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Game Profile
PlayStation 2
The Collective
GENRE: Action
February 14, 2006
Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure

Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure

 Written by Chris Reiter  on November 15, 2005

First Impressions: I'm Getting Up. The game. What? I'm talking to you. I am Getting Up. Getting Up...get me? Oh, forget it.

Trends begin. Then they evolve. As Hollywood has deeply emerged with the development of games over the last few years, it's only natural that other enterprises would find a niche in the system. Brian Michael Bendis for one, a well-known comic book writer of the Ultimate Spider-Man series, has just recently been the mastermind script maker in Activision's game based on the books. In a similar fashion, clothing designer Marc Ecko's name last year had begun its association into the foray of gaming. When Atari previewed a video clip based around idealism's of revolution and rebellion against the system that would punish these freedoms as an unknown graffiti artist spray painted his way to the top, spectators were wowed. First Atari sprayed us, then they let the paint dry, and later this month will be the time when gamers will be able to vandalize their own way into Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure.

Trane is a wreck on society...under the watchful eyes of the city's corrupt mayor in New Radius, anyway. Born into this New York City-inspired world, Trane's training toward a bigger life filled with more danger than what he'd ask for any other way, begins when he's kicked out of the house by his grandmother. His desire is to inspire, as Trane's goal in life from here on in is to oppose two sides that want to destroy him. Under the mayor's tyrannical leadership, the Civil Conduct Keepers (an army of enforcers) want Trane dead. Rival gang Vandals of New Radius also want Trane disposed of too. With a can of spray paint and street-smart skills on his side, all Trane's got to do now is show them that he's no sucker.

Jet Grind Radio and its sequel are the only games coming to mind when trying to imagine how many titles are out there that revolve around spray paint. There really is no major market for games that require you to tag multiple areas with a can; most likely because misshaping environments with art in generalities just isn't that prolific. Pit a sword-wielding hero against an army of the undead though, and that would more likely be a rule gamers are always ready to submit to. But then, Marc Ecko's Getting Up isn't sprung from some popular idea. A game that mixes a narrative in with urban culture and creative gameplay methods are a focus you can't dismiss as something that can't mature into a potentially prominent experience. And that's what's good about this game.

Rather than blading and hopping around people and objects that are too goofy to be considered threatening, Getting Up will be more comparable as the Manhunt of spray painting games. The whole philosophy behind Getting Up is spread across three different gameplay components: combat, platforming, and producing graffiti. It's a third-person action game that will let you mark territory with paint, but at the same time will force you to use your head between the challenges of getting around from place to place, "getting up" from place to place, and most importantly staying alive in the process. The combat system of Getting Up will possibly be one of the more attractive features to start with. Using makeshift weapons, such as a spray paint can as a blowtorch when combined with a lighter, Trane will be able to defeat enemies who come after him. Utilizing a list of upgradable combos that will allow him to deal blows with pipes and his own fists will also be added along those lines. But for Trane to stay alive when he's only a one man army, stealth will be the real key to play time. Pulling Trane's hoodie over his head will absorb him in a stealth mode that'll allow Trane to dispatch enemies quietly with one-hit-kills while infiltrating dangerous grounds guarded by his extensive list of adversaries.

When it comes to the actual event of experiencing Trane's artistic ability, what you'll have to realize is that the objective of whipping out a paint can and spraying won't be the idea. This is where platforming segments come in, using Trane to actually scale up to tall heights above the streets of the city. Trane will be able to climb telephone poles. He'll shimmy along narrow ledges and tiptoe along slim pipes. He'll have to do this all just to get to where he needs to go, to tag specific spots with misty coloring. Once arrived at the destined location, the challenge of masking a wall with paint won't be so tough. But then again, it won't be so easy either. Factoring into the scoring of the process will be speed, accuracy, and whether or not it's in a worthy placement. Since some targets will be better than others, maintaining your reputation will drive you to challenge yourself to harder places. If your work is sloppy though, this will affect your status in the game and then your new name will forever be known as Trainee.

As you'd expect from a game that's consumed by a metropolitan realm inspired by life's own New York City, you're going to get a lot of grit and some fancy details from Getting Up's stall. Not just interesting in gameplay, the visual style is looking to liven your eyeballs with appropriate uses of both lit and darkened areas. Inside subway settings and ratty buildings, and outside in dimmed streets and alleyways, the game will fly right along with its accurately modeled characters. From Trane's black hoodie style, to weathered jeans and jackets on the rival gangs' front. One other major item of note is that Getting Up will star a big lineup of names for its cast, including rapper Talib Kweli as the voice of Trane, rapper P. Diddy, actress Brittany Murphy, and even Batman himself, Adam West. The "Dick" to Adam's arsenal not included.

Final Thoughts
We do have a lot of killing games, but we don't have enough games about spray painting. Since everyone is too busy playing adult games these days, Atari and The Collective probably figure by combining the two, they'll draw over some attention in the matter. Make a few bucks. Maybe buy themselves some kid's meals at McDonald's. Whatever. But really, it's not just about finding a meal ticket in a space no one's really touching. It's more about the message that Getting Up is spreading, and how it's delivering the experience. Having in mind the notion that Marc Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure will be loosely based around the life of graffiti artists in a fictional orientation should be something inspirational to think about enough to check out this little number at its release time sometime next year.

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