Crytek's CEO Cevat Yerli and lead game designer Bernd Diemar on the PC FPS phenomenon

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So the summary is you get about 30-40 hours gameplay experience - if you replay of course - and you also get multiplayer as well. So it'll definitely be worth your money - for sure.

Which new technologies in Crysis would you say are most important in terms of new gameplay?

Cevat Yerli: I think the most important gameplay technologies are actually our breakable physics. It allows us to shatter things and break vegetation and model recoil damage, those make a huge impact on gameplay. The other aspect is soft cover and soft physics, to be able to represent motion throughout the jungle, that's very important for gameplay as well. Of course, things like motion blur add to the cinematic feeling, to the drama and the fear level, especially for the aliens, it amplifies speed and gives you the impression that they are moving very fast. It makes an impressive difference and you perceive the enemy differently as a result as well.

The other task when we were planning the game, was really to just make it more intense and dramatic, so it's not just the gameplay mechanics that you have with the technology, it's also the immersion factor. For immersion, definitely volumetric clouds, the lighting, the motion blur, the animated motion blur and camera blur as well, so all these add to the involvement. But the most important ones are the AI technology and the physics. The AI technology, we're pushing way harder than Far Cry, because we need to be in the number one spot again.

We had soft cover technologies for bushes in Far Cry, but now fog and clouds count as soft cover as well. To some degree fog has been done in other games, but for sure, cloud gameplay is a very new experience you're going to have. When you battle in the helicopter against the aliens inside the clouds it becomes very interesting indeed.

Driving a tank into the jungle, or chasing enemies into the jungle in your tank and laying on the devastation will be very interesting. For that matter, fighting in a helicopter, against the alien mech, which we call Hunter by the way, fighting that will be very interesting.

So put it this way, these technologies and multiple choices will add additional layers to your tactics, but ultimately it will be up to you how to play. Whether you use hard or soft cover, whether you're visible or not, what tools you use, what powers you use, which suit [configuration] you use or your ammunition type. So your amount of choices has increased radically over Far Cry. That's what we mean when we talk about 'outsmarting gameplay' which then leads into the AI. The AI will react to all these decisions intelligently and depending on how well you do, they get pissed off, they hide or ...well we'll see what they do with you.

So just how smart is your AI - and can you give examples of how it will directly affect gameplay?

Cevat Yerli: Well, with the aliens for example, the Hunter you have seen - I always say it is an enemy which you need to study for a while to understand its weaknesses. So the first time you encounter one, it will take a quite a bit of figuring out to take him down. It's a pain actually, you're not very well equipped or powerful.

Later on you'll meet maybe four, five or even six of those Hunters, but you're equipped better, you'll have skill-based moves against it. For example, you'll be able to jump on its head and take it down from up there. But from the off, you're not as good and you don't know how to do that. Your knowledge rather than your skills will evolve and, once you know that you can play the game again, now you can apply your knowledge, and you can take it down faster now. So we're evolving with the character, the intelligence of the player.

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