The Crysis series was a failure.
That seems harsh, but it’s not like they’re still cranking them out. This deconstruction of the series from Noah Caldwell-Gervais comes in at over an hour, but it’s a fascinating look at what went wrong with a franchise that used to be so ubiquitous that “Can it run Crysis?” was a joking question that was commonly used to judge new PCs.
And it’s fascinating to look at the entire series through the long lens of history. The first game was known for the freedom of the early levels, but it then turned into a linear slog. That odd turn was repeated in different ways as the story and characters jumped around from game to game, not to mention the lack of mechanical cohesion that should hold a series together.
Crysis 3 was a great game in my opinion, but it’s easy to see why it didn’t find an audience: No one knew who it was for, which made it impossible to market to anyone. This video does a thorough job of explaining and showing just how hard it is to manage a series while building an audience off the back of your last game. It’s something Crysis never quite managed.
That’s why it has become a series that’s rarely brought up in conversation, and seems to have added little that has endured to gaming culture. These are good games that never quite brought themselves together in a satisfying way.
It’s a neat bit of gaming history, and this is an enjoyable way to learn what went wrong.