The day that fans of the Crackdown series (or simply the original game) have been waiting for may have finally arrived. After teases and hints (some misinterpreted, others downright stated) from Microsoft firsthand have circled for months, a new rumor claims that Crackdown 3 will be coming to the Xbox One on 2016.
The news comes from a mysterious online source who has already spilled the beans on new Xbox One consoles, Microsoft’s plans for the Halo series in 2014, and more. But as far as Crackdown is concerned, the future may be bright – since a few members of the original development team may be in the picture.
Obviously we’d recommend that these reports be taken with a grain of salt, since they are most definitely rumors at this point. That being said, the claims of a white Xbox One console on its way have been confirmed, so the source doesn’t appear to be spinning fiction. Coming via NeoGAF, the online source made the following claims:
You will get Crackdown 3, unlikely announcement at E3 this year, as it is a 2016 release date.
It’s not a bombshell in and of itself that Crackdown 3 is on its way – Microsoft’s Phil Spencer has claimed as much, but maintained that while Microsoft is interested in the potential for the series, it won’t happen until it finds the right team. That might sound like an odd sentiment given that the developer of Crackdown 2, Ruffian Games, has an open schedule; but any fan of Crackdown knows that the open world sequel was nowhere near as well-received as the original title.
That is likely due to several causes, but the most significant was the shutdown of Realtime Worlds, the developer of Crackdown which was forced to close after their costly work on APB: All Points Bulletin. Much of the staff wound up at Ruffian, but failed to meet the high bar they had set with the first game in the series. So with the old studio gone, and the one meant to replace it having fumbled the sequel, who will Microsoft turn to?
When pressed by skeptics, the source offered up one more detail:
I can tell you that there is a deal with Microsoft and Cloudgine for the project (codenamed Nimbus) that was struck back last year.
The name Cloudgine might not be too familiar for many gamers, which is understandable. Founded in 2012, the company’s official website describes their mission statement as “delivering rendering and processing power from the cloud, allowing game developers to define new ground-breaking online gaming mechanics.” Perhaps underwhelming, but the company was co-founded by David Jones and Marco Anastasi – both former members of the Realtime Worlds team.
Since the first Crackdown was something of a breakthrough in open world exploration, it’s not hard to see why Microsoft would be looking to make a next-gen title utilizing cloud processing, and one designed by a development team with experience both with the brand and an action MMO (even a failed one). The possibility that a deal was struck last year makes the fact that Ruffian seemed to be gearing up for an announcement a bit clearer, not to mention Microsoft openly hinting at Crackdown during their Xbox One reveal event.
Hopefully more concrete details will be coming soon, but what do you make of the rumor? Does the timeframe seem appropriate for a game as big as ‘Crackdown on next-gen’ would imply? Do you have hopes for the game if more, or less of the existing teams are involved? Share your thoughts in the comments.
We’ll keep you updated as more news (or rumors) surrounding Crackdown 3 arrive, but given the reported release date, it may be a while before we hear an official announcement – perhaps as far as E3 2015.
Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.