The Good: Amazing technical feat, nano suit is awesome, on-the-fly weapon customization is very useful, huge open world, changes pace throughout the game, lots of weapons
The Bad: Very difficult, a bit on the short side, feels like it's missing something
The biggest hype behind Crysis was it's looks. Very few people have the hardware to run the game like it should be: All settings to very high and using DirectX 10, and I am one of the lucky few to have the hardware setup to do so. While most people can run this on ultra settings you won't find too many who can run it above 30 FPS. My setup was able to handle most of the game at above 20 FPS but did dip into the single digits every once in awhile. With that aside Crysis is just stunning even three years later. Every texture is high res and even when looking at something u close you can see all the detail in that texture and not just a blurry or pixelated mess. All the lighting is gorgeous and the physics seem almost real thank to the super advanced Crytek engine and DirectX 10. Everything in the game just look amazing: Every blade of grass sways, trees crumble under fire, leaves on palm trees shear off when fired at. Throughout the whole game you will never get sick of looking at this tropical technical feat.
Now a game can look as good as it wants, but it's no use if the game doesn't play well, and have a good story?. You play as a Special Forces agent called Nomad, and are sent in with a team to investigate an island that the Koreans have occupied. It gets interesting right from the beginning, and stays interesting throughout.
Thankfully Crysis is a solid shooter with some elements that other FPS games have never used before and the biggest thing is the Nano Suit. This thing lets you choose between four different modes to help you out on the battlefield. Stealth turns you invisible for an amount of time. The faster you move the more energy it depletes. Armor...well is pretty self explanitory, and speed gives you a super boost that lets you dash dozens of yards in a matter of seconds, for a few seconds. Lastly strength lets you throw enemies, and melee them to make them fly as well as extra height when jumping. All these are crucial to surviving in this hard and wide open game.
Yeah that's right it's not linear. Surprised? Well with so many linear FPS games out there *cough Halo cough* it's a nice change. The island is huge and wide open and you can take different approaches to each situation. Most of the time you have to infiltrate Korean KPA camps and using stealth along with silenced weapons is a good start. Or you can go in guns blazing. If you prefer the back door approach maybe you can get there by truck or swim across the lake and take them all by surprise. The multi-approach system is useful, but stealth may not always be the best choice, and some times you don't get one.
That brings me to the next element of customizing your weapons on the fly. Have a sub-machine gun and can get an accurate shot? Attach a silencer, and a sniper scope, and set it to single shot and pop off some guys before charging in. Once inside attach a red dot sight, and add an ACOG scope to the top and even a grenade launcher. Being able to change one weapon to another on the fly is just awesome and really does help in every situation. This breaks the monotony of trying to find a gun for specific situations.
The game's pacing takes a turn half way through the game when you start fighting aliens. Of course this makes the game more interesting and is almost like two games in one, and takes a more linear turn. Instead of infiltrating KPA camps your fighting alongside squad mates against aliens. This is fun and I wish shooters would do stuff like this more often. It breaks up the monotony of the open jungle and kicks things up a notch.
Every element in the game works, but of course everything could be better, and that's why Crysis 2 is coming out. My biggest gripe with the game is the difficulty. Even on easy the game is brutal and seems unfair at times such as vehicles blowing up really fast, and having 30+ guys come after you, and not being able to use stealth to get into a camp. This can drive you nuts, but the story is good enough for you to keep coming back for more. If you have the PC power Crysis is a must have.