Crime Life: Gang Wars is a free roaming crime-based beat em up. Mixing action and strategy elements within a gritty, detailed storyline to explore modern-day urban gang culture, the player is cast as a small-time homie who must work their way through the ranks to become a gang leader. Urban culture and the Hip Hop lifestyle is the focus of Crime Life: Gang Wars. The game boasts a strong narrative that shows the dangers and strains associated with gang membership, and promotes a strong sense of morality via game elements inspired by classic gang movies, such as "New Jack City," "Boyz 'n the Hood" and "Menace to Society." The player must protect his own people from exploitation and abuse, and defend his crew from the violence and treachery that permeates the society he lives in. The game is set within Grand Central City, a sprawling metropolis where ruthless gangs are vying for power as the police struggle to contain them. Reputation is everything, and for the player to survive he must establish himself as the toughest fighter against the most menacing gang members out there, all of whom are battling for street supremacy. The player will always feel like his next fight could finish him or make his name forever.