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Crysis 3 Review (X360)

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating

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Crysis 3 Review (X360)
EA
Crysis 3 is a natural evolution of the series that melds the gameplay and locales of the first two Crysis titles, along with lots of stuff borrowed from the rest of the FPS genre, to create a thoroughly enjoyable experience. It also definitely helps that it still looks very, very pretty and stands right next to Crysis 2 as one of the best looking games on Xbox 360. We have all of the details on Crysis 3 right here.
Game Details

  • Publisher: EA
  • Developer: Crytek
  • ESRB Rating: “M" for Mature
  • Genre: First-Person-Shooter
  • Pros: Incredible graphics; satisfying shooting; nanosuit powers; great setting
  • Cons: Very easy; very short; dumb A.I.

Crysis 3 takes place many years after Crysis 2 and marks the return of Psycho and Prophet from previous games in the series. The game is once again set in New York City, but now the city is covered by a giant dome and has been turned into essentially a greenhouse that is filled with plants and animals, as well as feral Ceph aliens. The game revolves around Prophet having visions of the leader of the aliens, known as the Alpha Ceph, and his attempts to take it down. The story is actually halfway decent this time around, and the focus on the human relationships between Prophet, Psycho, and others is a lot more personal and relatable than some generic alien invasion story.

Unlike Crysis 2, however, that seemed to stretch on seemingly forever (maybe too long, actually), Crysis 3 is a much shorter experience. How short? Depending on how you play it, beating it in under 5 hours is a distinct possibility. Of course, using stealth all the way through will increase that time quite a bit, but there is no denying that Crysis 3 is pretty darn short. It also doesn't help that the game is remarkably easy and the A.I. is still as dumb as ever (they don't notice arrows hitting the ground right next to them, or allies beside them dying ...), which makes the game seem even shorter.

Gameplay

EA
A big part of what makes the game so easy and the A.I. so dumb and easy to exploit, however, is the fact that the gameplay is actually really, really good. You have a number of abilities thanks to your nanosuit that make you basically invincible if you play your cards right. You can use a powerful shield to avoid taking damage, or use a cloaking mode to avoid any enemy detection at all. You can run at super-speed or jump crazy high and are able to explore and take advantage of every inch of the environment in each battle. Using all of these abilities, and more, gives you such an overwhelming advantage that the enemies never really have a chance. Each battle zone is a large "sandbox" where you're free to tackle enemies and situations any way you see fit (sort of like Halo). You can kill everyone. You can sneak past everyone. Whatever. You also have a huge arsenal of weapons, just about all of which are fun to use, that makes fighting surprisingly fun. Top it off with suit upgrades that make you even more powerful, and on-the-fly weapon customization that let you swap silencers or scopes, and you have a surprisingly deep and satisfying shooter. The new bow weapon is just icing on the cake - icing that also shoots explosive or electricity-tipped arrows that let you take out enemies even more easily.

The gameplay is just really satisfying. At least for a while. You are pretty overpowered though, and the enemies are so dumb, that it all kind of gets boring after a while. One positive about the game being relatively short, I guess, is that it lasts just long enough that it doesn't overstay its welcome. There is some replay value in trying to tackle different scenarios in different ways, but the lack of real challenge will catch up to you eventually and drag the experience down a bit.

Multiplayer

Crysis 3 does have a multiplayer mode as well, and is improved quite a bit over the somewhat forgettable multi in Crysis 2. Being able to use nanosuit powers in multiplayer is an absolute blast and makes the multiplayer quite different from every other game out there. It follows the Call of Duty formula where there are a ton of upgrades and unlocks as you level up that let you customize your character to suit your play style. It offers all of the standard modes and options we've come to expect from online multiplayer games, and can be a lot of fun. One mode that really stands out is the Hunter gametype where two players start out in nanosuits while the rest of the players are all normal soldiers with no powers (who respawn as hunters when they're killed). It is an absolutely thrilling survival mode (like how you always wished an Aliens game would be) where the normal soldiers really have their work cut out for them to avoid being taken out by the far superior hunters, but is amazingly satisfying if you can pull it off.

Graphics & Sound

Visually, Crysis 3 is a spectacular looking game that is among the very best graphics the Xbox 360 has to offer. Seeing NYC overgrown with lush green vegetation and crawling with animals (and aliens) is really quite breathtaking. The game takes place primarily during daylight hours, which shows off the visuals quite well. Everything just looks incredible.

The sound is also well done with especially fantastic sound effects for the wide variety of human and alien weaponry you come across. The music is solid. The voice acting is fine. And while your suit still is pretty chatty (it audibly speaks every power you activate), it isn't nearly as obnoxious as it was back in Crysis 2.

Bottom Line

EA
All in all, Crysis 3 is a fun ride that is somewhat a victim of its own fantastic gameplay, since it makes most enemy encounters somewhat trivial. You are overpowered as heck, which makes the game easy, but it does make it fun to experiment with and the large open environments give you lots of opportunities to goof off and make your own fun. And, of course, the game is absolutely stunning looking, which almost makes it worth playing just for that alone. It is a bit on the short side, however, and while some solid multiplayer modes to boost the value a bit, it can still be hard to justify a full priced purchase on what amounts to a 5-hour solo experience and multiplayer that may or may not be dead in a month. It is a good game overall, though, so we recommend at least a rental or holding out for a price drop.
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.
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