Grand Theft Auto-type game on steroids.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Playing an agent instead of a criminal, you're discouraged from abusing your power. But you can still use super powers you acquire in the game to handle criminals in extra-violent ways. You're reprimanded for running over pedestrians, but you can't avoid it.


Violent, bloody, and gory, this game is not for the faint of heart. You can shoot or run over anyone you want.


Much like Grand Theft Auto, this game also has prostitutes walking the streets and includes a reference to a female gang general who uses sex as a weapon.


Includes instances of swearing ("s--t" especially) and other strong language.


Includes more than 100 licensed songs in surround-sound.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some characters in the game use drugs, such as a gang kingpin who relies on it for strength.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this video game is laden with inappropriate content for kids. It earns a "Mature" rating for its intense violence, blood, and gore, and the ability to shoot or drive over whomever you like or throw them off ledges. Some may be offended by the stereotypical rival gangs -- there are Latino, Eastern European, and Asian organizations. Swearing includes "s--t," spewed by pedestrians you almost run over, and some displays of the middle finger. Characters use drugs, and the streets are full of prostitutes. The game offers online play.

What's it about?

Because of its explosive weapons, superhero-like powers and enormous 3-D city, CRACKDOWN can best be described as Grand Theft Auto (GTA) on steroids -- except now you're a genetically enhanced agent instead of a criminal. Sure, you can still carjack vehicles, shoot down gang members, and take on dozens of non-linear missions -- but you're discouraged from abusing your power, such as driving over innocent pedestrians. After you select from one of the available agents at the beginning of the game, and then choose your first vehicle in the Agency garage, you're introduced to the story surrounding three rival gangs who have turned Pacific City into an urban battleground. You also learn about the game's role-playing level-up feature that lets your character upgrade skills in five categories: agility, driving, explosives, strength, and weapons.

Is it any good?


Played from a third-person perspective, the game resembles a colorful graphic novel with its "cel-shaded" visual style. And more so than in GTA games, the Pacific City in Crackdown is quite vertical, so you will be able to climb, hang from, and scale walls, ledges, and boulders in order to best explore this huge city and perform the various missions. More than 100 licensed songs and surround-sound add to the overall immersion factor.

Have a friend on the Xbox Live network? Gamers can play online in an optional cooperative mode, allowing two agents on the scene at the same time.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why these kinds of open-ended "sandbox" games are so appealing and how this game differs from the Grand Theft Auto titles. Do you like that you are an agent instead of a criminal? Do your agent's superpowers make the world he works in seem less real?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360
Available online?Available online
Release date:February 20, 2007
ESRB rating:M for blood and gore, intense violence, sexual themes, strong language, use of drugs (Xbox 360)

This review of Crackdown was written by

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 3 year old Written bymessenger December 13, 2008

the rating is not fair

i have played this game and found the rating extreme the game is about a super cop who skills upgrade whenever you use them consit of driving shooting expolivs agility strentgh the game yes it has swearing but it is only here and there the gore is just a little blood squrit the game should not be compared to gta in gta you are a criminal who sleeps around and shoots up while there is some comparison like carjacking and shooting the game is a simple clean up the streets at the end it gives a little phisophical question so to my fellow parents this game is not like they portray it to be
Teen, 13 years old Written bymclaren700 March 10, 2009


my mom is being totally unfair... she wont even let me talk about the game! i have fallout 3, gears 1 and 2, and halo. IS THIS GAME REALLY THAT BAD?!?!?!?!?!
Parent Written bySmartParent1 February 21, 2012

Great Game but This Site Over Rates Mature Games

This site over rates everything! This game is awesome but saying the game has sex in it is stupid. There is NO SEX. The game is a little violent but the "prostitutes" are just normal civilains with cut off shirts with their lower stomach showing.
What other families should know
Too much swearing


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