|XBOX 360||Japan USA|
By Dan Zuccarelli . February 27, 2007 . 8:06pm
That’s pretty much the extent of the conversation a friend and I had after jumping into his game of Crackdown.
Before playing with him I checked his Xbox Live status to see what he’s playing, and I see the picture you see above. I’m laughing already and I haven’t even started playing the game yet. I say to myself, " This is going to be fun."
Let’s get this one thing out of the way at the very beginning; Crackdown is a one-trick pony of a game. But it does that one trick so well, and the rest of the game relies on tried and true game mechanics that you don’t mind in the least.
That one trick? Mad hopping skills. It’s true your aim, strength, driving, explosive abilities all grow over the course of the game as well, but none of those talents can even compare to the rush of jumping from rooftop to rooftop, or leaping tall buildings in a single bound, or climbing up a skyscraper to escape a firefight.
In co-op, everything is just twice as nice. Since there’s NO STORY whatsoever, it frees the game up to just stick to the "get rid of the crime in the city" missions, which can work with one player or two. What works so well about the co-op is the fact that while you’re playing together, you’re not stuck following each other or tackling the same thing at the same time. It plays exactly like the single player campaign, except that there’s someone else close by that’s blowing up the same amount of crap that you are.
For hours on end friends and I played together, sometimes going 20-30 minutes not really saying much to each other, just each kind of doing our own thing in the world. I was enhancing my explosive ability; he was bounding around grabbing agility orbs. When one of us went after a crime boss, or got into a hairy firefight, we’d call the other in for backup. It worked fantastically well, working in tandem and separately seamlessly.
I enjoyed the co-op in Gears of War but in a game like that you’re working on top of each other, following each other through each door and getting involved in the same battles. In Crackdown, while one of us jumped rooftops to a boss fight, the other was driving there from the other side of the city, finishing up whatever he was working on before moving in to help out. It’s difficult to explain but it’s like playing a single player game while someone else is playing another single player game with you.
In fact, the single player game is kind of boring in comparison. I still love it, and I’ve spent HOURS playing it but it’s not as cool as co-op. In fact, all the people I played with agreed that’s there’s really only one problem with it, it’s only 2 players at a time. Over our headsets we lament the fact that we couldn’t get more people involved in the melee. Imagine 4, 6, even 8 people in the world at the same time! Talk about awesome, I could radio out for help and whoever was in the area would be able to break off and help out. Oh well maybe next time.
While messing around blowing stuff up, on a lark we start racing from one end of the island to the other. Leaping higher and higher. Then I miss a jump and plummet off a bridge. As my guy flies through the air to his certain doom (saved by the water!), I hear my friend just laughing his ass off.
So we finally meet up on the other side of the island, atop one of the tallest buildings in the game. As he peers over the edge, I kick him off the ledge. Now I’M the one laughing. So is he, he can’t help it. It’s a six second trip to the hard asphalt below. As soon as he hits, I toss a grenade down, just to be cute. Then I haul ass, cause I know he’s gonna be coming after me. At some point we’ll have to get back to what we’re supposed to be doing in the game, but for now we’re just having too much fun.