When Crysis is mentioned, most gamers associate the name with fantastic graphics and a story that is seldom referred to as good. While a good amount of gamers have yet to dive into the Crytek-developed, EA-produced installments of the Crysis franchise, Crysis 3 is begging to be played. Many are familiar with the famed visuals and how beautiful the series is. The third installment of the series does not disappoint in that category–even with high expectations. Given the amazing visuals, wonderful audio and outstanding gameplay, along with a pretty polished online multiplayer, Crysis 3 proves to be an amazing game.
Crysis is a series about the discovery of ancient alien artifacts around the world that lead to a hostile alien takeover. Players do battle with aliens, known as Ceph, and militants known as CELL. Gamers take on the role of one of the privileged individuals wearing a Nanosuit; a suit that enhances the user’s physical attributes, along with giving them a Cloak for invisibility and Maximum Armor option to assist the user in sneaking around and remain protected in the most hostile of scenarios. The suit is the ultimate weapon, but the cost of wielding such power comes at the expense of wearing the suit essentially on a permanent basis.
Two games into the Crysis universe, the crap is finally hitting the fan in Crysis 3. Prophet has been shown visions by the Alpha-Ceph that foretell human extinction and his failure to save mankind. In Crysis 2, the Ceph spread a disease that was meant to exterminate the humans, but Alcatraz (the central character in Crysis 2 who assumes the identity of Prophet) foils the plan by turning the virus against the Ceph, leaving mankind to believe they are extinct.
The story is engaging and solid. Prophet actually talks, as opposed to Alcatraz, who does not say a word the entire game. This might seem like a small addition but in playing the game, it is realized how much weight the words of a main character can have. Prophet’s constant babbling about the Alpha-Ceph and his visions help the player to understand the character’s motives.
Are graphics really even a question when it comes to Crysis 3? The game is “Achieved with CryEngine 3,” which jumps into the discussion of which is the most beautiful and fluent game engine to date. The most obvious and noticeable aspect of the Crysis 3 environment is how plants blow in the wind and move as the player passes through even when cloaked. Life-like deer and flocks of birds roam the city. The player and enemy AI not only cast shadows, but react to shadows. Even with buildings half destroyed, the level of realism “achieved with CryEngine 3″ is just as good, if not better, than any other first-person shooter (FPS). Simply put, Crysis 3 is a visual spectacle.
Not only are the weapon sounds clear, crisp and true, but enemy movement and dialogue can be very noticeable and useful. Enemies tend to express themselves about their plans or fear of Prophet, often exposing to players the level of danger involved. This opens the door for gamers to choose which tactic they want to use to complete the level. With so many enemies armored or cloaked online, hearing the loud thud of heavy footsteps or hearing noises from a seemingly empty corner can be quite beneficial. The sound is not always helpful, however. In online matches and single player missions, the sound of a waterfall or streaming water will hinder the player’s ability to hear enemy footsteps.
The journey of Prophet in Crysis 3 is only about five to seven hours (depending on the players strategy). However, it is an epic journey featuring VTOL fights, gun battles, a bow with some nifty arrows, ample interactivity within the environment and plenty of aliens and explosions to keep the audience entertained.
Unlike most FPS titles, Crysis 3 is not a game that relies heavily on story. Plain and simple, Crysis 3 is just fun FPS action. Not only can a gamer stalk an enemy and hunt them down while cloaked, the player has the alternate option of kicking a car off a ledge at a group of enemies before jumping down and firing off a .50 caliber round while taking minimal damage due to the fact that they are using Maximum Armor.
A great aspect of the gameplay in Crysis 3 is that the player can seamlessly implement these tactics into online game modes. Imagine having a gunfight on a dock and, while shooting the enemy, a player jumps into the water and turns on their cloak. When the enemy follows, the player then sneaks up and gives a stealthy melee attack that leaves the enemy dead in the water. Not only did this actually happen during an online Team Deathmatch battle, but there are ample ways for the player to beneficially manipulate the suit and environment. Features like this can hinder other FPS titles in online gameplay and would cause lag in most cases, but that was not experienced with Crysis 3. Online fluidity is smooth, and players will not have to spend much time in lobbies. It could be the fact that Crysis is not as popular as Call of Duty and other shooters, so servers are not under as much stress. Regardless, the online play is smooth.
The online offers a number or modes, from standard modes like Deathmatch to special modes like Hunter. Hunter is essentially the equivalent of Infection in Halo, except the game is built around the crossbow and Nanosuit features. A group of players start as CELL operatives and turn into Hunters, who are Nanosuited players equipped with a crossbow, upon being killed. In all online game modes, players are given an overview of the map, the top scoring players over the last five matches, perks and kill streak awards as the map loads. Weapons are limited in number but the player has access to a significant amount if weapon types. Weapons include arrows, firearms, grenades, kickable cars and other items that can be swung or thrown. What most players will find to be extremely convenient is the fact that the player can customize their weapon attachments in-game, without changing their load-out or pausing the game. This feature is unprecedented and simply amazing. Add in the fact that a score is kept for personal battles between each player and plays highlights of the players top four kills in the match upon completion of said match.
Crysis 3 on PlayStation 3 is pretty amazing. Fans of the genre will certainly want to experience Crysis. The presentation is unmatched, especially in the FPS community, and key improvements to the story make Crysis 3 a breakout FPS title.