E3 2012: Sleeping Dogs Hands-On

Sleeping Dogs began its life as True Crime: Hong Kong. After going over budget and time, it was cancelled by Activision. However, it’s found a new home and a new name. Square Enix revived the franchise, but was it worth the effort? The short answer is yes. The long answer is, well long, so read on if you want know more.

So the premise behind the game has quite a bit of potential. You play a detective named Wei Sheng, tasked with going undercover in the Triads. You must balance your need to infiltrate the organization with the demands of actually living your life as a criminal. Things get hairy fast.

It’s an open world game and there are vehicle sections as well where you can use boats, cars and motorcycles. The combat system takes its cues from Batman: Arkham Asylum, being free flowing in nature with three basic moves. Grapple, Attack, and Counter. Attack is basic and unleashes kicks and punches, while grapple is used for getting past blocks. Counter is just want it sounds like and can result in some extraordinary moves. Beyond that, grapple let’s you perform some very cool and sometimes gruesome environmental finishing moves.

There’s plenty to see and do around the city as well, such as cockfighting, gambling, karaoke or joining a fight club. There are side missions as well and you can purchase new clothing. I played a demo at E3, and you can see what it consists of below- Basically you going after a guy who owes money to the Triads. This results in an extended chase sequence through the city and culminates in a rooftop battle. It was fun to play, although the fighting didn’t flow as well as Batman. Check it out below and judge it for yourself.


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