I can’t say that I’m a fan of the Crackdown video game series, because I’ve never actually played it. I do have the second game in my personal library, but simply never got around to diving into it due to an endless stream of other games to play that took priority.
Crackdown 3 was first announced at E3 2014 with a cinematic trailer, and because of my unfamiliarity with the series the announcement wasn’t something to get super excited about. But the game was on hand at Gamescom 2015 this week, and a lengthy gameplay demonstration was shared of it that, I must admit, kind of blew my mind. The demonstration focuses on the incredible physics of a game that promises a fully destructible city. A couple of games have offered or attempted to offer fully destructible environments, and if you’re a fan of games like that this gameplay will likely cause you to faint.
The only thing is, in order to be this, Crackdown 3 has to do things very differently and borrow a massive amount of power. You can read more and check out the unbelievable 17-minute gameplay demo as well as a first-look video below.
Now, the main thing to remember when watching this video is that, while there will be a single-player campaign, the fully destructible city will only be part of the game’s multiplayer action. And there is a huge reason for this. In order to actually pull something this insane off, they have to, as mentioned above, do things quite differently.
As you’ll see in the video, the buildings of the city are separated into color-coded groups, each color getting its very own server. On top of that, when things really start getting nuts and buildings start coming down, the game will look to the all-powerful cloud for a boost as the Xbox One alone wouldn’t be able to handle it. Hence it only being available in online multiplayer mode.
This is the most interesting part, as it sets a potential table for the future of gaming. How long before lots of games are borrowing power from the cloud to make their games bigger and better, and is that necessarily a good thing? For multiplayer it’s perfect, as gamers are used to the whole “make the most of it while the servers are still active” thing. But will some developers and/or publishers decide to use the power of the cloud to boost a single-player game someday soon, and would the game become entirely unplayable when it’s decided to shut down that cloud-based power assistance? I’d be pretty surprised if that were ever the case, but who knows at this point what some are willing to try.
A couple of other things worth keeping in mind while watching this: one is that the guns were majorly overpowered for this demo to show what the game can do more quickly. This is mentioned in the video, but lots of people who commented on the YouTube page didn’t catch it. The other is that this is still pre-alpha gameplay.