Cara Vs. Crysis 3 Was Never A Fair Fight

By Cara Ellison on February 14th, 2013 at 5:00 pm.

We sent Cara Ellison to EA to play some Crysis 3. We would like to formally apologise to Crytek and EA for having sent Cara Ellison to play some Crysis 3. Here is why:

Crysis games have always been beautiful. The Crysis series is a handsome, well-buffed man with grace and presence, one you’d never say no to being photographed with, one you’d proudly say you’d dated. You probably keep all the photos of him in a drawer, ready to pull out when your friends come over so that you can say that you hit that once and wow he was amazing. But the secret is that whenever he opened his mouth he told jokes so embarrassingly unfunny and garbled it was never worth taking him to meet anyone, and your utter confusion at what he meant by anything was the final nail in the relationship coffin. Though sometimes you gaze at his face from afar and remember that time you went to space because of reasons.

From what I played, and it wasn’t for very long (less than an hour, I’d say), Crysis 3 is voluptuous as hell in the looks department. The feeling of richness and closeness and dare I say it – verisimilitude – in the environment remains unrivalled. The New York of 2047, 20 years after the events of Crysis 2, is in a big mad bio-dome, and you are dropped into a jungle-covered Chinatown at one point to have a sit down dinner with your girl and attempt to make her laugh at your interpretations of the fortunes from fortune cookies.

I’m joking – you’re there to murder stuff.

At some point after asking Michael Read, the producer of Crysis 3, about the plot, I realised I’d stopped listening. Luckily I had a recording of the explanation. It came out something like this:

“We’ve taken on a whole new form when it comes to storytelling with this one. One of the new things that actually ties into it is a new piece of technology called performance capture. We actually released a video online of Psycho. We have a new writer – we had Richard Morgan for Crysis 2, now it’s a British writer by the name of Stephen Hall who has done some sci-fi writing, he’s been working with us on Crysis 3. We have Prophet – the leader of the squad in Crysis 1, had a small cameo role in the beginning and the end of Crysis 2, and now you’re playing him in Crysis 3. So you also have another character called Claire Fontinelli, she’s one of the leaders of this rebel group that’s operating inside the dome fighting Cell and Psycho fights alongside her in this quest to basically shut CELL down. Prophet’s goal ties into this as he’s having visions of the future and things that are potentially going to happen -”

My brain somehow thinks that he has said “Prophet’s goat” which I immediately perk up at: I imagine this goat having visions and attempting to draw them in Crayola with its tiny goat hooves for this high-tech douchebag Prophet in ten kinds of body armour waiting arms crossed – “What, goat, what?”. Fifty infinitely customisable weapons lie behind Prophet, totally pointless as this is a scene about a goat and its dreams.

But sadly this is not about a goat. It is about this guy we seem to have little reason to give a shit about, because the game industry spits out dudes like Prophet every day and they land on my front lawn and make a mess. I shouldn’t have begun asking about the story, because I really quite liked the shooty-killy parts.

“He’s trying to explain to the rebels that there’s more to what’s going on than just, you know, CELL fighting for these energy resources and what they’re doing under the Dome to do this.”

God I wish there was less to what’s going on. I really do. I’ve become horrifyingly more aware in the time it took me to play the Crysis 3 single player demo that videogames seem to borrow meandering, convoluted features and terms from genre fiction in order to have more weird missions to go on, and more outlandish stuff to do, without ever actually giving you a reason to do them. There is a complete lack of narrative focus. I don’t care that the planet is melting down right now, because you told me that last time and it was just a set of deus ex machina and some nice looking trinkets.

Look at that game affectionately known as Portal plants you into an easy to understand situation that immediately compels you to explore – and to escape. It then proceeds to tell you a more detailed story gradually through every facet of its environment – level design, audio, decals on the walls, even the glimpses of Chell’s body via a portal. Because the information comes in small doses, you have time to let it dissolve slowly in your mouth like a really piquant cola cube. Sometimes at night I would dream of those brand new sugary doses of story scrawled on the wall of a test chamber. But it seems like Crysis 3 will just jack open your mouth and hose down your gullet with thousands upon thousands of Jelly Babies until you’re sick on your mum’s brand new cream carpet. We’ve got to the third installment of this and it is still having us bowf up disembodied jelly heads.

“There’s a lot of character interactions that happen in this game, more so than previous games.” I hope this means that there will be a god damn you Psycho! line somewhere in the game. “I’ve been asked to sum up this Crysis in the past and the word I’d use to describe it is human.” That’s interesting – perhaps this will be the departure from Crysis 2 to story. But from what I’ve seen, it still has a little way to go. Gruff cockney men called Psycho seem suspiciously familiar to me.

Prophet has a nicely pressed Nanosuit and apparently thinks a lot of himself what with the name and everything. The suit makes you godlike, as in the previous instalments, and it seemed from the demo that far from being about story or characters, this game is primarily about the relationship between your Nanosuit and Prophet’s extremely limber Predator Bow. Throughout the demo I got a lot of purchase and satisfaction from that bow – cloaking and arrowing people in the face was my signature move. The bow was a pleasure to use – pulling an arrow back was such a viscous tease, and the arc of the arrow would appear before you release your finger, sending the arrow THUNK into an eyeball. The one thing I couldn’t figure out though, was exactly why I could click at any time to mod any number of stats on my bow. I haven’t got time, I thought. I don’t want to spend all day fiddling with the string on this thing when I am getting shot at. “You’ve got under-barrel attachments you’ve got scope attachments, different clips, you’ve got different types of ammo – the bow itself you can change the draw range, you can have a different tip type…” Mike elaborates. You can insta-mod pretty much any weapon in the game, which I think is a nice touch if you’ve got the time to sit around like Psycho who kept telling me to do stuff in the demo instead of doing it himself. Lazy sod.

Your suit has also been upgraded so that you can toggle to see where enemies are situated and how best to take them out – a sort of threat detector system, which I did like – although I have a bit of a weird aversion to being told what to do by a HUD, so I only used it a minimal amount. I’m stubborn like that. And the suit can hack towers, which is new. But there’s a combination chart for that too, you can pick and choose the highlights of your suit just like you can with the weapons. It’s about customising the way you approach things.

The only thing that’s really new here is a slight tweak to clothes and some new accessories and how it looks shinier. It’s a hollow shell of glamour, where you boot it up to render a ridiculous sandbox kill arena full of brocessories. Bro bling. This game is crawling with brotrinkets and brotrinketmongers. Nothing to do but kill bros all day, in a very stylish way, and at the end of it you go to bed having learned absolutely nothing at all about anything, but it was very nice to look at and kill bros. If Arnie had a wet dream about some armour and a bow this’d be it. It’s just bro central.

So little did I have to ask about Crysis 3 after playing the demo that I got rather antsy. Craig Pearson was floating about being point man for PC Gamer that day, and had just finished interviewing Michael, the producer I’ve already quoted above. But the poor guy didn’t know what was about to happen to him. Craig tapped me on the shoulder as he left the interview room, in the manner of what I now understand was a signal that we were in a good-cop bad-cop scenario, and tipped me to ask him why he is into PC BDSM, as he didn’t have the time. Oh yeah? I think. I will.

So I went a little off track down a path that is quite shady and is probably populated with headcrabs.

“Why do you hate PCs so much,” I ask, darkly.

“I don’t hate PCs!” he says, and bless him, I really like him, but he has no idea who has the wheel now.

“You hate them so much because you make them work really hard,” I say.

“That’s the ‘cry’ part in Crytek, right,” he smiles, slightly uneasily. I mentally give him points for the pun.

“I was going to say, I don’t know if you know that you have misspelt ‘crisis’ again,” I say, with a straight face.

“Uuuuuh yeah,” he says, “Just a little bit. But that ties in with ‘Crytek’ you know.”

“Yeah?” I say. I look expectantly at him.

He carries on. “So…. with PC gaming itself, when Crysis 1 came out we were known for this game that melted PCs, and it wouldn’t run, and… you know, but underneath all that, underneath the graphical abilities of what this game pushed I mean there was still a fantastic game in behind it. For Crysis 2 it was a whole new learning process – it had a new engine that we were iterating on for the Cry Engine 3, and in addition to that we were also developing for consoles, something we had never done before. So now we learned from those experiences, through Far Cry, Crysis 1 and Crysis 2, and really compiled all that together, and go okay how can we make this development process go smoothly but still push it out. So you start off looking at it and going, well developing for consoles is the baseline, and when you build up to a certain point you can separate the two out and really focus like – how hard can we push PCs. And we wanted to make that future-proof as well, not only for the game, but also for the engine and our licensees and all of these things that tie in together on that front.”

“So… you want to push PCs as far as they can go,” I say.

“Well you know, our CEO came out and said ‘Crysis 3 will melt your PC’ and it does push it very, very hard. We are pushing really on the boundaries of the consoles as well and what the capabilities were and what we were able to do for PS3. The amount of detail that our art guys – we have one guy who is really dedicated to lighting and any time he asks for something in the engine he typically gets it. Lighting has really become a big focus in a lot of the engines… trying to achieve that realism and pushing the graphical qualities. It also enables our designers to do more with the levels.”

“With all this customising and pushing the PC as far as you can go this really sounds a lot like PC BDSM,” I say. “Like you are fetishising technology.”

I think Mike was sort of flustered by this statement so he rambled about the engine sort of repeating himself for a little while in a bit of an adorable way. I wait until he peters out.

“Are you into BDSM?” I ask.

“…..No.”

“But you have a… relationship with your PC at home?”

He sort of smiles, and hesitates. “…….I beat my PC up a lot.”

My eyes begin to glint. I HAVE DONE IT, I think, feeling victorious. Oh press junket sheen, I have messed you all up!

“You know, occasionally you have to throw your PC across the room,” he continues, with a sly grin, “and be like work and then it magically works again.”

“I bet your PC is very sexy because it has to deal with Crysis all the time,” I say.

“It’s about me dominating my own PC,” Mike says. He’s taken a flying leap into Cara territory now. I am eating him alive.

“How good is your PC at home?” I ask, rubbing my hands together.

“Uh… it’s okay. I think I’ve got a Core I7 with a 460 in it, and like 12 gigs of RAM.”

I nod. “How big is your screen?” (Oh come on it is the obvious question.)

“Uhhhhhhh 24 inch screen.” 24 whole inches. “Yeah.” He nods, because he knows he just said it in a context he never wanted to even dip his toes into. “I’m happy with it,” he says, slightly apologetically. I try to nod understandingly. “I’m just waiting to upgrade it to the next level.” Upgrade huh. “You know… even on the low and medium settings [Crysis 3] still looks fantastic.”

I ask him why I can’t play a girl hero in it. “There was actually a female Nanosuit designed,” he said. “That’s a big secret. Nobody’s seen it and I probably shouldn’t say it. …It actually looks really cool.”

“Does it have special boob padding?” I ask.

“Well of course.”

He got his own back. A few hours ago Crysis friendzoned me.

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233 Comments »

  1. sinister agent says:

    This became adorably awkward towards the end.

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      Joshua says:

      This. I really like Cara Ellison for that.

      … Wait. Cara Ellison? Who is that exactly? Was she, at once point, introduced?

    • SelfEsteemFund says:

      So as for content, it’s Crysis 2.5 – now featuring a wallhack & a bow!

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      Vesuvius says:

      Cara is fast becoming my favorite journo here- I posted this quote of hers on my FB recently: “”But as Kip Katsarelis, the Senior Producer on the game said, mastering the perfect size of districts and layout of roads is for the “min-maxers”, and I immediately remembered how long it took me to figure out how to min-max Simcity 2000. Friendless NERD, I thought to myself. You sacrificed kissing boys for min-maxing. You could have been min-maxing faces.” – Cara Ellison, RPS”

      • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

        Yeah, that line really stuck out for me too. I do love reading RPS, but Cara’s writing is always a treat. So much fun to read! I am giggling, still. I will read articles about things I don’t care about even a little if she is the author.

        • TheIronSky says:

          Could not agree more. I love the way her articles start out so tame and begin escalating towards blissful insanity by the end. This was a fantastic read. Falls right into the kinds of humour I appreciate the most.

          Oh, and I was getting concerned that they forgot the graphics again like last time. Thank God Cara made sure that Crytek are still the PC fetishists I used to know!

      • Bootstraps says:

        Got to agree, both this article and the one on SimCity rule. MORE PLEASE.

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        Gap Gen says:

        Your face is min/maxed.

        I mean it’s huge but it’s one of those, right. Your face is really big. I forget why this is an insult now.

  2. Tiax says:

    Now that’s journalism.

    • Doomsayer says:

      I have seen the light, and her name is Cara Ellison.

      • Hoaxfish says:

        Both wave and particle?

        • mooken says:

          I would absolutely Schroding her.

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          Gap Gen says:

          So Heisenberg is caught cheating on his taxes and the auditor says “do you know how much you owe the state” and Heisenberg says “no but I know exactly where I am”.

          • Hastur says:

            Speaking of cheating, why was Heisenberg’s wife unhappy?

            Because when he had the position he didn’t have the momentum, and when he had the time he never had the energy.

      • Geen says:

        Cara’s writing is simply magnificent and hilarious. I demand more.

    • HisMastersVoice says:

      It’s certainly entertainment.

      Whether it’s also journalism depends on your definition of it.

      • AngoraFish says:

        Gonzo journalism

      • Jim Dandy says:

        …clip clop clip clop clip clop clip clop

        By what definition is it not journalism?

        clip clop clip clop clip clop clip clop…

    • jonfitt says:

      She’s the Samantha Bee of games journalism! More Cara please.

      • Uncompetative says:

        Agreed… this was epic… more, much more, of this please.

        I’m personally becoming sick of journalists comfortably being spoon-fed PR ambrosia only to turn into a bunch of mechanical witless parrots. Cara is no dumb bird even if she plays one in this subversive act.

    • McDan says:

      Curses! I was going to say the exact same thing, I shall anyway: definetely more Cara as she is amazing and as mentioned above possibly Quinns.

    • Dom_01 says:

      To me, this read more like a “if only you could talk to these creatures” preview, where everything that was criticized is because obviously Cara wanted another type of game, and failed to judge the game at hand based on its own merits.

      While I laughed and definitely think that it was an entertaining article, it fails to inform the reader of much. (Except that the producer of Crytek might be into BDSM, not just with his PC.)

      Not sure if I’m into this whole gonzo journalism thing, but to each their own.

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        Nogo says:

        Seemed pretty clear to me: Crysis is still very much Crysis to the point that it’s brimming with even more Crysis

    • DK says:

      It’s not journalism it’s entertainment. Which would be fine and dandy if someone was doing journalism, but in a field where that is already lacking, this is a tremendous missing of the point and waste of time.

      Might as well have just posted Cryteks PR press sheet with some predefined evasive answers and save Crytek the bother of lying to “journalists” faces.

      • Ruffian says:

        Ah quitcher grumpin. If this was something other than the sci-fi shooter with super powers (don’t get me wrong, they’re not bad games by any means) that it is, I’d be right there with you, but I doubt there really was much more information to be had from a one hour singleplayer demo than what was given – i.e. it still has nice graphics and plays like crysis.

  3. Brosepholis says:

    Well that got pretty strange towards the end.

    On second reading, this is probably the closest thing to a negative preview of a game I have ever read. I can see whence the apology.

    • SirKicksalot says:

      I don’t see the negativity. I mean, everyone knows Crytek’s stories are shit. It’s the gameplay that matters and she likes it.

      • Cara Ellison says:

        I don’t know why I even asked. I immediately knew I’d done the wrong thing. I really liked the arrowing people.

        • Phantoon says:

          Because you are a games journalist and games journalists ask about the story, especially when the story is irrelevant.

          I think it’s the equivalent of asking about someone’s job on a first date.

          • Droopy The Dog says:

            Worse, you already know they drown kittens in orphans’ tears for a living. But you ask anyway so you can keep up the pretense that you don’t think they have an awful job.

            …”You take that metaphore and run Droopy, don’t look back!”

      • mr.ioes says:

        I disagree.

        It’s not only the story itself but the delivering of it. And latter Crytek did a phenomenal job on in C1 at least. But that’s just my irrelevant, minority opinion.

        • nearly says:

          it was a decent enough story. I mean, it wasn’t terrible and I wanted to play more after the cliffhanger and was pretty miffed that they just totally abandoned everything they set up in the first game

      • kuddles says:

        I feel like that was kind of the point that the article in it’s own unique and funny way. We all know the Crysis games have bad story and good gameplay, and yet once again all they want to focus on is letting us know about how awesome their story is, even though we all know it’s just a bunch of convoluted excuses to have you bowing people in arenas some more. She’s just pointing out that the time that could be spent getting a better handle on the game is instead having her sit through an astronomical amount of exposition and character dialogue that isn’t nearly as interesting as devs and PR people seem to always think.

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    Fede says:

    My brain somehow thinks that he has said “Prophet’s goat” which I immediately perk up at: I imagine this goat having visions and attempting to draw them in Crayola with its tiny goat hooves for this high-tech douchebag Prophet in ten kinds of body armour waiting arms crossed – “What, goat, what?”. Fifty infinitely customisable weapons lie behind Prophet, totally pointless as this is a scene about a goat and its dreams.

    I want this game. :-(

    • Shinwaka says:

      I do too. Prophetic goats are way behind the power curve in games today.
      Kudos to you Cara for having a very entertaining (and informative) interview.

    • Cockles says:

      This is a serious preview, stop kidding around!

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      That was a marvelous bit, that was.

  5. Unrein says:

    Well, this is the most I’ve laughed at an RPS article in a while. Tears of happiness.

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      elderman says:

      Me too. I guffawed loud and long. That was wonderful.

      For me, Crysis 3 is a movie starlet: I can’t stop looking at pictures of it, but I wouldn’t want to spend any time in its company.

    • Snargelfargen says:

      Yeah, this was really funny. More Ellison articles please!

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    DrScuttles says:

    24 inches? I feel like such an insignificant insect in comparison.

  7. Chris D says:

    I don’t think I can ever play this game. I would only end up wistfully picturing what might have been with the fortune cookies and the goat.

  8. Shooop says:

    Yes. More like this please Ms. Ellison.

    • harbinger says:

      You might want to visit Kotaku if you want more like this, there’s plenty of stuff that doesn’t have to do anything with games over there.
      An audience RPS seems to be increasingly pandering to http://i.imgur.com/bcPdKAW.jpg , now they just need to start posting articles about life-sized body pillows, dating advice, the specific fetishes of each writer and about masturbation and they’ve arrived.

      • Chris D says:

        “now they just need to start posting articles about life-sized body pillows, dating advice, the specific fetishes of each writer and about masturbation and they’ve arrived”

        Dude, Kieron Gillen covered all of that lot in one afternoon.

        • sinister agent says:

          And he never called. That bastard.

        • The_B says:

          Yeah, I’ve never understood those calling out RPS for that – RPS has almost always done these sort of articles, arguably longer than Kotaku has. And brilliantly to boot.

        • Web Cole says:

          Its not what you do, its how you do it. Execution is everything. And man was Kieron ever the King of this shit :P

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        phuzz says:

        Yup, all they need now are people who will take the time to obsessively complain about unrelated subjects on every single article and they’ll be all the way there.
        Also, damn them for putting a gun to my head and forcing me to ready every article, even the ones I hate.

      • Premium User Badge

        X_kot says:

        “plenty of stuff that has nothing to do with games”

        There’s always VG24/7 or Giant Bomb if you want traditional reviews/previews, release notices, and interviews that discuss game mechanics/plot. Many game blogs, including RPS, do not limit their discussions to these things; they also look at the ways in which people interact with games. They do interviews with Crytek devs that critique how convoluted and pointless modern game narratives can be.

        • harbinger says:

          Oh I’m sorry, I totally missed the part where this was an in-depth, interesting, hard-hitting journalistic criticism piece about the shortcomings of storydesign in gaming and for a moment confused it with an excuse to bring up BDSM and dating and hinting at how casually funny the generally very uninterested-seeming author is being by slightly embarassing the games PR guy for trying to do his job and talk about the game that is going to come out soon, the invite was likely handed out for in the first place and all the horrible people might actually enjoy. My fault, I take it all back.

          • pandiculator says:

            Sometimes subtly is better than obviousness.

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            X_kot says:

            For being such a fan of sarcasm and irony, you seem to intentionally avoid acknowledging the element of parody in Cara’s piece. Or perhaps you noticed it but found it uninteresting compared to the content of the fifth paragraph. If that is the case, I understand your position and reiterate that other sites value pure data transmission over personal expression.

            But really, when will action games realize that whatever ridiculous narrative they devise will usually be disregarded at best or derided at worst? Sure, if you’re David Cage, the story is your thing; but when your franchise revolves around a supersuit destroying aliens, let’s not pretend that exposition and MacGuffins will make much of an impact.

      • Phantoon says:

        But I don’t want more of this if it’s not related to games. And other than Leigh Alexander and Cara here, I don’t have any interest in other gamjournos outside of RPS.

      • Shooop says:

        Are writers no longer allowed to screw around with interviews, especially ones that would just be a PR guy checking boxes on his list?

        This works because she knew he wouldn’t give her straight answers, and she already knows the game’s story is a load of crap. So why not fool around if you know you’re not going to get the answers that matter and share it with people? The guy wants to spend the entire time talking about how many triangles they fit into each frame, not about how it plays. So why should she take him seriously?

        This is a gag article yes. But it’s still about a real video game. One that’s taking itself way too seriously.

      • Lewis Denby says:

        harbinger: Patricia Hernandez has a very specific remit at Kotaku to write about particular stuff to do with games and culture, which might be why – surprisingly – her entire collection of articles you linked to all falls into a theme.

        Worth remembering that Kotaku doesn’t pretend to be a pure gaming website. Continues to surprise me how many people get totally offended by the fact that some of its articles “aren’t even about games maaan”.

        But y’know.

        • DXN says:

          Not to mention, EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THE LINKED ARTICLES IS ABOUT OR RELATED TO VIDEO GAMES.

      • abandonhope says:

        I really think the interview was just way over your head or something. Kotaku-like? No.

      • DXN says:

        Okay, you’ve finally sold me on Kotaku. I never realised all the bad press about it was just because they actually have variety and an attempt at broader relevance beyond boring old box-ticking reviews, screenshots and press releases.

        I say bring on the Ellisons and the Hernadezes, yea, and the Walkers, the Gillens and the Florences, and all the rest of them too. If they write enough, maybe the heads of all these tedious gripers will explode and we can get some damned peace.

        • MSJ says:

          Indeed. All the articles in that collage are about video games, and they are all meant to counter the perception that Kotaku is “about life-sized body pillows, dating advice, the specific fetishes of each writer and about masturbation”. In fact, they actually attracting people previously put off by Kotaku because they previously thought the site is juvenile or immature. I mean, sometimes it still is, but those kind of Patricia Hernandez articles are seen as the bright spots.

  9. ChaosSmurf says:

    Cara Ellison, the SHODAN of games journalism.

  10. Premium User Badge

    amateurviking says:

    Pure bowfin’

  11. mikmanner says:

    That was excellent

  12. AlphaCentauri says:

    This was a tiny bit weird.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      What’s with all that sexual innuendo? Double standards or what.

  13. Jeroen D Stout says:

    Ms Ellison seems exactly the type of person to write about games such as this. It is as-if I am in a parallel universe where games journalism is finally self-confidently tired of what passes for story and tired of ‘brobling’. Thank heavens.

  14. transmetalv2 says:

    Hi. Long time lurker, first time poster. I just registered to say that this was the most wonderful, ridiculous, and other positive-adjectives thing I have read in forever. Thank you.

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      All is Well says:

      Well, someone should say something so it might as well be me:
      Welcome in from the cold!

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      You have good taste, dear sir. Stick around and hold on for the ride. It might get a bit rough at times. Especially at night, when the Angry Internet Men wander the plains.

  15. Popcornicus says:

    THIS is how an interview should be conducted. A far cry from Meer figuratively sucking on Ken Levine’s toes whilst weeping.

    • RuySan says:

      Now i can’t take this picture out of my head. Thank you.

    • Archipelagos says:

      Agreed. More teeth, less gum.

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      I am starting to get a definite Sub-Dom vibe off this place of late. I look forward to the upcoming tech article that focuses on the best ball gags, strapons and extra small cock-chastity devices, written by “Mistress Silicon”

  16. Velko says:

    Most excellent and spiffing. Managed to be completely ludicrous AND oddly informative at the same time. Standing ovation, gentlemen!

    • AshRolls says:

      Haha yes.It’s funny and strange AND, crucially, it’s actually informative too. Brilliant writing thanks RPS.

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    RedViv says:

    Nice work, Cara A.E.I.B. Ellison.

  18. Mbaya says:

    Cracking read…seems you ate Michael alive along with those jelly babies, poor fella never stood a chance.

  19. ReV_VAdAUL says:

    Wow, this is getting a lot of praise and I can’t say I cared for it at all. Oh well.

    • Juan Carlo says:

      I did admire how it cut through the usual PR bullshit of these sorts of pre-release pieces and tried something differemt. However, It was juvenile and not very funny. Especially the BDSM stuff about beating computers at the end (“Do you beat your PC?” ……ha ha…..cutting edge comedy right there). I feel bad for the Crysis PR guy who was more or less remaining polite while no doubt thinking “why is this person suddenly acting like an obnoxious third grader?”

      • pedestrian2019 says:

        I don’t know I think it was kind of appropriate and refreshing. Having worked in the games industry for a large portion of my adult life I have become severely disillusioned by the persistent third grader, “bro” mentality of many of the people who work in it. Crysis is our industry’s equivalent of a Jerry Bruckheimer film. It is difficult at best to have a serious intellectual conversation about this sort of entertainment. And yes possibly Cara wasn’t the ideal person to be previewing this product.

    • NathanH says:

      I liked it because video gaming is clearly Serious Business whereas Cara comes across as always drunk and possibly about seven years old, so the clash of the two forces is amusing to watch.

      • ReV_VAdAUL says:

        I dunno, I just didn’t find it funny. I’m sure there is a rich vein of comedy to be mined from the absurdity of modern game plots and how seriously they’re treated but Ellison didn’t really go anywhere with it. Sure there was lots of mugging to the camera and “LOL BDSM” but that seemed to be nothing more than the tired joke of a cool person in sunglasses bursting into a boardroom and flustering all those stuffed shirts who aren’t nearly as cool as the sunglasses wearer.

        I like Brendan Caldwell’s stuff but he tends to be quite self deprecating in his articles whereas this seemed to a long drawn out case of “I get this stuff, aren’t I cool!?”

        I’m not rending my garments of fearing for the end of RPS or anything but seeing a lot of very positive comments did surprise me.

  20. Revolving Ocelot says:

    You and the what with the thing at the place now?

    Anyway, I don’t think my creaky 3.1ghz amd dual core and Radeon HD4850 would run even Crysis 1 at moderately high settings. I really could use a new PC this year, money permitting. Probably not for Crysis, though.

    • Shooop says:

      That’s not your hardware’s fault, it’s because the game is horribly optimized.

  21. The Army of None says:

    ““I don’t hate PCs!” he says, and bless him, I really like him, but he has no idea who has the wheel now.”

    Ahahah. Awesome.

  22. Jason Moyer says:

    That was an amazing article.

  23. Premium User Badge

    TheApologist says:

    Well, that was the most RPS thing I’ve read in some time, in an unconditionally good way.

    • Premium User Badge

      Sinomatic says:

      This. The folk who seem to take articles like this as some sign that RPS is diverging off into some different trend, or pandering to certain folk or whatever, clearly haven’t been reading the site for long enough.

    • Premium User Badge

      lhzr says:

      Aye. This is why I started reading RPS in the first place. If this sort of thing would be all RPS put out, I wouldn’t use the internet for anything else.

      This was probably the funniest thing I’ve read on RPS this year. And the most nostalgic.
      Also, I’d suggest to the newer readers to check the RPS Golden Era Archives for some of Kieron’s and Quinns’ stuff. Perhaps it’ll help clear up what RPS is “about”.

    • DXN says:

      Hear hear!

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      Couldn’t agree more. This is the games journalism I want to read.

  24. Premium User Badge

    mR.Waffles says:

    That was amazing.

  25. SirKicksalot says:

    From the “Crysis friendzoned me” link:
    Crysis@Crysis
    @Carachan1 Nanot really, but we do treasure your friendship

    Fucking hilarious.

  26. ETPC says:

    Cara. This is incredible.

  27. rb2610 says:

    Well, that was interesting… o_0

    Also, i7 & 12GB of RAM, but only a 460? Odd combination for a Crysis dev of all people…

  28. Totally heterosexual says:

    “Are you into BDSM?” I ask.

    “…..No.”

    What a boring guy. Did not even bother to read the rest.

    • NathanH says:

      I don’t think Cara pushed this line properly. The first time is obviously answered no, but after pushing a little further, notice how the flippant deflecting jokes start coming out. If she’d asked again he’d have blushed and muttered something shyly, and then later on in the pub he’d come clean about his fantasies.

  29. Premium User Badge

    Morph says:

    This is on par with my previous favourite developer questioning by Brendan Caldwell at Tankfest. Bravo.

  30. colw00t says:

    The biggest problem I have with Cara is that her articles always make me want to send her grade-school type cutesy mash notes.

    But I can’t do that, because this is The Internet, and that would make me a Creepy Person, worthy of everyone’s scorn, including my own. And I couldn’t bear being scorned by Cara AND myself.

    So yeah. Cara should write all of the articles.

    • Ravenholme says:

      That image is kinda funny though.

      But yeah, awesome article Cara, I particularly like the hard left into weird territory at the end. And the friendzoning was brilliant.

    • Premium User Badge

      Bluerps says:

      Yeah, I know what you mean.

      • colw00t says:

        It’s not even a sexual thing. It’s like a holding hands and playing tag thing.

        • Premium User Badge

          Bluerps says:

          Oh. Then I don’t know what you mean.
          (Though I wasn’t thinking of anything sexual either)

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      Am I literally the only one who is on the verge of honking my guts up at these posts? Its like an online cross between Take Me Out and humiliating japanese gameshow “Endurance” in here.

      • Premium User Badge

        elderman says:

        This is the internet. You’re not the only one of anything. That’s what makes the net awesome.

  31. pupsikaso says:

    Um… what is “Friendzoned” ?

    • Totally heterosexual says:

      I think we should just be friends.

      • Premium User Badge

        TheApologist says:

        Seriously though. What is it?

        It sounds like a method for deploying friends to defend set pieces.

        • Werthead says:

          When one person is romantically interested in another, but fails to act on the feelings for such a long time that they become ‘just friends’ and any attempt to instigate said relationship would result in the potential loss of the friendship.

          This clip from the popular-mid 1990s sitcom FRIENDS illustrates the point. Apologies for the clothes and hairstyles:

        • colw00t says:

          Alex and Bethany are friends, or at least acquaintances. Bethany says to Alex one day “you know, I really like you, I would like to date and or have sex with you.” Alex says “I’m sorry, but I’m not interested in dating and/or sex with you, but I would like to be/remain friends.”

          That’s friendzoning. If Bethany is an adult, they decide whether or not to go for the friendship and otherwise move on with their romantic attractions.

          However, if Bethany is a socially awkward teenager on the internet, they stay the course of trying to get into Alex’s pants, perhaps putting themselves into ridiculous situations. Then they complain about “friendzoning [bad, probably sexist word here]” on the internet, because they feel entitled to sex with someone because they are nice to them.

          If they are a REALLY awkward person, say, your average Redditor, then the whole proposing attraction thing takes them years to work up their nerves in the first place, if they do it at all.

        • NathanH says:

          As Andy Townsend will tell you, friendzoning is clearly inferior to man-friending and is just something those wishy-washy continentals do.

    • Calabi says:

      Yeah, I didnt get that, why would being friendzoned be bad, in this case?

  32. Jamesworkshop says:

    It may just be me but that was awkward to read like re-reading a sentence three times to even get the meaning, I cannot tell if its the grammar or the syntax.

    “Are you into BDSM?” I ask.

    “…..No.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NTK4xBIj5A

    Hostile work environment

  33. Premium User Badge

    Tinus says:

    Best preview I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.

  34. Askeladd says:

    I didn’t expect that. It was getting more and more awkward at the end and I have to say Cara, you are a bit crazy. But I like that. This needs more cowbell.

  35. guygodbois00 says:

    Cara Ellison, who are you kiddin’? You are sucker for the stories. You wrote an excellent one just now.

  36. Lucas Says says:

    Good times. We need more bad cop reviews asking the tough questions about whether or not developers are into BDSM because they abuse computers.

    RPS News: asking the tough questions.

  37. Tiguh says:

    More Cara Ellison! MOAR!

  38. mrosenki says:

    Thanks for the article.
    You got me at goat. Laughed so hard it hurt …. good.

    • Jamesworkshop says:

      we need more goats in games

      Baldur’s Goat

      it’s a start

      • Premium User Badge

        Lambchops says:

        Kid Icarus

        Sorry, didn’t have a PC reference that sprung to mind! Well beyond that bloody goat puzzle of course!

        • Premium User Badge

          RedViv says:

          I don’t think there are many word combinations that, while completely harmless for others, needlessly infuriate me to the point where I would want to break stuff. Goat – here I put words between them while I calm down – puzzle though… Oh yes. That’s my Bat Credit Card. My What’s A Paladin moment. Wait, no, What’s A Paladin was such a moment for me too.
          Which brings us back to EA.

      • BooleanBob says:

        Where in the World is Carmen Sandiegoat?

      • mooken says:

        Goats feature in Desktop Dungeons, and I do love my goat wallets in Far Cry 3.
        Also, plenty of GOTY editions of games. All GOTY games should include some sort of Goat DLC.

        Mutton League Football
        Sniper: Goat Warrior
        Teenage Mutton Ninja Turtles

  39. MOKKA says:

    Since it was mentioned in the text. What do you do, if your PC is not behaving in the way you expect him to behave? I usually kick him (he’s called ‘lumpi’).

    • Premium User Badge

      Sinomatic says:

      I whisper sweet nothings and gently stroke the case…..before threateningly browsing the chillblast or pc specialist website. Usually does the trick.

      Don’t look at me like that.

  40. ChromeBallz says:

    I want to see that female nanosuit.

  41. Low Life says:

    I don’t often long for video footage from interviews, but this could really use some.

  42. Premium User Badge

    Lambchops says:

    Cara Ellison is becoming to RPS what Ellie Gibson is to Eurogamer. This is, in my opinion, a good thing.

    • Premium User Badge

      RedViv says:

      Very obviously yes.

    • Premium User Badge

      lhzr says:

      Well, I sure hope not! I mean, how often does Ellie write something nowadays? Once every three months? Not cool at all. Especially seeing how Ellie’s stuff is EG’s best.

  43. Filden says:

    Loved the article, but in the present climate, if one of the male writers published the same account, fictionalized or not, about using sexually charged remarks with a female staff interviewee, there would be trouble.

    I have no point. Kudos to Cara for exploiting the double standard for our entertainment!

    • Senethro says:

      I assume you’re making this comment because you’re complaining, so forgive me if you’re not. The double standard exists because of mens behaviour. You only have to look at the incidence of rape or compare the differing rates of spousal murder between the sexes to see that a man speaking of sexual or violent aggression might be perceived differently from a woman doing the same.

      Basically, dudes will get to make edgy jokes just as soon as the punchline isn’t a realistic possibility.

      • Filden says:

        I’m not complaining about Cara’s article. I thought that was clear when I said I loved it.

        • Senethro says:

          So you’re not complaining about the article, but about the “present climate” then? Because if you’re not complaining and not making a point I don’t get what everything after “Loved the article” is for.

          • Filden says:

            I agree that you don’t get it.

          • njursten says:

            Sorry Filden, you don’t get it. :/

          • Filden says:

            Acknowledging a double standard, is not the same as not understanding why it exists, or being offended by it. But there is always value in drawing attention to it when you see it in action, if only to serve as a contrast as to why the flip side might not be acceptable, or to perhaps help to temper overreactions in a reverse scenario. Even if there are sound reasons for it existing, it would be better if there were no double standard there at all, yes? Isn’t that what we’re working towards?

            So the point is to say “Hi there double standard, I’ve got my eye on you”, while making a point of not taking offense from it. Hence my praise for the article, and saying I had no real point to make. Got it?

            If that is not PC enough, I apologize, but I’m simply not as worked up about it as you seem to want me to be.

          • SuperNashwanPower says:

            He is right that there’s a double standard, however it happens to be an accepted double standard, currently enforced by the full weight of taboo. Perhaps when equality is something that is seen or accepted to be present, then yes behaviour such as that in the article may come to be seen as a sexualised, bullying powerplay, as it would if from man to woman. Cultural shifts are interesting things. I am still waiting for The Worm That Turned to become a reality … :)

  44. Jamesworkshop says:

    Quantic Dream’s Kara engine demo vs Cryengine 3

    is what first came to mind when I saw the title and before I googled and found it was spelled “Kara” and not “Cara”

  45. Premium User Badge

    Bluerps says:

    That poor man. Why would you do this to him? :D

    Also, Prophet’s goat is adorable.

  46. FCA says:

    The nice weirdness of the last paragraphs aside, I wish some (most?) developers would take note of the paragraph about Portal and storytelling. Really resonated with me. Problem is probably that most games don’t take enough time for the story (takes away from time spent on exciting shooty-bang-bang-bits?), but maybe take a page from Doom then. Simple, but effective.

  47. mehteh says:

    “developing for consoles is the baseline”
    And that is why I get bored of console focus shooters. the mechanics, controls, and gameplay are made for idiots and/or casuals. Crysis 3 looks pretty and all, but its gameplay is shallow for an experienced true(PC) fps gamer

    • Shooop says:

      Oh look, this bullshit again.

      And what the hell defines someone as an “experienced true (PC) FPS gamer”? The speed at which they can flick their mouse at new targets? The time they can wait in one position for the other team to try and plant the bomb?

      FPS games were never more deep than “point and click at enemies until it dies”. The mechanics, controls, and gameplay have barely changed at all after almost two decades.

      The suit and its functions are more advanced mechanics than Quake which is one game I assume you have in mind that only “experienced true (PC) FPS gamers” play. The reason Crysis 3 is shallow isn’t because of regenerating health or a HUD. It’s because they’re funneling players through corridors instead of letting them make up their own way of doing things.

      Console aren’t what’s holding any games back. Not aside from graphics. What’s holding games back is the aversion to risk.

      • dE says:

        While I generally agree, people that stick a platform to their gamer identity are often utter idiots, I kinda disagree on the Quake Part. There’s a whole lot more going on than just point and click. Things like strafejumping, Item spawntimers, knowing when and where an enemy can show up at any given time and things like that.
        Activating a Nano Suit is not more advanced than that.

        • Shooop says:

          That’s still not really skill, it’s mostly memorization. Crysis used to be actually more complicated than that – you’d have to switch modes on the suit to do certain things in certain situations. And because there was no place where a rocket launcher always spawned it was always up the player to adapt to the situation on the fly.

          The problem is with the two games that followed is they streamlined the process so much it’s barely a mechanic anymore. The men in suits stepped in and said, “Hey we can attract a wider audience and make more money if you have the game do everything for the players! You sort of have to because if the game doesn’t sell you’re fired!”

          • dE says:

            That’s still not really skill, it’s mostly memorization.
            Oh dear, you’re probably serious about this, right? Like… really? Calculating spawn timers on the fly, learning to strafejump, predicting your enemies and controling the map has somehow nothing to do with skill, while pressing a single button to activate a built in, spawned with superpower does?

          • Shooop says:

            That is still about as much “skill” as memorizing a map and the locations where the rocket launchers spawn.

            Games aren’t sports, no matter how many people slap their names on overpriced headsets and keyboards.

  48. Premium User Badge

    psepho says:

    You made me laugh on the train! Now everyone thinks I’m weird…

  49. MentatYP says:

    Now imagine a male journalist asking a female game producer those questions. Still cute?

    Having said that, I enjoyed this immensely. Should I feel dirty for being a hypocrite?

  50. KevinLew says:

    I love this article so much that I want to go out and put a ring on its finger.