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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Arguably too short but, amazing fun while it lasts.
Stranglehold is an all action shoot 'em up which is great fun while it lasts. A lot of complaints have been made that it's too short. I agree to a certain extent but because the game play is virtually the same throughout I don't think it could have been stretched much further.

The action is some of the most exciting ever seen on a games console and the way the...
Published on 17 Jan 2008 by Mr. D. Bell

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not brilliant
I bought Stranglehold as i'm a fan of 'Shoot em ups' and liked the original film, Hard Boiled, of which this is the game sequel.
If your looking for vast expansive levels, challenging quests or free area's to roam like GTA then this isn't the game for you.
However if you like lots of guns, blowing the crap out of everything you see around you and some wicked...
Published on 13 Oct 2007 by Chris, Oxford


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Arguably too short but, amazing fun while it lasts., 17 Jan 2008
By 
Mr. D. Bell "Dan Bell" (Northampton, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Stranglehold is an all action shoot 'em up which is great fun while it lasts. A lot of complaints have been made that it's too short. I agree to a certain extent but because the game play is virtually the same throughout I don't think it could have been stretched much further.

The action is some of the most exciting ever seen on a games console and the way the scenery is destroyed adds to the immersion. Usually the damage to scenery in other shooters is minimal. In Stranglehold the damage is remarkable. Almost everything can be shot. During a gunfight, tables are knocked over, bottles smashed, concrete form pillars is smashed off and in one level even fish tanks can be shot spilling the contents all over the floor. At the end of a gunfight when you get your breath back and look at the room you are in the level of destruction is amazing.

Because the action is so fast and exciting its one of the few games you can let your mate have a go on and not get bored watching someone else play it.

Forty quid is definitely a lot to ask for a game that is this short, this easy and has very little replay value. However, now the price is half that it's definitely worth a purchase. Fans of big budget action films will love this.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars True Woo Style gameplay - challenging but not too difficult - shame about multiplayer though, 6 Nov 2007
By 
Silverfrog (Leeds UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
For those of you who love John Woo films and his artistic style, this game is for you. The game character Tequila is the character from the movie Hard Boiled (played by Chow Yun Fat) - a badass cop who doesn't mind bending the rules to put bad guys away. As in the movie Hard Boiled, the action scenes are wonderfully played out with a mix of slow motion and manic gun fights or exposions. In this game Stranglehold, this is no exception.

The feature of the game is that you can slow time down for a limited period of time allowing you to aim more precisely and kill more bad guys. You'll find that you want to dive often where time is automatically slowed down (just like in Hard Boiled!!).
You can also run along banisers, chairs, walls etc which is great fun and I really like being able to jump off a wall, kick it and fire my guns falling backwards and also jumping onto a trolley and killing peole as your coast along (also in Hard Boiled in the Hospital). John Woo's trademark is the used throughout the game like the use of two pistols, Woo time (slow motion) and close encouter gunfights, and sliding across tables etc. In the extra's, you can go to a shop with John Woo as the salesman and buy extras after earning them during gameplay.

Similar to Devil May Cry for the PS2, you have Style points and combo points, so the more you kill people with style (e.g. sliding down a banister and killing guys) the more points you gain. Your points are contributed to 'Tequila Bomb gauge' that fills up. As you progress along the game you unlock 4 specials. When the first quarter fills, you have the option of a health boost; the second precision aim (allows a zoom in to bad guys for distance shots); the third quarter allows Tequila to fill up with bullets on whatever weapon he is holding and then blast away very, very quickly without diminishing your ammo count; the final quarter filled up allows Tequila to do a special move, spinning on the spot to kill bad guys (which is really cool to watch).

As in Hard Boiled paper cranes make an appearance. You can collect these throughout the game to increase the 'Tequila Bomb gauge' immediately to help you get to those special moves quickly.

There is a multiplayer option but so far I don't think I've come across anyone on it yet. Maybe I'll take a look on the XBOX forums to see who's interested in some gaming.

All in all a very enjoyable game. The movement for gameplay is easy to get used to and intuitive. The game is not too difficult to play but in places, hard enough to be a challenge. In addition, at any checkpoint, you can play on easy, casual and hard, so if you get stuck, just start the game again and continue the gameplay on an easier level.

If you always wanted to play Tequila and kick some butt, then get this game as you'll have a blast doing the slow motion, jumping over chairs, kicking tables etc. in true Woo style.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard boiled just got Harder in virtual reality gaming, 30 Sep 2007
By 
Great White "GW" (Leicester, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Wow i must say WOW! This is the game i have been waiting for since the film came out and now it's finally here and it doesn't disappoint not one little bit. The gunplay is better than what you had in the matrix even when you slow the action down it doesn't actually slow down to the point of boredom, it stays fast and furious. The moves you can do in this game are excellent from assending stairs to jumpin on balance rails to even surfing on trolleys and shoot the "claret" out of the bad guys. The inclusion of the special moves is brilliant too, like for instance Precsion aiming which you don't get until a little bit through the game and it's worth waiting for as revenge is a bloody mary, sweet, delicious and served cold with plenty of blood. You're being shot in the shoulder by some a'hole well turn the tides and shoot him where it most hurts. haha. Finally there is a videogames based on a film that 100% delivers all the thrills and excitement of the movie. And the body count cam never be maxed in the game, basically anything goes. You can either pistol whip them if you're close enough or you can blow the hell out of them with the assortment of weapons at your disposal. This is a rare game, shall i tell you why? Because it has endless replay value and just like the film will definately have you coming back for more. The multiplayer xbox live funtion of the game is great to play too will you proves you are the cop that can't be stopped? Chow Yun Fat proves that his character can cross borders from film to game almost effortlessly. This is my fave game and if you want a great action game then choose stranglehold.

JUST TO MAKE IT CLEAR I PLAYED THE GAME NOT THE DEMO.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of fun for John Woo fans, but let down by frustrating difficulty level., 8 Oct 2007
By 
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
JOHN WOO PRESENTS STRANGLEHOLD is a 'spiritual' sequel to his 1992 Hong Kong film HARD-BOILED, which starred Chow Yun-Fat (who was also seen in CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON; THE KILLER; A BETTER TOMORROW; BULLETPROOF MONK and PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: AT WORLD'S END) as police Inspector 'Tequila' Yuen. This game allows you to reprise the role of that iconic character (who is also voiced by Chow himself!) as you unravel a case involving two girls who get kidnapped by a crime syndicate.

The game itself is a third-person shooter that uses the Unreal engine (as did other titles like GEARS OF WAR and RAINBOW SIX: VEGAS), but there are quite a few things that make this quite different from those:

(1) STRANGLEHOLD has the most destructive environments in videogame history. Pretty much anything can be destroyed, from tables to glass windows to ornate vases and dragons. In some instances you can use this to your advantage, for if you see a suspended sign above a baddie you can shoot the sign so that it falls on top of him!
(2) You build up a Tequila Bomb meter (in the bottom-left corner) that allows you to pull off one of four special moves (although you don't get the ability to use them until certain points in the game, but you don't have to wait all that long before they become available).
(3) Being a John Woo-based game, if you're familiar with the best of Woo's movies then you know the drill: slow-motion, ballistic gun-battles with people leaping around and using their environment in imaginative ways to avoid getting shot or otherwise killed. Tequila can do things like dive forwards, sideways or backwards and shoot in any direction; bounce off walls to get a good shot in; slide down stair banisters while shooting; swing from chandeliers while shooting; or even ride on a trolley (a.k.a. rollcart) while shooting at people! A lot of imagination has gone into this game to make it feel like you're in an interactive John Woo film, especially as you have a Tequila Time meter (which is essentially slow-motion) to aid you in your quest to try and pull off the most stylish kills; you can earn even more style points and Tequila Bomb power by stringing style combos together, such as leaping off a wall then landing on a trolley!

About those Tequila Bombs (TB) mentioned in (2). Each time you kill someone you gain TB power, and you gain it much more quickly if you pull off stylish kills compared to ones where you're just standing and shooting. Once it reaches a high-enough level for a specific TB move you can execute it; it can also be filled up even more quickly by locating paper cranes scattered about the place. My favourite one of these, besides the first one (which allows you to restore lost health, which is handy if you don't know where to find or cannot easily access a first-aid kit on a wall or on the floor), is the Precision Aim. You go into first-person mode and move a crosshair about the screen to try and hit a baddie in a specific body part (it will also zoom in on distant baddies); you do this and fire to send a bullet (upon which the camera hitches a ride) hurtling towards your target and get some graphic results as the guy on the receiving end gets shot (whether or not he dies depends on where you hit him, assuming you hit him at all).

Weapons available to you include the basic Berettas (something that we're used to seeing Chow holding!), shotguns, sub-machine guns, assault rifles and others (which I'll leave as a surprise). There is some strategy involved because some guns are more powerful than others while others are better suited to long-distance shots than others. You can also only carry two different types of gun, but you can switch between the two at any point. Later on you also get a stash of grenades.

So far so good, but is the game any good? Well, I enjoyed it, and so did quite a few other people, although I feel that you will get more out of the game if you've seen the John Woo movies from Hong Kong (not just Hard-Boiled), as opposed to just his Hollywood fare, where he was told he couldn't really do what he was most famous for to quite the same degree, effectively watering down his trademark style.

Graphics aren't great, but then I expected that, if only due to the demands of trying to get the destructible backgrounds to work, so maybe more was spent on that than super-realistic visuals (but even then they're still hardly atrocious).

Sound is pretty good, although I would've preferred a meatier sound for the Beretta than the one that is currently there. The other weapons have perfectly suitable sounds, so no complaints there.

Gameplay is the real decider as to whether you like the game or hate it with a passion. While it's a lot of fun diving around and trying to pull off stylish kills, there really isn't a huge amount of variety in the gameplay, and for some that may not be enough. There are also bits where wave after wave of baddies seem to come at you, which some people might find tedious and annoying, especially as there is no radar, so they can easily sneak up behind you if you're not constantly alert. You also cannot really hide from them to prevent you from being seen by them, as you can in games like Rainbow Six Vegas, where a foe has to actually see you to know you're there and to take action. Even through a wall your presence will be made aware to the baddies, as if by telepathic connection, and as soon as you're in the immediate vicinity they will come for you. This is a tad unrealistic and can be frustrating at times.

Although you can take cover behind things, like in many of these games, you sometimes have to be choosy as to what to hide behind, because some of the things you can hide behind can be destroyed by gunfire (sometimes frighteningly quickly)! Here, a tactical element comes into play as you try to think quickly on your feet where you can go to avoid being shot when your cover is completely destroyed. You can shoot while remaining in cover, although you cannot look all the way around you while hiding (only about 180 degrees each way), which I thought was a bit unfair and can lead to someone coming up behind you and whacking you with a melee attack (which does TONS of damage - and you can't simply wait for your health to recover like in other shooters; in STRANGLEHOLD you have to either use the health-restoring TB or go and find a first-aid box! The biggest problem with this facet about cover is that sometimes the onslaught of baddies is so intense that you barely get enough time to think, which often leads to more frustrating deaths.

Regarding the stylish kills, sometimes you have to align yourself correctly with an object (e.g. stair bainster) to run up it or slide down it (you'll know if you're in the right position to interact with it because it glows white when you are), and when there's a choice or you're in a hurry to avoid being shot, sometimes it can do the wrong thing, or at least do something unexpected, which can lead to yet more frustrating deaths. This alone can make the game much more anger-inducing than it really needs to be, not helped by the fact that many of the restart points are quite widely spread apart, or the fact that some levels have snipers with laser-sighted assault rifles - these do a LOT of damage when they hit you, even on the easier difficulty levels. In fact, I think they do a bit too much damage, really. The game's hard enough as it is; even on the easier settings it's quite a challenge without those annoying snipers making it a real deathtrap!

Yet, despite its flaws, I still felt compelled to play on. I love the Tequila character and the experience of diving around and trying to pull off the most stylish kills that I could, it's that much of a guilty pleasure. It's just that, with a little more thought, the game could've been less frustrating and slightly better designed than it is, which would've made it a true classic.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars tequila... he makes me happy!!, 17 Sep 2007
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Bought this game yesterday, having just bought a 360 3 days ago. i have to say i a very impressed. the game is so much fun!!! i spent half of the game laughing my face off beacause i was having so much fun. the script is so action filmy, and the dialoge so much like a john woo film (to be expected i guess) that you actualy feel like your in the action, and there is enough varitey of attacks and locations to keep the fun going. but here in lies the problem, i have finished the main game already, took be maybe about 5 or 6 hours. it was fun but i wanted more. i didnt want the fun to stop. having said this it is about the same length as most games like this and i will be going back to play through again. also theres the multi player which i havnt even touched on. i sugesst you buy it, or at least rent it for a few days, and get the lemon and salt ready!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not brilliant, 13 Oct 2007
By 
Chris, Oxford (Oxford, England.) - See all my reviews
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
I bought Stranglehold as i'm a fan of 'Shoot em ups' and liked the original film, Hard Boiled, of which this is the game sequel.
If your looking for vast expansive levels, challenging quests or free area's to roam like GTA then this isn't the game for you.
However if you like lots of guns, blowing the crap out of everything you see around you and some wicked close up shots when you kill people with the precision shot option then this is the game for you. Its fun, playable and has some neat features like 'tequilla time' and style points for fancy kills.
In summary, its a real good shooting game and there isn't a game out there which beats it on environmental destruction..... and like i said,use precision shot for some great close ups.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars John Woo action hits 360! in all its slow-mo glory and enough doves to fill a large skip!, 17 Sep 2007
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Like many of you I too downloaded the demo of John Woo's Stranglehold in an attempt to recapture the cool action scenes of woo's unique action movies. I am pleased to announce that this game did just that I enjoyed the demo (entire first level) so much I played it over 10 times on all difficulties. So needless to say I bought the full game the day it came out, Stranglehold play's like Max Payne's big brother. Not since the fantastic Max Payne have I had so much fun diving into a room full of bad guys, hitting the bullet (sorry tequila) time and taking out everyone in the room before I hit the ground.
As I am sure your aware Stranglehold is the sequal to John Woo's classic and some his greatest film Hard Boiled. Back in the starring role as hard hitting (and shooting) cop Tequlia is the great Chow Yun Fat! well his likeness anyway but if you can tell the soundalike Chow Yun to the real one you have a better ear than I. This game is great fun to play the graphics are gorgous, the game is unbelievably interactive if you see it you can shoot it!. Wood splinters, vases smash, windows shatter and I can't begin to tell you how cool the fish tanks look when you shoot them and the water comes pouring out and the fish lay flapping on the damp floor. Chow Yun can also interact with nearly everything, swing from the lights, slide down the banister, jump belly first on to a trolly and shoot loads of bad guys in cool Woo style slo-mo while your doing it. Also at your disposal is some very cool special moves from precision aiming -(so fun just aim the baddies extremties, shoot and just watch their expression!, a cool spin attack and a lethal barrage move are also cool.

So once again we have a near perfect gaming experience but not quite! firstly I hear the games length is problem (a worrying trend these days) I must admit I have not finished it yet but I have only played it for 4-5 hours and get the distinct impression there is not much story left to tell. Secondly and more importantly the multiplayer is far from great, this may just be down to personal taste but I don't think it works. The rooms/maps are too small its very difficult to find a game with more than 1-2 players, and when you do there is always some one who finds the power ups straight away and just uses the barrage move (invinicibility) over and over again. Believe me its very frustrating even if you manage to power up enough to use barrage too its just a case of shooting each other for 30 seconds until one players barrage runs out, in other words no skill is really needed. Its a shame because just using the enviroment would have been "WOO" enough for the multiplayer and the special moves which work great in Singleplayer should have stayed there.

As multiplayer is only really a bonus to the excellent singleplayer you can't really deduct to many points because the multiplayer isn't GRAW2. The single player experiance is where the fun is to be had, believe me it doesn't push the next gen limits in innovation terms, but It does have gorgous graphics and the nearest you probably ever get to being in a John Woo movie. Oh one last thing if like John Woo you have a strange Pigeon and Dove fetish there are more than a few in Stranglehold to keep you happy.

Cheers for reading Unluckbauer007 (gamertag)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Game, 30 Sep 2007
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
"Stranglehold" is an amazing game! I love the way everything is so interactive - Walls fall appart, tables break up, baskets of fruit go flying... You name it! Also the ability to slow time while shotting the enemy is great - You also learn different techniques as the game goes on.

The game however is a short as some people say it is, so what I suggest is putting the difficulty level on Hard to make it last that little longer and to give yourself more of a challenge, although you could probably play this game a few times over before getting bored of it.

It reminds me so much of Max Payne.

I'd recoomend this to anyone! A must buy!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mental Fun!!, 15 Jan 2008
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
I must take issue with the people complaining that this game lacks depth - its a "shooter" for goodness sake?! What did you expect other than shooting?? And you do get loads of super fun, super varied and super exciting shooting. There's no lazy programming here. You can interact with your entire environment. The graphics are stunning. The character control is excellent. If you don't enjoy swinging in slow motion from a chandelier shooting gangsters with a machine gun then what in blazes are you doing buying a shooter anyway?! The difficultly levels really do change the game as well. In some games (see Gears of War), its hard to tell the difference between "Casual" and "Insane" difficulty - not here. I was reeeally struggling on hard as opposed to the relative sail through I had on Casual. And that's as it should be.

Only a couple of negatives - the game is short. I wanted more!!
The multi-player is poor - but I don't really like online shooters anyway. You just end up getting killed endlessly by the same nerd that spends his entire days and nights snipering newbies like me. It's their substitute for having a woman y'see....poor wee lambs.

Anyway - buy it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's big, it's bold, and it's John Woo!, 1 Oct 2007
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Stranglehold (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
One of the best titles to join the Xbox 360 Elite Gaming Collection, Stranglehold is a top notch shooter that deserves a chance. I don't seem why people would not like this game. This game differs a lot because of the special gaming physics combined with the Unreal Engine 3.0. The 'Massive D' Physic is incredible, as it allows you to destroy everything around you, and use it against the enemy. This is will be a reason this game will be remembered.

As in John Woo's style, you get shootouts, doves flying, and loads of diving and jumping all over the place. The controls are easy to pick up and place down, and you'll have a fun shooting all over the place. It's generaly one of those games where you can go crazy. The story is hollywood-style at it's best. Loads of action, great dialogue and an awesome plot. Adding top-notch voice talent, how can anyone not like it?

The graphics are great, yet sometimes you'll wonder it looks slow. The odd framerate drop is here and there, but it doesn't matter, neither does it stop it from being perfect.

All in all, Stranglehold I'd reccomend to anyone looking for a slice of action.
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Stranglehold (Xbox 360)
Stranglehold (Xbox 360) by Midway Games Ltd (Xbox 360)
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