Crysis has been to console gamers what the far east was to Renaissance Europe: A mystical far off entity that doesn’t really pertain to day to day life.  As was life in the far east at the time, it is quite the opposite to a PC gamer.  Everyone who has ever gotten a new video card or CPU has installed and fired up Crysis even if they hate the damn game. Incredible and groundbreaking graphics aside it was an excellent game back in 2007 – its expansion, Crysis Warhead, was no slouch either.  Crysis 2 is finally nearing release and console gamers will get to experience some of what the series has to offer – sans the large holes burned in your wallet after buying a new video card.

Crysis is the spiritual successor of Crytek’s first PC outing, Far Cry.  After loosing the Far Cry IP rights to the game’s publisher Ubisoft, the company set out to develop a new IP.  The resulting game became quite different from the Far Cry series.   The premise of Crysis revolves around a handful of special forces in multi-million dollar ‘nano suits’ on a secret mission to rescue stranded archeologists on an island controlled by the North Korean army.  Needless to say, things go awry, and you find yourself  spearheading the mission amidst some very peculiar goings-on. (read: aliens) The gameplay was quite open ended in the regard that you can proceed and complete your next objective in any way you please; unlike say, the Call of Duty series.  Your suit has different powers such as maximum strength, speed, armor and even invisibility.  These boosts to your abilities go a long way to tilt the scales in your favor when dealing with North Korean soldiers and eventually the aliens.  If was anything lacking about the game, it would have to be the said aliens.  The Matrix inspired aliens were fantastic adversaries no doubt; the trouble came with the fact that you don’t really fight any until the last third of the game.  Crysis 2 seems to fix this shortcoming by prominently featuring aliens as the main adversary.  All in all it was an excellent although not perfect game.

Changing the setting from a pacific island to the big apple New York City, Crysis 2 has the potential to be very different from its predecessor.  For better or for worse, both console and PC gamers won’t be getting the same experience as the original – I’d like to think that’s a good thing.  The market is bursting with other shooters so Crytek has to make Crysis 2 stand above the pack; if they can do that while maintaining the quality they are known for across all platforms, whether PC or console, then the Crysis series will get the attention it deserves.   The release is set for March and I will hopefully have a review shortly after .