Stranglehold, or John Woo Presents Stranglehold, is a third-person shooter developed by Midway Games' Chicago studio, released in late 2007 for Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 3. It is Midway's first game to use Unreal Engine 3, and was developed in collaboration with John Woo.
Stranglehold is the sequel to Woo's 1992 Hong Kong action film, Hard Boiled, and stars Chow Yun-fat in a reprisal of his role as hard-boiled cop Inspector "Tequila" Yuen. Stranglehold is the first project on which Woo and Chow have collaborated since Hard Boiled.
During play, jumping in any direction or interacting with any object while aiming at an opponent (or pressing a certain button) will slow time, creating a short window during which Tequila can shoot at targets. This technique— called Tequila Time —generates a cinematic effect that mimics Woo's. Tequila Time is managed through a meter which drains with use and regenerates with time. Tequila can also make use of his environment, moving up and down railings, swinging from chandeliers, and sliding across tabletops and riding on carts while shooting at enemies.
Another form of gameplay comes from the style and grace associated with Woo's balletic firefights. By taking out enemies the player earns stars. The more stylish the kills performed, the more stars received. Taking out enemies in quick succession, or interacting with the environment when taking down opponents, will earn the player the optimum amount of stars. As an incentive to interact with the environment, Tequila receives a bonus to his attack power and defense during interactions.
Tequila also employs several iconic techniques from Woo's movies, referred to as Tequila Bombs. Tequila Bombs require energy to perform. The player gains energy by defeating enemies (equal to the Stars obtained) and by collecting paper cranes hidden about each level.