Ryse: Son of Rome is the “Best Thing” Microsoft’s Phil Spencer Has Ever Seen on Xbox One

During a 20 minute long chat with Larry “Major Nelson” Hryb, Microsoft Game Studios Vice President Phil Spencer shared a definitely positive opinion about the latest build of Crytek’s Ryse: Son of Rome:

I played a build of Ryse last week, some new levels on kit, and it’s the best thing I’ve seen on Xbox One. Just incredible. Not only the combat…a lot of people are asking about combat, and combat is coming along…It’s strong…

Crytek always did a great job with graphics, and you can see these scenes that truly…I mean I just sat there and stared for a little while. It’s amazing work.

It is (a different game from Crysis), and that’s one of the reasons why we wanted to partner with them on this. They’ve traditionally done shooters, think about FarCry, think about Crysis. We have a lot of shooters on the platform and they came and said “We want to try something new, we want to be first party for the first time”. I’ve known that team for seven, eight years back when they did FarCry and thought: “what a great opportunity to come together”.

That’s definitely high praise, considering that Ryse isn’t even a title developed by Spencer’s own studios. Of course we can’t exactly expect him to be neutral about it, but it’s still promising. I doubt he’d go out of his way to define the title the “best thing” he’s seen on Xbox One if he wasn’t at least relatively confident about it.

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  • Sheldon Prescott

    That reminds me of how I was when I played Rage on Xbox 360. I just sat there looking like, wow…that’s gorgeous! I’m thinking Ryse will give me the same reaction.

    • Ron

      Sheldon you have a problem, you need help. Ryse looks amazing though.

  • benbenkr

    As usual, Crytek games look amazing.

    But when it comes to gameplay… yawnfest.
    Let’s hope Ryse is different.

    • Anthony J. Mitchell

      Totally agree.

    • MeTheGreat

      I still don’t agree with that. Have you played Crysis Warhead or Crysis 2 ? They had brilliant gameplay. Fast paced, responsive, with so many badass ways to do stuff. I replayed Crysis Warhead tons of times, and some of Crysis 2 over and over. Gameplay, at least on PC was fantastic !
      I played Killzone 3 on ps3, and it was ok, but nothing compared to Crysis Warhead or 2 were in terms of gameplay. It was so shallow. (They seem to be changing that with Shadow Fall)
      The best thing about Crysis Warhead was that like the previous Crysis, it was a proper simulation. There are advantages to having a world done so dynamically and in realtime. Some games have beauty, but not really beauty that you can fully interact with.
      That said, I have played Crysis 2 on PS3… and yeah… I’d rather play Killzone 3 I guess.

      • benbenkr

        Finished Crysis 1, Warhead, partly 2 and half of 3. So I think I’m in a good place to say how much of a yawnfest they were.

        All those things you could do in the game? Uhm.. so? There’s no sense of “wow!! what I did was just.. hot damn! I can’t even- !@*&#” moments for me at all.

        • MeTheGreat

          well it must be just opinion then.All those things you could do in the game were brilliant, they were varied and were fun. So a game is a yawnfest if it doesn’t blow you away with it’s gameplay and have Wow ! moments all the time ? It’s gameplay was neatly done and responsive.Things like kicking cars onto enemies and ground stomping, for me, were wow moments if I pulled them off. Running around, jumping, climbing, flanking my opponents. Those were awesome moments too. Again, tons better than most other fps singleplayer games where you can do very little besides basic movement and shooting. I loved it. I could do whatever I wanted, however I wanted. The fact that you could cloak was brilliant, and even the MP in Crysis 2 (beta) that I played was lots of fun, and made me feel really powerful.

          Crysis 2… how was the gameplay in crysis 2 lackluster ??? It was some of the most fun gameplay ever in an fps game…it was amazing. It made me feel so powerful.

          Besides, Crysis Warhead got very good reception and reviews. Crysis 2 got good reviews too. In fact, it was praised extensively for it’s gameplay ! It’s the lackluster graphics and lack of simulation that irritated a lot of PC players. That and the story could have been better

          Unfortunately, it seems from reviews that Crysis 3 is mediocre :/
          That sucks, was really excited about that game. Apparently the level design and balancing issues let it down.

          All I know is that they’re better than most other fps games out there at the time in terms of singleplayer. They have a certain depth that others lack. This depth makes playing it more satisfying

          • benbenkr

            Yes it’s a matter of opinion and you’re entitled to yours just as I’m entitled to mine, still a yanwfest to me regardless.
            The game just didn’t made me care for it, storywise or gameplay wise. 🙂

          • MeTheGreat

            lol yeah 🙂

  • Shazbot

    QTE: The Game is the best thing on the XBone? I fear to ask what’s the worst…

    • JerkDaNERD7

      What’s worst?

      QTE obviously…..if your playing on pansy difficulty, very obvious indeed!

      • Lemondish

        I don’t know if you’re aware, but the QTE executions play through even if you fail. The only purpose to do them is for additional points. Your failure doesn’t lead to you dieing, no matter the difficulty.

        Yes, the game literally plays itself.

        • aielchief123

          actually the QTE was a fill in, not an indication of the final combat in the game. http://www.gameplanet.com.au/xbox-one/news/g51ef118216c75/Ryse-not-as-QTE-heavy-as-its-E3-build-implied-Crytek/

          • Nicholas Perry

            Their decision to show what they did at e3 was a very poor one. One that I think will ultimately come back to bite them.

          • JerkDaNERD7

            To bite them even IF they prove them otherwise?! Or you just prefer them bitten either way, right?!

          • zakcole

            “prefer them bitten either way” this has pretty much been the basis of every console debate I’ve seen.
            “CHANGE THIS AND THIS AND THIS”, “oh look, they changed it. They have no spine! SONY FTW”

            It’s no longer a good thing to be considered a gamer since these are the people I’m associated with. I’m going to come up with a new title. Like, gaming connoisseur. Or adult with a game habbit.

          • Lemondish

            That’s certainly good news. It played pretty boringly. The graphics were phenomenal for the character models, but the environment was bland and grey. Hopefully the next thing they show is a more fleshed out combat system and some different scenery.

        • JerkDaNERD7

          Mark this post, and wait until they reveal more. Then I would love to say I told ya so.

          • Lemondish

            Sure, I’ll wait until they reveal more. The amount that I played was terrible for showing off a flagship title, though. I won’t get a chance to be at Gamescom, so my next hands on will likely be at launch.

          • JerkDaNERD7


        • zakcole

          I don’t know if it’s a genetic thing, or if it’s a nurture over nature thing. But are some people only able to process parts of information? And why does that part of the information always benefit their already narrow minded opinion?

          The QTE’s are for executions. You’d have already defeated your opponent if you got to that stage. Think of it as stamping on a corpse on GTA for overkill…

          • Lemondish

            God of War did QTE executions right. Do you want to know how? By making failure something real and recognizable. It was skill based, however elementary that turned out to be, I’ll give you that.

          • zakcole

            Funny this. You comment on the day of Gamescom. When Ryse footage has been shown. Glad you brought me back here. Combat is not QTE heavy. Watch the gameplay footage for the Gladiator mode…

  • XBO FTW!

    XBO FTW!

  • Microsoft sux

    If the best XBox 180 has is a Quicktime Button Fest, then it is doomed

  • Anthony S.


  • PureSophistry
  • Mildra

    It’s quite telling that the entirety of his comments were about graphics and the studio developing the game. Either way, i’m willing to bet that you’ll hear about the “cloud” in future press comments for Ryse.

  • Nicholas Perry

    (And this is a Promotional screenshot too that is supposed to be a bullshot)
    I’ve seen better looking games on PC.

    Heck, Crysis 2 with a free fan high resolution texture pack looks better than this game.

    It’s a good looking game for sure that i’m interested in, even though I ultimately know I’ll be disappointed on the Story front as per usual Crytek games.

    • Emanuele Emaxx Zeppieri


    • Kenneth Richardson


    • Gaben

      It was all from pre-alpha gameplay though so its quite outdated to the final build

  • jspillen

    Forza looks exciting… all these other titles look like OK 360 titles, but their is yet to be anything next gen.

  • Erik Jacobs

    “The best thing on XBone”. Great, for a console that hasn’t reached consumers yet this is a totally useless comment. Same could apply to any new to be releashed ps4 title by the way.

  • Truth

    Xbox One FTW indeed!

  • Cory Johnston

    Quick Time Events: The future of Micro$oft published exclusives.

    • zakcole

      The game that everybody has been so wet over these past months – TLOU – has quick time events.

      • Geoffrey Davey

        I played through it and don’t remember a single one. Mashing X to strangle someone every once in a while is different than an entire combat system reliant upon QTEs.

        • zakcole

          Funny i’m just getting this reply now. Seen Ryse at Gamescom yet?

  • Dimitris Pavlou

    titanfall got me hyped,ryse looks amazing

  • Rory Breslin

    There looks to be to much of the “hit the correct button sequence” during fights for me. I think i’ll leave this title.

  • shark_tsuki

    This guy have low standards for gaming. There are lots of better games in Xbox One. lol.

  • MeTheGreat

    As for graphics, The Division, The Witcher 3, Watchdogs, Infamous Second Son, Battlefield 4 really have me excited.
    The witcher 3 has me the most excited. They’ve already added in tons of awesome new features. In an Angry Joe interview at E3, that Tomas guy from CD Projekt said that what they showed at E3 was after only 2 months of engine reprogramming. In other words, they weren’t quite done yet. He then basically said “So imagine what it will look like when it comes out”

    Also, earlier they’ve said they wanted to achieve CG quality levels with The Witcher 3. People often say that… but after playing The Witcher 2, I know they won’t disappoint