John Woo presents Stranglehold (Xbox 360) by Midway Home Entertainment

John Woo presents Stranglehold (Xbox 360) by Midway Home Entertainment Box Art

North Amercian Release Date: August 27, 2007.

Average Overall Score:
8.70 / 10

John Woo Presents Stranglehold, developed by Tiger Hill and published by Midway, has a lot of expectation to live up to. Tiger Hill is a unique studio ? created in 2003 by John Woo and Terence Chang, Tiger Hill seeks to bring existing video game worlds into the world of action cinema, and to bring the world of action cinema into video games in a unique cross pollination."

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Experience exhilarating 3rd person next-gen action as you continue the story of John Woo’s influential action film, Hard Boiled starring Chow Yun-Fat. Run into danger with both fists full of lead and take down the organized crime bosses who stepped over the line when they took your family. Stop at nothing as you destroy the entire world around you to get them back. You are a desperate man following your own rules; honor thy family; do what’s right; fear no man.


Sunday, May 21, 2006


Hong Kong Marketplace Completed
Complete the Hong Kong Marketplace level on any Difficulty setting.
Tai O Completed
Complete the Tai O level on any Difficulty setting.
The Mega Restaurant Completed
Complete The Mega Restaurant level on any Difficulty setting.
Zakarov's Penthouse Completed
Complete the Zakarov's Penthouse level on any Difficulty setting.
Chicago History Museum Completed
Complete the Chicago History Museum level on any Difficulty setting.
Slums of Kowloon Completed
Complete the Slums of Kowloon level on any Difficulty setting.
Wong's Estate Completed
Complete the Wong's Estate level on any Difficulty setting.
Game Completed - Casual
Complete the entire game on the Casual Difficulty setting.
Game Completed - Normal
Complete the entire game on the Normal Difficulty setting.
Game Completed - Hard
Complete the entire game on the Hard Difficulty setting.
Game Completed - Hard Boiled
Complete the entire game on the Hard Boiled Difficulty setting.
I Don't Know How to Play Those
In The Mega Restaurant level, complete the Casino or the Restaurant without using the Guitar Cases.
In the Chicago History Museum level, completely destroy the Brachiosaurus or the T-Rex.
Stay Dry
In the Slums of Kowloon level, stay along the top pathway in the crumbling sewer area.
Master of Precision Aim
Kill 50 enemies with the Precision Aim special move.
Master of Barrage
Kill 100 enemies with the Barrage special move.
Master of Spin Attack
Kill 100 enemies with the Spin Attack Special Move.
Barrage Specialist
Use the Barrage special move with every weapon.
Old School
On any difficulty setting, complete a level without using any of the Tequila Bomb Special Moves.
On any difficulty setting, complete a Standoff by defeating all enemies without taking any damage.
Deadly World
Kill 50 enemies by using the environment instead of guns.
Rolling Death
Kill 50 enemies while riding on a roll cart.
Death by Swing
Kill 50 enemies while hanging from a chandelier.
The Killer
Fire 10,000 times.
Origami Master
Collect 250 Origami Cranes.
Chow Would Be Proud
Kill 10 enemies with a 5 star kill rating.
Perform a 50 star Style Combo.
Massive D
Cause at least $75,000,000 of damage.
Nobody Has That Much Style...
Acquire 5,000 total Style Points.
Meet John Woo
Visit the Unlock Shop.
Purchase all of the Multiplayer characters in the Unlock Shop.
It's All Mine...
Purchase every item in the Unlock Shop.
Tea Party
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Kowloon Teahouse map.
Jurassic Battle
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Dinosaur Rotunda map.
Mega Jackpot
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Golden Dragon Casino map.
Lounge Lizard
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Mega Lounge map.
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Totem Pole Gallery map.
Sea Food
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Tai O Drug Labs map.
Movin' on Up
Host and complete 10 multiplayer matches on the Chicago Penthouse map.
One Gun To Rule Them All
Finish in 1st place in a Multiplayer ranked match.
Killing Spree
Get 5 kills in a row without dying in a Multiplayer ranked match.
Bullet Ballet
Kill 50 opponents while in Tequila Time in Multiplayer matches.
Winner Takes All
Kill 50 opponents using Tequila Bombs in Multiplayer matches.
Hardboiled Killer
Kill 307 opponents in Multiplayer matches.
Be the Master
Kill 100 opponents as John Woo in Multiplayer matches.

User Reviews

Score: 87
Overall User Average: 9.20 / 10 (87.0%)
Gameplay User Average: 9.00 / 10
Graphics User Average: 8.80 / 10
Sound User Average: 9.50 / 10
Date reviewed: June 14, 2008.

Overall: Stranglehold is the video game continuation of John Woo's cl@!%#*!ic fast action movie: "Hard Boiled" starring Chow Yun Fat.
Stranglehold is John Woo's vision of his style of action movies converted to video game format.
John Woo has inspired many action movies like "The Matrix" and has introduced the concept of "Bullet-time" slow motion video into games such as Max Payne.
Director/Producer John Woo's style of weapon oriented action movies represent a sort of onscreen ballet of violence. Characters wielding two guns at once, very choreographed stylish movements, liberal use of slow motion and spiraling camera angles. It was only a matter of time before the full vision of John Woo's stories and his pursuit of personifying the action movie genre would be fully realized as a video game.

You play as the character Police Detective John Tequila, as portrayed by the actor Chow Yun Fat. John Tequila, much like he was in the movie "Hard Boiled" is a maverick detective. He has a strong sense of duty and honor, but he's willing to break the rules and disregard orders to get the mission done.
To best personify who John Tequila really is, there is a line in which the police superintendent admonishes John for going into a situation alone, and John merely replies "I was not alone, I had my two friends with me," as he pats his two signature Berreta 92F pistols.
Stranglehold begins with the investigation of a mission Hong Kong policeman. As the story continues, Detective Tequila takes the matters personally and the further he fights his way through the case, the deeper he goes he himself finds himself in a stranglehold between life, his family and the crime syndicate he's pursuing.

Gameplay: This is John Woo's vision of a game, therefore you are thrust into the game as if on the set of one his movies. You are expected to create as much damage as possible to everything around you right off the bat. Very little is out of bounds even if that means shooting a large sign fixture until it drops on top of one of your enemies thusly killing him, then by all means do so.

The environment around you is either partially destructible or somehow can be used by you during gameplay. Whether be by taking cover behind something or being able to easily use environmental items to do some very stylish maneuvers. I'm talking about jumping on a grocery cart and body surfing it across a room and shooting at people in slow motion with a gun in each hand.
Or how about sliding under a table and kicking the table up to use as cover? Looks familiar?
Because things like that are what made John Woo popular. You are awarded for creativity during battle. Sliding across tables shooting, jumping backwards and sliding backwards on your back while shooting, diving and shooting, kicking off of walls while shooting are just a few activities you are expected to do.

So you are awarded for destructiveness and your general ability for @!%#*! kickery. You are awarded with Tequila Bombs. These bombs are special moves that can be pulled off when you have satisfactorily maintained a special meter that measures your scale of action. In general, the more outrageous you get the more you can do and more often it can happen.

You are awarded with the ability to heal yourself partially initially. As time goes on you awarded with the other bombs such as the precision shot. Activating the precision shot stops the game play for brief second allowing you to aim exactly where you want at a distance. Once your selection is made, John pulls a snap shot and you are awarded with a camera-following-bullet view as it strikes whoever it was you aimed at. Where you aim cues certain animations, shooting somebody in the groin, in the eye and so forth.

One of my personal favorites is the "Barrage Mode." Activation the barrage treats you to a animation sequence of John Tequila with Chow Yun Fat's near signature smirk on his face, reloading his gun and for a brief moment in time the game slows down, you become immune to damage and you have unlimited ammunition and your gun fires in continuous streams of death . Use this wisely, but trust me you won't be disappointed when you get a shotgun and do a barrage with it.

Stranglehold does offer an interesting sequence that occurs when you get surrounded called "standoff". It's very similar to Army of Two's back to back mode. The game goes into slow motion and the screen rotates around giving you a few seconds to engage the closest enemy. They fire back but you can use that time to dodge the bullets with a small movement of your body like what you saw in "The Matrix." Bullet trails included.
Graphics: Though the graphics are very good and the representations of Chow Yun Fat and even John Woo who makes a cameo in the game are outstanding, there are some minor graphic flaws. There are some minor clipping issues with character protrusions going through the game map elements. Sometimes walls disappear and reappear and occasionally the mission maps seem very repetitive.
Though nothing wrong with the missions, it's just that sometimes I began to wonder if I'm ever going to look at something different than what I've been looking at for the past 10 minutes.

A nice touch is that John bleeds when he's injured. The more hurt he gets, the bloodier he gets. Which looks really cool during that infamous barrage weapon loading scene if you've been shot up a bit.

The slow motion views are represented well and done convincingly. The reddish haze over the camera sometimes obscures brightly colored elements that may be important, but you can turn off slow motion and turn it on at will with a press of a button.
Sound: You can't go wrong here. The voices are the voices of the real characters, the audio is in sync with people's mouths and of course, the guns sound like guns which is really all you need.

The sound track to this game is essentially you shooting everybody all the time with a great many bullets. All other sounds are nonessential.

Suggestions: To be honest, the multiplayer over Xbox Live could be completely avoided. Sure it could be fun, but with so many great online games like Call of Duty 4 and Gears of War, it's hard to compare. I'll be honest, I never played Stranglehold online because I never saw the need to. I absolutely love this game, but it's just one of those games that I just don't feel compelled to play because i have other great games to play online.

Since we're suggesting things here, I'd suggest a sequel but done with a co-op mode.

Overall: 92 %
Gameplay: 90 %
Graphics: 88 %
Sound: 95 %

John Woo presents Stranglehold News

Stranglehold Ships Over a Million Worldwide
Midway has today announced that its John Woo action title Stranglehold has shipped over a million units worldwide. Stranglehold was a Top Ten title in North America for the month of September according to data from the NPD Group.

Midway Records Higher Losses
Chicago-based Midway has posted a greater loss for the most recent quarter, and has downgraded guidance in the face of key delays. Net loss for the quarter was $33.5 million versus a loss of $22.2 million for the comparable quarter a year ago.

John Woo Presents Stranglehold: Achievements
There are 45 achievements with a total of 1000 points.

Six Cool Things to Do In The Stranglehold Demo
The Stranglehold demo is officially out and available for the 360, and I strongly suggest a download. This is what a demo should be; long enough to give you a good idea about how the game plays, but short enough that you're left wanting more.

Demo: Stranglehold
Play as Inspector Tequila in this single-player demo and engage in cinematic firefights, inspired by John Woo, blasting your way through a fully destructible Hong Kong marketplace.

Stranglehold 360 Demo Dated
The glorious news comes from a moderator on the official forums over at Midway.

E3: Stranglehold Demo Dated
Midway announced at its E3 conference in Santa Monica that a demo for Stranglehold will be available to download on Xbox 360 next month.

Stranglehold Official Site Live
The official site for John Woo’s Stranglehold is up and after shooting at game logo, new screens appear.

Stanglehold Screens
Midways sent along some pretty nice screens of this action packed shooter. Have a look!

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