Crysis 2 screenshot
Crysis 2 screenshot

The basics haven't changed much from Crysis or its superior expansion Warhead, with a 19 level campaign (clocking in at between 8-10 hours) revolving around you juggling armour and cloaking modes in your spangly supersuit while resting behind jutting points of cover to recharge your battery. The Nanosuit 2.0, as it's called, has about 20-30 seconds of juice in it before conking out, which puts it in roughly the same ballpark as the 3DS.

Whereas Crysis allowed you further strength and speed modes, these two have now been folded into the regular control scheme and can be toggled alongside armour and cloak provided you've got enough juice. Speed is mapped to a traditional sprint command, and strength can be used to stabilise crosshairs or charge up throws and melee attacks, which means you can wait in the darkness and then kill aliens by lobbing bins at their heads. Don't pretend you won't.

Aiming feels light and delicate, as if Alcatraz can't quite control the little motions with his superpowers. I often found myself forced to rely on the snap-to aiming, which requires a surrendering of player control that I'm not entirely comfortable with. Guns, meanwhile, come with fancy names - such as Scarab, Jackal and Grendel - but assume those ever-familiar roles of shotgun, SMG and assault rifle, though near the end of the game you acquire a microwave gun that causes alien heads to pop into visually resplendent goop. Sound work is particularly well done, too, with each weapon throwing out deep and bassy rattles to go alongside the thunderous background music. While the guns might be a little difficult to point at the enemy, then, they certainly sound good when they go off.

Fighting in the city gives you a comforting arrangement of angular geometry alongside the bevy of set-pieces, with your traversal of wide open spaces punctuated by scrappy skirmishes against both human and alien foes. Shrewd play is required, as spray-and-pray firing will usually just send you back to the last checkpoint. The game quickly makes it clear that you've been given the ability to cloak for a reason, so it's a case of picking your battles wisely.

A tactical display is available, its usage repeatedly encouraged by the game, which highlights nearby areas of interest such as good flanking opportunities, nearby weapons, and ammo caches. The general rhythms of play have you stopping every few minutes to observe your surroundings, usually when cloaked which, yes, makes you feel a bit like the Predator. This is a game big enough to get lost in, and once the frustration subsides from spending five minutes fumbling around for the right door you're hit with an aftertaste of liberation when compared to the usual corridor funnels of its shooter contemporaries.

Crysis 2 screenshot

As you progress you'll be able to upgrade weapons with attachments, and also the Nanosuit itself, the latter accomplished by hoovering up magical space dust from fallen alien bodies. The main failing with this, however, is that the game's economy ensures there's not enough to fully upgrade the suit in a single playthrough and you're left desperately shooting your way across the city, like a junkie looking for a fix, as opposed to considering the more tactful approach in any given ordeal.

The Ceph themselves are more standard enemies in their new bipedal iteration, modelled on Terminators rather than those squid things from the Matrix. This, thankfully, allows Crytek to avoid the awkward change in pace which plagued Far Cry and Crysis; the bits where the human enemies get removed and replaced with fiddlier, more frustrating monsters. In a nice twist you also return to a level stocked with human enemies near the end of Crysis 2, after fighting Ceph for a good few hours, and in your upgraded form you satisfyingly tear through them like the useless meat puppets they are.

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Highest Rated Comment

squidman's Avatar

squidman@ EMS70

I understand your concern but allow me to put it to rest. KZ2 was the exception rather than the rule, and after our reviewer came away from an extraordinarily brief review event held by Sony he felt like he was unable to sufficiently judge the game's online portion.

I didn't have that same experience with Crysis 2, though I'll admit online games were certainly tricky to put together. As is always the case with multiplayer components there's so much left to time that we're unable to account for - whether the community will be active, whether it'll be supported by the developer, whether somebody will find a hack and destroy the experience etc - but I think the framework put in place is solid and I'm certainly looking forward to playing more in the coming weeks.

I can also assure you we review our games with the utmost respect and that we do hold our reviews to the same standard, which is exactly why our review of KZ3 was delayed.
Posted 21:58 on 22 March 2011

User Comments

pblive's Avatar

pblive

£22 now at Gamestation and Game
Posted 10:04 on 13 May 2011
Maxxgold's Avatar

Maxxgold

Great review. Awesome game. Finally a game site that knows how to review games.
Posted 21:59 on 19 April 2011
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Screw it, I'm buying it despite the fact I know it'll be £20 soon. I wanna see what all the hype is about :)
Posted 22:22 on 28 March 2011
RecoN's Avatar

RecoN

Guys i have been playing the pc version this morning, and can confirm the graphics are breathtaking through the introduction. Although and can't seem to activate SLI on my latest driver.
Don't hold back though because my frame rate is holding very smoothly indeed, even when i'm in an intense battles.

Any pc gamer holding back because of the worrys about their pc holding up to the job. Try the demo or just buy the game because Crytek really have learned from Crysis 1 :)
Posted 08:52 on 25 March 2011
draytone's Avatar

draytone

I was sitting on the fence, waiting for the reviews to come out before I decided on whether or not to pick it up. Definitely looks better then Homefront.
Posted 10:00 on 24 March 2011
TomPearson's Avatar

TomPearson

I agree with the review. However, if you are as concerned as me about frame rates in games, then probs best to pick up the PC version, where it will have the potential to run as good as your computer can give. That game is a beast!
Posted 15:40 on 23 March 2011
clangod's Avatar

clangod

I was never too fussed on Crysis 2 having not played the first but I can't help but feel based on the video I've seen thus far that Crysis 2 is one of those floaty FPS's where your character doesn't appear to have much (if any) weight. It's almost as if when jumping from one piece of scenery to another, the portion of the jump where you are airborne looks like it slows down a fraction. It's a bit of a contrast to the animation when you actually hit the ground though, as the force, speed and weight of the impact don't quite match the animation... Maybe it's just me.

Apart from that it looks great on PC. PS3 is apparently meant to suffer on the console side but hopefully it is a case of "if you look hard enough for faults you're bound to find them".

I am at least interested to give it a go after suffering through part of Black Ops and having no interest in Homefront. I know that the weightless feel of the game will turn me off if my suspicions are correct but as a Crysis virgin, I may be able to sit with it for long enough to get over the floaty feel.

8 - 10 hours is a bonus for the SP. I wouldn't consider getting this with multiplayer in mind so if anything it'll be for the campaign. At the moment I don't own KZ3 either so there will be some consideration needed when and if I have to choose.
Posted 05:47 on 23 March 2011
p0rtalthinker's Avatar

p0rtalthinker

B-b-b-but Martin, I can't afford all these games coming out! First Assassin's Creed Brotherhood was released today, now this. How will I go about my day? HOW?!

I'm super stoked to pick this up, whenever that may be. I'm looking forward to kicking some alien butt in style ;). Just a few questions I have though: Any particular reason for it not getting a ten, cause it sounded like you didn't have any qualms at all (save for the aiming, which, really, you should just have picked up the PC version)?

Save for that, is Nomad (the character you played in the original) anywhere in the game, or is he at least mentioned at all? I find it funny there hasn't been any info on him at all...
Posted 23:03 on 22 March 2011
squidman's Avatar

squidman@ EMS70

I understand your concern but allow me to put it to rest. KZ2 was the exception rather than the rule, and after our reviewer came away from an extraordinarily brief review event held by Sony he felt like he was unable to sufficiently judge the game's online portion.

I didn't have that same experience with Crysis 2, though I'll admit online games were certainly tricky to put together. As is always the case with multiplayer components there's so much left to time that we're unable to account for - whether the community will be active, whether it'll be supported by the developer, whether somebody will find a hack and destroy the experience etc - but I think the framework put in place is solid and I'm certainly looking forward to playing more in the coming weeks.

I can also assure you we review our games with the utmost respect and that we do hold our reviews to the same standard, which is exactly why our review of KZ3 was delayed.
Posted 21:58 on 22 March 2011
EMS70's Avatar

EMS70

Hmmm...So KZ3 has to wait a week in order to get a multiplayer review, but you were able to sink in enough time with Crysis in 1 day? How many hours could you have played? Just think that games in the same genre should be reviewed equally.
Posted 18:11 on 22 March 2011
pilofight's Avatar

pilofight

yes!!...i bought it on amazon and i was not sure how would it hold up....thanks mein
Posted 18:04 on 22 March 2011
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Really didn't expect it to get such a high score, but considering it did, I'm definitely considering picking it up.
Posted 17:25 on 22 March 2011
Gollum_85's Avatar

Gollum_85

Well this is a nice surprise. 8-10 hours is above average for an FPS single-player. This has just jumped ahead of Killzone 3 in the queue!
Posted 17:04 on 22 March 2011
Neon-Soldier32's Avatar

Neon-Soldier32

Just a few questions: What were the main draw backs from it getting a 10, as I couldn't find anything negativewithin your review. Have you had any chance to compare to the PC version and if so, is there a significant different between the console / PC verions. And finally, the Tomb Raider Trilogy is out this week: Do you think that, that is as good to the point that I should pick it up over this?

Good review though.
Posted 16:47 on 22 March 2011
EverTheOptimist's Avatar

EverTheOptimist

I'm sure the PC version, if you have a top-end PC, is far, far more beautiful than the 360 one, so I'm sitting it out until I see the game first-hand I reckon.
Posted 16:37 on 22 March 2011

Game Stats

System Requirements
9
Out of 10
Crysis 2
  • Nanosuit is fun to use
  • Unlike its contemporaries
  • Technically impressive
  • Killing enemies for upgrades gets old
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 25/03/2011
Platforms: PC , Xbox 360 , PS3
Developer: Crytek
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: First Person Shooter
Rating: PEGI 18+
Site Rank: 305 20
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