Crackdown 3: Wrecking Zone was supposed to be a showcase in the future of cloud computing. With a fully destructible environment promised, the question is: does the game live up to this promise? Let’s talk about some positive aspects first.
The destruction is obviously the most talked about feature of Crackdown 3‘s multiplayer. The main focus of the promised cloud destruction was 100% destruction. This goal is very well accomplished in terms of how it functions within the game. Blasting and collapsing tall buildings on your enemies feels great. While every explosion blows up a building in a unique way that makes every explosion and building collapse feel different. Unfortunately, this novelty of the destruction very quickly wears off, especially if you played games such as Battlefield V, and the sense of destruction can feel very underwhelming.
Now, something I cited as a positive in my review of Crackdown 3‘s campaign reappears again. That is the sheer verticality of the maps, and how it plays into how you approach killing your enemies. With lock-on aiming, there is really not too much of a learning curve in terms of combat. However, the skill advantage comes down to how well you are able to maneuver your agent around the map. Dodging and being quick on your feet are key parts to survival. Taking advantage of high angles, and dropping down to do a power slam are all good techniques to get the hang of to really soften up an enemy before engaging them.
Showing off Gameplay and the Verticality of the Maps
Now, let’s dive into the negatives. One of the largest glaring issues is the complete lack of content. Crackdown 3 was marketed heavily with the multiplayer being the main focus. However, launching with three maps and only two game modes is unacceptable in 2019. Now it is publicly documented that the multiplayer aspect of Crackdown 3 went through development hell. At the end of the day however, Crackdown 3 is a $60 game and in terms of content, it is sadly lacking in the multiplayer side of things. Weapon variety is OK, featuring some of the best weapons from the campaign. However with no form of leveling system/cosmetics rewards, and only three maps, the game quickly wears out its welcome. Game mode variety could have been much better, with the sheer maneuverability that the game gives you, the fact it doesn’t have a capture the flag mode is a missed opportunity. While to counteract this criticism, these faults could be fixed with post-launch support. However at launch to say that Wrecking Zone is bare bones, is an understatement.
At this time, party support is not available for Crackdown 3: Wrecking Zone but will be coming soon via an upcoming update. The game would be remarkably more fun with a group of friends and could possibly increase the longevity of the multiplayer. Yet there will be a remarkable challenge when party play comes to the Wrecking Zone. Weapon balance will be one of the most challenging aspects of this game moving forward. Due to the lock-on aim feature, and the power of the conqueror revolver. It would be very easy for full teams of four to single out and dismantle people who may be solo queuing or not in full teams. While many games reward team play, being locked on by three people using an overpowered weapon will endlessly frustrate new players. It will take a very delicate touch to be able to tune the balance of this game, player feedback will be paramount.
Crackdown 3’s Wrecking Zone has room to grow, and could hugely benefit from some great post-launch support. I am not sure about its future though, especially in a hyper-competitive market where multiplayer games such as Apex Legends, Battlefield V, Call of Duty, are dominating the conversation, as well as just providing more content for the same cost, (Apex Legends being free doesn’t help either). Crackdown 3’s Wrecking Zone just doesn’t seem to stack up against the big dogs and does very little to impress. It’s a hard road ahead, and I hope the developers prove me wrong in the long run, but only time will tell.