Sleeping Dogs Review
Varied missions, hard-hitting melee combat, and a captivating setting make Sleeping Dogs an enjoyable escapade.
- Savage melee combat
- Alluring atmosphere
- Fun driving and gunplay
- Varied missions
- Numerous collectibles to hunt down and other enjoyable diversions.
- Artificial-looking character models and animations.
What does it take to survive as an undercover cop who infiltrates one of Hong Kong's most ruthless criminal organizations? If Sleeping Dogs is any indication, it takes martial arts prowess, good marksmanship, driving skill, a reckless willingness to leap from one speeding vehicle to another, and the confidence to sing karaoke. None of the individual elements in Sleeping Dogs are best-in-class, but they're all thoroughly enjoyable, and the structured story missions have you switching from one type of action to another frequently enough that you're never tired of what you're doing at any given moment. Additionally, the fictionalized version of Hong Kong where Sleeping Dogs takes place is an exotic and atmospheric setting for this tale of conflicting loyalties; you probably wouldn't want to live amid the ruthless criminals who populate the game's cast, but this world sure is a nice place to visit.
You play as Wei Shen, a Hong Kong native who has returned after spending some time in the States. Driven by a desire to avenge his sister's death, he accepts a dangerous assignment to infiltrate the Sun On Yee triad and help take them down from the inside. Starting out on the lowest rungs of the criminal ladder, he rapidly climbs up through the ranks, behaving in ways that sometimes make his triad cohorts suspect he's a cop and sometimes make his police superiors think he's getting too attached to his brothers in crime. It's a typical tale of an undercover cop possibly getting in too deep, and the story doesn't have any surprises in store for you. But solid voice acting and writing that convincingly blends English and Cantonese make it a narrative that's more than capable of supporting the gameplay, providing context for many a dramatic mission and building up to a cathartic climax that's bloody enough to be taken right out of one of John Woo's Hong Kong action films.
Sleeping Dogs is an open-world game, but it doesn't start out by setting you free. The opening chapters keep you on a tight leash as they introduce you to the basics of movement and melee combat, which is good, since that combat plays a huge role in the game as a whole. Taking its cues from the standard-setting brawling of Batman: Arkham Asylum and its sequel, this combat has you unleashing combos and using timed button presses to counter enemy attacks. Wei's attacks look and feel powerful, and the bone-breaking animations may often make you squirm and make your enemies flinch.
But what sets Sleeping Dogs' combat apart from games with similar systems is the emphasis on environmental attacks. In most places where you find yourself needing to clobber some fools, you can drag enemies to certain objects around you and use these things to finish them off. These environmental finishers range from the relatively restrained old standby of tossing a thug into a dumpster, to the much more original and brutal attack that has Wei impaling an enemy on a swordfish head. There's a good assortment of these attack opportunities throughout the game, and a number of chances for you to make your own fun with the environment, too. Tossing an enemy from the upper level of a swanky club to the level down below isn't, strictly speaking, one of the game's contextual environmental attacks, but don't let that stop you from doing it. It's empowering and effective.
The early stages also introduce you to some of the atmospheric pleasures of this fictional Hong Kong. People believably appear to go about their business; cooks fry things up in restaurants, merchants hock their wares at the marketplace, and dancers perform at a street festival. What's absent from the behavior of non-player characters is almost as important as what's present. Strangers can sometimes be overheard discussing story events, but they don't constantly call out to you as if their existences revolved around you. (They do, of course, but it shouldn't seem like they do.) Unfortunately, close inspection can shatter the illusion. Character models look like plastic dolls when viewed up close, and some gestures characters make are rigid and unnatural. Despite these oddities, the PC version is easily the best-looking version of the game. A high-resolution texture pack is included as free downloadable content, but even if you need to run the game at low settings, everything is much crisper than in the comparatively fuzzy console versions.
Still, Sleeping Dogs is more about wide-angle, big-picture atmosphere than about fine details. The skyline gleams with towering skyscrapers. Neon signs hang from every available outcropping on busy streets, crowding the air above you with glowing Chinese characters. This city may not be accurately modeled on the real Hong Kong, but it nonetheless has a powerful identity, and while you're playing, you feel transported to this dangerous land. Collectibles scattered across the island make exploring it worthwhile as well as enjoyable; finding health shrines increases your maximum health, while blue lockboxes hidden all over the place reward you with cash and sometimes with new items of clothing.
Once you complete the first few missions, you're free to explore the island as you see fit. But Sleeping Dogs is an open-world game in which you're sure to enjoy the structured missions more than the opportunities for free-form mayhem. It's fun for a while to run around jump-kicking people to death, or fatally tossing them off of three-foot-high railings. However, unlike other games in the genre like Just Cause 2 and Saints Row: The Third, which reveled in giving you ways to wreak incredible havoc on your own, Sleeping Dogs is at its best when you're playing through the story. Missions typically string together a number of activities, switching from one type of action to another frequently enough to keep you on your toes and ensure that you never get tired of what you're doing.
Here I am selling it if you wanna give it a try! I am selling it on ebay here:
Awesome game, pretty much all aspects of it. There are a lot of controls and it took a few re-maps and tweaks to get it right - but once I settled in, I was sucked in for good. The review is correct in that there is so much to do and see, and all aspects (fighting, gun fights, driving etc) are very polished. Theres also a free hi-res texture DLC available. This game easily deserves a rating of 9.0 minimum.
they made a huge game deserves long time as 3 years of development but it was really good game,story,graphics are really awesome
I really wanted to enjoy this game but the controls are so terrible and unresponding (PC). It is just unplayable, stay away from the PC version!
Exactly the same things I encountered when playing it. PC controll are not on the best. Sometime they are frustrated but still it is not so 'unplayable', I just finished it last night and I must say that the combat, gunfire and drivring are on the top.
nice game, i liked the story but the combat is sometimes unresponding and awful (PC). Driving is good ( actually in my opinion, way better than GTA IV), graphics dont dissapoint. :) 8.8 stars from me
The camera is twisting while driving, the Batman-like fighting is dull, just counter - strike - heavy strike - ... Gun fighting is more exciting with slow-mo, and driving is good. 7/10.
just tried out the demo and it was horrible, was so hard to control the character, when running around the mouse turns so slowly then when you have a gun it was so sensitive I couldn't aim at anyone. The melee combat was almost the same as Batman but terrible.
You just need to change up some settings. That's what i did and changed my opinion after that.
not even in top 10 in its genre,the whole map looks the same and the action parts become boring at some points. 6~7 of 10 is much fair.
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GTA V: Post-UK-Semi-Free-Trade-Hong-Kong edition. I'm on the fence about this game. Just when I get fed up with it or bored, there's something that's "kinda cool..." that keeps me going for a bit, then I get a lame mission or something and I get all flustered again. The fighting is obviously cool, but gets old after a bit. I know I'm crazy for not using a controller on the PC, but the camera angles when I first get in a car or on a motorcycle seem broken until I get going in a straight line. Not sure if a controller fixes that. All in all, not a horrible game like people make it sound, but I think I'm just about burned out on sandbox/GTA-type games for good. The game seems like a mashup of GTA meets Fast N Furious: China Drift. None of this is a knock on SE, they've always been well-respected in my book as far as video game accolades. This is all just my opinion, which means nothing, and I realize a lot of you won't agree. Just felt compelled to share my .02 with the interwebz.
this game is really booring :( i ended this game, after that, there is no another police cases or something like true crime new york city..
This game looks suckish,i thought this was going to be a good one and now i'm disappointed.The gaming industry has failed me once again.
@ahmed_tawfeek98 Fuck you! This is a great game!
Are you devoid of meaningful opinion? "This game looks suckish" is your casual observation based on basically nothing and from that you get to criticize an entire industry? Grow up.
@pauldanielj No,i meant what i said.I have been playing video games as long as i can remember and i am sick of the mainstream industry of gaming that cares more about making money than the fun of gaming,the mainstream industry ruined a lot of game titles in the last couple of years that were good before.And they keep making these movie based video games that suck.I have played so many bad video games that now i can easily spot one just by reading about it.You shouldn't attack random people on the internet,you are the one that needs to grow up.
@leakky No,not the whole industry stopped.There are few gaming studios that are still trying to keep it real.
@ahmed_tawfeek98 well..if u think the game industry no longer make fun game, just stop playing games man.
@ahmed_tawfeek98 "Movie based"? What movie is this game based on? What the heck are you even talking about? If you've got some sort of grudge against the entire industry, go find a new hobby. Gamespot gave this game an 8.0, and most comments on here have been positive, so you have no basis for criticizing the game. I mean literally you have no basis for what you're saying, you're just babbling and whining for no purpose.
Great game. I haven't enjoyed or stuck to a game this long in a while. I use my 360 controller on it. Never tried the keyboard.
Overall - game is good.
But, unfortunately, for me it's COMPLETELY UNPLAYABLE because of the controls.
Controls are ABYSMAL! Worst controls system I've ever experienced!
Mouse lag is unbearable, sensitivity changes when you in a vehicle is just way too high, key presses in a fights periodically lagging without any reason...
I just don't understand this - how Square Enix could ruin such a good game by this horrible controlling system?
3 of 10. (+3/3 GFX, +3/3 story, +3/3 gameplay, -6 controls)
And it will stay this way until SE do something about controls.
Thank god I didn't buy it (I've almost did)!
Wow, this forum looks a lot cleaner and less hateful than it did yesterday. The moderators have clearly been busy. I don't know what makes people want to personally attack a talented editor for doing her job and stating her opinion, but I really hope that it isn't a growing trend.
In my opinion this game sets new standards for sandbox game play and surpasses the GTA series.
Carolyn you should have tried playing with the texture pack first, it makes everything look so much better.
Actually true crime wasnt bad specially on story sequences. The problem was the glitches and bugs beyond the level of normality.
The combat looks good, but I am fearful that there are only a handful of attacks. It might be awesome for the 1st ten minutes, but repetitive attacks can start to dry up the experience a bit. At least there is a variety of ways to smash your opponents into objects in the environment. That almost never gets old if there is enough variety involved there.
- Player Reviews: 54
- Game Universe:
- True Crime: Streets of LA (GC, XBOX, PS2, MAC, PC),
- True Crime: New York City (XBOX, PS2, GC, PC, X360, PSP),
- Sleeping Dogs (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Nightmare in North Point (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Dragon Master Pack (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Drunken Fist Pack (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Square Enix Character Pack (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Gangland Style Pack (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Zodiac Tournament Pack (X360, PS3, PC),
- Sleeping Dogs: Year of the Snake (X360, PS3, PC)