A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
While agents with special powers take on terrorists, corrupt politicians, and other enemies of freedom, the heightened focus on combat and destruction overwhelms the positive messages of the gameplay.
Positive Role Models
You can play as more than 20 different agents -- each with their own special abilities -- but the main character is modeled after actor Terry Crews ("Commander Jaxon"). He's nearly killed at the start of the game and you work to rebuild his strength and abilities, as he fights against opposing threats. While a likable character who wants to do good, Jaxon and others inflict pain and death on many people.
Ease of Play
The game is simple to interact with, although it starts with a mandatory 20 minute tutorial to familiarize yourself with the controls. The captions are very small and difficult to see at times, so you might miss some instructions, but it wont take long to figure out what to do and how to do it.
Violence & Scariness
While it's somewhat cartoon-like, combat is the main gameplay focus. You experiment with your weapons, special abilities, and the environment to kill enemies and move onto additional missions or parts of the urban map. You'll use handguns, machine guns, laser blasters, bombs, and more, along with the ability to hurl people and objects. There's blood and blood splatter in battle, but not too much gore. Some cut-scenes show people screaming in pain as they're vaporized.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
There's no nudity, but it does contain some sexual material, including some adult signs in New Providence, like "XXX Smut," "Lust" and "The Hot Room: Everyone's Naked, Your depravity is our desire." There's also sexually suggestive lines of dialog, like "My purchases are all booze, lube, junk food and porn," "[He] was Niemand's former 'hump-buddy," and "I'm not paying that much just to get an STD."
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Frequent use of swearing, including "motherf--ker," "f--k you," "holy s--t, "a--hole," "sons of bitches," and many more.
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Products & Purchases
The game's main characters is modeled after and voiced by actor Terry Crews, who also stars in the promotional materials and commercials for the game. This is the latest installment in the franchise.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
One of the main antagonists smokes a large cigarette or cigar, and dialogue refers to alcohol and drugs, sometimes as the person consumes it or destroys it.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Crackdown 3 is an action game for the Xbox One and Windows PCs. It's the latest game in the Crackdown franchise, which features a lot of superhero-like endeavors against human opponents. The game has a heavy focus on combat, using modern-day and futuristic weapons and abilities to kill human enemies -- and there's blood and blood splatter often seen during and after skirmishes. Enemies may cry out in pain, die in explosions (though no gore's seen), or be seen vaporized in cut-scene movie sequences. While there isn't any nudity in the game, there's lot of sex-related signage in this city, as well as sexually suggestive lines of dialogue that comes up. There's ample profanity as well, including words like "f--k," "mother--ker," and "s--t." A character smokes a cigar or a long cigarette, and there are also comments about drugs and smoking that are occasionally scattered through the game, either when a character is destroying the items or using them.
Is It Any Good?
While fun, accessible, and there's a lot to do in the game modes, compared to other amazing third-person action games out there, this game really is just average with lots of repetitive play. Aside from playing as the charismatic Terry Crews (and several other agents to choose from), players will mostly enjoy the game's verticality (there are some seriously tall buildings and other structures to climb). You'll also like hopping into transforming cars to race around the city, and the character progression system to upgrade your agent. You can imagine how fun it is to upgrade your agility to the point where you can literally leap over buildings or have enough strength to lift a car and toss it at a boss. Aside from somewhat long load times, the game's scope and art direction are worth mentioning, and the visuals are all nice eye-candy.
So, what's wrong? A few things, other than the previously stated underwhelming gameplay, especially when held up against other recent blockbusters. Many of the fetch-this and find-that scavenger hunt-style missions grow tiring. There's some variety, when you mix in some street racing and other assorted tasks, but there isn't too much exciting action woven in over time. Players were promised a fully destructible game world, leveraging Microsoft Cloud, but this tech is only available in Wrecking Zone. The main story campaign doesn't let you destroy too much (other than blowing up some objects and structures). Wrecking Zone doesn't allow you to play with friends for some reason, so it doesn't support Xbox Live parties at launch. This is something supposedly being remedied in a future update, but it's nowhere to be seen with the initial release of the game. As a result, it's hard to not feel like there's a lot to like about Crackdown 3's open world environments, but the repetitive gameplay and limited destruction really makes it a less compelling action title.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.