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After the Hype: Crysis 2

by John Kirby on April 5, 2011


Let me start off by saying that I was a big fan of Crysis 2.  It was a day one buy for me (Xbox 360) and I have no regrets.  That being said, after spending some quality time with the game, as much as I was impressed, I see far more potential to be had.  I am happy too, because it shows us that there are more great things to come from both the Crysis series, and CryEngine 3.  Below are some of the things that I think Crysis 2 did very, well, in addition to some of the things it needs to improve.

Strengths:

1. The Nanosuit: Shooter gameplay was getting pretty stale in my books until Crysis 2 came along.  The nanosuit added an entirely new dimension to the game in both strategy and scope.  How do I want to kick ass today? Straight up gun on gun?  Stealth take-downs?  Kicking cars into enemies?  Throwing crap at people?  Jumping on people? All fun, all the time. The harder the difficulty, the more fun it was.

2. Sandbox battlefields: During the single player campaign I salivated every time I was notified “tactical options available.”  The maps were large enough to give options, yet small enough to keep focus.

3. Size and scale: Bigger is better in Crysis 2.  The sense of visual scale in the game was very impressive.  I often myself only half listening to dialogue while I took in the sights of each level.

4. Multiplayer: I easily spent 25 hours on the two versions of the Crysis 2 demo on the 360.  That says a lot, since most full games don’t give me that kind of  shelf-life.  The freshness the nanosuit really makes Crysis 2 one of the most diverse and unique FPS multiplayer out there.  I also find the lag to be negligible compared to other shooters (COD), which is a big bonus.

5. Graphics: The best on any console right now.  Not only are graphics stunning, but level design and art direction are just phenomenal. In a genre saturated with beige and greys, Crysis 2 is a breath of fresh air.  Plus, the lighting effects in this game have no peer when it comes to quality.

Weaknesses:

1. Pop-in: This is not a game-breaker by any means, but it is noticeable, especially in multiplayer.  If this can be fixed, Crysis 3 will be a console beast.

2. Story: As far as shooters go, it was decent, but I hope Crysis 3 focuses more on making a good story and developing some characters.  I feel that a good game is made up of a combination of 1. solid game-play (stability, mechanics, variety, etc), 2. graphics (stability, art direction, etc), and 3. story (characters, plot, etc).  I think Crysis 2 lacked the latter.

3. Vehicles: If Crysis 2 had the effortless vehicle combat like Halo or Battlefield it would be hard to beat.  The current vehicle offerings are a good start, but I would love to see it expanded upon, especially in multiplayer.

4.  Enemy variety: I loved the enemies of Crysis 2, but like many shooters these days, some increased variety would be great.

Final Thoughts:

At the end of the day, Crysis 2 is a must have game for any fan of the sci-fi or shooter genre.  In many ways this is an immensely impressive game for it’s graphics, art direction, scope, and game-play.  However like most games out there it is not perfect, especially in the story department.  Crytek could really make Crysis 3 a great game with a bit more polish and more emphasis on quality story and character development.  Still though, it makes you think that if Crytek’s first console offering is this good… Crysis 3 should really be one to watch for.

Say Something
  • Rob hestar

    I agree, I’m loving the hell outta the MP,but the SP could of used more enemies and boss fights if u ask me

  • gnbi

    good graphics don’t make a good game.

    there is no option to toggle first person and third person with vehicles in Crysis2.. there is no option to disable the nano-suit voice…

    crysis 2 is set in urban new york..i’d expect a tactical game like commandeering battle tanks – jet fighters – hellfire missile strikes and heavy weapon support.

  • AnonFox

    Then you obviously don’t know what Crysis is about if thats what you expected.

  • MAXIMALIS

    I have to disagree with many of your points.

    Strengths:

    1. The harder the difficulty, the more fun it was.

    -I actually find Crysis 2 actually EASIER than the first on the same difficulties settings.

    2. Sandbox battlefields: During the single player campaign I salivated every time I was notified “tactical options available.” The maps were large enough to give options, yet small enough to keep focus.

    -Sandbox? Lol. Crysis 2 is way more linear compared to the first. In fact just play games like CoD, HALO, etc. thats what I meant. It feels way more restricted thats anything but sanbox about it.

    3. Size and scale: Bigger is better in Crysis 2. The sense of visual scale in the game was very impressive. I often myself only half listening to dialogue while I took in the sights of each level.

    -If anything the “visual” was actually a downgrade in terms of environment. Somethings like debris was defiantly improved but many it kind of lack the large scale environment of the first. However if you notice the shadows in this game is even worst than in one, look closely you find many objects lacking even proper shadow.

    Weaknesses:

    2. Story: As far as shooters go, it was decent, but I hope Crysis 3 focuses more on making a good story and developing some characters. I feel that a good game is made up of a combination of 1. solid game-play (stability, mechanics, variety, etc), 2. graphics (stability, art direction, etc), and 3. story (characters, plot, etc). I think Crysis 2 lacked the latter.

    -Crysis 2 story was defiantly inferior to Crysis 1. Hands down, seriously uncontrollable outbreak in a populated city? now how many media and games already have that?

    3. Vehicles: If Crysis 2 had the effortless vehicle combat like Halo or Battlefield it would be hard to beat. The current vehicle offerings are a good start, but I would love to see it expanded upon, especially in multiplayer.

    -Rofl. You can’t compare Crysis games to Battlefield or even HALO. Vehicles are not the main focus whatever in SP or MP. You won’t be seeing players piloting battleships or attack helos to decimate enemy positions. It’s more to using your uber nanosuit and trounce people with your physical and mechanical weaponry.

    By the way, before anyone flames I been a loyal fan since the first was released even got the retail Crysis Special Edition, Warhead and Maximum Edition compilation all together. After purchasing and playing Crysis 2 I can say it leave a lot to be desired compared to the first games.

    • adam

      Good points but looking at the things he said I believe he is refering to console version. Im sure pc vanilla crysis was crazy awesome, but for me personally never having been able to play that, crysis 2 is pretty sick. We console gamers are lucky to get to play this game and actually I think not having played the first I appreciate it more not having pre expectations going in.

    • Galietn5

      Ok, I must agree with you on some of these points. I’d also like to note that you would never catch me playing a console.

      Strengths

      “1. The harder the difficulty, the more fun it was.

      -I actually find Crysis 2 actually EASIER than the first on the same difficulties settings.”

      – Agreed Crysis 2 is much easier than Crysis or Crysis Warhead.

      “2. Sandbox battlefields: During the single player campaign I salivated every time I was notified “tactical options available.” The maps were large enough to give options, yet small enough to keep focus.

      -Sandbox? Lol. Crysis 2 is way more linear compared to the first. In fact just play games like CoD, HALO, etc. thats what I meant. It feels way more restricted thats anything but sanbox about it.”

      – It IS more linear however you really have to play the game twice to appreciate the choices you really have, for example, Lab Rat is quite possibly the best level in Crysis 2. It is very open and I can play that level alone for hours. There are other open levels but Lab Rat is the most note worthy.

      “3. Size and scale: Bigger is better in Crysis 2. The sense of visual scale in the game was very impressive. I often myself only half listening to dialogue while I took in the sights of each level.

      -If anything the “visual” was actually a downgrade in terms of environment. Somethings like debris was defiantly improved but many it kind of lack the large scale environment of the first. However if you notice the shadows in this game is even worst than in one, look closely you find many objects lacking even proper shadow.”

      I really must disagree here. Don’t get me wrong, Crysis looked much better but it’s main weakness (in graphics) was its lighting and Crysis 2 has vastly improved on that, even on the lowest settings. Turn it up to “Extreme Settings” and the lighting and shading is much better than the original’s.

      Weaknesses

      “2. Story: As far as shooters go, it was decent, but I hope Crysis 3 focuses more on making a good story and developing some characters. I feel that a good game is made up of a combination of 1. solid game-play (stability, mechanics, variety, etc), 2. graphics (stability, art direction, etc), and 3. story (characters, plot, etc). I think Crysis 2 lacked the latter.

      -Crysis 2 story was defiantly inferior to Crysis 1. Hands down, seriously uncontrollable outbreak in a populated city? now how many media and games already have that?”

      – Crysis 2’s story is far superior than that of Crysis’. You made a point about it being cliched and it being done before. Same with the original’s and to a much greater degree, Despite it being entertaining it was a mediocre story, Crysis 2’s story is actually good and does something new which is hard since almost anything has been done now days.

      “3. Vehicles: If Crysis 2 had the effortless vehicle combat like Halo or Battlefield it would be hard to beat. The current vehicle offerings are a good start, but I would love to see it expanded upon, especially in multiplayer.

      -Rofl. You can’t compare Crysis games to Battlefield or even HALO. Vehicles are not the main focus whatever in SP or MP. You won’t be seeing players piloting battleships or attack helos to decimate enemy positions. It’s more to using your uber nanosuit and trounce people with your physical and mechanical weaponry.”

      – Have you not played Crysis’ multilayer? on the larger maps that’s EXACTLY what people did, I would always jump into a vtol or heli to destroy tanks or flush people out of bunkers, Vehicles also play an integral part to the single player. This statement has lead me to believe you might never have actually played the game. Of course Crysis is about the Nano suit but vehicles were an import aspect of Crysis, not so much Crysis 2.

      To the author of this article, How can you place story last? Gameplay and tech can bring a game a very long way, Crysis showed us that, It is my second favorite game, second only to Half-Life 2 because ValvE showed us the most amazing combonation of all three aspects, but mainly story.

  • Tom

    WHy bother mentioning the first game? The 1st game was basically a graphics whore, though I highly enjoyed the campaign, but I found that this game gave you more options… in the 2nd one, stealth wasn’t much of an option to be honest. It was more you want to grab dudes and throw em, shoot em w/ armor on? or do a sneaky sneaky, then do all of the above. The game was fantastic, while offering Crysis Fans 2 different kinds of games in the same series. I hope the next offers something just as spectactular.

    I played the first, beautiful game, but with nothing but grass to look at, the textures are nice, but the same sun at the end of the ocean view scene got repititive, and I love the new aliens. The first ones didn’t feel dangerous… except the big ones, but those took 2-3 gauss shots anyway, and the big boss fight at the end was the toughest boss. Cry 2 was easier! probably because stealth was finally useful. Though, a person looking for a tough fight would set rules for himself to not take advantage of AI. Or just the fact, that the Suit really is the perfect hit and run weapon.

  • MAXIMALIS

    WHy bother mentioning the first game? The 1st game was basically a graphics whore,

    -Crysis IS a graphic whore, thats pretty sums up the whole point of Crytek’s games including FarCry (the first one) which was also a graphic whore whore during it’s time. The fact the devs keep ‘advertising’ how much awesome the graphics is compared to the first with the new CryEngine 3 was really misleading. In fact the new engine kinda feels more of a step backwards.

    in the 2nd one, stealth wasn’t much of an option to be honest. It was more you want to grab dudes and throw em, shoot em w/ armor on? or do a sneaky sneaky, then do all of the above. The game was fantastic, while offering Crysis Fans 2 different kinds of games in the same series. I hope the next offers something just as spectactular.

    -If you are referring to stealth, pretty much both the first and second overused it. In fact, you could blaze a trail of bloody massacre “Predator style” and barely take any hits as long as you plan your approach properly.

    I played the first, beautiful game, but with nothing but grass to look at, the textures are nice, but the same sun at the end of the ocean view scene got repititive, and I love the new aliens. The first ones didn’t feel dangerous… except the big ones, but those took 2-3 gauss shots anyway, and the big boss fight at the end was the toughest boss.

    -If you like to put it that way the same thing can be said for Crysis 2 where all you see is urban wreckage, concrete and more concrete. Once playing for 2 hours through you pretty much get the whole idea where the game environment is going. And the alien enemies in Crysis 1 was a joke (except the last boss). The korean’s soldiers and attack helios was a much bigger threat throughout most of the game.

    Cry 2 was easier! probably because stealth was finally useful. Though, a person looking for a tough fight would set rules for himself to not take advantage of AI. Or just the fact, that the Suit really is the perfect hit and run weapon.

    -The stealth in the first game was also VERY useful, sure you go all gun blazing but once you mastered using clocking and hiding behind cover you more than likely gets things done faster and more efficient. The stealth in 2 was bit more simplified I can say. The AI is more easily exploited in this game due to the urban environment which drastically limits the AI’s patchfinding and engagements abilities and being able to upgrade your nano tech doesn’t help much in providing a better challenge either way.

  • Dudbe

    CRYSIS had a lot of material the sequel could have improved upon but had fail miserably:

    Diversity of Weapons (like the MOAC, TAC Launcher, MiniGun and Gauss Rifle).
    Power struggle Mode (The Best multiplayer mode available on the original providing domination based tactical gameplay with an emphasis on vehicles, abnormal weaponry and terrain altering power),
    The Story (the story from the sequent iteration was horrible, having few if any redeeming qualities),
    The voice acting (if you can call it that( was abhorrent and just tossed in without any work, Explaining why the aliens were different from the original Crysis (were they a different caste of a social hierarchy?)
    Where was Nomad and Psycho, what happened on Lang Island.
    The graphics have been proven to be of a lower quality than that of the original Crysis, but really there is nothing more to be said.

    As a game it stands at a 8.7 – (9.1)
    As a sequel it stands at a 4.3

  • Tracy

    Gameplay wise it’s average at best, much like the first one.

  • ChanKana

    maximum port.

  • Thundercast

    A fun game. I’ve always focused on the plot in a game, so crysis 2 disappointed me for a very particular reason : you can feel, when playing, that the game had a huge potential. However, there are sooooooooooo many plotholes that it ruined the story… :-(
    (btw lol at people who think the scenario is impressing, play Mass Effect, then you’ll be able to say you know impressing plots in FPS, cause Mass Effect is way more an FPS than a RPG imo, and you can even compare its plot to crysis 2’s. Crysis 2’s plot, as said, could have been really good, but the plot holes only left the usual clichés “omagad aliens attack us, like in 35932 other games/films without any particularity”)

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