sdoots's Crysis 2 (Xbox 360) review

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"The suit changes everything"

FPS games have been growing stale. For the most part, the market is flooded with military shooters, and many of them satisfy the exact same itch. Crysis 2 finds itself potentially overlooked as a result of this, and that's a shame, because it revitalized my interest in the FPS genre. 
What sets Crysis 2 apart from the rest is the Nanosuit. With the touch of a button, you can turn partially invisible, become much more resilient to damage, and scan the battlefield for strategic opportunities. All of these functions deplete your energy meter over time, which regenerates fairly quickly. Yes, you'll still be shooting dudes and aliens, but the tactics you can use to do so are so much more expansive than what you've come to expect from a shooter that each encounter is thrilling and engaging. 
Unfortunately, Crytek fails to properly introduce console players to the story. You're just sort of expected to recognize certain figures, and the game fails to provide even a "Previously in..." video like the one seen in Dead Space 2. To it's credit, past the first hour or so I had a pretty firm understanding of what was going on in the world, and by the end of the game found myself thoroughly invested in the plot. 
On the multiplayer side, Crysis 2 offers what could crudely be described as "Call Of Duty meets Halo". The Nanosuit has much of the functions it does in the Campaign, (the only real omission is the lack of highlighted strategic options) and the variety of perks let you customize the strengths and weaknesses of your nanosuit to your liking. For example, in the first perk slot you can choose to either have slower energy drain during armor mode, or gain the ability to break open an unfortunate enemies skull with your fist mid-jump. 
Since this is a Crysis game, I'm pretty much required to mention the graphics. As someone who never played the first game, Crysis 2 looks great. It never made me stop and go "Holy crap", but there were definitely a few times where I realized that I had never seen a game look quite this sharp before.
Crysis 2 lives and dies by the Nanosuit. Without it, it's just another shooter. With it, it's one of the most enjoyable shooters I've played in what feels like ages.

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