There have been plenty of ‘pretty’ games on the current-gen consoles; Watch_Dogs, Forza Horizon 2 and NHL 15 being amongst the best lookers. Still, despite all of the power of the Xbox One and the time developers have had to get used to the new console, I haven’t yet played a game that’s better looking than Ryse.
When I first got my Xbox One, I was absolutely blown away by Ryse. It wasn’t just a fantastic game to play, it was also a stunning game to look at. The graphics were crisp and clean, the animations were impressive and the world that Crytek had created was vibrant and full of depth. From the murky, dark forests of Britain to the bright, hot city of Rome – each setting was almost breath-taking. Add to that the level of detail in the facial expressions, both in the gameplay itself and in the cut-scenes, and you have a recipe for a gorgeous game.
Now I look at games like Pro Evolution Soccer 2015, Destiny, The Evil Within, and Shadow of Mordor and I think to myself, “sure, they’re pretty good looking games – but I wouldn’t say they’re an improvement on Ryse”. And the impressive thing for me is that, during the game, the frame-rate rarely dropped, glitches were few and far between and the game looked just as good during gameplay as it did during the cut-scenes. In some of the newer games, however, the characters will look amazingly lifelike in the cut-scenes and the promotional screen shots, but during the game they’ll look less impressive. The in-game graphics rarely live up to the cut-scene graphics, and the graphics of games don’t really seem to be greatly improving at the moment. Still, I have high hopes for the console, and the current-gen consoles in general – I think we’ll start seeing some really visually impressive games in the years to come.
Now, I’m definitely not the sort of person who cares that much about graphics. If a game is good, I don’t really mind how it looks. In fact, I’d much rather play a great ugly game than a crap pretty game. Still, I do appreciate a pretty game. The last game that blew me away, since Ryse, was actually NHL 15. Much of the FIFA 15 promotion was based on impressive visuals and an ‘alive’ crowd which helped to create an electric atmosphere. In actuality, though, EA failed to deliver. They did, however, manage to deliver this atmosphere, feel and overall look for NHL 15. It’s a visually stunning game – and it plays pretty well too.
I can understand why a game like Ryse is easier to pretty up when compared to a game like Destiny. The world is smaller, the enemies are slightly less varied and the combat is completely different. Plus, all of the quick-time events really gave Crytek the opportunity to show off with Ryse, in suuuuper. sloooow. mooootion. In my opinion, there are a few games coming out in the next few months that could knock Ryse off of its perch. The Witcher 3 looks quite impressive, Dead Island 2 was very good looking at EGX last year and I’m sure that Quantum Break will be a pretty game. Then there’s always NHL 16, Star Wars: Battlefront 3 and, of course, The Order: 1886 to contend with. I’m sure that, over the next few years, video-games will start getting a lot prettier, and I’m really looking forward to experiencing the ‘wow factor’ again, which brought a massive grin to my face when I first played Ryse.
Which games have given you that wow factor this generation? Or are you still waiting on the one game that will make your jaw drop? Let me know in the comments below!