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POSTED 31/8/12


SLEEPING DOGS

Square Enix
PS3 (also on Xbox 360, PC)

Hey Channel 9! Judging by recent output, youíre running out of ideas for milking Underbelly, so why not go bonkers in Hongkers?!

Too late! Squeenix got there first, and have likely pulled it off in cooler style than you former residents of Bendigo Street ever could have. This isnít to say, however, that Sleeping Dogs doesnít boggle the mind with some insane OTTness amidst the rampant so-why-so-seriousness.

Itíd be easy to dismiss this as Grand Theft Auto: Hong Kong, and anybody who reckons that it could exist without Rockstarís venerable celebrations of all things criminality would be, well, nongish. That being said Ė or typed in this case - unlike that cigarette-reeking vacuum-bonce in high school whoíd sit beside you just to copy your test answers, Sleeping Dogs doesnít settle for slavish replication.

In particular, the localeís Asianicness inspires, from basics such as focus on martial artsy hand-to-hand-to-fist-to-leg-to-foot-to-environmental-ouchything combat rather than gunplay (although that comes), to going karaoke on the likes of The Clash while cleansing scum from a nightclub. Yep, youíre not just crookgasmic, youíre actually a cop doing the double agent thang, infiltrating the Triads to kablooey them from within. This adds intrigue, as goodie and baddie actions both reward in their own ways.

Anyway, after an occasionally interactive intro, itís meat and potatoes time (apologies to any vegetarians reading this whilst snuffling down their mungbeans). Yep, an open Hong Kong-inspired world (it isnít real map centimetre perfect at all) appears, full of main and side missions, things to tackle on foot, things to tackle on wheels, amusing diversions and noodles Ė erm, oodles - of shiny collectibles.

Donít pause to ruminate upon the many contradictions inherent in your cop/baddie objectives (and why should you? Itís a game for fuckís sake!) and youíll get one hell of a kick (ow!) out of Sleeping Dogs.

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2018. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.