Sleeping Dogs (360, PS3, PC)
There are many things that make a good game, but one thing that definintely helps is having a seriously kick-ass protagonist that makes slightly overweight gamers (not, me, obviously) feel like the biggest baddest mutha on the planet, all from the comfort of their own sofa. From the opening scene, Sleeping Dogs' Wei Shen IS that kick-ass hero, a Hong Kong cop with a penchant for roundhouse kicks and chops to the face who must go undercover and break the gangs controlling illegal activity in the settlement. It's a scenario that lives up to its promise.
Sleeping Dogs is an open-world adventure that has almost everything a game needs in this genre. It's a pretty-looking game, with only occasional glitches getting in the way of what turns out to be a pretty realistic Hong Kong. It's not quite as living as it could be, but it does the job. Happily, the plot is actually really good, being intricate and suspenseful enough while retaining some realism. You really feel like you're playing in one of Jackie Chan's better movies.
Also happily, for a game that relies on combat constantly, it's a satisfying system with bone-crunching sound effects and a fluid andn intuitive system based in large part on the Arkham City and Asylum set-up. It's not as accomplished as Batman, but it's nevertheless satisfying and fun. Outside of the main story there's lots to see and do, including some mini-games like cock-fighting, some street races which are short but sweet, an RPG-lite ability system which gives you a few boosts, ambient achievements that also provide bonuses as well as onlione leaderboards for that all-impoertant oneupmanship element.
Sleeping Dogs is an excellent example of an open-world 3rd person game done very well indeed. Lots of involving and entertaining content in the vanilla game as well as the forthcoming DLC adds up to a quality game with plenty of replayability. highly recommended if open-world games are your thing, or even, for that matter, if not.