Shortly after beating Portal 2, I started playing Crysis, the classic award-winning first-person shooter (FPS). The game was released back in 2007 but I never played it until now. After beating it on March 31st, I wish I never waited so long to play it!
In Crysis, you assume the role of a soldier named Nomad who is part of an elite group to rescue some archaeologists after they sent out a distress signal. They discovered something that may ‘change the world’ and the North Korean Army took over the island to claim the power for themselves. Your unit is equipped with Nanosuits which augment the occupant’s power, speed, durability, and stealthiness. You fight your way through the island and uncover the mystery of what the archaeologists found.
The first thing you notice about Crysis is it is a beautiful game. Most of the game takes place on a tropical island. The jungle looks rich and lush. The water around and throughout the island looks great. Later in the game you watch a mountain get flash-frozen in ice. You also float around in a very detailed alien ship.
Your squad mates, the opposing North Korean soldiers, aliens, and mini-bosses all look great. The weapons, vehicles such as tanks and VTOLs (aerial vehicles) also are very detailed.
The game simply looks amazing.
Crysis employs “sandbox” game play which means the environments are mostly open-ended and you are free to go wherever you want. You have primary objectives that you can head directly for or take the path ‘less traveled’ and explore a little bit. Often when you do, you find secondary objectives which do not advance the story line but are fun to complete. You often are rewarded with new weapons that you would normally get later in the game.
As I mentioned earlier, you are equipped with an advanced Nanosuit which has several modes that augment your fighting abilities. Armor mode protects against damage and you regenerate health faster. Speed mode helps you run past or away from enemies and avoid being hit. The Power mode gives you extra strength to destroy obstacles and killing enemies by punching them, to jump much higher, and to stabilize your weapons when firing. Cloak mode makes you invisible for a short period so you can sneak around undetected and advance on enemy positions. I personally used the Cloak mode the most because I liked to get headshots on unsuspecting enemies but it’s hard to really remain stealthy like you can in Splinter Cell.
The game has a good variety of weapons which you can customize slightly. You can add or remove your silencer, change the scope, or change the grenade attachments. The silencer made your gun feel very weak but it depends on your play style whether you want to use it. I liked how you could use pistols, sub-machine guns, shotguns, automatic rifles, sniper rifles, or even rocket launchers.
The game’s difficulty felt just about right. You cannot simply run out in the open and expect to survive enemy encounters. You had to use cover and your Nanosuit’s powers to be successful. The enemy’s AI was generally smart. North Korean soldiers would try to flank you and flush you out with grenades. There were pockets of enemies everywhere so you always had to be mindful of your surroundings and remaining ammo.
I really enjoyed that Crysis felt like a complete game. The early levels took considerable effort to beat as you unravel the game’s plot. I did not particularly care for the level inside an alien ship. You float around in a zero gravity environment and it is not particularly obvious where you need to go next. It is easy to get disoriented and it actually made me feel nauseous. However, the good part about the level is that it is pretty spooky navigating through the alien ship.
After you get out of the alien ship, the pace of the game seems to really pick up. Waves of aliens rush out and attack everyone in sight. The game concludes with a pretty epic battle with a mini-boss and final boss on an aircraft carrier.
Even though Crysis was released back in 2007 and it is now 2012, this game can still tax most high-end gaming PCs. Fortunately my crazy buff gaming rig was able to comfortably handle running at a full 1920 x 1080 resolution with Very High presets.
To summarize, Crysis is a great game and I wish I played it sooner. It has great graphics that rival even today’s titles. The sound and music add to the game’s immersion. It has a good story and lots of action that keep you engaged all of the way through. The game is deserving of all its accolades and I highly recommend it to any fans of first-person shooters. Just make sure your computer is buff enough.