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Video Game / Marc Eckō's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure

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Get up, Trane.

"I just wanted to get up, get my name up, write graffiti."
— Coltrane 'Trane' Crowley

Marc Eckō's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure is a 2006 video game for the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC, developed by The Collective and published by Atari in collaboration with fashion designer and entrepeneur Marc Eckō. It centres on an up-and-coming young graffiti artist named Coltrane "Trane" Crowley (voiced by Talib Kweli), who is determined to make a name for himself in the fictional dystopic city of New Radius, while leading his graffiti crew, the Still Free Crew (SFC), in a street war against their rivals the Vandals of New Radius (VaNR), led by Gabe (MC Serch). However, in the midst of his efforts, he uncovers evidence of a conspiracy involving Trane's dead father and the mayor of New Radius, Mayor Miguel Sung (George Hamilton), and decides to use graffiti in an effort to expose the government's corruption. In the process he must outfight and outsmart the violent and virulently anti-graffiti New Radius police force, the Civil Conduct Keepers (CCK).

The gameplay is a blend of Jet Set Radio-esque graffiti mini-games (there are numerous different styles of graffiti, each with their own corresponding techniques and mechanics to master), Prince of Persia-style realistic platforming, combo-based brawling and occasional stealth sequences.

In addition to the game itself, a cut-down version was also released for mobile phones, developed by Glu Mobile.

In 2013, the game was made available for download on Steam, courtesy of Devolver Digital.

Contains the following tropes:

  • 100% Completion: Complete all the main and optional graffiti pieces (and do them perfectly), the freeform challenges, find all the iPods, find all the Eckō rhinos, find all the Gold Montana spray cans, take pictures of all the graffiti legends...
  • Alone in a Crowd: The Opening video starts out with Trane in the crowd, as people pass by him. In the end video, he is also in the crowd, but this time he disappears completely.
  • Action-Adventure: It was perhaps inevitably classified as this given its Genre-Busting gameplay.
  • Aerosol Flamethrower: Trane learns how to use his paint cans and a lighter as an improvised flamethrower during the course of the game.
  • Arc Number: 9/06. It's the day Trane's father and Sung's political rival were killed by Mayor Sung.
  • As Himself: All the graffiti artists featured in the game.
  • Aspect Ratio Switch: The Steam re-release by General Arcade had to resort to this as the game was developed with 4:3 screens in mind, switching between 4:3 and 16:9 (or whatever aspect ratio the system is in) in menus and gameplay. As the original source code to the game was lost, it's basically all what the porting house could muster short of decompiling the game.
  • Back Stab: Or in this case, thwacking an enemy in the back of the head with a spray can.
  • Batter Up!: An available weapon you can get in the streets, for one reason or another all of them seem to have been taped with broken glass, in fact if you hit an enemy with it you can actually hear the glass break. As if normal bats weren't enough...
  • Book Ends: Trane in the opening video starts with him being Alone in a Crowd, and ends with him being Alone in a Crowd.
  • Before the Dark Times: Trane's monologue in the intro:
    Trane: New Radius used to be alive, brimming with culture. That was the Golden Age. I wish I was smart enough to appreciate that then. But now...they're watchin', looking at our every move.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: Mayor Sung and the CCK are depicted like this.
    Trane: New Radius isn't very friendly to graff artists. If they catch you, it's a wrap, and if they don't, be ready to run. Forever...and ever...and ever...and ever...and ever.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Sung is exposed as the murderer of Dexter Crowley and the one who orchestrated the murder of Brandon Grey, with strong hints that justice will be done following Sung's resignation. However, Decoy is dead, Trane has lost all of his friends and he Did Not Get the Girl. He is also homeless again thanks to the destruction of both the abandoned art school and his grandmother's block. Trane is still free, but alone.
  • Breakable Weapons: All of the Improvised Weapons break eventually, but they're only throwaway items anyway and not really vital to the combat system.
  • Co-Dragons: Chief Hunt and Shanna Ray to Sung.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Trane's not above beating downed opponents, improvising weapons, and punching dudes in the junk.
  • Combos: The fighting system is geared around it.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Trane and Tina don't end up together by the end of the game.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The CCK's response to graffiti is just a liiiiiittle over-the-top, with heavily-armored, gun-toting goons shouting things like "Art IS a crime!" while gunning down graffiti artists. Justified to an extent, because at least one graffiti artist in the city has major dirt on Mayor Sung.
  • Enemy Mine: Trane and Gabe decide to put their grudges aside to fight CCK. It doesn't last long.
  • Experience Points: Trane's "Reputation", which allows him to unlock fighting combos or additional graffiti styles and techniques.
  • Generic Graffiti: The whole premise and core mechanic.
  • Genre-Busting: Graffiti as a game mechanic, platforming, brawling, stealth, even the slightest hint of RPG Elements...
  • Graffiti of the Resistance: From the second act onwards, the plot switches from Trane simply trying to "get up" and make a name for himself and instead to Trane trying to fight against the corrupt government.
  • How We Got Here: The game opens with a cutscene that takes place immediately before the Final Boss. The rest of the game is a flashback.
  • Important Haircut: Trane shaves his head at the end of the first act, symbolizing his change in priorities from merely making a name for himself to fighting the government.
  • Improvised Weapon: Trane can use just about anything as a weapon: 2x4, bin lids, lengths of pipe, trophies, basketballs, his own graffiti tools and so on.
  • In Case You Forgot Who Wrote It: Yes, Marc Eckō's name features prominently in a title which is already a mouthful.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Karen Light.
  • It's Personal: After learning that Sung was behind his father's murder, Trane takes his crusade against the authority to a whole new level.
  • Love Triangle: Between Trane, Gabe and Gabe's girlfriend Tina. Neither of them gets together in the end.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: Sung doesn't get involved directly with Trane, instead sending his goons to deal with him.
  • Police Brutality: The CCK's standard modus operandi.
  • Pragmatic Hero: It's not clear whether Trane is knocking out his foes or outright killing them during combat, but if he happens to grapple an enemy and throw them towards a ledge, causing them to trip and fall (or in one level, into the freeway which is packed with speeding cars)? Yeah, they're definitely dead.
  • Product Placement: Extensive, and one of the most frequently criticized aspects of the game. iPods, Gold Montana aerosol cans and Eckō stickers are available as collectibles, among other things.
  • Red-Headed Stepchild: One of the subway maintenance engineers, upon spotting the player character, shouts at him: "I'm gonna beat you like the red-headed stepchild I never had!"
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After Decoy's death, Trane embarks on a mission to expose Sung's crimes.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: Increasingly common as the game progresses. Trane is vastly outnumbered by the better equipped CCK, who will easily overwhelm him if he doesn't sneak past them.
  • Stealth Mentor: Decoy is one to Trane.
  • Stout Strength: Beth is a vandal police chief that fights hand to hand with dual batons. Halfway into the fight with her, she gets thrown into an electric fence, merely says that it tickled once she manages to pry herself away, gets crushed by a concrete clown head, and is still ready for round two as if nothing happened.
  • Tell Me About My Father: Decoy confesses that he knew Dexter Crowley, Trane's father. He tells Trane how Dexter used to hustle to feed Trane and his grandma until he got arrested. He was later released, but made to serve as Miguel Sung's assassin, killing Brandon Grey, Sung's rival for Mayor. Sung then kills Dexter. Both are made to look like gang shootings.
  • "X" Marks the Hero: Trane sports an orange X on the back of his hoodie. Early in the game, he gets a cross spray painted on his back courtesy of Gabe. When Trane changes clothes, he keeps the symbol as his own, symbolizing how he'll "Flip the script" on the Vandals.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Trane's grandma explicitly tells him not to come back to her if he goes on his journey. Trane persists anyway and finds a new home in the abandoned art school. Both residences end up destroyed by the end of the game.
  • You Killed My Father: Trane discovers that Mayor Sung had Trane's father killed, prompting Trane's vendetta against Sung.

The legendary street artist known as 'Trane' was behind last night's graffiti blitz, and in the end is, in fact... Still Free.

Alternative Title(s): Mark Eckos Getting Up Contents Under Pressure