Just Makes Me Wanna Crysis 2
What’s so funny about peace, love and understanding? Oh, you’ve shot me in the face.
I really, really enjoyed Crysis 2. Now let me tell you everything that was wrong with it.
Obviously, the complete lack of graphics options was a glove-slap to the rosy cheeks of the PC gamers who basically funded this whole thing. Which is a shame, because even running at full whack, the game runs like a dream. And not just any dream, but a really finely-optimised dream that’s been configured to work splendidly for PC. It’s a beautiful game, no doubts there, and not just in terms of sheer pixel-pushing horespower – as much as they try to hide it by setting it in GRIMY NEW YORK STREETS, there are some really strong images in here: the severed arm of Lady Liberty holding her torch up to the crumpled cityscape at just the right angle to catch the sun’s defiant rays as you charge into another assault, or the bus flying over your head as you grip desperately to the girders of a toppling bridge tilting to reveal a terrified lady still caught inside. And even beyond those little momentary sights that stick with you, the game renders citywide destruction in a way that’s impressive both in scale and fidelity; sure, there are the obvious moments where enormous skyscrapers are reduced to so much rubble and smoke plumes, but there’s also the way stone pillars crumble and fragment during firefights, or the way photocopiers inevitably end up furiously spitting paper every which way, or the sight of dead drivers left to rot in the mangled wrecks along the streets.
(It’s almost tragic to hide the game’s sheen beneath my infuriatingly constant Photoshop filtering nonsense, so click any of the images in this post to see them in all their glory.)
(Also, despite the game’s lack of graphics options being summarily fixed by the tremendously helpful tool Wasdie designed, the v1.8 patch for Crysis 2 that just went live today has seemingly nerfed the tool’s effects (most noticeably evidenced by the return of those TIMEWASTING COMPANY LOGO VIDEOS that EVERY VIDEO GAME INSISTS ON MAKING UNSKIPPABLE YOU UNSALVAGEABLE TURDS, which I had previously disabled using Wasdie’s program). This wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the fact that the advanced graphics options that the patch introduced into the game’s menus, where they should have been all along, are far less in-depth than Wasdie’s tool, and therefore still comparatively useless. WHAT A WORLD. (They did put in an option to toggle crouch though, so it’s not all bad.) (Actually, while I’m on a brackety tangent, why doesn’t the game have a “prone” position, like what its prequels did? The contextual cover system is all well and good, but sometimes, you just wanna bellycrawl.)
Narratively, the game is a mess in more ways than you really want to consider. Never mind the clear telegraphing of villainy or the nonsense of the Ceph technology pulling the Earth’s crust apart or any of that – the real problem is that the game has about fourteen different climaxes.
“Aha! I’ve eliminated the virus! Now to finish off the evil army guy who’s hunting me.”
“Ha! I’ve finally killed the evil army guy who was hunting me. Oh, there’s more.”
“Ha! I’ve finally tracked down the villainous mastermind who’s been deceiving me. Oh, there’s more.”
“Ha! I’ve blown his building sky high and successfully escaped! Oh, wait. More.”
“Yes, okay, finally. Done. Buhhhh.”
And the worst part is that the EVENTUAL ending is a complete damp squib. Which would be understandable in the usual “Well, they’re technicians, not writers” kind of way if Crytek hadn’t made a song and dance about hiring Richard Morgan, an (apparently) famous sci-fi author, to write the story. YOU ARE ALL INCOMPETENT.
But the important part was the shooting was fun. I’ll detail the good stuff tomorry.