Square Enix nabbed the True Crime franchise right from Activision last year after the in-development title True Crime: Hong Kong was laid to rest. The game was the placed in the hands of Square Enix London Studios, and that team has been quietly working on the project since then. That silence ends today.
A morning press release confirms the existence of Sleeping Dogs, which London Studios worked on in a collaborative effort with United Front Games (ModNation Racers). There's no mention of the True Crime franchise name at all in the release, but anyone who was familiar with the cancelled game's story and setup can see easily enough that Sleeping Dogs is a retitled True Crime: Hong Kong.
The live-action trailer above is completely devoid of gameplay, but it's filled with some slick visuals all the same. It also notes that the game is due for release sometime this year on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Windows PC platforms, presumably as a late summer or early fall title. Here's what the press release has to say about London Studios' "gritty open-world cop drama":
Sleeping Dogs catapults players into the role of undercover cop Wei Shen, tasked with taking down one of the world’s most fearsome criminal organisations from the inside... the Hong Kong Triads. As players explore the bustling and crowded Hong Kong island, through its neon-lit side streets and sprawling street markets, an incredible story unfolds of loyalty and betrayal where Wei begins to question his own motives as he is sucked in deeper than he could ever imagine.
Offering players an island packed with action, every street corner, market stall, harbor dock or city skyscraper can become an opportunity for intense shoot-outs, adrenaline-fuelled street races and intense, brutal martial arts combat. Featuring one of the most intuitive and imaginative combat systems, Sleeping Dogs empowers players to perform an extensive set of martial arts moves, singlehandedly taking on numerous opponents. Players perform bone-crunching kicks and combos, vicious counters and a cinematic set of environmental takedowns making use of countless real-world items from circular saws to phone booths, incinerators to refrigerator doors.