Police games capture our interest in a way that isn’t very common to most games. Maybe some people want to feel the power of the law, or other want to feel like their solving a crime or mystery and some may just like the idea of protecting justice. Whatever it is that attracts you to police games, we’ve compiled a great list for you and your perusing pleasure, especially if you’re looking for a new title to play. So without further a’do, we give to you:
The Best Police Games
15. 9mm – (Android)
It’s not often that a mobile only game gets listed on a top game list (except maybe a list of top mobile games), but here we have it. 9mm is a game that explores a bit of the darker side of the police, being an officer in charge of a team that doesn’t really mind breaking the law to get the job done. Of course, I should mention that this game is mostly a shooter, as most good police games are, so it’s a nice game to have if you’re a fan of cop games and playing on mobiles.
14. Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments – (Multiple Platforms)
Who wouldn’t love Sherlock Holmes, one of the most famous fictional detectives? Thankfully, some game developer had the same thought, and this game was born. There’s really not much action in this game, mostly focusing on the puzzle-solving aspect, as you would expect for a detective game. In truth, it could have been much more and is a bit shallow, but overall, it’s a good Sherlock game, and an even better police game.
13. Driver: San Francisco – (Multiple Platforms)
The Driver franchise has always been pretty interesting, focusing gameplay around driving around, and Driver: San Francisco is no different. Taking a bit of a slightly less scientific approach to the story and gameplay, you are a cop who is able to take control or transfer your mind to other people, ostensible those who are driving around in cars. Of course, this adds an interesting perspective to the game, introducing new mechanics for solving problems and completing missions.
12. Detective Grimoire – (Multiple Platforms)
One of a new breed of games that is moving over from flash, Detective Grimoire is a great little murder-mystery game. While it is a point and click, so not much action, the game has great voice acting, a wonderful art style and an interesting setting. I should point out thought that this game was original made for mobile devices, so if you want to check it out, you should head over to the play store or the apple store to get yourself a copy.
11. Virtua Cop – (PC, Arcades, Saturn)
This baby is really old school, having come out in 1994. Of course, that doesn’t matter much since the game is a shooter and mostly uses a light fun, so you’re probably going to have to go out to an arcade, or find yourself a light gun for the PC, before you’re able to play it. If you do, then you’ll find one of the most original and fun cop themed games from the past.
10. Pursuit Force – (PSP)
Another game for mobile devices, this time for the PSP, Pursuit Force places you as a member of an elite police force. As such, you are tasked with taking down a series of guns by fighting enemies on foot, and myriad of vehicles. Of course, like most cop games, it’s a shooter, so if you’re looking for a bit of a more esoteric game, you’ll have to wait for a bit later in the list!
9. Crackdown – (Xbox 360)
It’s not often you find police games that are set in an open world ,unless you count GTA as a police game, in which case, you might be reading the wrong list. Fortunately, the game works well as a shooter sandbox, and is considered one of the top games on Xbox 360. Taking a slightly supernatural approach to policing, you essentially have superpowers and are tasked with cleaning up the city.
8. Condemned Series – (Xbox 360, PC)
To be honest, this entry is a little sneaky because this game is primarily a psychological survival horror game with Police elements. That being said there is a crime scene investigation mechanic, and you play as CSI working for the FBI. So really, maybe this entry isn’t so sneaky, but instead, is the perfect game if you’re looking for a police game.
The atmosphere is grim and scary, which really puts it in a different tone than most police games. The combat is also great, as it’s mostly melee and first person, so you really feel the environment you are taking part in. There’s two installments in the series, so that’s two games for the price of one!
7. Murdered: Soul Suspect – (Multiple Platforms)
Another game that takes the supernatural approach to policing, Soul Suspect puts you in the shoes of an officer that has just died, by way of his . . . . wait for it . . . . soul! You weren’t expecting that were you?
Of course, as a dead person you can’t really carry a gun, so this game is mostly an adventure game with a big stealth and puzzle solving element. I won’t spoil much of the story, suffice to say that you are playing as a cop in the supernatural world, so it’s an interesting perspective story wise. Unfortunately, the best parts of the game are the story and gameplay concept, both of which are original and really, really good, but it suffers with combat, short length and low difficulty. Honestly though, if you don’t care about the combat or length as much, this is a really great game to involve yourself in.
6. Policenauts – (PlayStation, Sega Saturn)
This game doesn’t come up on the radar much, and that’s mostly due to the fact that it was released in the days were consoles didn’t have numbers next to them. Of course, the director is very well known, Hideo Kojima, the same one that brought you the Metal Gear Solid franchise and a bunch of other awesome games, you won’t be surprised to know that this game is also quite awesome. A point and click, action-adventure game, Policenauts puts you in the shoes of a detective trained to police one of humanities first colonies.
The story is quite intriguing and quite deep, and the gameplay is a lot of fun. Of course, you might need to get yourself an emulator to play it, but if you can, then you’re in for a few hours of fun.
5. True Crime: Streets of LA – (Multiple Platforms)
While the game had a mixed reception, True Crime: Streets of LA was a commercial success, mostly due to the fact that it paralleled GTA and had its own unique feature, which is a branching storyline. It’s true that the game has a few bugs here and there, and isn’t graphically the best, but it is a game that gives you the feeling that you are playing in a dynamic story. Of course, like some other games here, you might have to get an emulator to play this one, but if you can get one running, then this is a great game to play.
4. LEGO City Undercover – (Wii U)
The Lego ‘franchise’ of games has covered a lot of big comics and movies, from marvel to Indiana Jones, so it’s interesting that the developers decided to go with a police theme this time around. Much like other Lego games, the game is full of great humor, which lego games tend to have, as well as some real top-notch design. As a sandbox action-adventure, the game does really well, and is definitely a must play if you own a Wii U.
3. Heavy Rain – (PS3, PS4)
Let’s get the obvious out of the way: This game is quite depressing. That being said, Heavy Rain is a really interesting game, where the line between interactive storytelling and video games is blurred. As some of you may not own a Playstation, the game uses the analogue sticks to make your characters interact with the world in different ways, from shaving to opening doors. In a way, it’s one of the most immersive games out there.
The graphics are also visually stunning and the story really tugs at your heart strings. In-fact, I would say that Heavy Rain is one of the best reasons for owning a PS3 or PS4. If you already own one, then you’re in luck, because you get to play this incredibly awesome game.
2. Sleeping Dogs – (Multiple Platforms)
Sleeping dogs is the spiritual successor to the True Crimes franchise and is literally one of the best cop games out there, as well as one of the best open-world action adventure ones. Taking place in Hong Kong, you are a police officer tasked with infiltrating a Triad organization and bringing it down. In the process, you learn about yourself, about what you’re willing to do, and how the world really don’t care that much about you. It’s great.
The game’s graphics are also really astounding, especially with the HD pack that you can now get for it. Honestly, once you finish this article, you should have over to whatever your favorite publishing platform is, and get yourself a copy.
1. L.A. Noir – (Multiple Platforms)
Now, L.A. Noir definitely is the best cop game out there. Developed by Rockstar, so you know it’s good, actually used motion capture to put the actor’s expressions in the game, with the main mechanic revolving around whether you can successfully tell that they are lying. As a neo-noir detective game, this one does it all well, the fights, the mechanics, the atmosphere, just everything is really great.
So what do you think? Are there any games that should be included in this list? Let us know in the comments.