Terry Crews has had a few different jobs over the years. Once a professional football player, most of his gigs now are, as he puts it, in the “entertainment business”. I had a chat with Crews about one of his latest acting roles, which just so happens to be for a video game called Crackdown 3.
The Crackdown series is all about bringing down crime syndicates by raining down as much destruction on them as possible. It’s big, it’s unashamedly over the top, and Crews really was the best choice for the third entry’s playable character, Commander Isaiah Jaxon, who was actually named as a tribute to the actor’s son, Isaiah Crews.
When it comes to playing a role in a video game, Crews says the experience was actually quite challenging compared to what he’s used to. “What’s really strange and different as an actor being on set, is that I’m used to using props,” he told PEDESTRIAN.TV. “I’m used to grabbing props and grabbing things and, you know, sitting down here and moving over there and kinda seeing the world as it is, and it puts you in your place.”
“When I’m on Brooklyn Nine-Nine, as soon as I walk in on that set and it’s the bullpen, you’re right there, it’s kind of easier.”
When it comes to making a game, actors rarely get props or even a point of reference to aide with their performance. Instead, it’s usually a case of carrying out actions in a blank space with a bunch of gear attached to your body.
“With this video game, with Crackdown, I had all the motion capture nodules all over my body and the markings, and I was in a big giant empty room, so I had to imagine where everything was, and that was hard, that was a whole different thing,” he said.
“They were telling me, ‘oh, these are your people in front of you and this is the button, and the council is here,’ and I was like, what? That was really difficult.”
But at the end of the day, Crews said the team were “so happy,” with his work, so you can expect a good result when Crackdown 3 drops in a couple of weeks. In terms of how it fits in with the rest of the series, you can easily pick this one up with no prior knowledge of the previous two.
“It’s kinda standalone,” Crews said. “You don’t really have to have played the first two Crackdowns in order to be a part of this one.”
“Right now it’s actually, you know, the biggest, most giant, most crazy version, which is a lot like me [laughs]. I tell people it’s the Terry Crews simulator.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m intensely all-in on the idea of a Terry Crews simulator. The ex-footballer is also a big fan of gaming in general, particularly where classic arcade games of the 80s are concerned, but it was his son who got him back into the world.
“I was always into video games from the beginning, I mean, I had Pong when I was a kid, and then had Intellivision and the Atari and the 5200 and all the consoles all the way up,” he said. “But I got [back] into gaming by watching [my son]. I thought he was playing, but he was actually watching people play and I was like, man, I couldn’t believe he was actually not playing, and that’s when we decided to build a computer.”
With some help from the internet via a Facebook live, Crews and his son built a beastly gaming rig and recently, they’ve been playing a bunch of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, but Terry admits that his son kicks his ass.
“He’s way better than me, but I enjoy just being a part of his world and building that computer really put me into the things that he enjoys, and the things that we can talk about,” he said. “I was a professional football player, but he’s not really into football. This morning he didn’t know who was in the Super Bowl, you know what I mean, and that’s OK with me.”
“I would much rather be a part of his world than he be a part of mine.”
Aw man, my heart. I want Terry to adopt me. Crackdown 3 hits Xbox One and Windows PC as a Microsoft exclusive on February 15.Image: Brooklyn Nine-Nine