There are only 2 words that apply to the Crysis Single-Player Demo: F$#k!ng Amazing!
Where to be begin, the graphics I guess. Stunning, just stunning! The lighting, the foliage. I honestly felt like I was there. Those guys programmed one helluva beautiful rendering engine. You better believe you need one heck of a rig to run this bad boy to any of it's credit.
For the sake of a frame of reference, below are the specs to my main machine, this is where all the magic happens, especially the gaming, and it by far is the *baddest* box I own currently. Not a God system by any stretch but it does ok for me:
RAIDMAX RX-630A ATX12V / EPS12V 630W Power Supply
2 x BFG Tech BFGR88320GTSOCE GeForce 8800GTS 320MB 320-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16
Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 Conroe 2.66GHz 4M shared L2 Cache LGA 775 Processor
ASUS P5N32-E SLI LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 680i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard
2xCrucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit
2xAcer AL2016WBbd Black 20″ 5ms DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 800:1
2xSeagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3320620AS 320GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
GIGABYTE 3D Aurora 570 GZ-FA1CA-ASS Silver 1.0 mm Aluminum body ATX Full Tower Computer Case
ZALMAN CNPS9500 AT 2 Ball CPU Cooling Fan/Heatsink
For what it's worth, Vista's “Game Explorer” cites the recommended rating is 5.0, with a required of at least 3.0:
My system above gets me a 5.4 (in non-sli mode):
I should mention when I play it, I switch on SLI mode (what a waste of cash that is, do yourself a favor and just drop the cash on a sweet single card). Crysis auto-determines that I should use the “Medium” setting. And it's pretty playable, but oh lord beware of cranking up the options. They look awesome and cost a ton in terms of performance. Don't even think about Anti-Aliasing.
I kinda wonder what these fellas are developing these games on. But my guess is by summer of 2008, your average high end system ($3000+) should run it pretty well.
That said, the game is brilliant. And I've only run through the demo a few times. The UI enhancements are genious. And by believeably handling the not needing to pick up health pellets along the way, removed a HUGE stumbling block of scalable difficulty settings. How many times have have you found that making the game harder simply removes hald the armor and healthy pellets? Far far too many in my book my friends!
Like it older brother FarCry, there are sneaking elements of the game whereas one might need to eviscerate a small platoon of enemy soldiers and not get heard whilest one sneaks. Generally, I find these scenarious to be an annoyance in games, regardless of how realistic it actually is (i.e. I would expect to have no clue of the natives when thrown from an airplane, it still pisses me off to have to stumble on them.) but it felt liveable in Crysis, which I attribute primarily of not having to follow the path explicitly so that I may gain my health pellets… Brilliant I say.
I can't wait for the full blown version to come out, better yet when I can own a machine that lets it sing in 16x AA 😀