Keys to the City is nice, though
Crackdown 3‘s Wrecking Zone multiplayer mode was dead on arrival. Its cloud destruction was novel and impressive from a tech perspective, but the mode itself was uninspired and limp. It’s only three months after launch, and the lobbies are barren; it can take several hours to find a single game.
In an attempt to inject new life into Wrecking Zone, Microsoft has added a progression track full of cosmetic items. Through 100 tiers, players can earn vanity embellishments like weapon skins and helmets. Additionally, Microsoft says “We’ve also given the overall experience a fresh coat of paint, adding Agent customization screens, six different types of Overdrive Skill boosts, and a host of other user interface updates.”
But, as we all know, this is a bandage for a broken bone. Wrecking Zone’s problems are much more deeply rooted. It’s a flawed and unenjoyable experience; no cosmetic progression system is going to fix that. (And, it probably goes without saying, no one is going to progress very far if they can’t get into matches.)
Crackdown 3 got a more worthwhile update to its campaign. Keys to the City was added in pursuit of Crackdown‘s never-ending pursuit of ultimate sandbox freedom. It’s just what it sounds like: The metaphorical keys to the city. With these developer tools, players can spawn any number of items, weapons, enemies, vehicles, etc; level their abilities to any extent they want; enable god mode; turn all enemies passive; equip a jet pack; and add elemental damage to ground pounds. There’s more. It’s a lot.
Keys to the City is a fun-yet-fleeting toolset that can spice up Crackdown‘s sandbox approach. It’s neat to have complete control over all aspects of New Providence — and then blow it all to smithereens.