CrimeCraft Bleedout – 2011 ReReview
By Michael Sagoe (Mikedot), OnRPG Journalist
Guns, Drugs, Sex, Violence and Explosions! All of this and more can be found in the wonderfully grim and dreary world of CrimeCraft!
Back in 2009, CrimeCraft was released by Vogster Entertainment as a subscription based MMO third person shooter that received meager reception. Since then, the game has been updated, tweaked and reworked into a F2P MMO shooter; all while receiving its first major expansion called “The Bleedout”, which features a handful of new content. But with all this and more, does this game finally have enough street cred?
First, you’re obviously going to need a tough look for yourself when hitting up the streets, but that’s probably going to have to wait since the initial customization options are a bit lacking. For both male and female characters, you only get a handful of hairs, faces, shirts, shoes, etc. After cycling through the options and hitting the” randomize” button a few times, I managed to find a somewhat decent look, but still couldn’t help but feel like my new dude came straight out of a mental ward.
While the initial customization was lacking, you’ll have a good chunk of options much later on. Most clothing items that can be purchased with in-game money also have stats applied to them, so you might want to think twice about which clothing options to go with. The only way for your character to have the look you want with the stats you want is to pick up avatar clothing which covers over your stat clothing. The only way to get these is by purchasing them from the black market with gold bars (real money) or by bidding off another player’s avatar items at the auction house. Not really my cup of tea, but seems fair enough.
Powered by Unreal Engine 3, the world of CrimeCraft sets a damn good vibe of creating a post-apocalyptic city. The textures seem to be a bit sloppy and low-res in a few places, but for the most part the environments are fantastic.
Player models also give off a good amount of detail with solid animations, too. I just wish they could have done something with the model faces having a weird, creepy stare which makes them look more like living manikins rather than people. All of this gets wrapped up in a pretty bloody stained bow as killing your enemies viciously includes lots of gibs and ragdoll physics. Strange enough, though, I feel like the gore is a bit overdone (It seems like everyone in CrimeCraft is squishy and have open circulatory systems or something, because even a quick stab to the neck will make an enemy’s head explode.)
The control scheme used for CrimeCraft is very typical for first/third person shooters: WSAD for movement, MOUSE1 for firing, MOUSE2 for precise aiming, SHIFT for sprinting and SPACEBAR for action rolling. On a personal note: I wasn’t too fond of not being able to lean or switch aiming sides, so I couldn’t use most of my usual TPS tactics here. Also: Throwing grenades were a bit of a pain for me since they’re listed under skills, and each skill is mapped to the F1-F5 keys. Fortunately, these keys can be remapped.
Simply put: The controls scheme for CrimeCraft is as average as average can be, so you should be able to get used to them as soon as your start playing.
The game starts off in a way that really caught me off guard: Instead of heading straight into a tutorial, the game dumps you straight into a live match.
The available modes here contain a good amount of variety over the basics. While CrimeCraft contains your standard FFA, TDM and CTF (Renamed as Riot, Shootout and Snatch & Grab), there’s a couple of modes that change up the pace such as Robbery and Safeguard. After giving those modes a try, I can say that while they break up the monotony of straight forward shooting, they do lose its luster after a while. One nice feature with game modes is that other players are free to jump into your game at any time, which is great for PvE matches when you need some backup.
You also have the ability to start up a gang (clan/guild system), allowing you to start up a nice little hideout. If you’re feeling dominant, you can challenge other gangs and wage war while betting some cash on the side. With a gang, you can also start a night club business and have players pay to get in. Starting up or joining a gang is one of the easiest ways to make money in CrimeCraft, and very recommended, since a lot of items are expensive as hell.
There’s also crafting professions you can choose from that allow you make different weapons, outfits and other items. My personal favorite: Chemist profession, which lets me make wonderful “medicines” to use in and out of battle (and when I mean “medicine”, I totally mean drugs!). Ever wonder what it would be like to be a drug dealer? Look no further!
Living the dream!
Besides from a few quests that you can take, there’s always something going down, such as tournaments you can participate in on a daily and weekly basis. I think this is a great way to keep the community active and give players something new to do every time they log in.
While the population is a bit low, you’ll find more than enough players around to start a match or instance. The community here contains your typical bunch of friendly, rude and mild mannered players as in every free-to-play online game so don’t expect anything out of the ordinary.
CrimeCraft features a lot of content compared to its competition, making the experience well above average. It doesn’t re-invent the wheel, but its dark atmosphere alone makes the game stand above most other F2P shooters. If you’re looking for a long lasting experience or just looking to pop off a few heads every now and then, CrimeCraft is certainly worth a try.
Customization – 3
Graphics/Presentation – 4
Controls – 2
Features/Gameplay – 3
Community – 3