Project Sunburst is a tower defense-like game that uses map data from Microsoft's Bing service to create levels. You are allowed to enter addresses or other location information to position bases in real-world places. Weapons, such as laser turrets, rocket launchers, flamethrowers, and grenade tossers can be planted in a small area around your base, giving you the means to defend it.
While defending an area, sub-missions will occasionally surface, asking you to defend an incoming civilian or destroy armored Cell vehicles. Completing these tasks gives players bonus experience points
and cash. XP is used to gain levels and unlock additional weapon upgrades.
Project Sunburst ties into the other games released around Crackdown 2
. Specifically, some of Sunburst's weapons and upgrades will unlock early if you purchase and play the Deluge add-on for Crackdown 2 on Xbox 360. Playing the Facebook minigame, Chuck's Ducks 2, also unlocks additional in-game weapons for Sunburst.
The game "keeps running" when you aren't actively playing it, but all this means is that your upgrades--some of which can take eight hours or more--will continue being built when you aren't playing and you'll earn an amount of XP and some additional cash when you return to the game, implying that your turrets have been fighting while you're away.
Though the weapons all fire automatically, it's possible to use the touch screen to manually fire at targets, which is typically much more effective and damaging than letting the base defend itself. You can also tap targets to have the turrets auto-target specific enemies, which is key to completing the game's missions.
Though the "voice of the Agency" doesn't actually sound off in the game, on-screen text with a similar style does surface during missions.