Metascore
83

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Aug 17, 2012
    95
    What's that? Is that Activision cursing themselves because they've abandoned True Crime? Well, if they aren't, they should be! Sleeping Dogs is an absolutely fantastic game, which will definitely be fondly remembered as an example of the loads of fun a sandbox action game can deliver. Do not skip this one!
  2. Aug 14, 2012
    95
    Sleeping Dogs represents a marked step forward for open-world action games, offering surprisingly deep gameplay and an almost meticulous attention to detail.
  3. Sep 4, 2012
    90
    An undercover cop infiltrating the Triads of Hong Kong in a game that does most things right. All elements of the game are great, from story to fighting to driving. One of the best sandbox games in a long time.
  4. Aug 30, 2012
    90
    Sleeping Dogs is – for me - one of the biggest surprises of 2012. I had absolutely no interest in this game and was expecting a mediocre GTA clone with some extra brutality on the top. After just 2 hours of playing my opinion changed dramatically. I haven't had the opportunity to experience a game with such a compelling hero for a long time. Every death of a friendly character had an impact on me. Even reading a report describing tortures and death of the protagonist's predecessor gave me chills. A standing ovation!
  5. Aug 29, 2012
    90
    Just because a game lacks a multiplayer mode doesn't always mean that it's lacking. With good variety, solid character and world design, Sleeping Dogs offers a story that gamers haven't quite seen before, even if it does borrow liberally from other franchises. Unlike other titles, the game doesn't go all out and rely on the wacky or extreme to separate itself from the competition, instead choosing to present itself as a jack of all trades in a genre where no one knew it was needed.
  6. After its tumultuous history, Sleeping Dogs needed to emerge from cancellation as something special, and it doesn't disappoint. [Oct 202, p.77
  7. 90
    Sleeping Dogs isn't a groundbreaker so much as a hodgepodge of awesomeness. It is the satisfying culmination of years of open-world gaming. With hours of replay value, smooth combat and great voice acting, Sleeping Dogs illustrates the beginning of a successful franchise.
  8. Aug 14, 2012
    90
    Sleeping Dogs is a very good sandbox game, even though there are two things some players may complain about: its lack of personality and the lack of innovation. If you're OK with this, then this game has a lot to offer, from many hours of fun to a engaging story. Sleeping Dogs is, above all, a great surprise full of entertainment and quality. Definitely worth trying.
  9. Aug 14, 2012
    90
    A great game and one of this year's most pleasant surprises.
  10. 90
    Sleeping Dogs offers one of the strongest narratives in recent gaming and drags you through the gritty streets of Hong Kong's mob underworld in the process. Its gameplay doesn't offer many new ideas, but it delivers what it promises. Namely, an engaging story, fun combat, slick driving, and solid gameplay.
  11. 90
    The living, breathing underworld of Hong Kong is expertly recreated. The sum of all of these parts give Sleeping Dogs that classic Hong Kong Kung Fu action flick vibe, putting you in the director's chair. There may not be any multiplayer, however, the sheer volume of content and the added Social Hub will keep you playing long after the credits roll.
  12. Aug 14, 2012
    90
    Between the wonderfully acted story and the tight car and gunplay, Sleeping Dogs is an exceptional open-world crime drama that ups the ante for cinematic story presentations -- and execution moves -- in games.
  13. While Sleeping Dogs doesn't innovate enough to be considered on a par with Rockstar's finest, the fact that it comes so very close [and even improves up those games in a couple of ways] deserves massive credit. This is the game Saints Row has spent a decade desperate to be... It's unquestionably 2012's most brilliantly brutal surprise. [Sept 2012, p.95]
  14. Oct 14, 2012
    88
    It's hard to imagine, that Activision let this one go. Sleeping Dogs is action packed sandbox shooter, which - in many ways - does things a lot better than GTA. Parkour, shooting and hand to hand combat are wrapped around a stunning virtual version of Hong Kong. The story isn't quite Rockstar, but it keeps the action going. The bar is set for the fifth Grand Theft Auto. [Sept 2012]
  15. Aug 16, 2012
    86
    Wei Shen is like Niko Bellic, he moves in a similar game. But this title expands and becomes more serious and mature than Rockstar's game. If you like sandbox ga,es, go ahead and get ready to fight with martial arts and perfect shots, also enjoy driving in Hong Kong.
  16. Aug 16, 2012
    86
    It has its problems but I seriously doubt most action fans will be disappointed. I can almost guarantee enjoyment.
  17. Aug 25, 2012
    85
    Sleeping Dogs is a surprise so pleasing as it was unexpected.
  18. Aug 14, 2012
    85
    Its production values and some gameplay mechanics make Sleeping Dogs fun and engaging. GTA and Saint's Row now have a new contender for the throne of the sandbox genre.
  19. Aug 14, 2012
    85
    Sleeping Dogs did things that wowed me from the moment I started playing, and it never really stopped.
  20. Aug 23, 2012
    84
    A little rough around the edges, but this is a seriously enjoyable sandbox backed up by an involving story, well-rounded characters and some brutal combat. [Oct 2012, p.98]
  21. Aug 14, 2012
    83
    Well-tuned driving and fighting ultimately outweigh Sleeping Dogs' inconsistent tone and relatively modest production values. The ability and status of your character ramp up nicely, and you'll have plenty of opportunity to exercise your power in a well-constructed playground.
  22. The reason why we go into so much detail about the fighting system is because we've never seen such deep and expansive mechanics in an open world game. You will fight until your knuckles are covered in blood and still won't have had enough of it. [September 2012, p.72]
  23. Sep 17, 2012
    80
    Sleeping Dogs will quickly gain the attention of those who enjoy a good open world with infinity of missions to complete.
  24. Aug 24, 2012
    80
    Despite the departure of Activision but thanks to Square Enix's help, United Front Games found enough inspiration to propose a great alternative to the Grand Theft Auto series, with Sleeping Dogs. With its good representation of Hong-Kong, a variety of missions, and great fighting sequences that could bring Bruce Lee back from the dead, Sleeping Dogs can proudly appear among the best GTA-like games developed to date.
  25. Aug 23, 2012
    80
    Not top dog, but not in the land of nod either; Sleeping Dogs is a predictable but thoroughly enjoyable open world romp. Its undercover narrative and atmospheric Asian setting help to augment the title with an original identity, even if it's forced to sit a couple of places behind Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto franchise in the sandbox pecking order.
  26. Aug 22, 2012
    80
    The game has a great world where you can buy cars and clothes, fight with Triads, race cars, or just cause havoc if you like and it all amounts to a great time. Sleeping Dogs seemed like a game that was headed for disaster and pulled a complete curve ball and turned out to be pretty great.
  27. Aug 21, 2012
    80
    Sleeping Dogs is a great game, but it has moments in which it misses a finishing touch. Fortunately the flashy fights and additional content make it that Sleeping Dogs never becomes a simple lap dog.
  28. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    Sleeping Dogs isn't original in most of its mechanics and narrative but the little things that differ from genre staples are enough to warrant your attention. The combat system is a joy and the focus on unarmed combat, rather than firepower, is quite refreshing.
  29. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    After everything it went through, UFG's game is surprisingly efficient. It's a relaxed GTA-like well-served by the typical plot you'd find in any good HK movie, full of fist fights and acrobatics. The music kicks ass, and the atmosphere of the famous Chinese city does the rest.
  30. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    It's rough around the edges and sometimes insultingly simple, true. But Sleeping Dogs is also a game where you have to rescue a cake and can do so in your pants. An imperfect, but more often than not fun, sandbox romp. Yes, romp.
  31. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    Atmospheric, explosive, violent and gripping. This must be a bad day for Activision.
  32. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    I wish I could recommend Sleeping Dogs with no reservations. The story is excellent, the gameplay has flashes of brilliance and the mission structuring makes it rather addictive. It's hard to ignore all the little problems that keep presenting themselves, but not one of them is troublesome enough to make you stop playing.
  33. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    Goofing around and pursuing high marks on these leaderboards is fun, but it's the atmospheric city and the varied story missions that make Sleeping Dogs an alluring adventure. It may have more violence than you'd want in a typical vacation, but this is still a fun-filled Hong Kong getaway that will leave you with many happy memories.
  34. Aug 14, 2012
    80
    Sleeping Dogs is an extremely well realized "GTA-clone" with an interesting setting, story and cast of characters. The mix of martial arts, free running and shooting sequences is thrilling and gives this game an edge over many other similar titles.
  35. After a slow start it builds to a thundering crescendo and slaps on the action thick and fast, and you'll find a city that's yours for a good time, but not necessarily a long time. Dodgy vehicles aside, this has a belter of a combat system and is a lot of fun while it lasts. Get it. [Sept 2012, p.66]
  36. Aug 14, 2012
    78
    The only big problem with Sleeping Dogs is its skill system: it's deep and well balanced but it isn't used in the game to put more variety in the gameplay. And there are several technical flaws as well.
  37. Aug 12, 2012
    78
    The experience is worth playing, but the buggy gameplay makes former publisher Activision's lack of faith in the title understandable. [Sept 2012, p.90]
  38. Aug 29, 2012
    75
    Even though I missed the quality and thrills of San Andreas, GTA IV and Red Dead Redemption, I had more fun with Sleeping Dogs than I expected. It's worth giving it a try while waiting for GTA V. [10/2012, p.54]
  39. Aug 14, 2012
    70
    It's a good game, but Sleeping Dogs mostly leaves you remembering the media that inspired it and probably won't remain in your thoughts over time.
  40. Aug 15, 2012
    60
    You'll find well-executed entertainment here, some moments worth fighting for, but without the glue of a good script or the polish of a blockbuster to hold its disparate parts together, Sleeping Dogs feels as trapped as its hero. It's incapable of committing fully to the action movie thrills it seems so enamoured of, perhaps due to the resources that have been siphoned away to fuel its open-world obligations and scale.
User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 570 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 89 out of 107
  2. Negative: 8 out of 107
  1. Aug 14, 2012
    10
    The game is amazing!!! great hand-to-hand combat, driving is pretty good, and the gunplay is good. I don't know how they did it but they have amazing actors from both Hong Kong cinema and hollywood.(Emma Stone, Edison Chen, Lucy Liu and many more).Overall i would say go get this game now!!! Full Review »
  2. Aug 14, 2012
    10
    this game is great, the fighting is top notch, driving top notch, graphics better eway better than gta or saint's, great sound track, this game is the best open world game yet, esp combat, its like batman but more violent , graphics superb, almost as good as max 3, guess rockstar pays for reviews if reviewers give this less than a 8.5 Full Review »
  3. Aug 14, 2012
    10
    The fighting is awesome driving is a blast and everything about this game is just Brilliant! GET THIS GAME IF YOU HAVENT ALREADY! Its worth every penny and second of your time! Full Review »