Far Cry (X-Isle) [PC – Alpha & Tech Demo]

Far Cry (X-Isle) [PC – Alpha & Tech Demo]

Far Cry is a FPS developed by Crytek Studios from Germany and published by Ubisoft in 2004 for Microsoft Windows. The codename of the project was “X-Isle”, a tech demo with dinosaurs on a jungle island. Crytek history starts with the ECTS 2000. It was there that they impressed all the big publishers with their tech demos at the NVIDIA booth. They continued releasing various tech demos over the years and the X-Isle one evolved into Far Cry.

From the original X-Isle: Dinosaur Island the plot of the game was changed many times before the final one, and once there were aliens too. As we can read from an old Gamespot preview:

In the game, players will be pitted against an ancient alien life-form closely related to the dinosaurs. The aliens have re-created a colony of dinosaurs in an attempt to take back control of the globe. The player must overcome the advanced alien technology in addition to the brute strength and power of the dinosaurs in order to succeed.

In the pre-alpha version of the game, there were some differences as noticed by Slayermaggot81:

  • Different Hud/Health Bar
  • Different and unfinished levels (low textures)
  • More sunny lightning and clear transparent water (ain’t blue-ish like in the final game)
  • Enemies does look different than in the final game
  • Effects like explosions, smoke and blood were looking different

Thanks to Slayermaggot81 for the contribution!



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7 thoughts on “Far Cry (X-Isle) [PC – Alpha & Tech Demo]

  1. bionicman1024

    X-Isle was also to be released on xbox, there is a plot synopsis for the game here:


    It is interesting, I have been playing Far Cry Instincts Evolution recently (cool game BTW) and I think from a visual standpoint, the game engine technology seems to have a similar sophistication to what is seen in the early screen PICS for X-Isle. I wonder if Crytek kept the original code and outsourced it to Ubisoft for the ‘Instincts’ games.

    At the time when X-Isle was first demonstrated, Nvidia’s Geforce 3 was very new, and the tech. the demo of the game demonstrated the capabilities of Pixel and Vertex shaders. Funnily enough, the original xbox came out around the same time as that graphics card, and subsequently the proprietary ‘X-Chip’ graphics processor of the xbox had similar capabilities to the aforementioned graphics card, although the xbox’s custom chip was even further ahead of its time, with features that would later show up in The Geforce FX range of graphics cards.

    1. monokoma

      Thanks for the info Bionicman! :) Imho the xbox version was just a rumor, as X-Isle was just still an early tech demo, they probably never did anything on the real xbox hardware.. but maybe i’m wrong ;)

    1. LiqMat

      Ok, so here are the tech demo release versions for X-Isle:

      You can still find the X-Isle: Dinosaur Island tech demo download here >> https://www.guru3d.com/files-details/demo-of-x-isle-dinosaur-island.html >> This is the last and latest version dated 03-15-2001.

      There is an earlier version (v1.02) here >> https://www.fileplanet.com/archive/p-34577/Cryotek-X-Isle-Tech-Demo/download >> This version is dated 09-18-2000. You can download the v1.03 patch for this earlier version here >> https://web.archive.org/web/20020126123944/http://www.crytek.de/xislepatch103.zip

      The newer 2001 version seems to run fairly well on a Windows 7 64 box, but the earlier version does not. You may need to use a virtual machine with WinXP or real vintage hardware to get it running properly.

      The only version I could not find was version 2.01 which is dated November 2000. I based my version info from this link >> https://web.archive.org/web/20010330072446/http://www.crytek.de:80/hp/xisd.htm

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