Dead to Rights

aka: DtR
Moby ID: 7179
Xbox Specs
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Description official descriptions

Dead to Rights is a 3rd-person shooter in which the player is Jack Slate, a police officer in Grant City. On a routine call, he finds the dead body of his father. While trying to find the murderer, he is framed for another murder. Jack becomes a fugitive; his run from the law will take him to various places, from strip joints and hotels to office complexes, and even prison, as an inmate.

When controlling Jack, players can perform various moves, such as grabbing an enemy from behind and using him as a human shield, or tossing a fire extinguisher and shooting it, causing a huge explosion. If Jack does not have a gun drawn, he can disarm an enemy which causes him to steal the enemy's gun, then performing some sort of finish, such as a neck breaker. Initially, only a few disarm moves are available, but more can be unlocked as the game progresses.

Players will sometimes have to control Jack's best friend and partner, his K-9 dog Shadow, which allows enemies to be killed from a distance. In addition, Shadow will fetch their guns and bring them to Jack.

The game also features "adrenaline combat", similar to "Bullet Time" from Max Payne. Jack will then perform slow-motion dives and spins, giving him an advantage, as long as his adrenaline meter holds out.


  • 脱狱潜龙 - Chinese spelling (simplified)

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Credits (Xbox version)

160 People (149 developers, 11 thanks) · View all

Executive in charge of Production
Associate Producer
Lead Programmer
Technical Lead
Lead Technical Artist
Lead World Artist
Character Artists
Lead Animator
Motion Capture Talent
Voice Talent
[ full credits ]



Average score: 73% (based on 40 ratings)


Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 38 ratings with 3 reviews)

Now that's brutal, baby.

The Good
I could sum up this game in one word: BRUTAL. It is hard, and that's a good thing for action games. This is the kind of game that makes you WANT to be challenged. You actually feel significantly rewarded after you get done taking out 20 or so enemies on one screen. The graphics are quite good, but nothing too spectacular. It is on the same levels as Max Payne, however... so, if you liked the graphics in that one, you shouldn't be too disappointed by DtR. I must say that the gun-fights are fantastic and about as hectic as they come for action games. I also like the involvement of Max Payne's bullet time, which comes in very handy in many situations in the game. But, back to the graphics. The character models are done well enough, with animations that seem realistic and not forced. The lighting is OK, but nothing spectacular. But, the frame-rate is solid throughout most of the game (only stuttered a few times when there were tons of enemies surrounding you... and nothing big), and with all the action going on, you won't be too concerned with the lighting effects anyway. One thing I really liked, though, was the blood splatters. I know it may sound sick, but it was so awesome to shoot someone when they were in front of a wall and see their blood splatter on the wall behind them. (Shotguns make HUGE splatters ;) ) Like I said, this game is pretty brutal in almost all aspects.
As for the storyline, it's nothing too original (you play a cop who was framed and is now trying to re-right his wronged identity... sound familiar?), but the game plays out the story so well, you won't really care about that either. The voice acting is top notch, for the most part. There are only a few minor characters who sound kind of cheesy (like the guards in the prison), but other than that... it's a fairly spotless, and quite interesting storyline.
The sound effects were good... realistic sounding guns, and the characters make fairly realistic pain noises when they're being hurt/killed. The music... uh... well... let's just say it's non-invasive. The only time you're really going to notice the music is when you're in the nightclub, and that is... pretty much it. Nothing spectacular... nothing invasive.
As far as long-lasting appeal goes... it'll take you a while to beat this game, just because it's so DAMN HARD. It's not long, but it'll take you a while to get used to killing stuff without getting killed yourself. And it's got a lot of fun mini-games thrown in to add as a sort of "stress relief". Oh... and the helicopter part... is f'ing awesome big evil grin

The Bad
Well, after that novel, I can't say that there was absolutely nothing about the game that I didn't like. I liked the fact that it was going to be like Max Payne "but better". But, I wouldn't really consider this game to be better than Max Payne. I didn't really like the fact that, in the gun-shooting scenes, ammo can run out... well... rather fast. And, the overall difficulty of the game added on to that can make some gamers pretty stressed out to the point where they may not even want to continue playing the game. The camera angles at certain points bothered me. Yes, you can change the camera angles in most areas, but there were certain areas where you can not. And that kind of bugged me. Also, there were times when it seemed that my camera was actually STUCK inside of me, often at the most inopportune times, making it REALLY hard to play.
The fighting... well... it was boring. Run... block... punch... kick. That's it. There isn't much variation on what you can do when you're fighting, and most of the time, you'll find certain combos that work, and you won't really want to experiment with the limited moves you have anyway. I thought the fighting system could use a lot of work. Yes, it is an action game and not a fighting game... but, if you're going to include it in the game... you should at least make it fun. My last beef isn't really a beef at all... but, more of a minor whine. Initially, I had some problems with the bullet time. I would be hiding behind a wall, or some object, while some baddies ahead were shooting at me... and I would want to do this awesome bullet-time dive while shooting at them ala Max Payne... and when I'd go to execute the maneuver, I'd find myself jumping to the right and not being able to target anything. This was mucho annoying, to say the least, but I think I finally got the hang of things... and the bullet time stuff doesn't bother me as much.... sometimes.

The Bottom Line
If you liked Max Payne, you'll like DtR. If you like action shooting games, you'll like DtR. Hell, if you like playing games that are difficult and require lightning quick reflexes (most of the time), then you'll like DtR. It's a good game. I'll even go out on a limb and say that this is a great game. It has all the right elements to make you want to complete it... and it's hard enough to make you feel as though you actually accomplished something when you finally do. And the faults are only really minor ones which you'll more than likely forget about as you're wiping the sweat off your brow after blasting your way through 12 - 20 bad guys shooting at you from every direction. Definitely worth the money.

Xbox · by Daemion Blackfire (14) · 2002

A fun game with lots to like, but it's just way too long and way too repetitive.

The Good
I've heard this game compared to Grand Theft Auto III and Max Payne, and in a way, I can see why. This game features a real "life means nothing" Grand Theft Auto III approach regarding casualties and features some funky slow motion dive what-not like in Max Payne. But it's wrong to compare this game to either, as its similarities lie only in style, and only a little at that.

I had little expectations for this game when I picked it up. I saw the commercials and it looked like another one-gimmick mindless console game, and it didn't get great reviews. When it came to PC, it got even more mediocre reviews, but I got it anyway because I figured it would be good for a weekend-long run. I was surprised at the sheer length of this game, and to be honest, by how entertaining it was.

Let's not be soft, here. The game isn't much, really. Graphics are so-so and by the time you get to the fourth level you've seen everything there really is to see. But there's still a lot in those four levels you come to appreciate. At least, I did.

The game is a third-person shooter, similar to oh, say, Grand Theft Auto III or Max Payne. Some things set this game apart from others of the genre by slow motion dives, taking hostages, unleashing your dog on bad guys (who brings you back their gun -- useful if you're out of ammo) and other really cool cinematic stuff. One thing in particular I enjoyed was the "disarm" action, in which you take the opponent's gun and shoot them with it in various styles. It ranges from the "I take your gun and break your neck" to the "I take your gun, punch you in the face and shoot you in the head" to "I grab your shotgun, slam the butt of it into your fist, get down on a knee facing away from you, put the shotgun to my shoulder and blow your head off causing you to do a flip backwards landing in a pool of your own blood", and there are several others in addition to that.

Another thing I was particularly impressed by was the sheer lack of value on human life in the game. The way everyone must die. You can take a hostage and use him as a body shield and, should you no longer need him, you execute him. You either snap his neck, put the gun to his head, or throw him to the ground and blow the back of his head off. This ain't Splinter Cell where you just knock'em out, heh heh.

Most firefights are really fast paced and rather cinematic to a degree. Slow motion dives, explosions, taking hostages, using your dog, and the plethora of weapons to really makes every fight entertaining, right up to the end.

And the cinematics are also fantastic, if laughably over-dramatic. Consider one CG scene in which Jack Slate uses the force of a motorcycle's explosion to throw him into the cargo bay of an airborne aircraft, gunning down the bad guys as he goes down. It's a real treat to watch, but you really can't help but chuckle at it all. The opening cinematic is also one of the best ones I've seen.

Some other plusses to this game include chapter selection, for chapters you've beaten, and the option to go replay "min-games" which include dancing at a strip club, weight lifting, and bomb-disarming. Also the game has a rather fun rail-shooter level.

The Bad
This game's got a lot going for it. Fun fast firefights, slow motion, great "disarms", a dog, guns, girls...but there is a dark side to this thing.

First of all, this game is about eight chapters too long. Just so you know, the game is fifteen chapters long. Not six, not eight, not ten, not thirteen, it's fifteen. I think I only finished this game just so I could finally beat the damn game because, like I said, by level four you've seen really all there is to see, and the story is lengthy and annoying at times. It's not really that the story is too bad, it's the number of plot twists that serve no other purpose than to extend the game one more chapter that really gets to you. You'll see as you make alliances with people who turn on you in the next chapter, forcing you to spend a chapter "getting revenge", only to make another alliance with someone who turns on you the next chapter.

Some of the features of the game were implemented so poorly. One thing you can do is lean up against the wall, and do a move where you jump out suddenly, gun at the bad guys, and jump back to the wall. But there are almost NO WALLS that allow you to do this. You can lean up against the wall, but most walls simply won't let you jump around the corner from, due to the angle of the wall, or some object at the corner, or something. That was frustrating, as almost every good opprotunity to use this move prohibited you from doing it.

The difficulty sure increases suddenly about halfway through the game. It's not like the bad guys are necesarilly harder, it's that they start spawning at all sides of you and Jack Slate has a habit of picking the most unlikely targets when shooting. The way you shoot in this game, by the way, is by auto-targeting bad guys and shooting, and the firefights are way too fast to be choosing your target. You just hope Jack picks the one right in front of you that would die in one hit, instead of the sniper way off on the clocktower you have no chance of hitting. You hope, but Jack Slate thinks he can do it anyway. As the game went on, and I started enjoying it less, I turned the difficulty down to help get through some of the annoying spots in the game, but that just felt like cheating, because you almost can't die on "rookie" mode. Normal difficulty is far too hard at parts, rookie is just God-mode.

Boy do levels ever get repetitive. First of all, as I'd mentioned a few times, the game is just too damned long. And it makes it seem even longer when some of the levels are just...argh. Let's say, you arrive in a large room with three doors. Two of the doors are locked, so you go through the one that isn't locked. You get in a fight, advance to the next room, get in a fight, advance, fight, advance, fight, advance, fight, and then fight some sort of boss who drops a key. So you backtrack back to the large room with three doors, but all the bad guys have returned! So you fight, backtrack, fight, backtrack...and then you do the exact same thing for the second door. Now you have a third key. Fight, backtrack, fight...and then when you arrive back at the large room, you have to get in a HUGE fight and fight an even bigger boss, and then go through the third door, fight, advance, fight, advance, fight, advance...and then finally fight the end-boss and finish the level. One horribly annoying level was a docks level, I believe, in which you go from indoors to outdoors, to indoors, and so on for what feels like an eternity.

There are also way too many characters in this game, which means there are way too many bosses, and most are pretty insignificant and they don't really have much depth. I can understand the greedy mayor, the prisoner guy who wants revenge, and the evil ex-partner, but the others are just pointless. There's some Yakuza girl who helps you out for seemingly no reason, the ex-boxer, the "twins", some crazy guy with a hat. Many more, none too memorable.

The Bottom Line
All in all, it was a fun game, but just went on way too long. At least toward the end you're treated to a lot of great CG scenes, and the firefights are pretty fun, but the game's difficulty increases way too much toward the end, the characters aren't very memorable, levels are hideously repetitive and targeting seriously needs work.

But still, there are great parts of the game. Fighting a bunch of clowns in a cemetary, throwing one to the ground and blow his head off with a shotgun, or the many hilarious and over-the-top disarms.

I'd recommend it. It's got enough in it to be a fun game. Just don't expect it to be a "weekend rental" because it's a lot longer than you think.

Windows · by kbmb (415) · 2004

You can forget about Payne now

The Good
Needless to say, I got addicted to multiple games developed by Namco recently, and they were each in a different genre, with different gameplay, and equally addictive to the very end. Dead to Rights is one of those titles I though shouldn't be much different from Max Payne or a very disappointing True Crime, so I didn't bother to get it until it was really a bargain. But when I did, I was surprised at my bad judgment and delay of getting that game due to reconciliation with my mind and at first glance bad graphics I thought it serves.

Well, Jack Slate will give you one helluva ride through the action flick of the year, alright. Those moves you'll encounter in this game I can't say I've ever seen, not even in games such as Metal Gear Solid or Splinter Cell. The mayhem you do with tons and tons of enemies roughly resembles Rambo II movie, only multiply the enemy number by ten. Odds are never to your favour, yet you manage to stay alive... plus this game has an easy level, which makes me wonder how hard one may be like and if playtesters for this game actually finished it on that one.

Another great thing this game brings is tons of pre-rendered cinematic which is always a pleasure to see as the story progresses, though aside from brilliant intro cinematic, others will look a bit less detailed, but will be plenty to see since this game is quite a long one no matter what the clock timer will say about your finishing time. It does have a regular slow-motion like Max Payne, and you can use it during jumping scenes or while disarming your opponent, but that's rarely a fun in this game, it as a lot more to enjoy in. You can easily grab an enemy character and use him as a shield (I don't recall that ever being done so easily, not even MGS games did as masterful as they promised), you can send you dog to attack the enemies and bring you back their weapons, you can disarm almost anyone (except bosses) with a variable and pretty amazing martial arts, which then follows by terminating the poor fella. Yes, you don't leave anyone alive, not even the one who served you as a shield, you can just knock him in the head like Fisher does in Splinter Cell, you put a bullet through his head instead. But hey, they wouldn't think twice to do the same, afterall, you'll serve a jail time for all the trouble they've caused you.

There are two types of action in this game, fighting time, and shooting time. Needless to say, first one is more addictive than reckless shooting, and you can make up to four combo kicks with hand or legs, plus throwing. Also, you can combine hand and legworks to achieve different punches. All in all, it's fast paced non-stop action in this game and you don't rest for a second. Plus, you don't want to rest, driven by vengeance, you want to get to the bottom of all this... and alas, you'll figure that whomever you trust, you'll pull the shortest straw, so plot will get its juice out of it. Although game may strike you as repetitive, the places vary all the time, though due to longevity it may feel repetitive.

The Bad
A pleasant surprise from Namco, and a definite relaxation from the games such as Max Payne and True Crime. This game's only minus may lay in the graphics, but seeing it being older, and gaining on the speed, I'd say everything's pretty much in its place.

The Bottom Line
This of a Max Payne with a speed of BloodRayne, and a whole set of cool moves that can match DOA series, and you'll get a glimpse at what this game looks like. It has a cliché story but enough to keep you wondering at some points, it has tons of fast paced action, both with martial arts and firearms, it has interesting boss battles you must think through, and it has tons of pre-rendered cutscenes to tell a tale. Oh yeah, and there's a neat striptease scene where you must dance correctly and as tempting to distract the guards, now that wasn't seen since... Anachronox, lol, yeah right.

PlayStation 2 · by MAT (240123) · 2012


Copy protection

This game uses the dreaded Starforce protection program to stop you pirating the game.

German version

When playing with German language, all in-game blood is missing. The cutscenes are still bloody, however.


The Xbox version of the game was the first to carry the CERO "Ages 18 and up" rating.


  • Gamespot
    • 2002 - Best Story on Xbox

Information also contributed by festershinetop and Sciere.


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by JPaterson.

Windows, GameCube, PlayStation 2 added by Corn Popper. Xbox 360, Xbox One added by Plok.

Additional contributors: j. jones, Unicorn Lynx, tarmo888, DreinIX, Patrick Bregger.

Game added August 30, 2002. Last modified February 25, 2024.