It’s so pretty!

I recently upgraded my computer, and I decided I really needed to see what it could do. As I was also in the mood for something quite violent, I took a look at the recent first-person shooters. I’ll be honest. I haven’t played many shooters lately. Not because I don’t like the genre. No, instead it was the console-izing. Too often shooters are now poorly done console ports that don’t take advantage of the PC’s strengths.

But the best reviewed game recently is Crysis 2, so I decided to give it a shot. And let me tell you something, shooting the heads off guys has never looked so good. At times I can’t help but marvel at all the little things that games have these days, like the leaves floating through the air, the swarms of buzzing flies you can see in detail through your rifle scope, the heat shimmers, dripping water. You know those gorgeous, high-def screenshots the developers release to show off the pretty? That’s what the game actually looks like when you run on max settings. And my machine is good enough to run on max settings (though I dropped a couple things down to very high to squeeze a few more framerates out during the heavier fights). I’m spoiled now.

Oh, and the game itself is great, too. They infuse story throughout the game. The NPCs for the most part act quite intelligently. You’ll occasionally see an NPC get stuck or run in place, or repeat the same phrase over and over. Those things will throw you out of the game momentarily, but overall the AI is good enough to keep you on your toes. I have no trouble treating the NPCs as I would human enemies and expecting them to react the same way a human would.

As for the console-izing? Well, at least you can remap the keys and access the game console to run inline commands to change the FOV. I would like it if the game allowed me to save anywhere (or at least was a little more generous with checkpoints; I hate redoing content). Overall, though, I’m enjoying Crysis 2 immensely.


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