The Crysis trilogy reminds me of a time when first-person shooters were much more ambitious in their presentation, with certain non-standard design choices and of course, visuals that were hard to grasp on PC hardware of its time. Crysis Remastered Trilogy takes the three mainline games in the franchise and updates them for modern PCs and consoles, with better graphics and performance than what was present in the original versions.
I played a good amount of the updated trilogy on the PS5 over the past week and I’m impressed. The amount of changes brought to the games reduces over the chronological order of the trilogy, with the first game seeing the most amount of perceivable updates in its presentation and performance. While the games are playable on the PS5, these are essentially PS4 versions played under backwards compatibility with certain enhancements on the new console.
Crysis Remastered on PS5
Let’s start with the original Crysis then. The remastered version includes 3 performance modes on the PS5 – ‘Quality Mode’, ‘Ray Tracing Mode’ and ‘Performance Mode’. On the last-gen consoles, the first two modes are capped at 30fps, with the performance mode targeting 60fps at a lower resolution (1080p). On the PS5, all three modes are unlocked to 60fps, but whether they maintain that is the more interesting topic. Simply put, the PS5 version of Crysis remastered is more stable in the ‘performance mode’, with the frame rate dropping in heavier scenes in the other two modes. Visual clarity is also sacrificed on those modes, meaning while you get a lower resolution image on the performance mode, it’s worth it since the gameplay doesn’t get affected.
The first Crysis is also the most open game in the franchise, with more attention given towards player freedom. This means that you can use the franchise’s signature nanosuit to its full potential when dealing with enemies, something which gets a little neutered in the subsequent follow-ups. It’s still fun playing in the sandbox of Crysis, although there are some issues aside from performance.For one, the input lag on Crysis Remastered is quite bad with the DualSense controller. This is something that Crytek knows about and may have already been fixed by the time anyone reads this review. Another issue I found was that enemy AI was quite unresponsive in certain situations, and while that is also on the known list of current issues, it sucked the joy out of feeling like a superhero in combat as you usually do with Crysis.
Once those problems are fixed, I believe that Crysis Remastered is the more sensible upgrade over its sequels, as it genuinely makes it more accessible (and playable) than previous versions of the game.
Crysis 2 and 3 Remastered on PS5
Crysis 2 is the one game that I have played the most of when it originally came out, and while it wasn’t as technically ambitious as the first game owing to it also being released on consoles, I’ve always liked the urban setting and more ‘modern’ aesthetics of the second and third games. While the PC version of Crysis 2 and Crysis 3 Remastered include ray-traced effects, the console versions exclude them.
Right off the bat, the first thing that you’ll notice with the remaster is its colour grading, which removes some of the more stylistic choices that made Crysis 2 (and 3) look more unique. The new remaster looks a little more natural, with less bloom and light shaft effects, and a more natural colour palette. Honestly, I miss the strong blue-ish filter on these games, but I don’t mind the new look in the remasters. I should also note that the HDR implementation on the console version is much more apparent with Crysis 2 and 3 remasters, which add an extra layer of depth on top of an already impressive visual showcase.
While the gameplay stays intact across both Crysis 2 and 3 Remastered, the lack of additional bonuses like a photo mode is disappointing. These games may be remembered for their visuals over the story, but going back to them felt quite fresh in an age of ever-evolving live service FPS games.
There are some clear upgrades to textures, character models, lighting and of course, performance making them look not quite as old as they are. Compared to the initial batch of PS4/Xbox One era games, Crysis 2 Remaster looks much more impressive for its time, and it was originally released a few years before those consoles! Crysis 3 was released the same year as those gen 8 consoles, and while it looks great, one can see the technical jump isn’t as high as the previous games in the franchise. Nevertheless, Crysis 3 was a good mix of ideas from the previous games, and it’s just as fun to play here as it was all those years ago.
Crysis Remastered Trilogy includes some quality of life upgrades with choices for different control schemes and offers a whole lot more than the franchise’s initial outing on consoles. While the number of changes is reduced for the more recent games, they still make up for being the best versions available on consoles. The inclusion of extra features on the PC versions of the remasters still make the games scalable for the future, but not at the expense of current PC hardware. Ultimately, the new remasters serve as a reminder of the nature of FPS shooters at the time and are more geared towards hardcore fans of the original games looking to take them for another spin. They also exist as being more accessible than those original games and are relatively cheap on PC and Xbox platforms. The India price of the PlayStation versions leave a lot to be desired and can be a little harder to recommend.
Crysis Remastered Trilogy is out now on PC, PS4 and Xbox One, with all three games being playable on the new PS5 and Xbox Series X|S games under backwards compatibility with enhancements.
For the latest gaming news and reviews, follow IGN India on Twitter and Facebook. For the latest gaming videos, follow us on Instagram.