Sleeping Dogs: 10 things you must try

Discover the hidden wonders of Hong Kong

Sleeping Dogs don't lie - they run around kicking honest citizens in the throat and stuffing them into cars. Here are a few ways to wrestle with United Front's open world brawler, should you be struggling for inspiration.


1. Big Face
Face XP has various benefits - it unlocks cars, clothing, and every time you level up you get a new perk. But it doesn't rise through the main story. To boost Face, do yellow icon favours, win races and beat up drug-dealing gangs.

2. Counter-measures
When in combat, a failed counter-attack paralyses you for two seconds. As the game gets tougher, this can turn a fight that's going well into a panic. A useful passive upgrade is the Triad power that reduces this paralysis time.

3. Party Favours
People often ask Wei for favours. So follow as many yellow quests as you can if you want bewildering inanity like driving cars into the sea and free-running for a cameraman on acid. Keep a look out for yellow shields on the minimap, too - these are small favour missions that only show up when you're near them, rather than on the main map, but offer Face boosts when completed.

4. Consider the environment
Many environment kills are basic, some are excellent - like the chandelier at the wedding. These can make enemies flinch, as does the unlockable knee-snapping move in the Triad skill tree.

5. Do get jaded
Most of the eleven jade statues appear in the background of missions. But sometimes you'll see one in a cutscene. Take note when they appear, they unlock combat moves and boosted heavy attacks. If you complete all the romance subplots (trigger them by calling the girls in your phone's address book) then the statues and all other collectibles will be marked on the map - although some statues can only be reached once you've reached certain points in the story.

6. Drug busts
Boost Cop and Face stats by doing drug busts, where you beat up a gang, hack a camera, and go to your flat to watch surveillance footage. Don't waste time - hack a few cameras, then go back and watch in one sitting.

7. Don't play chicken
Ignore the chicken fights. You can't win serious money, they're boring to watch, and they feel like half-arsed controversy bait. Spend your mini-game time on the optional cop missions, where you use faux tech to track bad guys.

8. The big money
Don't be afraid to splash cash on the little things. The range of buffs you can stack from food and drink can tip the scales in a tough battle: reduced damage, melee boost or boosted Face. It's worth stocking up on Herbal Tea whenever you pass a vendor - and there's one right outside Wei's first apartment which isn't marked on the map.

9. Fight clubs
They're not advertised, but "martial arts clubs" are six stage brawling endurance matches. The last stage will generally be a large crowd, and a great place to give any new moves an airing. Complete every wave and you'll unlock a costume based on classic Hong Kong action movies, too.

10. Hacking it up
Hacking a camera is a lot like the peg-guessing board game, Mastermind. Keep trying different numbers until you know which four are in the code, then juggle them around until you find the right combination. Don't feel you have to rush back to the apartment and trigger the bust, either - it's more efficient to save up a few and do them all at once.

Not bought it? Our Sleeping Dogs review is here to tell you why you really should, poppet.