Single Player via the Nanosuit.
Crysis 2 takes place in 2024 and depicts the city of New York being attacked from all directions. A strange virus is consuming the city piece by piece, and this has forced the military and the Crynet Corporation to develop a tentative partnership. This however doesn’t last very long and when a full scale Alien invasion hits, things start to fall apart quickly.
You take on the role of a marine called Alcatraz, who is suddenly thrown into a reality of destruction and complete chaos. In a unique twist, you are given the nanosuit and you start to discover it’s abilities as you go along.
The nanosuit is broken down into 3 modes:
Stealth mode – lets you become near invisible (cloaked) and lets you perform stealth kills.
Strength mode – enables you to perform devastating melee attacks, increased speed, and the ability to jump higher.
Armor mode – Lets you take immense damage and keep on moving like an armored tank.
Each one of these abilities drains your suit of energy and you quickly learn that energy management is of major importance in Crysis 2. This energy management and the adaptation of using different abilities in certain situations, is what Crysis 2 is all about. There is a true joy in finding different ways to use these powers and figuring out how to combine them to accomplish your objectives.
Another thing Crysis 2 does well is its interactive menu system. The entire game is played through the first person view of the nanosuit. This lets you pull up your hand to change layouts and such, on the fly, and it really lends to keeping you in the flow of the game. Everything except save screens happen in first person view and I found that it worked very well, while being a nice change of pace from other games in the FPS genre.
The levels in the single player are sandboxes, and you have a wide variety of ways to tackle your objectives. While these levels are not as big as previous Crysis games, a majority of the levels are very big. I felt that this decrease in size was a good change for the game, and it keeps the single player more focused.
The nanosuit also has an AI which at certain times will give you an overlay of available tactics to handle a situation. This is a nice addition for gamers that feel lost in sandbox style game play. When you get to a certain situation the suits AI with tell you “tactical options available”, you can then turn on your suits visor, which will show you different routes to flank the enemy or a route to use a stealth tactic and so on.
Skyline Tactical Overview.
I felt this was a great addition to a sandbox style game. You can go at the situation all on your own or you choose a variety of tactical options presented by the game.
Crysis 2 AI are pretty smart and when on the higher difficulty settings they will give you a heck of a fight. They respond well to your actions in a given situation and if you try a certain tactic and you screw it up, they will work together and come after you with a vengeance. You will also notice that at times, even when you’re in stealth mode, if you run in front of one of them, they know something is there, and they will make a comment about it, or start a search because something is off.
This adds to an overall feeling of realism from the AI and at times I found myself worrying about what tactics they were going to organize in order to find me or trap me. This really adds to the Crysis 2 world, and I felt that this interaction with the AI was very well done. Very few games can give you the feeling that your enemy are plotting against you in certain situations, and in Crysis 2, on the higher difficulty setting they do just that.
The story line is very good, and though it starts out kind of slow, it picks up at about an hour into the game. That was when I found myself really sucked into the story. On Normal difficulty settings, the single player was around 10 hours long.
Crysis 2 is not all great and it does have its share of problems. The checkpoint system can be a real pain at times and you can find yourself having to redo far too much of a level when you die. There are also some occasions when the free choice aspect of Crysis 2 is thrown out the window and you find yourself forced to play a certain way. This doesn’t happen enough to hinder the overall experience, but it can be annoying in a couple of spots in the game.
One other complaint is that at certain times I found myself not knowing where to go, and it would have been nice to have been given the ability to turn on a directional marker when I needed it. I’m never a big fan of those moments where I feel the frustration of “WHERE AM I SUPPOSED TO GO?”
Also as much as I was impressed with the AI in the game, there are some instances of AI glitches, I have seen them walk in circles or ignore a battle right next to them, when they should have been getting involved.
Crysis 2 does however do a good job of recovering quickly from these problems, and while I felt some frustration at times, it was short lived, and I was sucked back into the immersive world quickly forgetting about these issues.
Crysis 2 single player has a very good re-playability. Unlocked suit modules, abilities, and different weapon mods and can all be used in previously unlocked chapters, which can be set to any level of difficulty. I’m already finding myself drawn back in to replay levels on a higher difficulty. Overall Crysis 2 has one of the best FPS single player campaigns I have played in a good while. I would recommend it to anyone who likes FPS games even if you don’t play much multiplayer. You can’t go wrong with having this one in your collection strictly for the single player campaign.