Captain Ed Lee: I told you to not go in alone!
Today, your blood will pay for everything!
—Mr. James Wong
A Hong Kong policeman is killed in what looks like a regular murder by The Triads and the Tongs and it's a personal challenge for Inspector "Tequila" Yuen investigating the case. Before long, his star crossed love interest Billie and her daughter Teko are kidnapped by The Mafiya, too. Much Heroic Bloodshed ensues.
John Woo Presents Stranglehold is a 2007 Third-Person Shooter that is both an affectionate pastiche of the classic Heroic Bloodshed movies and a sequel to the probably most famous example of the genre, Hard Boiled. And it was produced with John Woo participating, while Chow Yun-Fat reprises his role as Tequila. As you may have expected from that lineup, the game is much more about marrying Rule of Cool to Rule of Fun and trashing each next level in impossibly awesome ways than anything else.
Recently, rumors have surfaced that John Woo will be directing a film adaptation of the game. Talk about full circle.
- As Himself: John Woo is credited "As Himself" in the end credits.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: Mr. Wong
- Avenging the Villain: Mr. Wong is the father of Johnny Wong from Hard Boiled.
- Badass Grandpa: Mr. Wong is one hell of a villainous example. The guy single-hands a Sniper Rifle for Christ's sake!
- A Barrett M82. Which isn't even meant for use against human targets.
- Battle Butler: Dapang.
- Bling Bling Bang: The Golden Gun.
- Boring but Practical: The pistols.
- Boss Banter: Just about every one.
- Bottomless Magazines: Partly averted, as you have a limit on the total ammo... though it goes away, too, when you activate a Tequila Bomb.
- And although your ammo is finite, even if you run out, it's a simple matter of backtracking two steps and get the gun of some of the dozens of dead Mooks you will leave in your wake.
- The Brute: Dapang.
- Bullet Time: Partly automated.
- Cool Shades
- Check Point Starvation: The game features some very long gunfight sequences with nary a checkpoint in sight.
- Cowardly Boss: Jerry.
- Cowboy Cop: Not surprising, since Tequila has been a prime example of this trope ever since Hard Boiled.
- Creator Cameo: John Woo is the bartender in an early level.
- He also runs a store to buy extra goodies, and is a playable multi-player character.
- Cycle of Revenge
- Dirty Coward: Jerry.
- Disturbed Doves: Does it even have to be mentioned?
- Hell, conjuring these out of nowhere, being on the dock or a luxury casino seems to be yet another of Tequila's powers of Pure Awesomeness.
- Dragons Up the Yin-Yang: Wong's chamber has a giant jade dragon statue.
- Drink Order: Tequila has his name because his drink of choice is the Tequila Slammer. Lampshaded even.
- Every Car Is a Pinto
- Everything Breaks: Especially under a Barrage.
- Everything's Better with Spinning: The Spin Attack Tequila Bomb.
- Exploding Barrels
- Face Heel Turn: Jerry.
- Going Native: Jerry.
- Good Old Ways/Honor Before Reason: Wong proudly presents himself this way to others. He's not.
- Grind Boots: One of the standard combat maneuvers.
- Guns Akimbo: Tequila does this with normal handguns, Golden Guns, and SMGs.
- And several of the bad guys do this as well, including the Elite Mooks, Dapang (who uses dual shotguns) and Jerry.
- The Gunslinger: Tequila... just Tequila. He combines Improbable Aiming Skills of the Trick Shot, More Dakka of the Vaporizer, the Gun Fu of the Woo, and is a master of Mexican Standoffs. Also, Jerry who was Tequila's student and is the Woo.
- Heroic Bloodshed
- Improbable Aiming Skills: The Precision Shot Tequila Bomb.
- It's Personal: All of it.
- Knife Outline: Tequila does that with bullets.
- Kung Shui
- Leap and Fire
- Limit Break: The Tequila Bombs.
- Mob War
- The Mole: Jerry was this for the good guys. But then he went native.
- More Dakka: Except for the Barrage Tequila Bomb, you also get to shoot a minigun at one point.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: In a flashback.
- An Offer You Can't Refuse: Mr. Wong's.
- Offing the Offspring: Poor Billie.
- One-Man Army: Tequila.
- Parental Marriage Veto: Mr. Wong.
- Respawning Enemies: Normally their respawns are limited.
- Rewarding Vandalism: Destroying stuff restores your Tequila Bomb meter.
- Ruthless Foreign Gangsters: The Zakarovs.
- Senseless Violins: Guitar cases full of guns.
- Short-Range Shotgun: Averted. The shotgun's only real drawback is it's low ammo capacity.
- Shout-Out: A Penny Arcade strip about the game featured an achievement called "Testikill" for shooting enough mooks in the groin. When the game's DLC came out, this was made into an actual achievement.
- Spin Attack: When doves go flying, Tequila kills everyone in the manner most awesome to the most beautiful soundtrack you can imagine. Kinda like this.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: Tequila and Billie.
- The Syndicate: The Golden Kane, the Zakarov syndicate and Dragon Claw.
- Take Cover: The game features a basic cover system, although most of the time you'll be jumping around in bullet time. And when you do take cover, because Everything Breaks, you can't stay there forever.
- Throw-Away Guns: When running out of ammo.
- Title Drop: Zakarov does it.
- Trampled Underfoot: During Billie and Teko's kidnapping.
- The Triads and the Tongs: It wouldn't be a Hong Kong action game without them.
- Unstoppable Rage: The Barrage Tequila Bomb. Not only does everything go into slo-mo, but Tequila is invulnerable, has endless ammo, and rapid fires - even with rocket launchers!
- The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: Wong's Estate.
- Villainous Glutton: Dapang.
- Why We Can't Have Nice Things: It's really too bad about Chicago History Museum.
- There's even an achievement for completely demolishing a dinosaur skeleton.
- Why Won't You Die?: Tequila provokes this reaction in Vlad.