Crackdown 2 Demo Hands-On

We check out the upcoming demo of Crackdown 2 during a visit to Microsoft's booth at E3 2010.

We haven't had many opportunities to get our hands on Crackdown 2 up until now, so during a visit to Microsoft's huge booth at E3 2010 today, we made a point of checking out the version of the game that was on display. That version was a generous 30-minute demo that, from what we could gather, will be released publicly at some point before the game's release next month. Interestingly, said demo will let players earn 100 of the game's 1,000 achievement points prior to the game's release, although unlocking all 10 of the achievements will undoubtedly require multiple play-throughs.

The demo didn't feature much in the way of a tutorial and instead threw us straight into a mission to secure a couple of tactical locations (helicopter pads on this occasion) that were overrun by enemies. Our character wasn't leveled up at all, so while he could jump significantly higher and farther than any normal person, he didn't feel especially agile yet. His default weapons were powerful enough to take care of enemies with little trouble, though, even though the lock-on system had a nasty habit of targeting stationary armored vehicles that posed no threat rather than the enemies directly in front of them. Fortunately, the targeting system was also able to lock on to the exploding barrels and such that littered most of the areas enemies were hanging out in.

After securing two of the three helicopter landing areas, we unlocked a second mission that played out in much the same way but required us to instead capture three power generators. Unlike the previous mission, which took place almost entirely at ground level, this one required us to reach the roofs of buildings and made us thankful that we'd taken the time to collect a handful of agility orbs to increase our jumping ability. Jumping and grabbing onto the sides of buildings works in much the way that it did in the first game, though if anything, many of the structures that we encountered were less climber-friendly this time around.

With only about 10 minutes of our 30 remaining, we decided to get into a car (stolen from an enemy faction) and try out a couple of the 15 races that the demo appears to offer. Both were checkpoint affairs that didn't actually involve any opposition, but the presence of traffic and shoot-outs-in-progress on the racing line definitely kept things interesting. The vehicle handling also kept things "interesting" because, presumably as a result of our character's minimal driving skill, the car we were in was extremely twitchy. Fortunately, skills appear to improve pretty quickly, because the game recognizes and rewards even very minor accomplishments--a successful J-turn while driving, for example.

If and when this E3 demo is released publicly, you might find that it's a tough one to put down. Crackdown 2 constantly rewards you with improved skills that make the game more fun, and being able to unlock achievements early is a demo feature that we hope will catch on. Expect more coverage of Crackdown 2 closer to its release in July.

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24 comments
MazzingerZ
MazzingerZ

Why games on the X360 mostly feels like expansions? I mean, despite of being released after 2-3 years, it doesn't feel like a big leap from the previous game...Forza 3, Gears 2 and now Crackdown 2 which looks below today's standards...no woder why they release it now and not during the fall...hope Reach really looks like a whole new game

xpepox
xpepox

the graphics look terrible.

dogpigfish
dogpigfish

The demo is good, but the gameplay is identical to the first one. I don't know how it is different than the first except that it is more difficult to climb onto things. It feels like an expansion to the first game, which I guess isn't a bad thing. Some things were more difficult, like catching racing orbs. Not sure why they decided to make the game a lot more difficult. Addictive, but increasingly more difficult.

jqm1978
jqm1978

Just preordered it from amazon for 55 bucks and got a coupon for ten bucks off my next purchase......also comes with the preorder bonus content......

ReeksOfAwsmnss7
ReeksOfAwsmnss7

I hope they make better use of the cars this time around. I didn't care to do much driving when I was at full agility, haha.

snake3rules
snake3rules

ok full games out in two weeks ... lets get that demo on live now!

edubuccaneer
edubuccaneer moderator

Oh God, more orbs to collect. Thankfully there will be a sort of tracker this time. :D

Danthegamingman
Danthegamingman

I played the crap out of the first game, its been 3 1/2 years, so I am ready for some more

wizdom
wizdom

@ Lord Midas, how is that harsh? To say that a game is better then another game you haven't played yet is silly and borderline trolling, there is now way around it. That's like me saying Gta5 is terrible and GT4 is so much better, how can I say it when i haven't played GTA5 yet? it's trolling or borderline trolling in my books , to say a game you haven't played yet is worse then the previous game is trolling in my books that's my view on it.

ChudWarrior
ChudWarrior

Excellent. Now when is the demo coming out!

JONO51
JONO51

Looks great. Took me a few hours to get into the original but i'm sure I'll be right inot this one.

Zverugin
Zverugin

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Lord_Midas
Lord_Midas

@wizdom. That's a bit harsh. I thought his comment was a great comment. You replying like that only makes his comment more relevant :) Plus, I believe that Crackdown 2 will be excellent. They must be making a better game. It's only natural.

wizdom
wizdom

@downloadthefile so what? I really don't get your pointless comment.

INF1DEL
INF1DEL

Achievements from a demo? Never thought about that before. I don't understand why people care so much about graphics. Terrible graphics can ruin a game and amazing graphics are great but otherwise I never even think about it. Story and gameplay are what's important.

IceJester45
IceJester45

This is the kind of sandbox game I can get into. Give me open spaces and a whole bunch of toys. Excellent. I just can't seem to get past the game's graphics. This game sure ain't a looker.

downloadthefile
downloadthefile

@wizdom obviously he did a good job trolling because you responded.

wizdom
wizdom

@360 Player, and you know that Crackdown is better how? Crackdown 2 isn't even out yet, do a better job at trolling next time.

wizdom
wizdom

Can't wait to try the demo out and see how the game is.

Riggs_ii
Riggs_ii

I already reserved my copy!!! Can't wait, the first one was straight crack !!!

GunGriffin
GunGriffin

It's a crying shame they did not do more to update their old engine from the first game. Most titles that use this type of Cell Shaded Graphics look ten times better. Borderlands, Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm 2, Dragon Ball Z Burst Limit, even games like Super Mario Galaxy have more color and detail then this game dose sadly. The AI also seems kinda boring......... They still stand around and shoot you like morons, and they still unless they are a super powerful boss fighter have no way to kill the player.

renigade16
renigade16

I want it but I need more money!!