May 11, 2007 - It's no secret that Crackdown has been piggybacking on the hype that the Halo 3 beta has build. That's not to say that Crackdown isn't impressive in its own right, but packaging a free Halo 3 beta invite with the game couldn't have hurt sales numbers very much. And wouldn't you know it? Just one week before the Halo 3 beta is slated to launch, a trio of impressive downloadable content packs for Crackdown arrives on Xbox Live Marketplace.
Hey, no one ever said Microsoft wasn't smart, and releasing even more content for 800 Microsoft points just as every Crackdown owner in the free world is logging on to Marketplace to download the beta is pure genius. The good news? It just so happens that the DLC is a pretty swank little package.
First off, there are really three downloads here: a mandatory title update with some minor upgrades and tweaks; the Free for All with new achievements and game modes (free of charge); and the Getting Busy pack with new vehicles, weapons and game mode (for 800 points.). Obviously downloading the Free for All pack is a no-brainer, as it comes with a fun new Keys to the City mode allowing you to insert cheats on the fly. You can spawn any agency vehicle at any time, upgrade your skills and stack hundreds of explosive barrels for true mayhem.
The armored vehicle fires rockets and kicks ass.
But is Getting Busy worth scratching off the code on a new Microsoft Points card? Yes, yes it is. The three new vehicles are hot: the agency race car is fast and grips the road with ease -- perfect for the new Street Racing mode we'll get to in a moment. The Armored Vehicle is a friggin' tank ripped straight out of the War on Terror. Using the left bumper or B, you can aim with the right stick and fire guided missiles at Pacific City gangsters, now peeing in their pants. Nothing short of a banana in the tail pipe can stop this thing. Finally, the Buggy adds a new climbing dimension to driving -- you can go straight up rock faces and buildings and ride the walls of tunnels. It's equipped with a mini-gun that uses the same weapon controls as the armored vehicle.
The only problem we've found with the new rides is that we can't find them in the Agency Garage during the campaign. Rather, we used them in Keys To The City mode after using a spawn spawn. Also, the vehicles do not upgrade with your driving ability, but that's not so terrible since they are so badass to begin with.
Get vertical in the buggy.
The new Street Racing mode fuses Crackdown and Forza. There are six different tracks and six races with different cars for each track, limos, trucks, whatever. Other tracks let you choose the new race car or the buggy for some off-road action. The AI is tough as well -- CPU drivers will try to ram you off the road as you pass them. A friend can jump online and race with you as well. What's especially fun is how you can jump out of your car, pelt bullets into another car, get back in your car and continue the race.
As for weapons, you get a sweet harpoon gun that lets you stick gangsters to walls and, even better, to cars. Then jump in the car and laugh as gangsters are dragged along the streets of Pacific City. There's even an achievement for tagging five gangsters on one car.
The MSK lobber fires homing rockets at a rapid clip thanks to the rotating muzzle. New proximity charges can be attached to any surface and explode when a gangster or agent enters a visible field. Civilians can walk through unscathed, unfortunately. The new minigun takes a few seconds to get going, but then is able to fire hundreds of high-caliber bullets into enemies -- think Terminator 2 here. Finally, a cloaking device turns you into the Predator for a few seconds and helps you to run past enemies undetected. The rub is that the device drains your suit shield, rendering you vulnerable when you become visible again.
Use the harpoon gun to stick gangsters to cars. Then make them pay.
Finally, Getting Busy adds nine new rooftop agility races to the list. There's a new minigame called Stockpile in which players try to find all the game-specific orbs in as short of time as possible. There are two new online games: Checkpoint Chase and Rocket Tag. In Checkpoint Chase, you and another player try to start from the garage and try to reach a randomly chosen point on the map -- first player to 10 points wins. Get there by any means necessary. In Rocket Tag, one player uses a rocket launcher and hunts the other player who defends himself with a wee pistol. To win, the hunted must survive for 60 seconds. All of this is worth five new achievements.
Rarely do we see an update come packed with so much content, and we're not even talking about the Free for All or title update, either. If you have the points and love Crackdown, this is a great buy. At the very least, it's better than Double Dragon. Zing.
Thanks to IGN.com for sharing the news with us!