Despite an obvious campaign to breathe new meaning into the term ‘Triple A’, Crytek
’s Rasmus assured us that the hands-off demo we sat through was a decidedly early build.
So early in fact they hadn’t decided if the Composite Bow, featured so prominently on the box art, would constitute a permanent fixture in our arsenal. Nor had they determined the size or range of carried weaponry. And for those of you who see the Nanosuit as the definitive CQC weapon (invisible, super fast, incredibly durable and extremely strong armour would end a scrap right quick!) sadly the power melee system has yet to be finalised.
So early was this build, you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for last spring’s (admittedly gorgeous) Crysis 2.
Yes, it’s still running on Cry Engine 3
and certainly, the frame rate offers the glorious sheen of super crisp imagery sliding by. But bar a few environmental and gameplay enhancements, this could have been a Crysis 2
But, in case I’ve yet to labour this point, it was AN EARLY BUILD. And Crytek
still have a year to melt our faces and scramble our brains.
Set in the New York Biodome of 2047, players once again inhabit Prophet as he hunts down Ceph and Humans alike. The jungle aesthetic provokes fond memories of the originator. However Crytek
cleverly retained the vertical planes and scalable ruins of the sequel’s urban landscape.
This veritable wealth of vantage points obviously benefits the ‘Assess’ tenet.
BioDome makes it sound healthier than it actually is... Enlarge
Regarding adaptation, Prophet newest ingredient is a bow, which isn’t all that tasty in itself. But serve with super strength, invisibility and some sharpened arrows and you have a recipe for some stealthily impaled Ceph at fifty yards!
And that’s just delish!
On occasion, presumably for long range archery, an ‘arrow-cam’ triggers, tracing the projectile’s trajectory, normally into an enemy eye-socket. Couple this with some sneaky knife work, a selection of functional (and explosive) arrow heads, and the sensation more resembles The Avengers
' own Hawkeye than Crysis
’ beefy protagonist.
With but a few quarrels loosed, it became painfully apparent that the long, sneaky game might be the way to go in Crysis 3
Unfortunately, the awkward, uninspired tagging system has returned. And with a disappointing absence of new or improved ‘visor modes’, adaptation could depend on as much luck as skill.
have always had a firm grip on the notion of ‘Attack!’
No doubt due to story-related Nanosuit evolutions, Prophet can now employ Ceph weaponry, making for some colourful firefights/works. Fireworks which proceed to drip pink gloop from the resulting debris field.
The ability to hack and reprogramme certain turrets and emplacements or send foes hurtling through the air via a well placed uppercut mean Prophet is by no means bound to the shadows.
Full disclosure, despite the leaked reveal tumult, I was a tad underwhelmed by Crysis 3
. But following on so soon after its predecessor, I’d be amazed to find myself alone in my “Cloak Engaged” fatigue.
But on reflection, it’s an appealing package. Predictably, it looks astonishing but also boasts a crisp frame rate. The fresh, flora heavy sci-fi environs evoke joyous recollections of Enslaved
(and more-so its never-gonna-happen sequel) and best of all, the addition of augmented archery opens up a promising new direction for the series.
And for all my moaning, Crytek
still have the guts of another year to pull it out of the bag/biodome in time for Spring 2013!