It’s no secret that the shooter market is more than a little crowded. With the big players churning out blockbusters like Call of Duty, Battlefield and Halo in the last year it’s hard to make room for a new face in the shooter pond.
One way to get your foot in the door is to build a game that borrows liberally from games that have established a winning formula. But aping the a successful game franchise can backfire, take Techmo’s Quantum Theory. It’s basically Gears of War, it’s got big guys with big guns running from cover to cover, growling and acting tough. Unfortunately, few people were impressed.
So I was a little conflicted when I heard the developers of Crysis 2 making some big claims about the next installment of their eye melting, system punishing shooter series. But today I got a chance to try out the multiplayer with a free demo for Xbox live gold subscribers.
Crysis 1 was a PC only game with many claiming it’s graphics couldn’t be recreated on a console. But with it’s sequel going multiplatform I can confirm that the sequel lives up to the original’s benchmark for graphics quality. I can also attest to how shamelessly it’s borrows from the tried and true multiplayer formulas of Halo and Call of Duty.
But first, the good things. Like I said, this game looks amazing, the guns have a good weight and feel to them, they don’t bounce around like in Medal of Honor or DICE’s other shooter Battlefield: Bad Company 2 and aren’t as static and floating as Halo or Call of Duty’s. The fiction of the game also gives purpose to the perks and game play quirks. The soldiers walk around in futuristic Nano Suits that let the players move faster, jump higher and even harden your armor or go invisible.
Those all sound like the armor abilities from Halo Reach right? Well, ya, it does all fit into the fiction, it’s hard not to notice the similarities. It gets even harder when you start playing. It’s a mix of the control scheme from Call of Duty (I literally didn’t have to look at the controls. Want to run? Click the left control stick. What to melee? click the right tumbstick) and the medal system of Bad Company. That doesn’t even mention the perks, gun customization, and kill streaks.
But that also means it’s fun as hell. There is a bit of an issue with the sluggishness of the controls, but that might just be from lag. either way Crysis 2 looks like it could set the benchmark for graphics on consoles. It’s just won’t revolutionize the multiplayer formula.