|System: PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Vogster Ent.||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Vogster Ent.||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Aug. 25, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: MMO||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Mature||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
CrimeCraft's character creation does allow for a modicum of variety, but not much when compared to other MMORPG character creation systems. Be prepared to run into a lot of players that look very similar to your own, despite a variety of clothing options and colors. Other RPG elements include experience points, levels, unlockable abilities, and the ability to craft items. Players progress through the game by completing missions, which are PvE quests, playing PvP and PvE matches, and by completing "Jobs," which are very similar to Xbox LIVE and Steam Achievements with the bonus that they are worth experience points and money.
Players also have the choice to choose a crafting profession among tailoring, which results in armors and clothing; engineering, which results in weapons and weapon modifications; and chemistry, which results in power-up and health regeneration items. Most items found during PvE matches or received at the end of PvP matches are crafting items that can be combined to fulfill recipe requirements. Overall, the crafting system is simple and fairly easy to understand.
There is a micro-transaction system in place as well, although Vogster has managed to keep it from breaking the balance of gameplay, which is a much-appreciated relief. For example, many games that feature micro-transactions allow players to spend real money to acquire more powerful items that give them a significant advantage over others. However, CrimeCraft is clever in that the system is only useful for buying cosmetic items such as unique clothing, hairstyles, and other items that only alter the aesthetics. Therefore, gamers who don't find forking over some additional cash can put on a ninja suit or a SWAT team uniform.
One of the most troubling aspects of CrimeCraft is the complete lack of "crime." The cities are ruled by gangs, corruption is supposed to be everywhere, and yet, things seem quite serene. Gamers looking for the opportunity to mug an old lady or rob a city bank aren't going find their fantasies fulfilled. Players still purchase items from vendors and buy and sell items at an auction house, which doesn't strike me as particularly devious. It does provide a platform for gang wars, but the system does little more than record wins and losses. A territory control system that actually affected the game world would at least have been a step in the right direction, but you won't find it here either.
CrimeCraft costs the standard $50 up front before you can begin playing. After that, gamers are looking at a reoccurring $10 per month to keep the habit. There is a significant number of real-world, in-game advertisements as well, which really breaks the immersion level considering it would be assumed that a collapsed economy would force companies like Atticus and Alienware out of business. The PvP game modes are certainly CrimeCraft's strong point as the combat can be fun, varied, and interesting, but it lacks in the RPG department and doesn't seem nearly as polished in many other areas of production.
If you're an avid FPS gamer, CrimeCraft will deliver what you'd expect, albeit in third-person. Whether it is worth the hefty price tag considering most shooters deliver their multiplayer free of charge, is another question entirely. It might be advantageous to sit on the sidelines and see how well the game develops before taking the dive.
CCC Freelance Writer