Crysis is visually stunning, packed with intelligent, thrilling gameplay, and easily one of the greatest shooters ever made.
- Dynamic, emergent shooter gameplay
- Unparalleled visuals with destructible environments
- High level of replayability
- Power struggle makes for huge multiplayer battles
- An amazing accomplishment overall.
- The single-player story ends
- Will laugh at every CPU and GPU thrown at it
- No team deathmatch.
It was hard not to be completely impressed when the first images and videos of Crysis appeared about 18 months ago. Scenes of lush jungles and towering alien war machines looked light-years beyond what seemed possible. Of course, the two questions that revolved around Crysis since its announcement were whether it would deliver on those visuals and whether it would deliver a game worthy of those fancy graphics. It turns out that the answer to both those questions is a resounding yes, as Germany's Crytek has proven that its 2004 hit Far Cry was no fluke. In fact, it was just the beginning from this studio. With its sophomore effort, Crytek has managed to deliver an incredibly advanced and exciting first-person shooter that practically rewrites the rules for the entire genre.
Crysis is an alien invasion game set in the year 2020. An archeological team on a remote Pacific island is captured by an invasion force of North Koreans, and your US Special Forces team is dispatched to investigate and rescue the scientists. Clad in high-tech nanosuits capable of boosting your strength, speed, and armor, as well as cloaking you temporarily to the enemy, you're parachuted into a tropical paradise that's crawling with intelligent enemies and something else that's tearing both the North Koreans and US forces to shreds.
Like Far Cry, the first half of Crysis is essentially a "sandbox" game where you're put in the middle of incredibly large levels and tasked with an objective. How you get the job done is pretty much entirely up to you, which is part of the brilliance of the game's design. For instance, the environments are big enough to give you a wide range of latitude. Do you have to get to a certain point on the map? You can take a meandering route that avoids patrols and go stealthy, or try the up-front approach and try to blast your way through, with the danger of enemy reinforcements showing up. Need to infiltrate a North Korean-held village? You can try the front gate, or maybe explore and find a quieter way in.
Couple these huge environments with the powers of the nanosuit, and you have a ton more options. You can play like the eponymous character from the movie Predator and use your cloaking abilities to stalk North Korean patrols, picking them off one by one and watching the survivors react in confusion. That could be via a silenced rifle, or simply coming up from behind a guard and grabbing him by the throat and hurling him off a cliff, or through the roof of a building, or against a tree, or whatever catches your fancy. Enhanced speed and strength give you an amazing amount of mobility, so you can vault atop buildings and come down behind someone, or run up against a North Korean vehicle next to a cliff and push it over the side. In a heartbeat you can switch between different roles, from stealthy assassin to seemingly unstoppable death dealer. It's a game that makes you feel like a superhero, though not an invincible one, because you simply can't run roughshod over the enemy. Crysis rewards smart, fast thinking.
It helps that the game features a high degree of advanced physics and destructibility in a highly dynamic world. Getting caught in a firefight in the jungle is a cinematic treat, thanks to the way the bullets will chop down trees, while branches sway from impacts. This isn't just a visual effect, either, as falling timber can kill if it lands on someone. There's all sorts of emergent behavior like that throughout the game, events that spring up completely unintended or unforeseen. In one instance, the flaming wreckage of a chopper landed on a hut, crushing it and killing all those inside.
Meanwhile, the gunplay and ballistics modeling make this shooter feel as if you're handling real weapons. Trying to hit a target at long engagement ranges is challenging thanks to weapon recoil and other factors. The North Koreans are encased in body armor, so they take some time to gun down, unless you aim for the head, which usually puts them on the ground. At your disposal is a variety of firearms, like shotguns and assault rifles. One of the neat aspects of the game is that you can fix up your weapons on the fly, adding scopes, silencers, and grenade launchers, provided you've found them. There are trade-offs for each add-on. Silencers let you take down guys quietly, though they reduce bullet damage, meaning you've got to make every shot count. Or flashlights mounted on your weapons might help you out in dark levels, but will give you away.
Crysis gives you all of these toys and ratchets the action higher and higher the deeper you get into it. The first level of the game introduces you to the sandbox combat and the nanosuit. From then on, the battles become larger and more intense as the action escalates. You'll storm North Korean-held villages and bases; encounter their counter to your nanosuit; take part in a chaotic assault on a North Korean harbor; and from there the game accelerates. Next is a wild tank battle in a tropical mountain valley, with helicopters and jet fighters roaring overhead. There's a sheer rush as your tank plows through vegetation and knocks down trees as missiles and tank fire erupt all around you. Meanwhile, the vehicle explosions are convincing, right down to the way ammunition cooks off and sends spirals of smoke outward. It's visual poetry of destruction. You're not confined to your tank the entire time, either. You can jump out at any time and use your suit powers and rifle to take on enemy infantry. When they're dead, pick up their dropped rocket launchers and engage vehicles in a cat-and-mouse-style game.
This game was indeed a great one with awesome graphics many years ago when it was launched. Now it has ridiiculous graphics to say the least. The shooting engine is BS. However, Crysis 2 is simply amazing.
I realized a while ago that the reviewers here are on the advertisers' payroll and specialize in polishing turds but you people must simply be high. I'm glad I tried the demo instead of just swallowing all this hype. The dumb sci-fi genre aside, the game presents cartoonish world with human characters looking like cut-outs from a comic book, enemies the size of ants and crappy crackling sound. I really hate this engine and will have to avoid Crytek's products wholesale.
Loved the review, cant agree more. One of the best games ever made, i will rate it with 10/10 :D except the bugs with 1920*1080 expect that its amazing.
It's been almost 5 years and it still remains one of the best first person shooters I have ever played.