Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Game Review : Crysis (EA)

The new game from Crytek called Crysis was released last year. Here's the review I did in November of 2007

Manufacturer Electronic Arts
Category Shoot 'em Up Mother Fu%$er
Platform PC (Only decent platform there is)
Date 13 November, 2007
Plot Outline Shoot the shit out of everything and the aliens too.

Riding on the coattails of the success of Farcry, Cryteks new FPS Crysis has taken running around shooting and blowing stuff up on an island to a new level. For many months before its release date, I had been looking at the screenshots and short in-play vids posted on the interweb with great excitement. I enjoyed Farcry immensely, and its successor looked every bit as good but with better graphics and in game physics. The short vids of palm tree’s being shot enough to fall over was an excellent teaser. So when it hit release date I shot straight off to the shop and grabbed a copy.

Once you get into it, its easy to see why this game has been given some pretty excellent reviews. An awesome physics engine, and relatively simple and free roaming gameplay make Crysis an easy game to immerse yourself in.


The scenery reacting in a very lifelike manner and the physics engine make this game rock. Whether its jungle blowing up from grenade bursts, punching a guy with super strength so he flies 20 metres through the air, or shooting out tires on vehicles, the whole reactive environment makes for enjoyable gametime.


The hardest bit of the game is getting used to switching quickly between modes on the nanosuit. The ability to stealth your way through situations, or open up with all guns means there is many choices on how you want to approach certain situations. Couple this with an Objective style of gameplay, and a reasonable variety of weapons customisations, you can complete much of the game however you feel. Sneaking past an enemy patrol, charging headlong into a group of soldiers and punching them out, or running away like the Flash – its up to you.


Good story and open game play combine well so that although you feel you should keep moving, the game doesn’t end if you don’t. This means you can stop and smell the flowers (or shoot down coconut trees) before moving to the next objective. The storyline, while not being totally unique (good old alien invasion) has some neat spins and twists to keep you engaged.


Graphics Engine
I had read about some of the issues around people being unable to play the game in the highest settings, and apparently this was by design. Crytek had designed the game so that the best PC of 18 months from release date would be able to play it at full spec. The unfortunate side effect is that the Recommended System Requirements are quite high – Intel Core 2 Duo proc @ 2.2ghz or AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+, 2GB RAM, 12GB HD Space, Geforce 8800 GTS 640MB Video card.

Its also one of the first engines to take advantage of Direct3D 10 framework of Windows Vista, which many gamers are not moving to due to reported performance problems. This means if your PC was good 6 months ago, it’ll probably only play Crysis on low settings. Time to upgrade!


I felt like I was just starting to get to the meat of the story when the game ended – I felt that I had been a bit ripped off, game length wise. I completed it in 5 sessions of about 2 or 3 hours each, which seems about average reading some other reviews out there. On the flipside to this, I did want to keep playing and following the storyline – which is just as well, as this is part 1 of 3 (Crysis Wars and World in Crysis to come).

Ending (warning: mild spoiler)

Although the rest of the game was excellent, the ending reminded me to much of the old Sega days playing Phantasy Star, and Nintendo’s Zelda – big end of level meanie, flashing in sections as you hit it, section falls off as enough damage is done, leaving large middle section which gets a big nuke up the wahzoo. Not exactly what I expected.


Excellent game, well done Crytek. Look forward to the next episodes.

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