Crytek

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Crytek GmbH
Private
Industry Video game industry
Founded September 1999; 17 years ago (1999-09) in Coburg, Germany
Founders
Headquarters Frankfurt, Germany
Key people
  • Cevat Yerli
  • Avni Yerli
  • Faruk Yerli
Products
Number of employees
552 (2017)
Subsidiaries List of Crytek subsidiaries
Website crytek.com

Crytek GmbH is a German video game and software developer, based in Frankfurt, Germany. Founded by Turkish German brothers Cevat, Avni and Faruk Yerli in Coburg in September 1999 and moved to Frankfurt in 2006, Crytek also operates further studios in Kiev and Istanbul.[1]

The company is best known for developing first installment of the Far Cry series (later sequels and spin-offs being developed by Ubisoft) and the Crysis series, the open world nature of their games which showcase the company's CryEngine, and for pushing the limits on PC specifications to achieve advanced graphics and gameplay. Their most recent major products were the 2013 Ryse: Son of Rome, released as a launch title for the Xbox One, and its supporting iteration of their CryEngine. Some of Crytek's current and past business partners include Electronic Arts, Mail.Ru Group, Ubisoft, Microsoft Studios, Nexon, Tencent, Amazon.com, Sony, Apple Inc., Nvidia, Intel, AMD, FMOD, Scaleform and Xoreax Software.

History[edit]

Far Cry[edit]

Crytek was founded by the Yerli brothers in 1999 in Coburg, Germany.[2] One of their first projects was a tech demo of a game called X-Isle: Dinosaur Island, which showcased their game engine technology that allowed for large viewing distances that other game engines could not do, at that time. They met with NVIDIA during the 1999 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) where their tech demo caught the attention of NVIDIA and various media groups. Crytek later signed on with NVIDIA to distribute X-Isle as benchmarking software for NVIDIA cards.[2]

Crytek's first major game was Engalus, a first-person shooter with a cyberpunk theme and role-playing elements, which was first privately shown at E3 2000. The project first attracted publicity for the company at the 2000 ECTS with their tech demo at the NVIDIA booth, but was subsequently cancelled.[3]

Crytek was approached by Ubisoft to develop X-Isle into a full AAA game. This evolved into Far Cry, which was released in 2004. Alongside this, Crytek announced their licensable game engine, CryEngine, that was used for X-Isle and Far Cry.[2]

In February 2004 German police carried out a morning raid on Crytek offices, acting on an ex-intern's claim that Crytek was using software illegally. The police investigated for more software copies than licenses purchased, but no charges were pressed.[4]

Also in that same month, Crytek and Electronic Arts (EA) announced a strategic partnership to develop a new gaming franchise based on the CryEngine, which would eventually be the Crysis series. Crytek opted in this direction to showcase that the CryEngine was not limited to just what Far Cry had shown.[2] Due to this partnership, Ubisoft acquired the full rights to the Far Cry franchise by 2006 as well as a perpetual license to the first CryEngine, which they have since adapted into their own Dunia Engine.[5]

In December 2004, Crytek and ATI created a special cinematic machinima[6] to demonstrate the future of PC gaming.

Crysis[edit]

On 23 January 2006 Crytek announced the development of Crysis, promising that it would be an original first-person shooter with a new kind of gameplay challenge requiring "adaptive tactics".[7] The game later won several Best PC Game awards from E3 and Games Convention. In April 2006 Crytek moved to new offices in Frankfurt. The first public demonstration of Crytek's CryEngine 2 was on 23 January 2007, one year after Crysis was announced. It has been licensed by many companies such as Avatar Reality, WeMade Entertainment, Entropia Universe, XLGames, Reloaded Studios. On 16 September 2008 an expansion to Crysis entitled Crysis Warhead was released as a PC-exclusive game. In October 2011 Crysis hit consoles, allowing a fresh wave of players to get to grips with the original game via Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network.

Company expansion[edit]

On 11 May 2007 Crytek announced that their satellite studio in Kiev, Ukraine, had been upgraded to a full development studio, giving the company its second development studio. About a week after the upgrade of the Kiev studio, Crytek announced a new studio in Budapest, Hungary.

On 14 July 2008 Crytek bought Black Sea Studios and renamed it to Crytek Black Sea.[8] On 17 November 2008 Crytek opened an office in South Korea named Crytek, Ltd.[9] On 3 February 2009 Crytek purchased Free Radical Design, a British video game company known for the TimeSplitters series, and renamed the company to Crytek UK.[10] On 17 January 2013 Crytek officially opened an office in Istanbul.[11] On 28 January 2013 Crytek opened a new studio in Austin, Texas, Crytek USA, consisting primarily of former Vigil Games employees.[12]

CryEngine 3 and Crysis 2[edit]

On 11 March 2009 Crytek announced on the company's website that it would introduce CryEngine 3 at the 2009 Game Developers Conference, from 25–27 March. This new engine was developed for use on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PCs.[13] On 14 October 2009 CryEngine 3 became available in trade flow for game developers.[14] On 3 March 2010 CryEngine 3 was made compatible with stereoscopic 3D technology.[15] On 22 March 2011, Crytek released Crysis 2, a direct sequel to the original game, in North America. The game was subsequently released in Europe on 24 March and in Australia on 25 March.

Ryse: Son of Rome, Homefront: The Revolution and Crysis 3[edit]

At E3 2011, Crytek exhibited several new projects, including the action game Ryse: Son of Rome. On 20 September 2011, THQ and Crytek announced a partnership to develop Homefront 2.[16] After THQ filed for bankruptcy, Crytek acquired the Homefront franchise from THQ entirely on 22 January 2013.[17] In February 2012 Crytek announced a new cloud based social gaming network called Gface.[18] The service is designed to help users meet people and play multiplayer video games with friends.[19] Crytek began researching a cloud gaming system in 2005 for Crysis, but paused development in 2007.[20][21]

On 13 April 2012 Crytek released the CryEngine 3.4 SDK which brought full DirectX 11 support to the CryEngine SDK.[22] Crytek released Crysis 3 in February 2013[23] and Ryse: Son of Rome on 22 November 2013 as an Xbox One launch title.[24] The PC version of Ryse: Son of Rome was released in October 2014.[25]

Restructuring[edit]

In June 2014 reports surfaced that Crytek had missed wage payments and withheld bonuses for Crytek UK and Crytek USA employees, and the company responded that it was in a "transitional phase" as it secured capital for future projects, with a particular emphasis on online gaming. On 30 July 2014 Crytek announced a strategic deal where the rights to Homefront including Homefront: The Revolution and the Crytek UK staff were transferred to Koch Media. The team continued its work on the game as the new Deep Silver Dambuster Studios. Crytek USA was restructured to remain an engine support team while development of Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age was transferred to Crytek. The team that originally worked on the game started new ventures.[citation needed]

On 20 December 2016 Crytek announced that their studios in Hungary, Bulgaria, South Korea, China, and Turkey would be shut down.[26]

On 7 March 2017 Crytek sold Crytek Black Sea to Sega and The Creative Assembly.[27]

Latest projects[edit]

Crytek is currently working on two free-to-play projects: Hunt: Showdown (which will utilize the fourth generation of the CryEngine currently in development), and updates for the previously released game Warface. The company is also working on two virtual reality projects, namely The Climb for the Oculus Rift and Robinson: The Journey for the PlayStation VR.[28][29] The status of Arena of Fate is unknown after Crytek's restructuring on 20 December 2016, which saw the game's developer Crytek Black Sea get closed down.[30]

Subsidiaries[edit]

Current[edit]

  • Crytek Kiev in Kiev, Ukraine — founded in 2006.
  • Crytek Istanbul in Istanbul, Turkey — founded in 2012.

Former[edit]

  • Crytek Black Sea in Sofia, Bulgaria — founded in 2001 as Black Sea Studios; acquired and renamed in 2008; sold to Sega in 2017.
  • Crytek Budapest in Budapest, Hungary — founded in 2007, closed in 2016.
  • Crytek Seoul in Seoul, South Korea — founded in 2008, closed in 2016.
  • Crytek Shanghai in Shanghai, China — founded in 2012, closed in 2016.
  • Crytek UK in Nottingham, England — founded in 1999 as Free Radical Design; acquired and renamed in 2009; closed in 2014.
  • Crytek USA in Austin, Texas, U.S. — founded in 2013, closed in 2014.

Games developed[edit]

Year Title Publisher(s) Platform(s) Studio(s)
2004 Far Cry Ubisoft Microsoft Windows Crytek
2007 Crysis Electronic Arts Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
2008 Crysis Warhead Microsoft Windows Crytek Budapest
2011 Crysis 2 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 Crytek, Crytek UK
2012 Fibble: Flick 'n' Roll Crytek iOS, Android Crytek Budapest
2013 Crysis 3 Electronic Arts Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 Crytek, Crytek UK
Warface Microsoft Studios, Crytek Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360 Crytek Kiev
Ryse: Son of Rome Microsoft Windows, Xbox One Crytek
2014 The Collectables DeNA iOS Crytek Budapest
2016 The Climb Crytek Microsoft Windows Crytek
Robinson: The Journey PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows
TBA Hunt: Showdown Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Arena of Fate Microsoft Windows Crytek Black Sea

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Crytek closes five studios after rough year". 
  2. ^ a b c d Hall, Charlie (July 11, 2013). "THE STORY OF CRYTEK: FROM X-ISLE THROUGH REDEMPTION". Polygon. Retrieved May 31, 2017. 
  3. ^ Corriea, Alexa Ray (February 7, 2013). "Crytek's canceled FPS was a cyberpunk adventure of 'Half-Life meets Metal Gear Solid'". Polygon. Retrieved May 17, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Crytek Raided". 
  5. ^ Steel, Wade (March 30, 2006). "UBISOFT ACQUIRES RIGHTS TO FAR CRY". IGN. Retrieved May 30, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Crytek and ATI Demo". 
  7. ^ "Crysis Announced". 
  8. ^ Crytek bought Black Sea Studios
  9. ^ "Crytek Opens South Korean Office". Shacknews. Retrieved 25 September 2015. 
  10. ^ "Crytek Buys TimeSplitters Dev. Free Radical". Shacknews. Retrieved 25 September 2015. 
  11. ^ "Crytek". Retrieved 25 September 2015. 
  12. ^ "How Crytek hired the ex-Vigil team (and formed a new studio) based on one meeting". VentureBeat. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  13. ^ "Crytek Announces CryENGINE 3". Crytek. March 11, 2009. Archived from the original on March 23, 2009. Retrieved March 12, 2009. 
  14. ^ "Crytek CryENGINE 3 trade begins". Hardwired. October 14, 2009. Retrieved October 14, 2009. 
  15. ^ "CryTek Adds Stereoscopic 3D To Its Game Engine". ApertureGames. October 14, 2009. Retrieved March 3, 2010. 
  16. ^ Kietzmann, Ludwig (2011-09-20). "Crytek developing Homefront sequel with THQ". Joystiq. Retrieved 2011-09-21. 
  17. ^ "THQ Dissolved, Saints Row, Company of Heroes Devs Acquired". IGN. Retrieved 23 January 2013. 
  18. ^ "Gface, Crytek-backed streaming game network, goes into beta". Joystiq. 2012-02-05. Retrieved 2012-02-05. 
  19. ^ Fletcher, JC (5 February 2012). "Gface, Crytek-backed streaming game network, goes into beta". Joystiq. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  20. ^ Sandberg, Adam (2 April 2009). "Crytek was way ahead of OnLive". That VideoGame Blog. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  21. ^ Dobra, Andrei (27 April 2009). "Crytek Attempted Cloud Gaming Way Before OnLive". Softpedia. Retrieved 16 December 2013. 
  22. ^ "CryEngine 3.4 SDK, Crytek today announced the arrival of a feature-filled update to its award-winning game development solution, CryENGINE 3.". Crytek. 2012-04-13. Retrieved 2012-04-17. 
  23. ^ "Crysis 3 Release Date Announced". GameSpy. 
  24. ^ "Xbox One to Launch on 22 November 2013 in 13 Markets". Xbox. 
  25. ^ "Ryse PC release date and system requirements revealed". PC Gamer. 
  26. ^ "Crytek Outlines Future Plans and Focuses on Return to Core Competencies". June 15, 2015. Retrieved December 20, 2016. 
  27. ^ "Crytek sells Black Sea studio in Bulgaria to Sega and The Creative Assembly". 
  28. ^ Kuchera, Ben (June 15, 2015). "Crytek brings dinosaurs to VR with Robinson: The Journey". Polygon. Retrieved June 15, 2015. 
  29. ^ Phillips, Tom (December 15, 2015). "Crytek shows off VR mountaineering game The Climb". Eurogamer. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  30. ^ "Crytek Outlines Future Plans and Focuses on Return to Core Competencies". June 15, 2015. Retrieved December 20, 2016. 

External links[edit]