Crytek Used The Spirits Within As Benchmark For CryEngine 3
With Crysis 2 in the works and plenty of industry insiders talking up the new CryEngine 3, it stands to reason that Crytek CEO and founder Yevat Cerli had some things to say at this week's GamesCom event in Cologne, Germany.
Yerli's session was entitled "The Future of Gaming Graphics," and perhaps surprisingly, he believes we won't be seeing any significant visual upgrades between now and 2012. This is due to the fact that "engines are bound to console cycles," and therefore, this means he thinks the next generation of consoles will arrive around 2012. He also says this is when the next major upgrade for his team's CryEngine will be available. However, while this may sound disappointing on the surface (why do we gotta wait so long for better graphics?!), Yerli did say we'll still see definite improvements in the areas of "physics, AI, and simulation of special effects over the next few years." As for comparisons to CGI movies, he says we'll see Ice Age visuals in games (in real time) in 2013, and as a nod to Final Fantasy fans everywhere, Yerli said he has used "Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within" as a benchmark goal for the CryEngine 3.
"We wanted to beat the faces in the Final Fantasy movie, but doing in real time what they were doing offline. Every day I was getting posted images from the Final Fantasy movie." Then, after showing off one of the faces his team has produced, he proudly announced that "one face has more technology than the entire first Far Cry."
For our part, we've always wondered when we'd be seeing in-game visuals that are similar to those of the modern-day CGI films. And if any team is capable of pulling it off in the next three or four years, it's Crytek; Crysis was most impressive and everyone is expecting great things from the sequel. Do you agree with Yerli's predictions?
8/17/2009 Ben Dutka