With the release of the full CryENGINE 3 SDK from Crytek everyone can get their hands on the Sandbox editor without the complex contracts. There is a bit more info on the licensing models, though the MyCryEngine site is still uninformative about many of the details. Gamesutra's little article details the 20% model as well, all good news for using this mighty engine for things.
This release only ships with one level (the forest) and I havent looked enough to know yet whether we are given as much in the way of assets. The completely new look CryMod now CryDev will hopefully lead me to assets that might flesh out what I will need for my work.
These screenshots are some of the promo ones on the download page (looks awesome)
[CryENGINE 3 Sandbox screenshots via the CryDev download site (shrunk)]
The SDK is a strange download, it doesnt install, it just sits wherever you put it, and you as long as you keep it together the Editor.exe etc just seem to run from there with or without Crysis2 in the mix. The forest level is ok (not perfect) but does show the basics of the engine and I will be keen to see over the next few days how it compares to the tests I had done in CryEngine2.
Plus there is the Crysis2 Mod SDK still available as well, maybe that is better (will all make sense soon enough)...