Crysis Mini-Review

May 11, 2008

I completed Crysis yesterday, so I thought I would post a few quick thoughts on my experience:

What I Liked

  • As can be expected, the graphics in this game are insane. The jungle atmosphere is spot-on, physics are incredible, lighting is superb, and character modeling is excellent. Visually, this game is a real treat to play.
  • The nano-suit which the player wears is an interesting game play mechanic. 'Health' is handled via the nano-suit, and the abilities which the suit provides (speed, strength, armor, and cloak) are fun to play with.
  • Level design is excellent. All of the locations feel incredibly realistic, and there's a ton to explore. I'll probably play through the game once more just to fully explore each map, because I know there's a ton of stuff I missed.

What I Didn't Like

  • Crysis isn't near as long as Far Cry, which really disappointed me. Likewise, the maps in Crysis aren't as large either.
  • Crysis has an incredibly weak story line, much like Far Cry did. This comes as no surprise, especially in the FPS genre, but I was hoping for a little more meat than what I was given.
  • Again, just like Far Cry, the game turns into a battle against alien forces. I really enjoyed battling the human forces in the early parts of this game, and I wish Crytek had stuck to that theme. The later alien-based levels are, for the most part, not very fun. Why can't we get a game that uses this style engine and doesn't devolve into a 'save-the-world-from-alien-attack' kind of story? Perhaps Far Cry 2 will provide the kind of experience I'm looking for.
  • Difficulty is really uneven. I played through on the 'Normal' difficulty, and found myself stuck at a few places (though I never got stuck permanently). Some battles are surprisingly easy, while others are incredibly hard to survive.
  • Some of the vehicles the player gets to drive are woefully difficult to maneuver, which is frustrating. I'm not entirely sure why this is, because the vehicles in Far Cry were a pleasure to drive.
  • This game is a system hog. I played at 1280x1024 on the High setting (no anti-aliasing or anything fancy), and there were still a few moments where things really chugged (entering and exiting buildings especially). Overall my experience was smooth, but these moments of stuttering killed some of the immersion factor.

I'm not sure if I can recommend this game or not. It's worth playing through for the eye candy, but some of the game's frustrations cancel out that fun. My final verdict for Crysis? C+

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