Crysis was great…I think

Crysis was one of my most anticipated games of 2007, but with the holidays I haven’t been able to get, or play, or review this game until now. There were highs, there were lows, but overall I left the game feeling empty. And actually, as I write this review, I’m having trouble remembering any moments in the game that really stood out for me. But I’ll try…

Note: This review will contain some minor spoilers.

The game IS good

Now don’t get me wrong. The game was damn fun and despite a few frustrating levels, I enjoyed most every bit of it. Crysis introduces some new elements into the first person genre. First is your nano/super suit thing, or as I like to call it “the suit that does all this stuff but the only thing you ever really use it for is that invisibility feature which doesn’t last long enough”. Unless I had to, I hardly used any of the other suit’s features (expect its default ‘increased armor feature’).

The game also has a weapon customization feature which I used a lot more. Pretty much every weapon in the game you can customize with different items, like silencers, sniper scopes, grenade launchers, flashlights, etc. I actually enjoyed messing with my guns and using their new outfits to kill some enemies.

Also, the control setup on how you access your suit’s abilities and weapon customization is superb. Crytek did a very good job figuring out how players should access their suit’s abilities and select one. Holding down the middle mouse button brings up your suit controls, and moving the mouse in a certain direction highlights that ability. Letting go of the middle mouse button selects that ability. I thought this control scheme was excellent.

What did I miss?

Obviously, the graphics are top notch – ’nuff said. The character animations and voice acting seems top notch as well. Especially the main characters. They all seemed very believable. But the story itself was pretty weak. Besides being pretty generic (which I’m fine with in an fps), the story just felt kind of lost. You had clear objectives most of the time, but sometimes I found myself wondering why am I doing this?

The enemy AI was good. Almost too good. The same AI issues that stumped FarCry seemed to have made their way over to Crysis. I’m not saying the enemy AI is dumb (or any more dumb than standard fps AI is now a days), but it’s too good. I’m talking about how enemy soldiers can spot you through a forest from 100 meters away. Or hear you from 100 meters away while you are cloaked. Even with your weapon silenced, cloak engaged, lying prone in a bush, you can snipe an enemy from a distance, and his partners can pretty much pin-point your location. I mean, come on!

The alien ship level was kind of annoying. While it was an excellent idea, I think it was executed poorly. Graphics and design wise, those levels are beautiful. The zero-g setting is also a nice change of pace and new to the fps genre. But the enemies were horrible. There’s no ammo in the alien ship (unless I missed it). I played through this level twice, and each time I ran out of bullets about half way through. This left me with two options, either book it through the level, or by staying cloaked, creep your way through the level. This turned a great experience, into a daunting task.

In the end…

Crysis was a decent game. PC Gamer (US) gave it a score of 98 percent, which is the same score they gave Half-Life 2. Is Crysis anywhere near Half-Life 2? Definitely not, but I would rank the game in the high 80 percent range. I’ll probably play through the game again at some point, but I see myself spending more time with the Sandbox2 editor.

For an even better review, check out this comic: Crysis Review by DumDeeDum.

Nick Villescas

I'm an IT professional, musician, and PC gamer with a particular fondness of all things tech-related. Feel free to connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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