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on August 30, 2013
The first Crysis was a beautiful slideshow of a middle-finger to everyone with a sub-$300 graphics card when it came out. Rendering huge densly-packed vistas over miles and miles it showcased all the effects one feasibly COULD put into a single engine, all at once, all the time. The fact that also played very well was icing on the beautiful cake, and I, like everyone else, loved sneaking through its near-photorealistic jungles and battling aliens and the KPA. Half a decade later, with a video card that can actually run it, Crysis remains the best looking PC game you can play today and a testament to how awesome PC gaming can be.

Sadly everyone stole it. Like EVERYONE. Conservative estimates put Crysis at easily the most pirated PC game in history.

Understandably burned by this, Crytek developed their next game for console. This has had good and bad effects, because while Crytek managed to squeeze obscenely good performance out of a console game, and while the PC release does have a lot more bells and whistles, no console on the market can contain the raw power of the cryengine, and sacrifices were made.

First, the game doesn't look quite as shockingly real as Crysis did. It still looks leaps and bounds better than many other games on the market, but the water and glass are reflection mapped instead of reflective*, not every surface is as casually parallax mapped (the use of a graphical map to add geometric depth to surfaces) as the ground was in Crysis, and some clouds, buildings, and objects of interest in the distance are textural props instead of real geometry.

Second, the game world is a little more confined. This is not as bad as people have made it out to be. Play Crysis again, and you will see it is full of barriers- a cliff here, an impassible gorge there- In Crysis 2, set as it is in New York, these barriers are simply buildings and walls, and therefore more obvious. There is still plenty of room to sneak, avoid, and snipe to your heart's content. But drivable road is more rare, and in general environments feel a little more compact- as you would expect in a city instead of a jungle.

The good news? None of this matters. Even toned down, Crysis 2 is one of the loveliest games of recent memory and it does a LOT. You want thick atmospheric effects? You got it. Earthquakes that shake the loose objects of a whole map? It's here. God rays and water caustics and particle effects all over the place? Yup. And you can still see your own body, something FPS games struggle with to this day. And while the environments are restricted by location and technology, the New York of Crysis 2 is very convincingly a city, albeit one full of blockades, debris, fires, and alien warfare. Gone are Crysis' samey jungles- each level now feels convincingly different, and those levels are still quite large, with a terrific sense of scale.

The gameplay is back too. Player control is responsive and natural with a good sense of weight and motion. PC controls are spot on and do not suffer from being also-rans to an XBox pad. Enemies are smarter than they were in Crysis, engaging in elaborate searches and flanks, and their behavior is so realistic they can even be fooled convincingly. The aliens of the first game are back, but instead of boring robots we get living commandos with their own tactics and weaknesses to learn. And while it's no Oscar winner, the story in Crysis 2 feels a bit more taut and well expressed, as affable Boffin Dr. Gould flogs you around the city to fight enemies, do science, and clear his browser cache before the evil Cell PMC troops can find his porn.

So Crysis 2 is a pretty awesome game. It's not the face-melting tech demo that the first title was, but it IS a beautiful action adventure with good challenge, exciting action, and a killer musical score**.

PROS
-Looks great
-Plays great
-Has awesome atmosphere
-Actually runs on most PCs now

CONS
-Only select vehicles can now be driven and there is less opportunity to do so
-Doesn't really look appreciably better than Crysis does (then again neither does anything else short of a pixar movie)
-The player character has a bad habit of just watching stuff during cutscenes when, given the choice, a little precision sniping would probably be better (for instance early in the game you eyeball the main villain from like 40 feet away and do nothing while he leaves in a leisurely fashion)

NOTES
-This version of Crysis comes with high-def textures that far outstrip what shipped with the base game or console editions
-Nanosuit modes are automatic now. Run and you use power, power jump and it happens automatically. Only armor, the visor, and stealth are manual. Plus you can now use strength mode to steady your gun while aiming!

* There is a tool you can DL from Crytek to enable "real" reflections, or you can tweak INIs yourself
** With a theme by Hans Zimmer, no less!
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on May 31, 2012
I don't know about you, but I'm not up for paying $20 for another few maps and a new weapon! Amazon sent me a coupon for $20 off, because I purchased Crysis 2 from them. Still, it's a ridiculously overpriced product.
1616 comments| 42 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 27, 2012
I downloaded the game twice through Amazon, and couldn't get it to install. First time the download was corrupted, and apparently the folks who wrote the Amazon download manager didn't think to break large downloads into smaller pieces if a piece get's corrupted.

The second time I downloaded it, the game installed but wouldn't accept my authorization code without downloading Origin, EA's Downloadable Rights Management program which has a handful of other "features". I didn't want to download Origin, I've heard many bad things about it, so I tried to use the activation code on Steam. The code wouldn't work, even though Steam now sells this exact version of Crysis 2. Figures.

Once I installed Origin (and I had a few problems there, too) I entered the product code from Amazon, and guess what? I had to download the game AGAIN, this time through Origin.

At this point, I've spent ~20 hours downloading and re-downloading the game three times. Origin installs the game (not where I want it installed, of course) and I can finally play the game. But not without an internet connection. The game requires me to run and log into Origin and also log into the in-game thing, even if all I want to do is play the (offline) singleplayer.

I should have spent the $5 extra and bought the game on Steam.

Amazon, please rewrite your download manager so it can re-download and replace corrupted segments of game data. EA... get rid of Origin. You aren't stopping folks who pirate your games, and you're making things a hassle for your paying, PAYING, customers. I hope developers stop making contracts with EA.

Oh, and the game itself? Exactly what I expected because I've played the game before. Fun, but it doesn't really belong in the Crysis franchise. What you can't do is a disappointment compared to the prior games, and what you can do isn't really good enough. Ultimately Crysis 2 is yet another forgettable CoD-ish first person shooter. Singleplayer and multiplayer is unlikely to entertain for long. I mostly bought the game for the various mods that are starting to come from the community.
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on November 29, 2012
this game is awesome,i have played battlefield bad company 2,batttlefield 3,modern warfare call of duty 3,and mass effect 2 and 3...and by far crysis 2 maximum edition is the best game i have ever played!! contrary to what one reviewer said about not playing in sli crossfire mode,he is wrong..im running twin geforce 8800gtx's side by side in sli crossfire with an old QX6700 extreme quad core cpu,with 8gb ram using 4 reapers and the game plays perfect!! well worth the money,you want the best then you have to pay the big bucks!
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on October 29, 2013
I moved very often during that last 3 years from country to country due to my job, I could not assemble myself a great game rig, but finally I settle back to home country and did so, so bought the 2nd version of the game I feel is the best, yes, there is the 3rd of this already on the market but I didn't wanted to skip any step so I bought this, I am about to finish, just that playing online is so good that I can don't continue the campaigns.. taking my time though. I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THIS GAME
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on April 1, 2013
This game is intense! Must develop skills to proceed. Multi-player is insane!!
I would buy this game for a friend!! That says all that needs to be said. Only issue,
the game eventually ends :-(.
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on April 5, 2014
I loaded it and couldn't get it to run. I have Windows 8 and assumed that was the prob. I may have the same issue as the other low rating reviewers. If I load a game and have no special instructions on how to get it to work I may not want to spend the time to find out why. I couldn't get it to work.
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on December 22, 2013
Even if the 12 GIGABYTE download goes well, and even if the installation goes well, you then have to run the game. Guess what? It won't run because Amazon's down loader/installer doesn't install "Origin", the DRM manager that Crysis is hard-wired to require to run. Then you have to download Origin and install it (and all the well-publicized issues that come with it), which then forces a re-download of the entire game so it can install it on Origin's terms and where Origin wants to install it. Only then will this game work. But in MY case, the Origin app continually crashes and I cannot get it to run at all, let alone Crysis. I have yet to play Crysis 2. THIS, people, is why EA continually gets voted the worst/most hated company in America. It's because they earn it.

So, now that I've legitimately paid for this crapware, I am now going to download a cracked/hacked, pirated, copy of it that actually works.
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on April 20, 2014
Let’s get the obvious out of the way first: CRYSIS 2 looks great. You would expect stunning visuals from Crytek and they deliver here in spades. Alien-devastated New York feels very realistic as you work your way through the dust and trash that blows in the air. Much has been said about the fact that you have to work our way through the streets rather than roam freely, as was possible in the first Crysis game, and it’s true that C2 is less open-world than the original. But it never feels as though you’re being herded and there is some room for exploration within the confines of the streets. But even though this aspect is a little disappointing C2 is an improvement on the original in most aspects. The suit controls have been made far more intuitive and it’s now possible to upgrade it as you gather points through despatching alien invaders. The story is less nebulous than in the first and the action is far more intense, with barely a moment to take a breath at times. The set-pieces are more epic in scope and there’s a real sense of urgency throughout. Sadly it’s not a long game. I took my time but still completed it in a little under 20 hours. But if you like the Crysis franchise this game is a worthy follow up to the original, even though it doesn’t quite have the same overall impact. Now onto Crysis 3 …
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on August 20, 2013
I had never played a game from the Crysis series before, but I received Crysis 2 as part of a Humble Bundle and decided to give it a shot. So, this review won't be based on comparisons between this game and the original Crysis, which I've heard was a different beast. I also don't have any interest in the multiplayer aspect, so this review is about the single-player campaign only.

Story

Alright, not the most original story ever written. But it's clear that the developers wanted to focus mostly on gameplay and graphics. Without giving anything away (which is almost impossible, since there aren't really any big twists), you play a soldier named Alcatraz who is rescued from an alien attack by Prophet, the wearer of an advanced nanosuit that imparts incredible abilities on him. Prophet passes the suit on to Alcatraz, who is then tasked with protecting the citizens of New York and pushing back against an alien invasion.

If that sounds familiar, it's because that's basically the storyline of most sci-fi first person shooters. Despite that, however, characters like Nathan Gould and Jacob Hargreave were still interesting enough to keep me engaged in the plot.

Gameplay

This is where Crysis 2 really shines (aside from graphics, obviously, which I'll get to in a bit). It's true that Crysis 2 isn't an open-world game and the levels are what most players would call linear. Even so, most levels provide at least two paths: one for stealth players and one for full-on assault players. The tactical visor feature enables you to scout the area and formulate a plan before jumping into battle.

The weapons are satisfyingly powerful without being over-the-top. Although I found little incentive to carry anything but a silenced full-auto rifle and a silenced sniper rifle. Ammo was abundant enough that I almost never had to switch to a different set of weapons. But that's not a hugely important criticism. If you're interested in carrying a wider range of weaponry, it's certainly available. There are also various weapon upgrades that can be applied and removed on-the-fly. You don't have to search around for a silencer upgrade when you swap weapons, for example.

The suit itself adds some very interesting gameplay mechanics. The cloaking ability will be a stealth player's best friend. The powerful melee abilities are great, but as someone who prefers ranged combat, I didn't get to use them that often. You can also run, slide, jump, and grab on to ledges. I probably had the most fun with the sliding ability. While executing a slide, you maintain the ability to fire your weapon, which led to some incredible Matrix-esque moments of sliding under doors and picking off surprised enemies as I went. Like with weapons, you can apply upgrades to your suit and change them whenever you want. However, suit upgrades have to be unlocked by spending points earned by killing aliens. The first half of the game is largely full of human enemies, so don't expect to unlock a lot of suit upgrades until later on. The point pickups dropped by aliens also disappear after a short time, so you're likely to lose some of them during large battles.

Graphics

I've heard people refer to this game as a console port and cite that as a reason for its less-than-spectacular graphics. Frankly, I don't know what they're on about. Again, I've never played Crysis 1, but on its own, Crysis 2 is wonderful to look at. With an nVidia GeForce GTX 650 Ti, it ran flawlessly in Extreme mode and very rarely stuttered in Ultra mode. It's probably one of the most visually stunning games I've ever played.

Conclusion

The bottom line is: if you enjoy first-person shooters and don't mind a generic story, Crysis 2 is going to provide you with 10 to 15 hours of fun.
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