own mortality and if you ever take on a soldier alone, be assured that he will try to bring in some reinforcements as soon as he can. This causes the player to take special care in tactics or else face a deadly barrage of bullets from all sides.

Sound is excellent and plays a great part in the gameplay itself, as sometimes it is the best way to determine where your enemies are. I definitely recommend playing with a good headset.

The Bad

As technically beautiful as Crysis may be, as a game it falls short. This is a game that I really wanted to love, especially since I bought it with my brand new gaming system. Even so, I found myself rather uninspired from the beginning.

The storyline is not terribly involving and verges into cliche. As well, I never found any of the characters - least of all my own - to be very appealing. I do wish that I could have played as the cocky British commando in the team instead of the incredibly bland American muscle slab that I was.

Gameplay is actually not as fun as you would think it could be. The idea of sneaking around in the jungles, using ambush tactics, and generally engaging in stealth badassery seems awesome - and it is awesome. But the inclusion of your super-powered suit with built in stealth capabilities spoils it. Once I began running circles around groups of enemies, repeatedly hiding and recloaking after each kill, I began to feel like I was shooting fish in a barrel. Try to play without cloaking, though, and it is like pushing boulders up the side of Mt. Fuji. The enemy suddenly knows exactly where you are and they somehow all have the accuracy of Navy SEAL snipers.

Weapon selection is pretty uninteresting. This is especially the case because you soon run out of ammunition for your cool high-tech assault rifle and have to pick up the aging Korean model instead.

Also, there seems to be little reason for stealth other than to keep from being filled with holes. I think that it would have been great to have missions in which you needed to infiltrate a base without raising the alarm, silently bypassing or removing guards as you go.

The Bottom Line

Crysis is an awesome technical achievement but a mediocre first-person shooter. I hope that someone takes this engine and makes the game that FPS fans have really all been awaiting.