Finally, a proper look at Crackdown 3's much-wondered-about multiplayer mode in action, and those big promises of buildings being blown to pieces seem to be... born out. It looks quite fun.
Inside Ruffian's struggle to break free from its legacy.
There is a special kind of halo around the things games do that they don't really have to. The radio stations in GTA, or the fact that the GPS disappears when you go through a tunnel. The tinkle of shell-casings hitting the floor in a shooter that you would assume is too brisk and frowny for such distractions. The plaque you sometimes find by monuments on the battle royale island of Fortnite. These things don't define a game, but they quietly help to make things feel richer. They are signs that someone cares, and maybe, even, that somebody was having fun thinking of the fun that you would one day have in the worlds they were making.
It's still brilliant. It really is. And on Xbox One X, Crackdown is even better than you remember it. The 2007 classic scales up wonderfully to 4K resolution, but the biggest takeaway here is that, remarkably, the gameplay still holds up - it's still utterly superb. I picked up the game exactly where I left off - with a tooled up, maxed-out Agent ready to take on the final gang left in the game, the villainous Shai-Gen. What happened next is Crackdown at its best: absolute carnage on the streets of Pacific City, urban warfare on a simply spectacular scale. It is - quite possibly - the best £1.50 I've ever spent on a game.
Considering Crackdown 3 is one of the few platform exclusives that Microsoft has at the moment, its showing at E3 seemed rather muted. The short campaign trailer may have had a big dose of Terry Crews, but it was surprisingly light on destruction - a feature, it turns out, that's actually limited to its multiplayer portion only.
I didn't expect much of Crackdown. I wanted a next-gen GTA and while this shared the same pedigree, it was about fighting crime rather than causing it, and spoken of mostly as a means to get into the Halo 3 beta. Keenly aware of my inability to keep up with Halo players, I steered clear, and it wasn't until a few months after release that I was persuaded to pick up a second-hand copy.
Ruffian's indie game Game of Glens is suffering from a backlash.
There's nothing much to do at the top of the Agency Tower. Trust me: I've been there before.
In May 2013 Microsoft teased a new entry in the Crackdown series with a tiny image shown during the company's Xbox One reveal event, but we haven't heard anything about it since - despite some hoping it would be announced at Gamescom this week.
UPDATE: Microsoft has just confirmed the earlier reports that next month's free Xbox 360 Games with Gold titles will be Crackdown and Dead Rising 2.
It looks like a new Crackdown game for Xbox One is in the works.
Realtime Worlds, developer of ABP, has gone into administration – the first word coming earlier this afternoon from an employee via Twitter.
The outstanding Crackdown has been added Xbox Live's Games on Demand for £14.99.
Ellie is in place. Her coverage will begin shortly.
In the first of our technical retrospectives, Digital Foundry takes a look at Crackdown on Xbox 360. Two years on from its release, it remains an intriguing game: still state-of-the-art in some respects, but superseded by competitors in several others. It's also fair to say that from a gameplay perspective, it remains one of the single most wonderful games you can play on Xbox 360. A brand new copy can be bought for a pittance now, so if you're a newcomer to the Microsoft console, it's a must-buy.
Crackdown developer Realtime Worlds has said it's in "ongoing discussions" with Microsoft following reports that Crackdown 2 is being developed by a new studio, Ruffian, formed by ex-RTW staffers.
Realtime Worlds boss Colin MacDonald has offered a glimmer of hope for a sequel to Crackdown, the fantastic Xbox 360 openworld romp from 2007.
Crackdown developer Realtime Worlds has secured USD 50 million of financing, according to TechCrunch.com.
Microsoft Game Studios boss Shane Kim has confirmed that the Marvel Universe MMO has been canned.
The latest Crackdown downloadable content included a bug that's been responsible for resetting saved game files.
The two downloadable content packs and title update for Crackdown are now available on Xbox Live.
Realtime Worlds has detailed the contents of its upcoming downloadable content for Crackdown.
Realtime Worlds has been teasing us about Crackdown downloadable content for a couple of months now, but this week community liaison "Agent G" offered us a genuine glimpse of it - courtesy of a screen-capture posted on the official forums.
A patch for Crackdown should download automatically the next time you run the game while you're hooked up to Xbox Live, if it hasn't already.
Elsewhere on the site this morning is a very enjoyable Q&A with Crackdown producer Phil Wilson, who fields your questions about the game - and sheds a bit of light on what to expect from the forthcoming downloadable content.
Crackdown was released by Realtime Worlds in February to critical acclaim and excellent sales. The game scored a well-earned 9/10 on Eurogamer with Tom Bramwell informing us that it was his '...favourite Xbox 360 game of recent times' [still is - Tom Bramwell, for it is he]. The game has also generated one of the most popular threads on the Eurogamer forum, with members discussing their tactics and sharing the fun things they find to do in the world of Crackdown on a daily basis. With this in mind, and some Irish soda bread and a crate of Guinness in the post, producer Phil Wilson thus agreed to answer some of the community's questions. Given that the Guinness had been handed over before he answered any questions, we can't guarantee the coherency of his answers. Then again, we can't guarantee the coherency of our questions.
Two format exclusives have gone head to head in this week's charts - with the ageing PS2 beating the next-gen Xbox 360 to the number one spot.
Xbox Live may have popped out for a smoke, but when it comes back in you should be able to get your hands on four free new agents for Crackdown, which is due out this Friday.
Mr Publisher pays the bills, and Mr Publisher wants a GTA game. What do we make? Well, let's have bigger guns than GTA, obviously. Let's have faster cars. Let's have more swearwords. And, I dunno, protection rackets? A better lock-on camera? It's not like you can do much else in a city!
If GTA games were an entrance exam for developers, that would be the wrong answer. The right answer would be something like Crackdown, and would involve taking people who submit that kind of answer, kicking them 50 feet into the air and juggling them with heat-seeking rockets for bonus points.
The difference between GTA and Crackdown isn't that you used to be a villain and now you're a cop. It's that you are the Incredible Hulk of cops. You start off a complete weakling, except you can already leap 15 feet, throw cinderblocks the length of a cricket square, and regenerate your health in-between absorbing hails of bullets. No wonder nobody messes with you. Well, everybody messes with you, because they're programmed to, but you like it that way. It gives you an excuse to kick them off the tops of buildings.
Crackdown was originally set to feature 200 unlockable achievements, but Microsoft wouldn't allow it, according to an MTV report.
It's GTA in the future. Or how about: GTA where you're the cop. GTA with superheroes perhaps - but like 2000AD superheroes, not Marvel superheroes. It's a cel-shaded GTA. Right, GTA with 2000AD-style cel-shaded superhero cops from the future. Will that do?
Microsoft has reassured gamers worried about not finding a Halo 3 beta invitation in their copy of Crackdown.
As promised, Xbox Live Gold members can this morning say hello to a playable demo of Real Time Worlds' Crackdown.
Those of you expecting to test-flex genetically enhanced muscle today will now have to wait until the end of the month for the Crackdown Xbox Live demo.
If you are one of the many Eurogamer readers from across the pond who previously tried but failed to gain entry to the spring Halo 3 beta, do not despair! Microsoft has announced a further two additional paths to make your virtual dreams come true.
Your first option is to log into Xbox Live and play through three gruelling hours of Halo 2 online, between Thursday, Feb. 1, 2007, 12:01 a.m. EST and Feb. 3, 2007, 11:59 p.m. EST. If your confidence still hasn't been shattered by twelve year-old toilet-tongued bratlings, then head over to the Halo 3 website and be one of the first 13,333 gamers to register for the "Rule of Three" program.
Failing to do this will leave you with only one other choice for now: to buy Real Time Worlds' co-op crime-busting title Crackdown. It's released across the US on 20th February, and in Europe on 23rd February, with certain marked copies of the game acting as keys that will let you download the required Halo 3 beta data from Xbox Live Marketplace.
Get rid of the dirt on the streets using your own brand of Flash-cleaner, as Microsoft announces a 23rd February release date for crime-battling title Crackdown.
Xbox 360 titles Forza Motorsport 2, Crackdown, Shadowrun and Too Human are now down for release before the end of June 2007, Peter Moore has admitted.