Game Reviews for PC, PS2, X-Box, Playstation, CCGs, Pen and Paper Role Playing and Table Top Games, plus Movies, DVDs, and Anime!

     " The story alone still makes it worth a play through... "

      Title: The Getaway by Sony

      Format: PS2 Action Shooter

      Reviewing Monkey: Our Ape Masters

      The Hype: One of the most hyped games in Sony's illustrious history, The Getaway promises to bring a hard core crime drama to life in video game form. Billing heavy action and car jacking it, even at first glance, is obviously similar to another PS2 game that rhymes with "Band Cleft Motto" but thinks its story and drama will separate it from the pack.

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Graphics: Like a lot of games we've seen lately, The Getaway began production about 2 years ago and spent a whole lot of time in development. What that means for it, as it has with so many other titles that fall within the same category, is that the graphics were stunning when they began but by now end up being a bit on the lackluster side. Especially vulnerable in the rendering, The Getaway manages keep a strong enough graphical profile that it doesn't detract from play but there is certainly nothing here you'll pay particular attention to. The exception to that, as was also heavily billed, is the cut scenes…which are wonderfully vivid and very tight. Still, as with other story driven games in the past, that's not quite enough to make a game's graphics. 3.5 out of 5

      Playability: All right, no need to beat around the bush about it, The Getaway is a straight shot off Grand Theft Auto. The action is the same (run around shooting guns, jacking cars, and driving around the city), the feel is the same (centered in the darker side of urban commerce), and the violence and drama are every bit as brazen. Now, on the plus side, if you're gonna emulate a game GTA is a great choice (and we knew it would happen eventually). Lots of action, a great combination of genres, and a fun way to live out those sadistic urges we all have.
          The downside is that, so far as playability goes, The Getaway ends up being inferior in almost every respect. The controls are not nearly as smooth or responsive, the weapon choices and effects aren't as satisfying, the driving is a helluva lot clunkier, and the mapping and transportation features aren't nearly as polished. The only partial exception to that is the damage system which lacks a health meter and is instead measured visually by the bleeding and sagging of your character- which was an addition of realism I loved. Unfortunately, the also replaced health pickups with simply leaning against walls to "catch your breath"…which not only makes no sense but also seriously detracts from the flow of gameplay. 3 out of 5

      Story and Drama: While the graphics may be lackluster and the playability unimpressive, in story The Gateway manages to fall second to none this review has ever seen. Arguably the first true "playable movie" at the foundation of the entire game is a brilliant story about an ex-con whose wife is killed and child is kidnapped by a vicious mob boss to force him back into the trade. Okay, so it's not that original, but it is actually told like a real story played out be real digitized actors who have a greater interest in conveying emotion and delivering their lines with verve than they do in getting the paycheck at the end of the day. Add to that some wonderfully adult (this one is definitely not for kids) and arguably overly British dialogue and you've got a game that actually plays like a cross between the movies Snatch and Payback. It is, hands down, the best video game story I've seen in years (if not ever) and only falls to the gripe of being entirely linear…but that's a small gripe a best. 5 out of 5

      Multiplayer and Replayability: No multiplayer (though, as it's been said with GTA, would have been a cool addition) and replayability comes from playing the whole game over again with an unlockable cop after you've beaten it the first time. And while there's deeper story to unlock by doing it the second time through you may find the overall gameplay insufficiently stimulating to take it on. 3.5 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       If they could have cleaned up the controls and kept the graphics up to date this game would have been a keeper hands down. As it stands, the story alone still makes it worth a play through but, in the end, the gameplay will leave you wanting.

      The Good: Amazing story and script.

      The Bad: Unfortunately inferior gameplay to others of its type.

      The Overall Ugly: A must play but not, necessarily, a must own.

      What it's Worth: Rental

Buy it direct from

Copyright © Game Monkey Press, Game Monkeys Magazine. All Rights Reserved.
Game Monkeys(tm) 1999 Game Monkey Press