Review by Treiden

"Don't judge a book by its cover"

Ah, yes. Crysis. Quite possibly one of the most anticipated games of 2007. Personally, I didn't buy into the hype, mainly because I have a deep phobia for games that can't be run on full detail on my system. As a result, I only picked this up recently, after several of my friends badgered me into buying it, claiming how good the game really was.

Damn you, peer pressure.

Let me just stress the fact I'm not saying this game is, say, "Big Rig" bad. I'm saying this game is unremarkable, and has far too many flaws to make it an enjoyable experience, let alone the ground-breaking shooter it was hyped up to be. So let's get on to the actual review:

Graphics

Surprise, surprise, the graphics are by far the best I have ever seen on any game. That is, on full detail. Which also means you'll be playing a slide show instead of an actual game unless you have a computer to end all computers. I'm not going to bombard people with my system specs, so I'll just make this comparison: I can run Assassin's Creed on full blast, and on 1280x1024 with no slowdown at all, but Crysis barely chugs along on medium settings with the resolution set to 1024x768. These are Crysis' own recommended settings based on my system, and I'm still getting frame drops every minute. I'm all for fancy graphics, but the people over at Crytek spent absolutely no time optimizing their graphics engine.

Not only that, but this engine is not without its fair share of glitches. For instance, picking up chickens and turtles and throwing them away is pretty fun, but it's no fun running them over with a car. The main reason for that would be that you just can't. You drive through them. Speaking of cars, mine just blew up when a tree trunk rolled against the side of my car. That, and the water looks like someone threw a gigantic piece of plastic over the ocean. I'm not even kidding here.

+ Amazing graphics
- Lack of engine optimization, making the availability of this kind of graphics useless to 99% of the public
- Glitches galore
6/10

Sound

Not much to say here, as I generally don't pay much attention to this unless it's really good or really bad. You have your basic gunfire and explosion noises, and the voice acting is convincing enough. A nice touch is the fact your enemies speak in Korean instead of English if you crank up the difficulty.

+ Decent voice acting
+ Language "gimmick"
8/10

Gameplay

The core of the review. Crytek claimed to revamp the genre completely. What they claimed, and what they achieved with Crysis is not exactly the same thing.

First off, the core gameplay is exactly like any other shooter. You get an objective, you fulfill that objective and shoot the baddies along the way. Oh sure, you can throw objects and pilot cars and boats and what not, but this came out in 2007. All this stuff is run-of-the-mill nowadays. A nice touch is the fact most stuff is destroyable, and as a result, you can use the environment to outsmart and kill your opponent (by say, destroying the house he's hiding in). Not that outsmarting him is that hard. More on that later.

The boys over at Crytek apparently realized this, as they added a couple of more original features: the Nano suit being the first of them. This suit, which you'll be wearing at all times, provides you with a set of powerups. Some of these are extra Speed or Strength. My personal favourite is Strength, seeing as how a mere punch (yes, you can use your fists as a weapon too) could send an enemy flying, resulting in a laugh or two. Of course, it would be more fun if these powerups lasted longer than a split second. You see, next to your health, you also have energy, which is required to perform these powerups. This energy runs out insanely fast, rendering your suit's abilities virtually useless in most cases. Strike one.

Feature number two, namely weapon customization, might do better. You can outfit most weapons with several gadgets, such as flashlights or sight scopes. This seems very convenient at first, until you realize most of the accessories you get will be collecting dust since they're just not useful at all. Strike two, Crytek.

Let's talk about AI. Well, I can be brief here. There is none.

Well, I might be exaggerating there, but really, the AI is just not smart. I've been playing this on Delta (the hardest of the 4 available difficulty modes), and too many times the enemies just stood still in clear open view, shooting miles above my head. Too many times, they just stood there watching how I was racing towards them with a car to squish them. Come to think of it, the only way I actually died was thanks to the glitches found in the game.

Speaking of those (oh yes, here they come again), not only the graphics have glitches. Just to give an example: I died while trying to commandeer an enemy controlled boat. I wasn't run (sailed?) over or anything, I was actually standing in the boat, but I just dropped dead on the spot without anything happening. To make things even more ridiculous: all of the aforementioned glitches happened in the first part of the game, which (according to internet forums and other reviews) is supposed to be the non-buggy part. I haven't mustered up the courage to play it into the last part, which is supposedly riddled with glitches. Strike three, you're out.

+Destroyable environment
+Vehicles, physics, basically everything that was done 5 years ago already
- The stuff that's actually original is really not that useful
- AI is plain stupid
- GLITCHES!
3/10

Overall

Well, Crytek claimed this to be THE game, but it really isn't. Very flawed gameplay mechanics wrapped up in a shiny but very unoptimized graphics engine does not make a good game. Rent, at best.


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 10/14/08

Game Release: Crysis (EU, 11/16/07)


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