Crysis • Page 3

World exclusive Crytek studio tour - complete with multiplayer.

FNG or two-tour sarge?

If we're talking about issues, there may be one of length. There are 11 levels in single-player Crysis, and each can be completed in around 45 minutes.

"It really depends on how much time you want to spend with the game," says Huebeler. "We don't hold the player up too much. You have to fight your way through and if you'd like to run through it you can do it in 45 minutes. But you can also spend a lot of time exploring and trying out different tactics."

Apparently in focus tests, many players spent up to two hours on individual missions. This isn't hard to believe considering just how wide-ranging each environment is, how many options you have for side missions and how much room there is to experiment with different routes and strategies.

Length and lag aside, though, the big question is whether or not Crysis will bring anything genuinely new to the FPS genre. The unsurprising answer, according to art director Michael Khaimzon, is yes.

"First of all, there are the production values - I don't think Crysis is comparable to any game out there right now. I don't think people realise how much insane, crazy work it is to make a game at this level.

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"People might think we just throw objects in. Every object on this island has a purpose. It takes time for designers to place and think where it has to be, how the eye has to work with it. It's a huge amount of work."

But he's keen to point out that it's not just about stunning effects and detailed environments. "The gameplay is pretty cool. People loved Far Cry for what it was. Now we've taken Far Cry and added more to it, like the possibility for players to play how they want to play - stealthy, fast - and more tools to do that."

Despite the advances, though, Crysis isn't without its clichés. Characters include a shouting Afro American chief and a British thug type who responds to orders with, "Bollocks". The first mission sees you rescuing a woman wearing a vest smaller than something Lara wears when she wants to look slutty. And everyone says things like, "The whole mountain is encased in some kind of energy sphere" with noteworthy regularity.

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The review may find Crysis failing to push boundaries too hard when it comes to plot, characterisation or basic gameplay mechanics, but that there are truthfully innovative features, namely the nano suit and the Power Struggle mode. Whatever the final verdict, there's no denying that Crysis's biggest differentiating element is the fact that it looks brilliant - even, as we found out in Frankfurt, if you don't have the very latest technology to play it on.

Cervat Yerli agrees. "I would even say some DirectX 10 games out there won't look as good as ours running DirectX 9. Or as a competitor friend said, "Crysis will be the zenith of graphics for probably the next two or three years.' It's not me saying it: it's another guy saying it."

He won't provide a name. But whoever it was could just be right.

The Crytek visit will appear in the next episode of the Eurogamer TV Show, including interviews, tons more direct feed footage and plenty more. Stay tuned, Johnny fans.

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