Video Game Settings, the Graffiti Town is a lighter version of Gangster Land where the action takes place in a modern urban area that has all the stereotypical elements of being "urban": tall brick apartment buildings with some wear and tear, elaborate and/or gigantic graffiti on the buildings, and tall chain-link fences. The stage music is usually in the hip-hop genre.
Note this setting has to have exaggerated features of heavy urban areas, like downtown Los Angeles or New York. So Liberty City from Grand Theft Auto can't count because the environment is relatively realistic compared to what is described here. Some basketball video games may have this as a court instead of the usual sports stadium.
Likely to overlap with Metropolis Level. Not to be confused with Art Course.
Video Game Examples
- Kerning City in MapleStory. Semi-derelict buildings? Check. Really impressive graffiti? Check. Hip-hop music? Check. Tri-fecta Graffiti Town.
- One of the arenas in Robot Arena 2 is an empty lot in an urban district. The surrounding buildings are covered in elaborate graffiti that say the game's abbreviation, RA2.
- Prison Planet Thantos in Bomberman 64: The Second Attack. Although it a post-apocalyptic version with zombies, rogue bikers, and gaping chasms.
- The entirety of The World Ends with You takes place in Shibuya. In Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance], Traverse Town has become a sort of stand-in for Shibuya, complete with the TWEWY cast as cameos.
- Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future has Tokyo-To, where the player actually helps decorate the city with said elaborate graffiti. This extends to Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing and its sequel for tracks based on JSR. On top of that, Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed's Jet Set course is called Graffiti City.
- The early stages in the Streets of Rage games.
- The first stage of Final Fight. Paris has shades of this in Final Fight 2, as do several stages in Final Fight 3
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time features this in one of it's first stages.
- Final Fantasy VII Midgar is an industrial metropolis, filled with smog from the Mako reactors.
- In the first Manhunt game, Carcer City is a mix between this and a Bleak Level.
- One appears (briefly) in the anime opening sequence for Sonic Riders, although there isn't one in the actual game.
- The "Chicago: Stealth" mission from Perfect Dark, with the exception of most of the graffiti being in Chinese. Joanna's target (the headquarters of the dataDyne subsidiary G5 Corporation) is located in Chinatown.
- Resident Evil 2 has this in the earliest parts of the game (before you enter to the police station) with all the elements of this trope (brick walls, graffiti everywhere, chain link fences, and basketball courts) however, it is a wrecked Graffiti Town after a Zombie Apocalypse.
- Stilwater in Saints Row has this trope in effect for all but the most wealthy parts of the city, however the trope is dropped entirely in the second and third games, as Stilwater is depicted as a sleeker, cleaner, more realistic city (due in large part to Ultor's corporate security) and Steelport from the third game is a very sleek and bright city.
- No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle: The Rank 2 level, which culminates in a fight against Alice Twilight in the roof of a building, is set in a dense urban area filled with tall brick buildings, one of which has a gigantic graffiti modeled after Travis' face.
- The Splatoon series has the various locales that serve as Hub Worlds for each game are largely clean and colorful urban settings, but players are able to use a mailbox feature to post graffiti that will litter the overworld and the various multiplayer stages.
- This is the setting of the virtual pinball table Extreme from Zen Pinball.
- Varrigan City from MadWorld, or at least the first three levels of it. The city features Mooks that look like extremely stereotypical street thugs, there are buildings everywhere that usually have stuff for you to kill people with, and the style for the music tracks are more urban-themed compared to the rest of the game (The entire soundtrack is hip-hop, so the tracks in the city have a bit more guitar and piano than the later levels).
- Roughly half of the planets in Blender Bros have an aspect of this to them. The game is set in the far future and takes place in mostly urban, colonized worlds.
- While New Donk City from Super Mario Odyssey is a mostly clean fantasy take on New York City, the grungy and less heavily populated areas tend to be covered in Bowser-themed graffiti, particularly the underground areas.
- Pokémon Sword and Shield has Spikemuth, located in the south east part of the map. It's a loving homage to games like Streets of Rage, featuring a single hallway of a stage complete with Invisible Walls (actually Mr. Mime's making barriers), and enemy (trainers) jumping in from the sides of the screens. Derelict buildings, graffiti adorn the street, and it feels quite grungy.
- Telluria City from the TOME RPG is a perfect example. Not as hostile as a Gangster Land, but with graffiti and urban imagery abound.
- The second level in Streets of Rage takes place in an urban environment away from the glamourous city that was in the previous stage. The apartment buildings are worn down, graffiti and posters are plastered on the walls, trash is flying in the wind, barrels are everywhere, some areas have chain link fences in the background, and the whole block is filled with punks and other gang-like enemies.
Non Video Game Examples
- Early seasons of Sesame Street contained elements of this since it was originally marketed toward children in urban areas. Many of the "letters of the day" even appeared as graffiti as seen here.
- In west Philadelphia born and raised, on the playground where I spent most of my days...
- Artwork from the manuals in the very first editions of Vampire: The Masquerade and Werewolf: The Apocalypse combined this trope with Gothic Punk.
- In Turning Red, Toronto is portrayed like this.