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Microsoft defends "Crackdown" path to "Halo 3"

As the latest in a spate of urban action video games, "Crackdown" was getting little attention until Microsoft's game studio played a trump card -- giving buyers early access to the latest version of blockbuster game "Halo."

Microsoft in early January announced that retail buyers of "Crackdown," due out on February 20 for the Xbox 360 console, would also get a special key allowing them to be on the team that will test "Halo 3" this spring. But it also sparked complaints from some gamers, who in online forums have charged that Microsoft is forcing people to buy a $60 game they may not have otherwise purchased to get pre-release access to one of the most hyped games of 2007 -- "Halo 3".

"('Crackdown') was not highly anticipated," said Garnett Lee, managing editor of video game network 1UP.com. "Millions might pick ('Crackdown') up now."

Microsoft defended its strategy.

"I can understand why people might think that," said Craig Evans, Microsoft's director of marketing. "But the bottom line is that "Crackdown" is a game that stands on its own."

Evans said over 600,000 people downloaded a free demo of "Crackdown" over the Xbox Live online service in just a couple of weeks, demonstrating its worth as a game.

"People are definitely saying "I'm getting a free beta with 'Crackdown,' not the other way around," Evans said. "The 'Halo 3' beta isn't going to push the game's sales into the millions. 'Crackdown' is going to push its sales into the millions."

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Frag Monger3813d ago

From the article:
"But it also sparked complaints from some gamers, who in online forums have charged that Microsoft is forcing people to buy a $60 game they may not have otherwise purchased"

Nobody is "forcing" anyone to buy anything. There are three different ways to get into the Halo 3 beta - and if you don't, you don't. You are not 'forced' to buy Crackdown. You just won't be in the Beta.

omegaheat3813d ago

Yeah, Crackdown will sell millions on its own without the Halo3 Beta. And yes, I think it was sinisterly brilliant that Microsoft came up with the beta invitation as a way to lure in gamers who weren't initially interested in the title. If I saw such an opportunity, I would capitalize on it too. It's not as if we as consumers are being treated unfairly and it's not Microsoft's fault if most of us missed out on the beta invitation which was free from the beginning. For those who are complaining, don't blame Microsoft for you being a Halo fanatic who can't wait for the game's next installment. If you weren't going to purchase Crackdown before the beta inclusion, then you still have a reason not to purchase the title, and instead just wait for Halo3's release like everyone else who may not get the chance to play the beta. No one is being forced to buy Crackdown; your console will still function with or without the game+beta. Give it a rest.

JasonPC360PS3Wii3813d ago

Dont games cost $60? so your getting a game and a chance to play another game before it comes out. WFT! They been putting demos and gametrailers on game disc for years now. So why the damn bi***ng about getting something extra in a roven (EGM review) good game?

duffbeer3813d ago

Listen, if Microsoft really believed Crackdown would sell enough on its own like they say they do, then they wouldn't have attached the beta to it. They could easily have sold it on XBL marketplace to those who didnt get it through the sweepstakes. Instead of getting people to pay $5-$10 for the beta, they get to push this game (good or not) onto the millions of rabid halo fans that won't hesitate to pay that kind of money. It may be fair but its definitely shady. This is a crazy thin lie that I think even they are having a hard time believing.

HaKeRsCanRotINHEL3813d ago

if you own a 360 and have X-box live then its great, if your a Sony fan then its lowdown and backhanded!