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Time Off: Books: GAME CHECK.

True Crime: Streets of LA (pounds 34.99,PS2,Activision)

I NEVER though I'dever admit it but it looks like Grand Theft Auto 3 has a new contender for the throne.

True Crime: Streets of LA is a different take on the 3D interactive city game,and scoops GTA mainly for the extra detail it uses. You play Nicholas Wilson, a tough cop who's just back from suspension. Signed to the Elite Operations Division (EOD),it's your job to root out crime and take on the mob.

Easier said than done really. With a scope of almost 300 missions, you have to be careful with every move you make. You see, unlikeGTA3,every action can reflect your nature as a good or bad cop -and points in either direction influence the ending of the game.

Add to this bustling streets, kung fu,gang fighting and the fantastic `bullet time' technique from Max Payne,and you have a game that has loads to do.

Certain aspects could have been tweaked a bit -namely the shooting and some of the diabolical clipping errors -but this is a great game all the same.

RATING: 8/10 -Most Wanted

Ghosthunter (pounds 39.99,PS2, SCEE) GOING to the long-abandoned scene of a mass murder in the middle of the night is a sure-fire way to get into trouble.

And trouble is exactly what Detroit cop Lazarus Jones walks into when he stops by a derelict high school while on routine patrol. In the basement he finds a hidden supernatural research centre and inadvertently releases all the caged spirits.

When the power is brought back on-line,Jones is tasked with recapturing all the ghosts,armed with a ghost-trappinggrenade,a plasma gun and a newfound ability to see into the spectral world.

Ghosthunter uses every trick in the horror movie maker's repertoire to keep you on the edge of your seat. Most of the action is viewed from a third person perspective but automated camera angles leave you tantalisingly short of information on what lies ahead.

Enthralling but scary, Ghosthunter is definitely one to play with the lights on.

RATING: 8/10 -High Spirits
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Copyright 2003 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Dec 30, 2003
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