So here we are again -- The next generation shooter, or is it?
You don't even have to read this review, just know that if you have played Crysis 1, don't expect this one to be at least as good as original Crysis. It’s worse, almost as if Crytek was too overwhelmed by the success of Crysis and Crysis Warhead and then lost control of their minds in ecstasy, became insane and developed a sequel to the game. This is true! Or, is it?
Unlike the original Crysis, you don’t play an already physically and mentally advanced superhuman like qualities possessing soldiers from the Raptor team. You play as a 'toughed from will' Marine, Alcatraz.
The story begins, baahhh,, I had so much expectations from this one, but it disappointed me. I don’t even feel like writing a story. Anyways, the story begins with a short video clip showing the outbreak of a "Manhattan" virus which is so deadly, it has already claimed too many lives. A team of Marines is sent to the formerly gorgeous and always life-like New York city. Their mission is to evacuate a Crynet employee, Dr. Gould. He holds necessary information about suppressing the invading alien forces and he was the only one upon whom the mankind could rely.
Alcatraz remains quiet while his team members venture their wild guesses on what's happening. Suddenly, something big strikes their submarine and there is breakthrough of water quickly filling up the interior. The evacuation takes place and Alcatraz barely makes it to the surface. Then some aliens show up and start firing. Alcatraz ducks in the water and saves himself from the short alien invasion but drinks too much water and is left unconscious over the surface. In a short aftermath, it is concluded that all other team mates of his died, only he survived.
Prophet (remember him??) in a heroic way is taking down the aliens while Alcatraz is coming back to his conscious. Prophet takes him to a small hiding in a building. Alcatraz still doesn't know what’s happening around him. When he finally wakes up, he notices that he wearing the Nanosuit and that Prophet is lying dead nearby. In a short video clip that plays afterwards, Prophet says that he too was infected with the virus so he leaves his entire responsibility of dealing with the aliens upon Alcatraz.
Since Alcatraz is wearing Prophet's Nanosuit, he is still being recognized as Prophet by Gould who tries to communicate him. Alcatraz is given instructions to Alien tissue samples. When these samples are collected by the Nanosuit, it causes strange interferences. Alcatraz meets Gould finally in the lab. They learn that the Nanosuit is building up its immunes and defenses against the particular alien tissue. In a way, the suit was developing a cure for the Manhattan virus. CELL (Crynet Enforcement and Logical Logistics) forces ambush Gould and Alcatraz were examining the anti-body development in the Crytek base.
After holding both of them in captivity, CELL forces are overwhelmed by a massive bioweapon released by the Cephs (the alien invaders). Alcatraz is saved because of his Nanosuit which now was performing abnormally. It is then later restarted by Hargreave, the director of Crynet. He acknowledges that they have been using the Ceph technology to make the Nanosuit defensive against them. Hargreaves instructs Alcatraz to proceed to another spire to conduct experiment on him.
On his way, Alcatraz comes to know that the Manhattan virus was developed by the Ceph to clear the entire human race. The virus could liquefy the human tissue so that it can be later disposed of easily. When Alcatraz reaches the spire, he tests his Nanosuit but learns that his suit is not yet so much powerful for the experiment. Meanwhile, another team of Marines is instructed to drown the Ceph structure by damaging the city's internal flood barrier, as a result of which, Alcatraz is again left unconscious in the middle of the Madison Square Park.
Hargreaves later instructs Alcatraz to find a stabilizing agent in the bio-lab. Due to unforeseen consequences, the Marines and Alcatraz have to evacuate the Grand Central Terminal hastily. Alcatraz also meets one of his team mates which had survived the submarine invasion and Gould, who also escaped before the CELLs being overwhelmed by the Cephs. Alcatraz is now instructed to guard the Times Square where another gigantic alien spire rises. This time, he manages to enter the spire and interfere with the spores which would destroy the Ceph. In a resulting massive explosion it was concluded that all the biological warfare agent was removed.
Alcatraz makes his way to a Crynet complex where Hargraves wants Alcatraz to meet him. In his room, Hargreaves demands to take the Nanosuit himself so that he could finish the Ceph himself but the Nanosuit rejects its removal from Alcatraz. Alcatraz is then saved by Tara Strickland (daughter of Major Strickland from the original Crysis). She here was an undercover CIA operative and that she was the one who instructed the team of Marines (of Alcatraz) to carry out the evacuation of Gould in the first place. Hargreaves upgrades Alcatraz's Nanosuit and sets a count-down timer to self-destruct the complex. Alcatraz manages to escape while the Ceph launch an attack on the Roosevelt Island. Alcatraz rendezvous with Gould, Strickland and Chino (Alcatraz's Marine team mate).
In the final invasion of the Ceph, Alcatraz makes his way to the Central Park where he can see a giant Ceph core or something. He is able to enter the spire and cause a reprogramming in the bio-weapon of the Ceph to be used against the Ceph themselved. The results cause massive explosion in the Ceph themselves. Then there is a short cut scene which I am not going to mention here. It’s pretty good.
The story is an achievement I can say over the first Crysis. It’s good, long, healthy and there are a couple of surprises. The story gets interesting, that’s the best part. I would say it would have been even better if somehow Nomad and Psycho could also be a part of it, not as protagonists, but may be as supporting characters or even if they could pay some surprising visits. Talking about the environment, I would say it’s brutal. Although you don't get so much playability as would from the original Crysis, nonetheless, the maps and level designs are pretty good. The 'Urban Jungle' is just like Crytek promised.
The newer Nanosuit implementation is much more believable and better. In Crysis 2, Nanosuit 2.0 is used which Crytek claims is better than Nanosuit 1.0 (which was used in original Crysis). This time, instead of engaging one of the four modes, you can combine different modes and use them together. There are two main modes, and then there are two sub-modes that can be used together with the main mode. The two main modes are the cloak and armor mode. Engaging either of them will drain Nanosuit power gradually. Of course you turn them off when not required to use just the natural human mode. The sub-modes are the power sprint and the power jump that combine Maximum speed and Maximum strength respectively from the original Crysis. Just press and hold the sprint button to automatically engage the sprint mode. Press and hold the jump button to engage the power jump mode. Since the modes can be used with the two main modes, it is in fact better than Nanosuit 1.0. Moreover, you can also upgrade the Nanosuit so the modes drain lesser energy and utilize it more efficiently.
The AI is also improved. This time the aliens really pose threat and become some challenging competitors. The atmosphere is also excellent. You really get a sense of all the viral disease, gruesome liquefaction of tissues, enraging fights and pitiful turn of events. The atmosphere and the sounds portray an excellent modern alien invaded battlefield picture.
Now let's begin on downsides. You may have very well noticed that no matter how much I try to stay at the topic, I keep flying back to the original Crysis and end up comparing both of them. This is perhaps every Crysis player will do. I have given this game, chances enough to redeem itself as a failed attempt in a sequel in my opinion, but I am sorry, this game is just not as good as the original one. Please if you haven't looked at the way the aliens look in this one, do it, you will c*** your pants laughing. Then the graphics, they are ugly. Pathetic is the word I would use here. Time for a comparison again, all those who played Battlefield Bad Company 2, remember the graphics? They are in fact better than the graphics in Crysis 2. The blame goes entirely to the hectic and poor porting of the game to the PC platform since it was originally developed for consoles. Hell this game didn't even have DX11 or even DX10 support till the ninth patch! What Crytek did to redeem itself was then to launch a DX11 Ultra Hi-Res texture package which made the game even worse by dropping the already limited in numbers, fps. What Crytek did here, is worsen the graphics and increase the system requirements two-fold. This is just not fair and just not good.
I was so patiently waiting for this sequel and it completely managed to shatter my expectations. Then comes the horrible gameplay. I am sorry but I can't play a game if its gameplay is anything short of good. This has a horrible gameplay. I was literally playing this just for the sake of the nice story. And because of a below par gameplay, you just don’t get a satisfaction that you would get from a Call Of Duty or a Battlefield.
In the end, I would conclude that though this game was made on a very good story, it just managed to lose all the ingredients that could have made it much, much better. After reading this (as far as possible unbiased) review, you have two things to do for the good if you have not played original Crysis:
1. Play this game first, then play original Crysis.
2. Play only Crysis and read the story of Crysis 2, which I must say is much better explained in Wikipedia.
If you have played original Crysis before, here is one thing you can do:
1. Since the story of Crysis is a trilogy, play this game just hoping that Crysis 3 turns out to be much better than both of them.