Gangs of London hands-on

Aside from its five mission-based paths, Gangs of London packs in a few extras to keep gamers playing. The "free-roaming" mode from Getaway - which lets players explore London at their leisure - returns, enabling players to drive around a completely seamless, modeled-precisely-on-the-real-thing model of London.

This time, however, the game includes no fewer than seven ways to explore. You can drive/walk around aimlessly, or take The Knowledge - a cabbie-training game that teaches you how to get around the city quickly. Players will also be able to choose from Four Weeks Later, a zombie-bashing challenge; London Tourist, which casts players as a crass American stereotype; Riot Control, where players have to pummel and arrest looters as a team of cops; Speed Trap, a point-to-point race through the city; and The Getaway, where players have to outrun cops.

Gangs will also feature an assortment of pub-themed minigames (just for the hell of it, really), including darts, pool (US and UK rules), something called Skittles and a version of the ancient arcade game Snake. These modes support two players, but only insofar as they can take turns passing the PSP back and forth. There's a five-player game as well - again, turn-based - that recasts Gangs as a Risk -style board game where players battle for control of London.

Despite the lack of real multiplayer, Gangs will at least feature an interesting game-sharing feature that creates a custom demo level of the game, randomizing the layout, weapons and enemies based on the target PSP's serial number.

While it's still a little rough around the edges, the sheer amount of content packed into Gangs of London has us looking forward to speeding and shooting through the city's mean streets one more time. Expect this one to hit our shores in November.