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Have You Played... John Woo Presents: Stranglehold?

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Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

Stranglehold wasn’t bad, you know? It’s funny how a mostly decent game, on release, is defended by furious pre-orderers who won’t allow negative aspects to be identified. But give it nine years and everyone will have forgotten it ever existed. But fluttery doves, everybody!

Actually, it was a game that suffered from collapse. It started so well, a riveting action game, drawing deep inspiration from Woo’s catalogue, and even is sort of a bit a sequel to the movie Hard Boiled. Chow Yun-fat appears and everything! And in those early Hong Kong levels, it was explodey, exciting and very silly. Sadly the game then moved to Chicago, and became about car parks, and dwindled away to drear.

But it seems a shame to let a game that was nearly great go forgotten. Especially one in which you can dive sideways with a gun in both hands, while doves flutter away, and it isn’t starring a man called Max. Sadly it’s very discontinued, although a huge number of copies can be found on eBay.

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John Walker

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One of the original co-founding robots of Rock, Paper, Shotgun, I'm now a senior editor and hero of humanity. Old and special.

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