Crysis 2 Remastered: a first analysis

Crysis 2 Remastered: a first analysis

Crysis 2 Remastered

Coming out this fall, Crysis 2 and Crysis 3 Remastered are expected on current-gen and last-gen PlayStation and Xbox consoles, and Nintendo Switch. We are now able to show you the first Crysis 2 gameplay on PlayStation 5.

It's all part of the material we uploaded, including an interview with the developer we got on our recent visit to the Crytek headquarters in Frankfurt, during which we had the opportunity to speak with lead project Steffan Halbig and lead artist, Marcel Schaika.

The entire interview is attached in the video below, where we touch on the themes of the successes and failures of the Crysis Remastered projects and the approach to completing the trilogy.

Crysis 2 on PlayStation 5 is Basically a cross-generational project: the base code is for PS4 and runs on PS5 in back-compat plus mode, and Crytek takes a similar approach on Xbox Series consoles. As you can see from the debug information in the top right corner of the screen, Crysis 2 Remastered runs at 1440p native resolution and as we have seen so far, the frame-rate is very close to being stuck at 60fps. Expect higher resolution on Xbox Series X.

The current development process has evolved considerably since Crytek began its collaboration with Saber Interactive for the first Crysis Remastered chapter. While Saber remains responsible, Crytek has involved multiple members of its internal staff in the project to lead the development, to ensure that the project reaches its maximum potential. In practice, Digital Foundry took a preliminary build and offered feedback. Ultimately, the ultimate goal is to make sure the remasters deliver the best they can in relation to the project's budget, and that last sentence explains why games on the new consoles aren't native PS5 or Xbox Series apps.

John Linneman visits Crytek HQ to talk about Crysis 2 Remastered with project lead Steffan Halbig and lead artist, Marcel Schaika. Here you will also find the first look at the game itself.

Watch on YouTube. From a manufacturing standpoint, we should have a significantly leaner process this time around. For the first Crysis, Crytek chose to improve the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions instead of starting with the original PC version, which marked the cutting of a host of features that were present in the 2007 original. The missing contents have been gradually reinserted into the game, but the feeling remains that the game is not up to a remaster as it should be.

For the last two chapters of the Crysis Trilogy, Crytek had access to much better PC versions which were developed with newer versions of the CryEngine and supported API DX11. Crysis 2 is therefore based on API DX11, so key features such as tessellation are implemented in the remaster, but the team has gone further.

The sepia-orange color palette has been replaced with something better , and the remastering work goes far beyond the simple application of the effects guaranteed by DX11. Texture resolution is increased with 3D scans, material handling is significantly improved (especially on flashy objects such as weapons and vehicles), while lighting has received tweaks in certain areas thanks to the adoption of global lighting systems in real time (SVOGI). In addition, the screen-space reflections have been enhanced through an increment of the cube-map samples. Finally, we also have upgrades in the LODs.

Crysis Remastered has evolved over time, especially on PC. Here's a look at the latest major overhaul of the game.

Watch on YouTube. There are however some changes in the rendering modes available. Crytek has made performance modes, graphics fidelity, and ray tracing for the console builds, and is focusing on balancing performance and graphics quality for each rendering mode. On PC it is a pure formality, and in this version we expect to find, as usual, ray traced reflections along with the usual high level of customization.

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An interesting thing to note is that Crytek removed the 'Is Crysis running?' since the PC version of Crysis 2 and 3. This mode was originally integrated to maximize graphics fidelity and allow the engine to make the most of the latest GPUs, even if the upgrades visible to the eye were actually minimal.

It followed that users automatically set everything to maximum and ended up being disappointed with the performance, an avoidable situation since Crysis Remastered did not need a very high-end GPU to be maxed out. Speaking of performance, Crytek also informs us that CPU optimizations are still in the works to further improve the performance of Crysis Remastered.

Although we are not showing it today, we have seen and tried Crysis 2 and Crysis 3 Remastered on Nintendo Switch, a platform on which the target is understandably 30fps, but we are equally satisfied with the results we have seen on the hybrid console. We'll talk more about this as the project approaches its release date.

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