It’s two reviews in one! Primarily because Crackdown 2 – French/English is nothing special. The original Crackdown was a surprise hit, because expectations were so very very low. It’s first wave of sales was driven almost exclusively by people who wanted the Halo demo that came with it. And when those Halo fans tried out the game that came with their demo, they were delighted to find a fun, jump around supercop game. There were flaws, sure, but it made it by on suprising fun. This time around, there’s no surprise, and a whole lot of expectation, so the weak points are very obvious. The story is so far from the foreground that it’s meaningless. The aiming system stinks, just stinks. And the tone is inconsistent. The idea is that the Agents are supercops who are better than everyone else and detached from humanity. Fine and dandy, it’s a morally grey game. But whenever I accidentally killed some civilians who were eager to leap in front of my car or gun, the big jerk boss voice would scold me, and I would lose a few points. In a game that was trying to give you a real sense of moral choices and consequences, this would make sense, but in this mess it just kept me from driving anywhere, and not using the rocket launcher as much as I wanted to. Crackdown 2 only gets a 6 out of 10. I played it, and finished it, but it wasn’t a satisfying experience, especially for the cost.
Contrast that with Puzzle Quest 2, a game that combines puzzles, and rpg elements like leveling and weapon customization. Win! I bought and played it on Xbox live for about $20.00, and the single player alone was well worth the money. It even held some fun for the wife, so it was a family success too. A smaller, and cheaper game, it managed to outperform Crackdown 2 in every way except for jumping. There is no jumping in Puzzle Quest 2. I give it an 8 out of 10.