The much-loved Crackdown franchise could indeed be set for a return.
Many believed Crackdown 3 was all ready for an E3 reveal after an Agility Orb – one of the first game's most iconic inclusions – featured in a graphic used on stage at Microsoft's Xbox One reveal event in May.
Subsequently there was no mention of anything Crackdown at E3, but Microsoft Game Studios vice president Phil Spencer has told IGN that the use of the Agility Orb was anything but accidental.
Oh, Crackdown is one of my favourite games, and not just because it's a Microsoft first-party game,” he told IGN. I have a lot of love for that franchise. The homage to Crackdown in the reveal screenshots was… I know there was some, like, ‘Did we accidentally sneak that…?'. It wasn't accidental. Definitely.
I don't think Crackdown is dead at all. It's a franchise that's still close to me. I think there's a lot of room. For me, the natural progression for a game like Crackdown – and you see this showing up on our stage – is in these living, open worlds that live in the cloud.”
The Microsoft published Crackdown was released on Xbox 360 in early 2007. It successfully set itself apart from the swathe of other GTA-clones by equipping players with what amounted to super powers that could be upgraded throughout the game.
By far its most popular and iconic feature were Agility Orbs. The collection of these increased a character's physical prowess, allowing them to jump higher and higher and in turn collect harder to reach Orbs.
Crackdown 2 was released in mid 2010 and while it built on a lot of the ideas laid out in the first its inclusion of zombies proved less of a hit with gamers.