Old school pimp
10th February 2004
Crysis on on consoles? Myths dispelled [creds to Crysis-Online]
Why is Crysis on the PC?
Cevat Yerli, CEO and President of Crytek has a point to prove. He wants to show the world that gaming on the pc is not dead, but rather more alive than ever before. The PC gives Crytek much more freedom than a console such as the Xbox360.
Crytek have many goals they would like to achieve with Crysis. Some of their goals just can't be achieved on a console. Unlike many other game developers, Crytek have integrity. Cevat Yerli has a vision, that is to make the best FPS ever made. That milestone is just so much harder to reach on a console due to the hardware limitations.
Another reason is that Crytek have more experience with making games on the PC. They've only ever made one other game, and that was the pc version of FarCry (ubisoft bought the rights to FarCry soon after it was released). The majority of Crytek's fans are pc gamers, so why disappoint a large fan base by producing a game for consoles.
I know what you're saying. Couldn't they make a pc version and a console version? Well, please read on...
Why Can't Crysis Come to Consoles?
First of all, Crysis could be ported to consoles. It's only a matter of working out how many sacrifices would need to be made to make that achievable. But if Crytek can't reach a similar quality bar as they can with the PC version of Crysis, then it's not going to happen. If Crytek still wanted to make a game for the consoles, then they'd make a new game designed specifically for the consoles. Game ports have never really worked well. Games should either be designed for the PC, or consoles; not both. It's rare to have both the PC and console version of a game become successful.
Sure, Crytek would probably make an extra few million dollars if they did release Crysis on the consoles, but would it be worth the risk of damaging the companies reputation for making top quality games? I don't think so, and neither does Cevat Yerli according to many of his recent comments. There's also the bigger question which is can they actually do it?
Like I said, if Crytek 'can' reach that same quality bar on the consoles, then I can't see why they wouldn't release a console version of Crysis for Xbox360 and PS3. But If they did, it wouldn't be coming out anytime soon, and you probably wouldn't have the same gaming experience on the consoles as you would on the PC.
Here's what Michael Khaimzon ( Lead Art Director ) had to say in fairly recent interview...
"I don’t think there would be any problem to convert anything we work on to the next-gen consoles if we decided to. We have enough power here, with programmers and artists to be able to do such a thing. It's just a matter of making the decision which isn't mine to make. We would just have to see how much of a sacrifice to the game we'd have to make. Or whether there would be a sacrifice at all, maybe we could find a way to make the game look exactly the same as it does on PC on the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3." Why Can't Crytek Produce a Great Crysis Port? No one is saying they can't, but consoles do have their limitations. Crysis is a very detailed game with an enormous view distance. All that information has to be stored in a quick to reach place which is either the video ram, or the system ram. The next best thing is then the hard-drive. Unfortunately, consoles don't have much ram nor do they have a hard-drive ( which are much faster to read from than discs ). We've already seen how the simple environments in gears of war require many loading interruptions. This makes it hard to imagine how a game such as Crysis could run on a machine with so little quick access storage. Note: As far as I'm aware, the HDD's that come with some consoles aren't used to store game data for increased performance, the majority of the loading is done from the disc. Conclusion: At the moment, Crytek are only focusing on a PC version of Crysis. Although a console version has been talked about, no final decisions have been made and I doubt we'll hear anything further on this subject until after Crysis is released. Although the chances are that Crysis won't come to consoles, Crytek would certainly be thinking about the consoles and what they could do with them. As you would have read above, CryEngine2 does support both the PS3 and Xbox360. This makes it safe to presume that at some stage, we'll be seeing the same graphics engine that Crysis uses, on the consoles. Whether that be in a game made by Crytek, or another developer.
Hexus Gaming Interview w/ talks about MP Demo video that was recently released
HEXUS.gaming sat down for a couple of bevvies and quick chat with Sebastian Spatzek, Crytek’s Q+A Manager and Ben O’Donnell, Associate Producer for Electronic Arts… and there was only one topic of conversation, the hotly anticipated Crysis.
HEXUS.gaming : So what you’re showing here is a multiplayer build of Crysis, is that right? Seb: Nearly, what we’re about to show is a modified version of one of the multiplayer levels which will let us drop-in and show some real time gameplay to the crowd, which we think is gonna get them pretty excited. We’re going to do a fly-through of the level first, then drop into the game and start showing off some of the cool stuff in Crysis.
HEXUS.gaming : So this is an actual live demo, not just a pre-recorded, pre-rendered video? Seb : It’s both. We’ll start off with a fly-through to show off the environment, then for the nay-sayers, we’ll drop into the game and start mucking around… so all those people who sit there and say how it’s all pre-rendered and all that, they can see that what we calim the game can do and look like, it will really be true.
HEXUS.gaming : So can you tell us a bit about CryENGINE 2? After all, CryENGINE was something pretty special, you guys just came out of nowhere with FarCry and just wowed everyone… So obviously you guys have now got to do even better this time around… what’s going to be in CryENGINE 2? It’s obviously physics heavy, so is that your own stuff or have you used third party software for this? Seb : Well the one big thing which is really wowing the crowd is the destructible vegetation, overall the environment will almost completely interactive. So everything the player does has in impact on the surroundings, so not only can you break stuff and it looks pretty, but it also has an impact on the AI and what they do. Ben : The aim of Crysis, basically, is to have every aspect of the game making your experience completely interactive. I mean, the precedent we’re really pushing with Crysis is that we’re making the player have to outsmart and think about how to outsmart everything in the game. So instead of just being a first person shooter where you have to think about your ammo or your health, with Crysis everything around you is usable, you got this suit, you’ve got different types of ammo, the environment is destructible… So you see some guys over there, you can shoot a tree down and it can kill them… you can use different types of ammo to drop them wherever you want… I think really, to get an idea of how immersive this all is, you have to view it as a whole rather than just components because it all adds to the experience.
HEXUS.gaming : So what’s this suit you just mentioned? What’s special about that? Ben : Well it’s a muscular nano suit… HEXUS.gaming : Oh yeah, I saw one of those in Millets the other day… Ben : (laughing) Yeah, they’re pretty cool actually… but basically what it does is to augment your basic abilities, so you can dial up your strength, speed or your armour. HEXUS.gaming : A bit like the old triangle of power that we had in the X-Wing games? Where you could increase shields, speed or weapons power? Ben : Yeah, exactly. It’ll give you a cloak as well… and it shows how long you’ve been playing games to remember X-Wing! HEXUS.gaming : Yeah, yeah, so I’m getting old… ah those 386 days… Ben : Yeah… but the thing with the nano suit is you have to think about how you’re using it as well, because it all runs on energy meters, so there’s a risk versus reward aspect. You could use your speed to escape a situation but that’ll use your energy up pretty quickly. If you then want to replenish your armour in defence mode, you have to think about what energy you’ve used and if you can get to some place to recharge. So that’s all part of the gameplay experience and it all adds to the game as a whole.
AI, replayability and release
HEXUS.gaming : What about the AI in Crysis? What’s happening with that? Obviously the AI in FarCry was pretty good though I have to be honest that sometimes they were a bit dumb. Most of the time they were pretty good though and in my personal opinion FarCry’s AI just topped Half Life2’s. So how’s the AI coming on, is it the next step on from what we saw in FarCry? Seb : We’re striving for as realistic opponents as possible. Again it’s a bit different as it’s not linear levels, it’s all free roaming within the level. So the AI basically does the same as you do. So they react differently to various situations but because Crysis is free roaming, those situations will always be different. They might try and bring down half the wood to shoot you, but they can clear obstacles or even use them as cover. They will do that. HEXUS.gaming : If they get hit will they leg it or will they hang around and play the hero? Seb : That all depends on the situation they’re in. How many guys in the squad are left, for example, is the squad leader who gives the commands still alive… and even then it’s still up to the individual AI soldier for what he does so you won’t see the same behaviour for everyone each time. So if there’s three guys to fight, it won’t be the same the next time you load the same level, even the player does the same things. HEXUS.gaming : So even if you reload a level, it won’t play the same as the first time you played it? Seb: No, it definitely won’t. HEXUS.gaming : So you’ve got a massive amount of replayability then? Seb : Well each time you load a level it’ll play a bit differently and even then you’ve got tons of different ways to solve a situation. It totally depends on the player if he wants to go in ‘Rambo’ style in there or if he wants to sneak around and take them out with a silenced weapon. It’s up to the player. Ben : It’s quite telling that we spent however long it was at E3 playing the same level over and over again but it was never boring. I mean, usually on first person shooters after a while of demoing it you’re like “If I have to play this level one more time…” but, with Crysis, every time you were showing someone something new would happen right in front of you and you were like “Oh, that was cool, that hasn’t happened before”.
HEXUS.gaming : Tell us a bit about the actual 3D modelling in the gamebecause I’ve seen that your weapon is an actual object in the world, so you can knock the foliage around with it just by walking about… The player is actually ‘there’ as a 3D model, so bushes sway as you walk by and that kind of thing. Ben : Yes that’s right and that affects the gameplayas well because the AI will see the bushes moving and be attracted to the movement. Even if they can’t see it they might hear the movement as you’ll make a noise as you pass through the leaves. So it’s not just a case of crouching in a bush and them not being able to see you anymore, if you’re hiding in a bush the AI might’ve have seen the bush move as you crept into it… so you could be in just as much trouble anyway. HEXUS.gaming : So it really is as realistic as possible, within the bounds of it being a with a dirty great alien ship in it. Ben : Yeah, pretty much.
HEXUS.gaming : Well guys it’s been great talking to you but we’ve got to wrap up now as I’ve been told you’re due on stage for the gameplay any second… there’s 300 gamers out there, probably the toughest crowd you could choose to put Crysis in front of. Seb : Trust me, their gonna like what they see. HEXUS.gaming : One last quick question for you… When can we expect to see Crysis in the shops? Ben : When it’s ready. It’ll be out when it’s ready to be out. HEXUS.gaming : Hehe, ok. Guys, thanks very much, go do your stuff and let’s see what Crysis can do. Seb : Thanks. Ben : Cheers.