Odd as it may seem, I've only recently picked up Crysis. I won't bother making excuses, but I will give you a review. Note that I've spent probably only around ten hours on this thing so far. A plus here is that there are less spoilers I could reveal even if I wanted to. So let us begin...
Crysis is a sci-fi FPS adventure game developed by CryTek and released in 2007. The official "trial by fire" for gaming rigs, Crysis has made a significant name for itself. Unusual for a game 4 years old, it still pushes the limits of modern PC's at the highest detail. Naturally, it was still no match for my uber-rig, but it did put up a fight.
Touted elements include story, open-ended objectives, interesting mechanics, spiffy environments, and pretty pictures. Don't bork me for spending the rest of this review explaining how it kind of does these things, but halfheartedly.
Crysis at it's core is a cliche action FPS with the usual re-charging health and hiding behind things. I'm thankful that it's not the usual cover-based fare, but you had better hide behind things yourself if you expect to survive. It feels like they started out with a shooter where the player could use superpowers, and then decided to strap a bunch of other things on.
Story goes that some random island which archaeologists are excavating is taken over by Koreans. The transmissions from the island go silent, so you and a bunch of other dudes wearing funky "nanosuits" drop onto the island in the middle of the night. These nanosuits bestow superpowers on whomever happens to be wearing them at the time. You get separated during the drop, and get pretty quickly picked off until there's only half of you left. The story is actually interesting and convincing, but doesn't really make up a big part of the game. In places you can feel that it's just an excuse for you to do more shooting.
The gameplay itself is pretty solid. There were some awesome moments. Allow me to transcribe my thoughts during one:
"The signal says the hostage is in this building. Better switch to strength mode and jump up on top of it. Hack! The dude on top of the building is firing a machine gun at me! Armor mode to absorb the bullets. Speed mode as soon as I hit the ground so that I can run behind a corner. I know, I can switch to cloak mode and sneak up behind him. Then I can smack him in the face with the chicken I've been carrying around."
Unfortunately, these are spread out around "Go kill 400 dudes, it's going to be impossible if you want to sneak by, because that wasn't the way the game designers meant it" moments. It does go between a shooter and a stealth game pretty smoothly, although I would have preferred more choice in when you use stealth and when you don't.
I'm glad that the cutscenes are in first person. It kind of reminds me of Half Life. A lot of things about the game remind me of Half Life I guess. It's still its own thing though, which I also like.
The island setting is interesting, and I haven't got bored of it yet because the day/night cycle keeps changing the aesthetic. I'm sure the setting eventually changes, and it had better. I think this island setting will get boring sooner or later.
While this game has creative elements in many places, the weapons are all cliche. You get usual mixes of sniper rifles, machine guns, shotguns, grenades, and rocket launchers. Not to mention that the game still does that thing I hate where you can only carry a few weapons with you. I know the argument here is that it's more realistic, but if I wanted a realistic experience I would just stay in real life.
I'd love to write more about this game at some point, but I hope this review can give you a good peak. The verdict for me is that it's a game with many good elements, but a lack of depth and lack of concentration on any of the good elements takes away from the experience. I guess that the main problem here is that there really isn't that much to the game apart from it's cliche first person shooting.
Final Score: 7.5
(why this score?)