At first blush, Crytek’s Warface feels a bit like Team Fortress 2 on the astoundingly good CryENGINE 3 game engine. Maybe this was because I played my first game as a medic, and when rotating through my weapons found a defibrillator and a hammer. Or maybe it was the fact that I was wearing a bright orange hard hat.
Warface is a strange title. Boasting jaw-dropping graphics, it still doesn’t take itself too seriously, as you can outfit your character with all sorts of goofy costumes. Some of these are localized to Russia (where the game is currently open to play) and China (where the game is in a closed beta). That’s another reason Warface made me raise just one eyebrow. The game will have been developed, play tested, imagined, and realized in two countries not really known for their game development prowess.
But from what I saw, this shouldn’t affect the game too much. In my brief playthrough, I found the game to have a distinctive Crysis feel to it. Indeed, there’s even an in-game weapon customization option that looks exactly like Crysis 2. As one of the game’s producers, Peter Holzapefel put it, “We recognized the power of the [CryENGINE 3] engine and put it in Warface.”
This is apparent, and during my entire hands-on time, the game felt smooth and looked smoother. Running and sliding into cover, vaulting over cover and out-flanking enemies is instinctive and was easy even for a sub-par gamer like me.
Warface is free-to-play in Russia, but it’s not clear if that model will carry over to the United States. Either way, I imagine if you want your guy running around with a hilarious melee weapon, you’re going to have to put up cash for it. The game’s client can be downloaded now if you care to play with the Ruskies, but it will be released here in the States later this year.