Marc Ecko's Getting Up:
Contents Under Pressure

Format: PS2

3 546430 116890
Age Restrictions: 16+
17 February 2006

In a world where graffiti has been banned and freedom of expression has been suppressed by a tyrannical city government, an unlikely hero rises to win back his neighbourhood and become an urban legend of the city of New Radius. Play as Trane, a toy (beginner) graffiti artist with the street-smarts, athletic prowess and vision necessary to become an All City King, the most reputable of all graffiti artists. In your quest to become a legendary graffiti artist, you realise that an oppressive Mayor has a stranglehold on the city of New Radius, and you must use all of your high-wire graffiti talents to expose him and set the city free...

Getting Up is a novel game which PS2 owners won't have seen the likes of before. Whether you are a hoody wearing teenager, or a rather grumpy 30-something who still wears flared trousers (well, you never know when they might come back into fashion!) this game will impress you with its originality, if nothing else.

You play Trane a young punk who, in a near future version of earth where freedom of speech is prohibited, decides to stand up for his rights. You are led around the city on various missions where you have to write over other gangs graffiti, put your own signature around your home town, and dispatch any other gang members, or authority figures, that get in your way.

The actual graffiti element is pretty easy to master. You can write on any surface with one of your trademark signatures, but at designated areas you can paint an impressive work of art. When you find one of these areas you can chose how big you want to paint and which of your signatures to use. Then it's a simple case of spraying your art onto the wall. While you spray, you have to move the left analogue stick over the wall as the paint builds up. If you spray on an area for too long a red patch appears, to let you know that area is wet, if you continue to spray on that area then the paint will run - knocking points off your final score for that piece of graffiti. To earn extra reputation points you have to complete your art in a set period of time. You also have a limited amount of spray in your can. When it runs out you have to wait while Trane shakes the can, and then you can continue spraying. You can also ruin other gangs work - by changing their cool graffiti to something other than they painted - in order to make them look foolish.

There are enough side missions and different levels to keep most gamers interested for the duration. Although, the fighting elements are rather boring, and the painting does get a little tiresome after a while.

There are some issues with the controls (the subway ride section is almost impossible to complete due to the fact that the controls seem to work sporadically) and the camera angles (sometimes it's impossible to see what you are spraying), but otherwise this is a pretty impressive game.

If you play this solidly, you should easily complete it in a few days, and for that reason alone this is worth renting first. Other than those slight complaints, this is a pretty addictive game.

Nick Smithson

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