Sleeping Dogs is an open-world adventure game that generated a cult following enamored with the title’s expansive environment, intricate hand-to-hand combat system, and casting of Emma Stone in a lead role. Unfortunately, the game’s developer, United Front Games, went out of business in October 2016.
Even more unfortunate is that the developer was working on a sequel to Sleeping Dogs that now will never see the light of day, much to the chagrin of the title’s many fans. New information has been revealed that indicates the sequel would have been an ambitious effort, as Waypoint reports.
According to some documents that Waypoint was able to procure, Sleeping Dogs 2 was conceived as early as 2013 and canceled later that same year. Although the title was under serious consideration, it never made it past the conceptual and early development phases and was never in production.
Sleeping Dogs 2 would have been just as large a game as the original, with a complex storyline and such nuances as the ability of players to arrest any non-player character (NPC). The game would also have touched on some of today’s most common themes, including mobile devices, cloud services, and what sounds a lot like chatbots, but these elements did not have any real meat behind them in the early stages of the game’s development.
In addition, United Front Games was working toward a vision that it called “massively single player,” where although each player would only interact within their own world and with NPCs, their actions would impact the worlds being played in by other players. Player-to-player interaction would therefore essentially have been at one remove, in a fashion described as “using the cloud saves of all players to determine the global neighborhood crime levels across all games, and then mapping that crime to the difficulty level in policing those neighborhoods in the individual’s games.”
However, the title would also have supported cooperative play, with solo and team support and access to missions and challenges that could be attacked in groups. Everything from vehicle races, fight clubs, and battles would have been available in co-op play modes. The cooperative experience would have been enhanced through the use of procedurally generated missions that would have evaluated a host’s single-player game status and put together a campaign based on a number of in-game components.
The completed game would have been incredibly deep and detailed, and fans of Sleeping Dogs should check out all of the documentation that’s been made available for more information on what the sequel would have looked like. Although publisher Square Enix was apparently too invested in Tomb Raider and Hitman to put any effort behind Sleeping Dogs 2, the title would likely have represented another cult hit at least along the same lines as the original.