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Making Crysis Couch Friendly

Over the past few days I’ve been tweaking Crysis for couch play. It wasn’t the easiest of battles, but I think I’ve settled with a good compromise with both the controls and the visual fidelity. For the specs of the computer I’m running this on, head over to this post here.

Controller Configuration

Configuring for the Xbox 360 Controller

Note: Without program assists

Crysis has decent Xbox 360 controller support. It instantly recognizes the controller, but you cannot change any button layouts through the menu interface. Instead, I had to delve into some XML files. To my disappointment, I couldn’t find any references for the button layouts or buttons, so I’ve decided to post them here for future reference.

Controller Configuration File Location: %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\Crysis\Profiles\default\actionmaps.xml

Xbox 360 Button Mappings

X button = xi_x
A button = xi_a
B button = xi_b
Y button = xi_y

RT = xi_triggerr_btn
LT = xi_triggerl_btn
RB = xi_shoulderr
LB = xi_shoulderl

Start = xi_start
Back = xi_back

D-pad Up = xi_dpad_up
D-pad Right = xi_dpad_right
D-pad Left = xi_dpad_left
D-pad Down = xi_dpad_down

Left Thumbstick click = xi_thumbl
Right Thumbstick click = xi_thumbr

Left Thumb Stick X-axis = xi_thumblx
Left Thumb Stick Y-axis = xi_thumbly

Right Thumb Stick X-axis = xi_thumbrx
Right Thumb Stick Y-axis = xi_thumbry

Common Action Names

On Foot

xi_use = Use command
attack1 = Shoot
sprint = Sprint
reload = Reload
crouch = Crouch
special = Melee attack
nextitem = Cycle weapons
firemode = Weapon fire mode

xi_handgrenade = Hand Grenade
xi_grenade = Grenade

binoculars = binoculars
zoom_in = Zoom in (with binoculars)
zoom_out = Zoom out (with binoculars)

xi_movex = X-axis movement (left stick)
xi_movey = Y-axis movement (left stick)
xi_rotateyaw = Rotate Yaw (right stick)
xi_rotate pitch = Rotate Pitch (right stick)

hud_weapon_mod = Weapon modification screen
hud_suit_mod = Suit mod screen
xi_hud_back = Bring up the main menu
xi_hud_mouseclick = Mouse click while in HUD

Vehicle Controls

v_boost = Vehicle Accelerate
v_brake = Vehicle Braking
xi_v_rotatepitch = Rotating pitch
xi_v_rotateyaw = Rotating yaw
v_horn = Horn
v_lights = Lights
v_changeview = Change vehicle view
v_changeseat = Change seat
xi_v_movex = X-axis movement
xi_v_movey = Y-axis movement


xi_voice_chat_talk = Push to talk
hud_buy_wapons = Buy Weapons Screen

My Configuration

I tried to make this as close to the Call of Duty 4 standard as possible, but without the ability to toggle sprint (natively), I decided to map the sprint command back to the LB button.

X button = xi_use, xi_reload
B button = crouch (Note: To toggle crouch, use cl_crouchtoggle 1 in the console)
A button = v_brake, jump, xi_hud_mouseclick
Y button = v_changeseat
LB = spring, zoom_out
RB = xi_grenade, xi_handgrenade, zoom_in (Note: Hold to switch through grenade types)
RT = attack1
LT = zoom (Aiming down the sights is a toggle)
Right thumbstick click = special, v_horn
Left thumbstick click = N/A
Back = xi_hud_back (Note: Hold button to see mission objectives)
Start = xi_hud_show_pda_map (Note: Hold button to activate night vision)
D-pad Up = hud_suit_mod
D-pad Down = moveback (Note: moveback mapped for “Maximum Armor” double tap back shortcut)
D-pad Left = firemode
D-pad Right = binoculars

If you like my configuration, feel free to download a copy for yourself.

  Crysis 360 Controller ActionMaps.XML (14.6 KiB, 4,590 hits)

Selecting Resolution & Graphics Settings

Crysis is ridiculously tweakable. The amount of options you can tinker with is astounding (this TweakGuide has most of the important ones) And the number of config files out there to enhance the look of the game is up there as well. I started with a few custom config files, but I ended up using the simplest mod of all: a system.cfg file from Natural Mod 2.0.2. I found it made Crysis very natural looking.

Forget 1080p vs 720p. Welcome 900p.

I don’t know why I’ve been overlooking this for so long, but there’s a resolution between 1080p and 720p which enabled me to play Crysis at 30 FPS for a majority of the time. That resolution is 1600 x 900 aka 900p aka the most obvious 16:9 resolution. It’s a step down from 1080p, but it’s not as drastic as going down to 720p — especially when you’re several feet back on the couch. As long as the GPU scaling is working as intended, I can run Crysis with that resolution.

Along with that resolution, most of the options were set to ‘High’ along the Natural Mod’s configuration and a handful of minor changes. The results are mostly stunning except for this annoying drop to 20 FPS when I’m looking through a scope. The frame rate dropped even more regularly when cloaking is turned on. I have yet to find a solution to this problem. I doubt I ever will which will force me to not use that scope.

It’s bewildering to find that the rest of the game is humming along nicely except when I’m looking through a scope or the binoculars.

Note: For some odd reason, I cannot get this game to run at 720p and scale to full screen. I can eventually get 900p working by tinkering and toggling GPU scaling options via the Catalyst Control Center, but not 720p. Very strange.

13 Responses

  1. Hidiety
    | Reply

    Searched for an hour to find this thanks for the post.

  2. Sascha Böhme
    | Reply

    wow, great post! thanks a lot!!

  3. Mossybinlid
    | Reply

    Dam i had it working but after reinstall it wont work tried copying the files loads of times now any ideas?

    • Anonymous
      | Reply

      I noticed that it stopped working with Warhead, but I never bothered to figure out why since I found Warhead’s defaults to be much more sensible.

  4. Guest
    | Reply

    Sorry if this is a stupid question but how do you get this configuration to work? I tried replacing the original xml files in the Crysis folder with the one you provided here but it doesnt change anything in the game.

  5. Shunny
    | Reply

    I tried this twice and it dont work . i take it you gotto replace the original actionmaps file with this one, but the controls play the same ????  has anyone got this working off this file because im starting to think that he may have uploaded the wrong file.

  6. Lucien Br
    | Reply

    no works?

  7. pixelkorps
    | Reply

    Thanks a bunch – out of nostalgia, I just bought Crysis 1 in a recent Steam sale.

  8. Fable_devil
    | Reply

    You have to go to properties, of the archive here, and check the option “read only”, then the game can’t change the settings again.

  9. Guest
    | Reply

    this is working fine for me except for one problem. I can’t change what binoculars is mapped to for some reason. I can find binoculars in the actionmaps file, but it doesn’t show xi_b as being mapped to it, yet it is when I play the game, so if I map something else to it, it just does that and binoculars.

  10. P Butler
    | Reply

    Thanks so much for this article! I was becoming a bit frustrated with the crouch button assigned to the left thumb stick without being able to toggle it. Didn’t know how to get to the console so I just switched the crouch button with the suit mod button and Tah Dahhh! Thanx again, now the game is playable!

  11. Subarnajit Saha
    | Reply

    How about u map prone to left thumb stick click?

  12. EradifyerAO
    | Reply

    I have been frusterated for YEARS with the terrible vehicle controls on gamepad! I am actually comfortable with the controls as-is otherwise…

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