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I was getting ready to write a story about how disappointed I was in Crackdown 2, when I decided to go to Metacritic to see if others felt that same way. I wasn’t surprised to find some lesser-known sites singing the game’s praises — that tends to happen when they receive a prerelease version of a high-profile game (a story for another day). I scrolled down to the scores I felt were more reasonable, and noticed that everything I wanted to say about Crackdown 2 was already highlighted in the review blurbs.
Each one of these quotes perfectly sums up my thoughts on this uninspired sequel:
“For a game to go to so much trouble to replicate its predecessor in so many ways it is downright amazing that it should fail so spectacularly.”
“Because there's almost nothing in Crackdown 2 to recommend it over the competition. On the whole, I'd rather be in Panau.”
“Ultimately, this game is a very sub-par offering that has no real reason to exist. Everything that is good about Crackdown 2 is already in the original Crackdown, and many of the problems in Crackdown 2 are unique entirely to this installment. In essence, all Crackdown 2 does is take the original game and make it worse.”
“An interesting experiment? Sure. But the changes to the game design have all but removed the most-fun parts while emphasizing the game’s weaknesses. Whoops.”
“With most of the additions aimed at streamlining elements of the first game or, at least, making them less of a pain to deal with, Crackdown 2 occasionally feels like a big patch for the first game.”
“This game doesn't significantly build on or vastly improve any of the features of its predecessor, so those with high hopes for a stellar sequel will be disappointed.”
It’s not always necessary to write 2,000 words about a game to convey whether or not it’s worth a person’s time. Sometimes just a few sentences will get the job done just fine. In this case, it's all been said for me.
Bitmob’s Greg Ford is also playing Crackdown 2, and at some point this week he and I are going to discuss our experiences. In the meantime, feel free to share with me your thoughts on the game in the comments below.