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Video Game / Urban Reign

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Urban Reign is a Beat 'em Up from Namco for the PlayStation 2 released in 2005. In it you play as Brad Hawk, a "brawler for hire" in the crime-ridden but strangely almost gunless city of Green Harbor. He is hired to find a missing gang member, who has become the catalyst for gang wars across the city. However, the more gangs he beats down, the more answers he gets and the more complicated things become.

Urban Reign provides the following tropes:

  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Shun-Ying's brother, Lin Fong.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Most of the Gangsters who provide the opposition in the 3rd chapter. Particularly Shinkai.
  • Batman Gambit: At the end, you find out the Mayor of the city had purposely let loose criminal gangs, and was then going to use Yakuza to take them out, all so he can become popular with the public and run for state governor. It almost works, until Brad beats the leader of the Yakuza and finds a letter with his signature on it, exposing all of the mayor's plans.
  • Battle in the Rain: There's a few of these, but the standout one is the first fight with the karate master Kadonashi.
  • Batter Up!: The baseball bat's pretty common weapon, and one of its attacks lets you knock opponents for a home-run. Particularly satisfying when you finish a mission with it.
  • Book Ends: The game opens with Brad arriving in town and gaining the ire of two thugs who of course are the opening mission. At the end of the game, we see the two wondering what is going to happen after everything settles down and crossing paths with Brad again, but this time they stay out of his way.
  • Bonus Feature Failure: The mayor Bordin has the highest unlocking requirements of any character (S-ranks on most stages), but he's an intentionally terrible fighter with bad moves & stats, with nothing to redeem him. He's really just a token reward to show you've done well.
  • Breakable Weapons: Weapons like the glass bottle and wooden plank break after one use. The bottle still makes for a deadly weapon when broken, whereas the plank leaves a stump that's hardly worth bothering with, outside of throwing at someone.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: Available normally in the Challenge mode, but a cheat code will allow another player to take control of the 2nd character in the Story & Free Mission modes. Unfortunately the camera still only follows the first player. This may indicate that the 2-player story/mission mode was an unfinished feature.
  • Combination Attack: Useable by both the player and the AI-controlled characters, and available to every character in the game. Deals plenty of damage, builds meter, can't be escaped and the characters executing them are invulnerable during it.
  • Counter-Attack: Some characters can perform reversals where they catch an opponent's limb then throw them. The Karatekas can reverse high punches for example while Paul can reverse high & mid kicks.
  • The Cynic: Protagonist Brad Hawk has a bleakly professional view of the city, bordering on nihilism.
    Brad Hawk: Nobody's innocent. Justice is an illusion. Uncertainty is the only sure thing. Uncertainty creates fear, and fear creates money.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: After you beat certain bosses a number of times, they'll eventually join your side and become available to use for partner missions.
  • Die, Chair, Die!: Lots of breakable scenery like shelves, tables, chairs. etc to knock people through for extra damage.
  • Enemy Mine: You start off beating down gangs just for information and the like. While they're rough costumers, they were hardly evil. Once the psychopaths start to run amok in the city and cause riots, you soon team up with former adversaries to protect the city.
  • Excuse Plot: Very little in the way of plot, and most of it you're only told through voiceovers.
  • Executive Suite Fight: You confront (and pummel) the corrupt Mayor in his office.
  • Extremity Extremist: Taekwondo fighter Park doesn't have a single punch (except for an everyman ground-and-pound on a fallen foe). Boxer Grimm comes close, but has one or two basic low kicks.
  • From Camouflage to Criminal: Among the many antagonists in the game is The Shadow Platoon, a group of ex-military men all dismissed from the service for various reasons who are now involved in the underworld.
  • Gangster Land: The city of Green Harbor is almost comically abundant with organized crime. There are Gangbangers, bikers, ex-military, a Triad syndicate and a Yakuza clan, not to mention retired professional fighters joining gangs or freelancing. To top it all off, there's even a Sleazy Politician of the utmost corruption governing the city.
  • Glass Cannon: The corrupt Mayor, the true villain of the game. You can beat him in a single combo, but his gun can kill you in a single hit.
  • Grapple Move: Urban Reign has more throws than you can shake a stick at. Virtually every character has throws for 3 regions of the opponent's body(head, upper and lower body) when attacking from the front, the same again for attacking from behind, throws for opponents on the ground, throws after running up walls (or an opponent) throw reversals, throw escapes, team throws, throws on multiple opponents, weapon specific throws, and some characters can throw opponents in the air or activate a power-up to gain a different range of throws.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm: Glass bottles show up as weapons from time to time, and can be used once as a projectile or a club, which breaks them. Then they become a slashing weapon used the same way as a knife.
  • Guest Fighter: Paul Phoenix and Marshall Law from Tekken, and they can use many of their moves from their native series too. They have no involvement in the game's story, sadly.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: Some mooks drop cartons of milk or energy drinks which, when drank, restore health & special power respectively. You can then throw the container at an enemy and it'll ''deck them'' if it connects.
  • Immune to Flinching: Super Armor is probably the rarest of the self-buff skills, mostly seen on characters with the "Mighty" skillset.
  • I Shall Taunt You: There's a taunt button, when used the character performs a gesture and say a line (such as Bring It) to provoke the enemy. The practical use of this is that it makes a dizzy opponent wander helplessly towards you.
  • Invulnerable Attack: The power gauge-dependent Special Arts attacks, available to every character. A major boon for crowd control.
  • Lag Cancel: Virtually any normal attack can be immediately cut short by performing a Special Art.
  • Launcher Move: Just about every character (even the lowest of mooks!) has a move to knock a foe into the air where they can be juggled some more. Once launched though, a character can escape with a well-timed press of the Dodge button. The Dodge button doesn't respond to Special Arts however, so following a launcher with one results in an inescapable true combo.
  • Navel-Deep Neckline: Shun Ying Lee's outfit has a plunging neckline that goes past her navel, revealing her ample cleavage in the process.
  • Never Bring a Knife to a Gun Fight: William Bordin is not a hardened street fighter or skilled martial artist like the other characters. As a result, he falls easily to a few attacks. On the other hand, he is the only character to use a gun and it deals a One-Hit matter how tough your character is. Turns out that being a skilled martial artist or hardened street fighter doesn't make you capable of surviving a bullet to the head.
  • Post-Final Boss: After you beat Shinkai, the last of the gangster bosses, you go to confront the mayor Bordin. Not being a trained fighter however, he's a bit of a One-Hit-Point Wonder as anything short of a shove or the first hit of an attack string will knock him unconscious. In his favour however he has a...
  • One-Hit Kill: Bordin carries (and uses) a gun. You might survive it if you're stationary or walking when he gets you, but it's far more likely that you'll be running at him or attempting an attack, so this'll usually polish you off in one shot.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Shun Ying Lee is the only female seen within the game story. There are other girls whom you unlock with the challenge missions.
  • SNK Boss: Golem is frequently immune to stagger and deals exceptionally high damage. He also tends to carry a fireaxe with him and has one single unavoidable attack.
  • Timed Mission: Battles with time limits are fairly common.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Trust us, you'll be yelling foul a lot at the AI.
  • 2xFore: While it's a possible weapon, a wooden plank will break after one use.
  • Weapon-Based Characterization: Both the enemy mooks and your helper character get specific weapons suited to their designs. Urban brawlers tend to employ baseball bats, lead pipes and the like, the solders use combat knives, your swordmaster employer uses a unique Chinese sword, etcetera.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: Most of the characters have signature pro wrestling moves amongst their grappling sets: suplexes, DDT's, facelock jawbreakers, and powerbombs abound. In addition, there are team-up grapples that are obvious tributes to a number of famous tag teams. The Japanese gangsters even get Masahiro Chono style Yakuza Kicks (in fact, two of the gangster mooks are named Masa and Hiro).
  • Worthy Opponent: How rival hired-muscle Jake sees the protagonist Brad. While he initially takes Brad on for the money, their repeated battles ignite the former-wrestler's competitive spirit and he looks for a last throwdown to see who's tougher.
  • Zerg Rush: More often than not you'll find yourself surrounded and getting beaten from every side.