Sleeping Dogs Excitement Poll
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I'll admit it; when I first heard of the newest entry to the True Crime series, I let out a groan. I thought to myself, "Another flawed open-world crime game? I think I'll pass." It wasn't until I got a better view of just how awesome True Crime: Hong Kong (renamed Sleeping Dogs) is that I realized I'd made a huge mistake in passing it off. Sleeping Dogs is a gritty, violent, mature open-world action that game that features a whole host of illicit activities, a deep melee system, and a truly impressive recreation of Hong Kong. What's not to like?
Sleeping Dogs follows Wei Shen, an undercover cop, as he infiltrates a triad to try and destroy it from the inside. To gain the triad's trust, Wei must do the gang's bidding and kill, steal, maim, intimidate, and dismantle Hong Kong's rival triads. How he does this is up to the player. Whether you want to shove people into fans or chop at enemy gangbangers with meat cleavers is up to you. United Front Games has implemented an extraordinary hand-to-hand combat system that allows Wei to utilize the latest in martial arts techniques. Using a simple scheme of Attack, Grapple, and Counter, Wei can disarm opponents and break every bone in their bodies. If karate-chopping isn't your thing, the undercover brother is also proficient with firearms, though I feel you'll be missing out on some of the greatest-looking melee combat to grace a video game. Wei can also use the environment to his advantage by throwing enemies onto sharp poles, grinding them in fans, or lighting them on fire (among other things). Yeah, Sleeping Dogs is bloody.
While Sleeping Dogs is all about brutal, graphic violence, there are plenty of other activities for Wei to partake in. He can run cockfights, race against street rivals, date women, and generally cause a ruckus about the city. What's really piqued my curiosity is how Wei's status as a cop will affect his reactions to life as triad member. Will he be rattled by difficult moral conundrums, be driven to bloodlust by killing, embrace his identity as a triad member, or become something inhuman? While UFG and publishers Square Enix haven't focused on Wei's development, morality and evolving Wei's character will likely be integral components of the experience. If UFG can pull it off, Sleeping Dogs may be the most compelling open-world crime drama to hit the markets in a long time.
Like many other gamers, I passed Sleeping Dogs off as another generic open-world game. After Grand Theft Auto and Saints Row, it's hard for me to imagine playing another criminal underworld-driven title. But Sleeping Dogs has done the impossible. By crafting a complex, rewarding combat system and a thriving version of Hong Kong teeming with new experiences, UFG and Square Enix have gotten my attention. I can't wait until the mid-August release date hits; I'm really looking forward to experiencing Wei Shen's Machiavellian approach to justice. Look for Sleeping Dogs on August 14, 2012.
Still not convinced that the close quarters combat is awesome? Check out the trailer below!