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Narc

Busts are great. Whether they're adorning a lady's front or reminding you what Mozart looked like, they're pleasing to the eye, even nicer to touch and... no, hang on a minute. Narc, obviously, isn't about that type of bust at all.

Based on the ultra-violent 1988 arcade game, it's a True Crime clone, full of drugs, guns and - surprise! - ultra-violence. Oh, and busts.

Gravelly voice on, then: you are Jack Forzenski (voiced by Michael Madsen) or Marcus Hill (Bill 'Who He?' Bellamy) - one's a squeaky clean DEA agent, and the other makes Bad Lieutenant look like Dixon of Dock Green.

A typical mission goes like this: you're given an assignment by the sarge, maybe tailing a suspect.

You're on your way, but then you spot somebody you don't like the look of - a sign-carrying Christian, say - so a bit of police brutality's in order. They resist arrest, 'forcing' you to batter them into submission with a barrage of knees and a golf-swing-style cuff-o-meter.

Further action's at your discretion - a shoe to the kidneys might dislodge some drugs but it could also damage your rep. In extreme circumstances, it's possible to apply the 'super bust' - a nose-crunching takedown, followed by a swift cuffing.

And yes, you can execute suspects, although it doesn't do your rep much good.

OK, between subduing muggers, crack-heads, graffiti artists and totally innocent civilians, we didn't get much more than a feeling of GTA-lite from Narc, and the fact that it's by the same developers as State of Emergency is written all over its gormless face.

But a price of 20 quid means it's well worth a look for anyone who's mad for violence. Ray Parker Jr was right - bustin' makes you feel good.

Narc is out for PS2 and Xbox in May

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