Stranglehold (video game)

Stranglehold (video game)

Infobox VG
title = Stranglehold


developer = Midway Chicago
Tiger Hill Entertainment
publisher = Midway Games Success (Japan/Asia) [http://www.success-corp.co.jp/?page/contents/208 Stranglehold Xbox360 Page.] Retrieved on April 20, 2008. ja icon]
designer =
engine = Unreal Engine 3.0 (heavily modified) with Havok physics
released = Xbox 360:
vgrelease|USA|USA|September 7, 2007
vgrelease|Europe|EUR|September 14, 2007
vgrelease|Australia|AUS|September 20, 2007 [cite web| url = http://www.xbox.com/en-AU/games/j/johnwoopresentsstranglehold/| title = Xbox.com (Australia)| work = Xbox.com.au| accessdate = August 27 | accessyear = 2007] vgrelease|Japan|JPN|May 22, 2008 [http://www.success-corp.co.jp/?page/contents/208 Stranglehold Xbox360 Page.] Retrieved on April 20, 2008. ja icon]
Microsoft Windows:
vgrelease|USA|USA|September 18, 2007
vgrelease|Europe|EUR|September 18, 2007
PlayStation 3:
vgrelease|USA|USA|October 29, 2007
vgrelease|Australia|AUS|November 222007 [cite web| url = http://www.playstation.com.au/games_media/games/ps3/s/stranglehold.jhtml | title = Playstation.com (Australia)| work = Playstation.com.au| accessdate = August 27 | accessyear = 2007]
vgrelease|Europe|EUR|November 30, 2007

genre = Third-person shooter, Action
modes = Single-player, Multiplayer (online)
ratings = ESRB: M

OFLC: MA15+

BBFC: 18

CERO: D
platforms = Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, Playstation 3
media = DVD DL Blu-Ray
requirements =
input =

"Stranglehold" (or "John Woo Presents Stranglehold") is a third-person shooter developed by Midway Games (Chicago studio), released in late vgy|2007 for Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. It is Midway's first game to use Unreal Engine 3, and was developed in collaboration with John Woo. [cite web | title=John Woo to direct game | work=Eurogamer | url=http://www.eurogamer.net/article.php?article_id=59331 | accessdate=September 30 | accessyear=2005]

"Stranglehold" is the sequel to Woo’s 1992 Hong Kong action film, "Hard Boiled", and stars Chow Yun-Fat in a reprisal of his role as hard-boiled cop Inspector "Tequila" Yuen. [cite web | title=Hands-On: Stranglehold | work=GamePro | url=http://www.gamepro.com/microsoft/xbox360/games/previews/57548.shtml | accessdate=August 8 | accessyear=2007] "Stranglehold" is the first project on which Woo and Chow have collaborated since "Hard Boiled". [cite web | last =Smith | first =Jeremy | title =Chow Yun-Fat not to return to cast of The Battle of Red Cliff | date= 7-11-07 | url =http://chowyunfatfansite.blogspot.com/2007/07/chow-yun-fat-not-to-return-to-cast-of.html#links | accessdate =August 8 | accessyear=2007]

Plot

In latter-day Hong Kong, a policeman goes missing. The department is dumbfounded by the disappearance until they receive a ransom call from an unnamed source. The kidnappers request that a single officer appear at Kowloon market. Tequila volunteers for the assignment against his superior's wish, beginning a sequence of battles with rival Triads and the Russian Mafia that extends from the street markets of Hong Kong to the museums of Chicago. [cite web | work=Answers.com | title=Stranglehold | url=http://www.answers.com/topic/stranglehold | accessdate=August 8 | accessyear=2007]

Tequila finds the missing officer's badge with the picture of the officer dead. Tequila chases the kidnappers, which eventually lead him to Wong, the Triad boss of a group called Dragon Claw, who claims he was set up by Golden Kane. Tequila learns that his ex-wife, Billie—who is also Wong's daughter—and her daughter have been kidnapped by the Russian mob group, Zakarov. Tequila then heads to Chicago to rescue his family, leading to a shootout in a Chicago museum in which Tequila kills the Russian mob boss, Damon. Tequila finds Billie, and at the same time Tequila's undercover partner bursts in and opens fire on both of them, killing her. Tequila pursues him and manages to corner him. His undercover partner reveals that the Russian mafia was going to use Billie (through threatening her daughter) to remove the Triads from power by making her testify against Wong and that he was sent by Wong to kill her. Tequila kills him in an intense gunfight and heads back to Hong Kong, collaborating with Golden Kane to take down Dragon Claw by arranging an exchange in the slums of Kowloon as Golden Kane has Billie's daughter and would return her for "a slice of Hong Kong". The plan fails when Tequila did not make it at the arranged time and Wong's right hand man kills the leader of Golden Kane. Tequila chases Wong back to his estate and kills his second in command while his daughter kills Wong.

Influences

"Stranglehold" attempts to translate the gun ballet aesthetic popularized by director John Woo (in films such as "Hard-Boiled" and "The Killer") to an interactive media format. Although the game has drawn comparisons to the popular Remedy ("Max Payne") franchise (which in fact was highly influenced by Woo itself) [cite web | work=Actiontrip.com | title=Stranglehold Review | url=http://www.actiontrip.com/reviews/360/stranglehold.phtml | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] a more accurate account of both games’ creative provenances traces the games to Woo’s lengthy, balletic shootouts. [cite web | work=Actiontrip.com | title=Stranglehold First Look | url=http://www.actiontrip.com/previews/stranglehold.phtml | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] The similar styles are more appropriately attributed to Woo's own artistry, applied into a New Media format.

Tequila Time

Inspector Tequila’s principal advantage is his speed; during play, jumping in any direction or interacting with any object while aiming at an opponent will slow time, creating a short window during which Tequila can select (and destroy) targets. [cite web | title=Stranglehold Review (Xbox 360) | work=TeamXbox | url=http://reviews.teamxbox.com/xbox-360/1375/Stranglehold/p1/ | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] This technique—Tequila Time—generates a cinematic effect that mimics Woo’s. Tequila Time is managed through a meter which drains with use and regenerates with time.

Technology

"Stranglehold" uses a heavily modified version of the Unreal Engine 3.0. Among these modifications is Massive Destruction (also known as Massive D), a set of physics technologies that allows players to destroy nearly every object in a given level. [cite web | title=E3 2006: Stranglehold Interview | work=IGN | url=http://www.gamespot.com/pc/action/stranglehold/news.html?sid=6164457 | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] Stranglehold also incorporates a body swapping technique that randomizes parts of enemy character models, producing varied characters rather than repetitious clones.

"Stranglehold" incorporates location-based damage. The A.I. responds differently to various hit locations, varying enemy reactions with damage-mapped impact points. [cite web | title=John Woo Presents Stranglehold Review | work=IGN | url=http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/817/817191p1.html | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] This feature is integrated throughout the game, but especially apparent during the second of four Tequila Bombs: Precision Aim. [cite web | title=John Woo Presents Stranglehold - Precision Aiming | work=IGN | url=http://blogs.ign.com/Strangleholdgame/2007/08/06/62486/ | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007] Also, while targets take time to recover from flesh wounds, they will eventually revive (even if unable to stand) and continue to fire until passing out from simulated blood loss. [cite web | title=Stranglehold Xbox 360 Preview | work=1up.com | url=http://www.1up.com/do/previewPage?pager.offset=1&cId=3149620 | accessdate=September 7 | accessyear=2007]

"Stranglehold" contains dynamic in-game advertising, such as posters and billboards for real world products appearing during game-play.

Collector's Edition

"Midway" has announced that there will be a "Collector's Edition" of the game for next-gen console versions of the game. [cite web | title=Stranglehold: Collector's Edition Unveiled for 360 | work=1UP.com | url=http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3160452 | accessdate=June 20 | accessyear=2007]

The Playstation 3 "Collector's Edition" includes the aforementioned "Hard Boiled" fully remastered in high-definition and on the same Blu-ray disc with all the additional game extras and features. The Xbox 360 "Collector's Edition" will include the same extras and featurettes but on a separate disc without the Hard Boiled movie. [ [http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3160452 Stranglehold: Collector's Edition Unveiled for 360 news from 1UP.com ] ]

Reception

"Stranglehold" has an average review score of 79% at Game Rankings. IGN gave it a rating of 8.1 out of 10 for its cinematic flair and melodrama in the storyline true to the style of John Woo, enjoyable battles, and slick presentation. [ [http://uk.xbox360.ign.com/articles/817/817191p3.html IGN: John Woo Presents Stranglehold Review ] ] Empire Online gave it a 4 out of 5, also praising its "dynamic action", as well its "bombastic soundtrack" and "slick visuals". [ [http://www.empireonline.com/reviews/reviewcomplete.asp?GID=429 Empire Reviews Central - Review of John Woo Presents: Stranglehold ] ] GamerNode gave the game an 8.5 out of 10, calling it the "ultimate guy's game." [ [http://www.gamernode.com/Reviews/4084-Stranglehold/index.html Gamernode: Reviews - Stranglehold ] ] GameSpot gave "Stranglehold" a 7.0 out of 10, stating that although the game is solid in every department, it is repetitive, due to a short seven-hour single-player game and weak multiplayer. As well, Electronic Gaming Monthly is calling it " Finally, a game whose movie influences are more than skin deep."

Map Pack

On December 6, "Midway" announced a downloadable map pack for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 video game systems. The map pack features 10 additional multiplayer maps ranging from the Kowloon Market to Wong’s Estate Grounds to the Rooftops of Chicago, as well as 21 all-new multiplayer character skins. The Xbox 360 version will include 10 new achievements worth 250 points.

References

External links

* [http://strangleholdgame.com/ Official website]
* [http://blogs.ign.com/Strangleholdgame/ Stranglehold blog by Senior Game Designer, Patrick Curry]


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