Since EA‘s Crysis 2 was released on consoles, the popularity of the game has gone from strength to strength. The game offers a somewhat unique experience online with some brilliant modes that are genuinely quite different to each other. The Crysis 3 Beta is based on the online modes of Crash Site and Hunter, and gives us a glimpse of the potential of the game.
Upon loading up the demo, players are greeted to a nice introduction screen that screams the benefits of the Hunter’s weapons and skills. It’s a great insight into the upcoming action and sets the scene nicely for the encounter at hand.
Sadly, after the introduction has played there seems to be a few server issues. Over the days since launch, connecting to an actual game has been very hit or miss. Players either connect instantly, will constantly have server errors, or the system says it cannot find a game. Although it didn’t pose too much of a problem, the constant server errors could sometimes be irritating. Hopefully this will be rectified in the final release.
Crash Site sees alien drop-ships dropping pods randomly around the map while players from each team (distinguished by different uniforms) must capture a pod by staying next to it as long as they can and accumulate as many points as possible.
The Crash Site mode is really fun and exciting to play; it’s frantic and there’s always a huge fire-fight to be had. The only criticism for the game is that it can sometimes be quite hard to tell who is on your team and who is not. It may be a reflection of the individual’s online gaming skill, but it certainly did affect getting killed by members who you might think are on your side!
The Hunter mode is a very cool take on online game warfare. There are two teams consisting of Aliens and Marines. The Marines are the hunted and have to stay alive as long as possible, while the Aliens are the hunters and have to kill all enemies within a time limit.
A novel feature has players turning from a hunted upon death to the hunter. Of course, the Hunters and Hunted have different weapons and skills, so the Marine will just be a regular soldier, armed with weapon of choice and a special grenade that can find the Hunters. The Alien hunters have full invisibility, armor and a powerful crossbow that can kill in a single hit.
When playing the role of the Alien hunters, it really feels like being in the film Predator. Players will have a sense of power that comes over them that is unlike anything in any other game. However, that doesn’t make the game any easier, as the time limit in which to kill the Marines is very short; being on the hunt is required at all times.
All Crysis games have looked amazing and the online section of the upcoming Crysis 3 looks super impressive on the PS3. Both modes feature the Museum and Airport levels. They are well designed with plenty of hide-outs, routes, and diversity. Demolished buildings, burned-out aircraft, misty lakes and so much more can be found.
The graphical detail is very impressive. Landscapes and colors look realistic, animations are smooth, and the whole sense of a war-struck future was spot-on. Weapons looked good, were all useful, and they were fun to use in both online modes.
Normally, sound is a feature which is not as important in online multiplayer games. Crysis 3, though, has some of the best music heard, invoking a science fiction future and really fitting the action.
During the menu screens is a brilliantly composed tune that plays with a strong guitar-sounding instrument, synth keyboards, and a piano. In game, the music is just as effective and adds to the tension.
There are brilliant sound effects for weapons and a lot of speech in the game with soldiers yelling out. On a 5.1 surround system, bullets can be heard flying through the landscapes, and because of the detail in the sound, enemies are heard coming up from behind. This is the way sound should be done in games!
The Crysis 3 Beta looks very promising and gives a brilliant glimpse of what potentially could become one of this generation’s last great multiplayer games. The single player game, using the Crytek 3 engine, is no doubt going to look even better than the multiplayer option.
Overall, Crysis 3 is already a winner with some amazing gameplay and a great selection of weapons and perks. Crysis 3 is out Feb. 19 in the US , and definitely one to watch out for.