Sleeping Dogs brings the open world action-adventure that is similar to games such as Grand Theft Auto and other crime related series.
What sets apart Sleeping Dogs from the competition is its unique environment. Set in Hong Kong, the game really captures the look, sounds, and feeling of the back streets of the city. I often found myself walking down the alleys just to stop and listen to the NPC’s arguing in Cantonese and visiting the shops to check out the roast duck hanging up in the windows.
Unlike most Western media that attempts to portray Asian culture, I didn’t feel like Sleeping Dogs went out of its way to point out its “Asian-ness”. Instead, as a player I was simply immersed into the environment and although the Hong Kong culture felt like it was portrayed throughout I didn’t feel like there were signs pointing everywhere saying, “Look over here! We’re in Hong Kong! Look! Chopsticks! See? We’re portraying Asians!”
Instead we are allowed to explore Asian culture through the lens of a video game and although yes, it comes with its own bias that comes from our cultural awareness of Hong Kong style movies the result ends up being quite enjoyable.
Now I need to eat roast duck.