The compulsive desire to play the latest games at the highest resolution with every single graphical parameter maxed out is the only logical reason to shovel money down the black hole, otherwise known as system upgrade. However, there are two sides to the tendency that makes us tick every feature in the eye candy department. As important as it is to run games in hardware heaven at ultra high settings, it is equally important to have someone to share the graphical goodness with.
I mean, even Archimedes had to run around naked yelling 'Eureka' to share his discovery. So when you've sold a kidney or two to fund your latest gaming rig, you may be equally compelled to indulge in similar levels of attention seeking. But now that we have serious laws discouraging indecent exposure, we bring you games (in no particular order) to pimp your sweet gaming rig out to your friends in a safe PG13 manner.
Crysis Warhead and Crysis (with Natural mod)
The original Crysis and the stand-alone expansion Crysis Warhead rank among the few games that can bring any monster PC, you throw at them, right down to its knees with consummate ease. For a good reason too, because despite being released three years ago - and three years is a decade in terms of PC hardware - there is nothing out there that even comes close to the graphical goodness of these games. If you want to impress your friends, anything else will do, but Crysis is a game you whip out when you want to make their eyes bleed.
Crysis features a staggering amount of texture detail, and packs in almost 1GB of texture data. CryEngine 2 is a complex piece of code with over 85,000 shaders bringing unprecedented volumetric lighting and post process effects like blur, bloom, and HDR with unseen beauty and precision. The Natural mod (download here) for Crysis upped the ante even further by increasing the complexity of lighting effects. Just check out the screenshots to know what I mean.
Crysis Warhead did everything that Crysis did, and better, but a tad bit more optimized. That's not saying much though, as both Crysis games are known to be resource hogs and well established benchmarks for performance. No wonder the common gamer refrain is, "Can your system run Crysis?" It is the Mount Everest of the enthusiast world, if you must.