Crackdown 3 (Campaign) Xbox One X Review

September 29, 2019 by  
Filed under Xbox One, Features, Reviews & Features, Xbox

Publisher: Xbox Game Studios  Developer: Sumo Digital  Genre: Action  

Players: 1-10  Age Rating: 18+  Other console/handheld formats: N/A

Crackdown 3 is my first venture into the Crackdown series, and after having a taster of the previous two games, I would say this is the best game to introduce you to the series.

Saying that, I did play this through in online co-op, and there are a lot of issues with lag, being kicked from the network, and many glitches that occur because of it. It was never ‘game breaking’ or completely unplayable, but there are a lot of issues that do give some cause for frustration. I persevered with the game, however, because it is, ultimately, a fun game to play.

Crackdown 3 has you melee-ing, shooting and jumping around a generous, but not overwhelming, open map, hunting down various TerraNova crime lords by defeating their cronies and taking over their business empires, be it by bringing control back to a series of monorails, destabilising a number of turrets or bringing down oil refineries churning out gloopy green poisonous substances.

Each area is guarded by a horde of enemies, and once you manage to completely stabilise these areas, you then unlock and can fight the boss, of which there are 9 in total. Bosses can range from easy to extremely difficult, and there are times when you might not be able to focus on the boss because there are so many enemies that bombard the screen and so much action taking place.

Crackdown 3 is a game with as straightforward a premise as you can get – find enemies and blast them all away! You control Agents from The Agency, whose goal it is to keep the peace. There is a story of sorts, though it’s not one I was very enamoured with. After defeating certain bosses, a cut scene will play, though admittedly I just wanted the scene over with to quickly get back to the gameplay. There are two Directors who will guide you throughout the gameplay, perhaps a little bit too much, offering advice about manoeuvres or orbs a tad too often, even when you have completed the story.


The game is nowhere near as destructible as early trailers suggested, with the cloud tech being limited to the rather throwaway competitive multiplayer modes.

As an agent, you can upgrade 5 different abilities: agility, strength, firearm, driving and explosives. You upgrade by performing certain actions, such as driving or fighting enemies, and for agility you can collect green orbs located about the map, these orbs being the ones you are most encouraged to find. You can also find hidden blue orbs that will enhance all of your abilities at once, and as you collect orbs and upgrade, there are a number of missions unlocked to put your skills to the test, such as platforming up Propaganda Towers that require you to be at a certain level in order to be able to complete it.

Finding agility orbs is easy enough, with a set number of orbs in each area of the map. They make a low, droning sound when you are near to one and then you need only to try and pinpoint where it is, sometimes easier said than done. Orbs can be found anywhere, high or low, and the best approach to finding them is to keep an ear out. Upon finding enough agility orbs, you’ll gradually gain one of the best abilities in the game; to jump very high.

As well as enemies, other missions for you to complete include finding the DNA of other agents; collecting recordings; completing the many aforementioned Propaganda Towers, and driving/stunt challenges, and the newly added wingsuit challenges. There’s a lot of variety in gameplay, though aiming to do too many of the same missions can feel repetitive – it’s definitely best to mix things up.

The environments are colourful and neon bright, with lots of vehicles and guns to find and unlock. Visiting a Safe Point will allow you to change weapons, as well as switch which Agent you want to play as, and helps to increase low health. It should also clear alerts that cause enemies to keep track of you, following you relentlessly as they try to kill you, but this didn’t always seem to work for me.

Mostly, I had a lot of enjoyment playing the campaign, taking my time and exploring the many nooks and crannies to find the many orbs, simply jumping around a lot, and completing challenges. While being bombarded by enemies isn’t my ideal style of gameplay, finding it too overbearing and frantic – and often passing it over to my partner to complete – for those that enjoy getting stuck in to action-packed gameplay, stylishly manoeuvring your agent to avoid enemy gunfire whilst striking back with your own array of firepower, you’ll find Crackdown 3 an enjoyable romp to play through.