The Nano Stealth and Air Stomps of Crysis 2's Multiplayer Demo

I spent a chunk of yesterday hulking my way around the rooftop gardens and helipad of Crysis 2's Skyline map. The demo gives you a solid sampling of what to expect from the game's multiplayer when it hits.

The free multiplayer demo hit the Xbox 360 today, giving players a chance to check out a single multiplayer map for the upcoming futuristic shooter Crysis 2. The demo includes one map, two modes (death match and King of the Hill like Crashsite), four weapons and four character classes you can play as.

The key difference between Crysis 2's multiplayer and the multiplayer of other first-person shooters you may have played is the heft of the characters, they way they tear through the scenery, jump up buildings and knock people to death. That's all thanks to the powered Nano suit your character wears in the game.

The left bumper of your controller turns on the suit's armor, not only allowing you to absorb more attacks but also dish out an augmented melee blow to take down enemies. The right bumper turns you invisible, making it easier for you to sneak up on enemies, though firing off a shot or pulling a melee attack instantly makes you visible again.

You can also press down on the directional pad to turn on your Nano vision which lets you detect movement and heat signatures. Pushing up on the pad gives you a sort of zoomed in binocular view.

Finally, while running you can press the B button to power slide and while jumping press the b button to do an air stomp.

Combining all of these together can make for some amazing multiplayer matches. My favorite move is to power slide toward and enemy and then pop on armor and melee them as I stand.

All of these enhanced abilities, though, are tied to the power levels of your Nanosuit. Once it's drained you can't use any of them until it powers back up.

The demo's four primary weapons are pretty standard: You've got a shotgun, a sniper rifle, an assault rifle and a fully automatic machine gun.

It's worth noting that the demo has been running into a few hiccups. I had my Xbox 360 lock up twice over the course of maybe three hours of gameplay. Both times required a reboot. The Crytek folks say they're looking into a fix.

While it's hard to get a full sense of Crysis 2's multiplayer with a single, relatively small, map, my time spent with it leads me to believe I'll be playing much more Crysis 2 when it hits PC. PS3 and Xbox 360 on March 22.