Crysis Review (Xbox 360)

Earlier on in the year gamers had the chance to suit-up and whoop some serious butt in the nano-suit V2.0. The unfortunate situation, for console gamers, was that while we could play Crysis 2 we may not have had the chance to actually try out the first game in the series (the then PC only title, Crysis). Thankfully it did not detract much from the experience in the second game, but it possibly left folks wanting to experience, first hand, what happened on that island in the first game. Now we have that chance as Crytek and EA have released the original on both the Xbox 360 and PS3.

Crysis begins with yourself, Nomad, in the cargo bay of a plane listening in on a briefing before promptly jumping out of said plane and hurtling towards the island below. That’s about all I will say about the storyline and events that transpire as it is something that is secondary to the gameplay that Crysis boasts.

What you have in Crysis is a first person shooter with customisable weaponry combined with the facility of a suit that will allow you to access enhanced abilities at the tap of a button. Abilities that will allow you to: be somewhat resistant to an onslaught of gunfire and bullets; jump to the rooftop of a building or scale a hill; increase your movement speed in order to outrun your enemies; let you turn mostly invisible in order to sneak or evade sensitive areas. This proves to be quite fun in the beginning stages of the game as you have grand areas in which to test and experiment with your abilities and the environment and enemies that inhabit it.

For example, a car load of enemies and a mounted gunner could be speeding towards you. At this point you could simply hit your cloak button and move to the side and watch the confused pack wonder where you went as you take off to the objective ahead. Alternatively, you could jump right over the vehicle, hit your armour button before landing, turn around and shoot the fuel drum attached to the car – EXPLOSIONS! This is just one of many instances where you can utilise the unique abilities to an advantage, all in the name of fun and creativity. Combined with the many uses of your expensive suit is the capability to modify your weapons on the fly.

Most weapons that are acquired throughout Crysis will allow you attach scopes, silencers, flashlight and tactical mods and thereby give you options based on situation and gameplay style. Perhaps you like the idea of going in loud, alerting all soldiers to your positioning and then unleashing a tirade of grenade blasts (somewhat reminiscent of a small air-strike – fun!). Alternatively, scopes and silencers could be applied as you take the stealthy route (tension!). It is your choice and something that is admirable in an FPS, at least in the beginning half of the game.

I like to think of Crysis as a bit of a funnel; It’s quite wide up the top allowing you the freedom of pathing and choice, but as you get closer to the end it is extremely narrow. This isn’t really a bad thing either as at that point just before the long drop, the game will force you through set-piece, right up to the end. It is a fast paced, harrowing ride to the end, and quite memorable (at least for the short-term) as you will be pulled through situations quite different to what was experienced in the beginning.

Graphically speaking it isn’t the super rich experience that was had on the PC and personally I, and I am sure you, never expected it would be. However, it does deliver a great looking FPS, regardless, that would easily rival some of the better looking ones out there on the Xbox 360. Crytek have employed a new lighting system in the game and the effects are quite beautiful and noticed quite early on in the game when approaching a mission objective as dawn breaks. I did notice some strange shadowing effects at one point, but this was really a minor issue and more nitpicking then anything else.

For a downloadable title on the Xbox 360, Crysis provides a fun, single-player (no multiplayer mode), experience for those looking to explore the original title for the first time. I think it speaks highly of a game when you can play it (again) so many years down the track and still have a fun run-through at the gameplay level and Crysis (1) has it in spades.

Rating: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

About the Author

Dan co-hosts the Gameolio Podcast and handles the administration of the website. Occasional poster and frequent deleter with a strange love of the colour green.