Many of the features that made Dead to Rights such an interesting console offering, such as the bullet-time camera effects, the bloody and violent disarms and killing moves, and the police dog attack sequences, have been toned down, removed entirely, or implemented in such ways that they're impractical to use in the Game Boy Advance version of the game. At the same time, the shooting interface is unreliable and tough to get the hang of, which is unfortunate considering that Dead to Rights is supposedly an action game steeped in gunplay.
While DTR on the GBA deserves praise for is its side scenes and dialogue...
What the GBA version does best is present its story and dialogue sequences in attractive manners. Dead to Rights tells the tale of a vigilante cop named Jack Slate. His mission is to discover who framed him for murder and who killed his father. The whole game takes place in the buildings and on the streets of Grant City, a rainy and gritty place that's full of low-life scum. Although the GBA is incapable of reproducing the 3D animated cinematic intermissions the console game featured, the development team has done a good job of re-creating those scenes by using a combination of still images and text overlays. After completing each level, players are rewarded with glimpses into the aftermath of Slate's rampages, and sometimes the scenes can be a little violent or bloody.
It's ironic that the cinematics actually show some bloodshed once in a while, because none of the actual levels do. All the action in the console versions of Dead to Rights took place from a third-person viewpoint that clearly showed Slate shooting holes in hoodlums, as well as snapping their necks before taking away their guns. In fact, DTR was one of the first console games to show lifelike violence with 3D graphics, as it came out shortly after Grand Theft Auto III. The graphics here are of the 2D variety, which isn't an unexpected compromise, and the action is presented from a top-down viewpoint that doesn't do a bad job of giving players a bird's-eye view of what's going on. None of the blood splatters and violent deaths that helped make the console game so interesting were put into the GBA version, so when you shoot someone or perform a martial arts attack, the person will just fall down and disappear. Worse yet, the stylish disarm moves that added even more panache to the console offerings weren't implemented in the GBA counterpart either.
Included on the vast list of features from the console game that didn't make it into the GBA iteration is the crime drama soundtrack that added to the console version's film noir atmosphere. Except for a few pulsing beats and dramatic crescendos, this version's soundtrack consists mainly of the gunshots that Jack and his enemies trade back and forth, along with some explosions here and there. Likewise, the majority of voice work was removed, except for a few grunts and groans that occur when a thug meets his demise.