1st January 2005
When the first video demos were shown of CryEngine 3, many PC players scoffed at it saying the image quality was noticeably worse than that of Crysis. I pointed out repeatedly that they were merely showing compressed videos of what it will look like on the 360. It was rather obvious to me that the 1280x720 res and the file size were an indication it was a convenient way to stream a 360 demo video.
There are many advances shown here both in the end result of the rendering and the convenience features in the editor, like quick AI node profile access and multiple window drag and drop 3D object placement, scaling, etc. SB 2 was fairly easy to learn on, this will be even easier, and probably more optimized too. I just hope I can get the AI to trigger properly, something I always had a problem with in SB2, though my rig is a bit old for SB2.
One of the things that impresses me most is they've gone to procedural physics and destruction, which should be a huge help to optimization. I just hope they can get the procedural stuff to work smoothly. No game that's had procedural rendering has delivered what it's promised from what I've seen, but procedural physics and destruction is different.
Procedural rendering is hard to pull off because boatloads of textures have to be rendered on the fly, vs loaded from a load screen or map seam. It can create all sorts of problems. With procedural physics and destruction, you only have to change the entity parameters on the fly, which is much less complex to script and less of a strain on the game engine.
Really looking forward to Crysis 2, the map elements look great. They'll no doubt be taking us into the real alien lair this time. As for the many ridiculous comments about lack of optimization and silly gameplay, move on people, if you don't like it there are plenty other games to play. The comments are often far fetched and untrue.
Truth is Crysis is one of the better optimized games out there. I can play it on my P4 3GHz, X1950 Pro 512MB AGP, 2 GB RAM rig just fine with High textures, water, sound, Medium shaders, shadows, physics, gameplay, volumetrics, and Low post processing, particles, and objects (w/ High veg draw), at 1200x900 averaging 30 FPS (on Island with no action) and I never dip below 20 FPS in firefights.
Crysis has been on the short end of the stick for some time due to scads of people lazily adjusting the game to all one level of settings, vs carefully picking and choosing reasonable settings. The game was ahead of it's time upon release, and one could argue it still is, esp with CryEngine 3. Crysis looks better on med settings than most games do on high.
There are also tons of console commands that can be used to further optimize the performance, including the one for veg draw I mentioned, one for detail materials, one to turn off texture streaming, and one to increase the amount of VRAM the game uses, but most would rather whine then read the TweakGuide for it.