The Dead to Rights games take place in Grant City, an area overrun with criminals and there is only one man to stop them, Jack Slate. Jack is always accompanied by his K-9 partner, Shadow, who is eager to help. This franchise is known for its third person shooter style mixed with elements of brawlers. Dead to Rights' first game was published in 2002. Several more games have been released since then, two of which have been direct sequels. The latest was a remake of the first game.
The first game is the franchise introduces us to Jack Slate and Shadow as they are in the pursuit of the killers of his father. After discovering major corruption and under the table deals, he is framed for a murder by the corrupt chief of police Hennesey, to stop him from revealing what he has found. Jack is then taken into custody and jailed for several months before escaping. Fighting his way to freedom through crime lords such as Fat Chow, Patch, Fahook Abdul and then finally Hennesey. The game uses the Max Payne/ Matrix inspired ability of bullet-time and the jump dodges of the former. The game also includes areas that require the player to control Shadow to make his ways through "puzzle" areas.
The prequel to the first game in the series has Jack Slate and his K-9 companion Shadow fighting in the streets of Grant City in order to save his father's friend, a judge, who after revealing a crime syndicate is kidnapped. The game's third person action is very similar to its predecessor, but further incorporates Shadow into the action by having the dog disable or even kill enemies while Jack fights others. Minigame elements (which were necessary in the previous installment) took a backseat and were given out optionally.
Dead to Rights: Reckoning is the PSP iteration of the Dead to Rights series. The game plays in a very similar fashion to Dead To Rights 2, albeit on a handheld. Although the controls were different from the console versions, it does keep everything that makes Dead to Rights what it is, from slow-motion gunplay to attacks involving your dog Shadow. The story is fairly simple, revolving around Jack's efforts to rescue the daughter of a high ranking Grant City senator.
The most recent console game of the franchise (and fourth overall) resets the plot and features gameplay similar to its forerunners, while adding several new features. The cover mechanic has been greatly improved in order to fit in line with more recent games. A DLC pack priced at 400 Microsoft Points has also added two new game-modes: Assault on the 87th Precinct and Riot Control.