PAX East 2010: Crackdown 2 Rocket Tag ImpressionsBy Andrew Pfister - Posted Mar 26, 2010
What We Know: Ruffian Games, the team behind Crackdown 2, is made up of many members of the Realtime Worlds team that produced the first game. And it shows in the team's approach to the city. It's the same locale you played before, only much more war-torn and nasty. The Feed's first playthrough came during X10 in San Francisco, which you can read about here.
What We Saw: Crackdown 2: Can’t wait for it, Game of the Year 2010, would commit murder to have an early copy…all of these things I have said on the record, so my anticipation should be well-known by now. Good thing, then, that the multiplayer mode “Rocket Tag” is available to play on the show floor here at PAX East. I performed my professional duties by partaking in a round against the general public, and learned a valuable lesson that will play into my future Rocket Tag overall strategy: I am a rocket magnet.
Rocket Tag is fairly simple, as it should be: everyone playing is armed with a rocket launcher, and there’s a single gold-glowing orb on the map. The agent who maintains possession of the orb generates points; attackers are granted points for inflicting damage against the orb carrier. Most points at the end of the round decides the winner.
There’s a bit more strategy to it than that, as you’ll want to aim your blast radius not only at the orb carrier, but also your fellow chasers in an effort to deny them the ability to get the orb or score damage points themselves. Scattered about the map are glowing blue zones that, when touched, will launch you across the environment – this is how you’ll either get away from threats or get closer to your target in a rapid manner. Simply relying on standard running and jumping isn’t going to yield impressive results. You’ll also need to be mindful of your rockets’ splash damage (which I frequently did not), as they will not discriminate in favor of the one who launched them (which I frequently did). So it remains to be seen if the PAX crowd picked up on the game quickly and was very good, or I’m still jet-lagged from Pacific Time and was very bad. Probably a little of both.
So now that I’ve actually played more Crackdown 2, my lust is temporarily satiated, and I would merely commit voluntary manslaughter for early access to the full thing. Fair warning, Ruffian guys. Though there is a way to protect yourselves…