Battle of the GTA clones

True Crime: Streets of LA
Activision | PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

The setup: Smirky Asian American cop does battle with a Triad crime syndicate in Los Angeles, which has been painstakingly reconstructed from maps of the real thing.

The rides: The one you're supposed to stick to is a sweet Cadillac-style convertible, but anything on the street is yours for the commandeering. Whatever you choose to drive, though, it's probably going to slide around like a bar of soap in an ice rink.

The violence: Button-mashy kung-fu throwdowns mixed with stealth takedowns - lethal or knockout, your choice - and slightly awkward, John Woo-style dual-pistol firefights. You can also kill just about anyone you see on the street, but it'll affect your badge rating and karma.

Mikel Reparaz
After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.