It happened with Crackdown and now it returned with Crackdown 2.  My desire to to play Crackdown was close to nothing until I got my first hands-on with the demo and being the completionist I am, I was immediately addicted to finding every single orb.  Crackdown 2's recent demo has proved to be a return to form as I immediately found myself back at the mercy of those little green time consumers.  Crackdown 2 has soared it's way back up my Day One list.  Crackdown 2 has soared it’s way back up my Day One list even without any beta invite attached to it.

Let's keep it simple.  

What's new

Well for starters, there's now an Agility Orb ping that assists in finding all the scattered Agility and Hidden Orbs around Pacific City.  It's a feature I found tremendously helpful in inFAMOUS that I found myself asking why Crackdown didn't have this crucial ability implemented.  It appears someone over at Ruffian Games played inFAMOUS and figured the same.  While the patch that Real TIme Worlds released did help with it's wider radius and amplified sound wave, I was left with 2 Orbs hidden somewhere in the city that have forced me to bow out of that struggle with my head held high.

Not only will you spend most of your time scaling tall buildings for Agility Orbs and scouring every nook and cranny of Pacific City for Hidden Orbs, Ruffian Games found it necessary to add even more items to find.  Audio Logs will give you the backstory as to why Pacific City is in it’s current state, Agency Beacons, once activated, aid in eradicating the freaks and Tactical Locations provide weapon and vehicle drops.

While I’m still not sold on the addition of zombified Freaks, they do provide an easy way to acquire tons of XP.  

What’s the same

The same broken melee combat system still leads to some frustrating deaths so if you’re thinking of Ramboing it up think again.  Jumping head first into a pile of enemies will quickly bring up the Regenerate screen.

The targeting system was never Crackdown’s strongest suit either and it fails here as well.  While you can definitely free aim it, you’ll have better luck dating a fat chick.  The AI seems to have a better revamped version of the lock-on mechanic as every bullet that leaves their weapon seems to land without fail.  Who’s the Agent here?  

Wonky control system aside, I'm glad they decided to leave jump mapped to R3,  I’m in this for the Agility Orbs and hella rad over the top achievements.  As you’d expect the unbelievably ridiculous achievements are back once again and it seems Ruffian Games has had co-op heavily on the mind.  “Co-op Keepy Up” which requires an agent to pass a vehicle back and forth between each other 3 times using the UV shotgun without touching the ground is what Crackdown is all about.  With achievements like that and “Victory Roll”, kill and enemy with a mounted turret while airborne AND upside down, it’s easy to allow the combat off the hook but only slightly.  I can’t even begin to comprehend how I’d go about attempting that one.  Looks like it might be one of those accidental achievements I’ll obtain after mucking something up.   Any achievements you earn in the demo carry over to the full game which is a nice touch.

I’m in the process of testing out Co-op as I write this up and I’ll update it with those impressions once I’m done.  Anyone else had the chance to give it go?

Also posted at Bitmob.com

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