Appearing previously on consoles, True Crime: Streets of LA for the PC improves on the console format with sharper graphics and a better control system. PC World looked at preview code for this title, which was approximately 60 per cent complete.
The storyline follows Nick Kang, an ex-LAPD cop who was dismissed from the force for his unorthodox violent method of capturing crooks.
Given a second chance, he is recruited by the Elite Operations Division to try to curb the rise in crime caused by local Russian and Chinese crime syndicates. A perfect opportunity to strengthen his crime-fighting skills, this also gives him the chance to search for his father’s killer.
The similarity between True Crime and the Grand Theft Auto series is always apparent and it seems True Crime has been developed with a sense of homage to the GTA series. The gameplay is not quite as open-ended as that of GTA but there are elements that make this title stand out. Combat and gunplay are especially noteworthy and a variety of fighting moves is available, so in no time at all you’ll be beating your enemies to a pulp. The gunplay, with bullet time dodging effects, is reminiscent of another well-known third person action game called Max Payne.
The crux of the gameplay is com-mandeering vehicles to drive to and from the missions. Random crimes are reported on the car’s police scanner and present a slight deviation to the missions. Nothing gives more satisfaction than chasing down a crook, tackling and arresting the perp whilst a crowd looks on.
Activision has prepared an interesting cast of actors for the character voice- overs, including Gary Oldman, Christopher Walken, Snoop Dogg and others. The PC version incorporates some new music from Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube and Eazy E that console players would envy. It also has a multiplayer function and four different game modes.
The PC version of True Crime is a definite improvement over the console versions, and you can spend many hours playing both the single and multiplayer levels with relish. If you liked the style of the GTA series and felt something was lacking, pick up True Crime for the fun multiplayer modes, if nothing else.
[Preview version, not scored]