The Getaway is an Open World, action-adventure game that was developed by Sony Computer Entertainment subsidiary SCEE Studio Soho for the PlayStation 2 and the first game in the franchise (The Getaway) of the same name. Originally proposed as a launch title for the console the game was delayed in total 27 months due the difficulty the team experienced recreating the large areas of London (the setting of the game) by the team. The setting and general theme of the game was said to be inspired by the British gangland films "Get Carter" and "Snatch".
The plot to The Getaway is split between two different characters that you will play as, and the two plots frequently run into one another. Initially, you play as Mark Hammond, an ex-convict and member of the 'Collins Crew' gang, which operates in the Soho area. However, on a routine morning, Mark's wife is shot dead, and his son abducted. After this you chase down the men responsible. However, you are forced into running some 'errands' for the leader of the gang responsible. That gang is the 'Bethnal Green mob', which is headed by Charlie Jolson.
Jolson is something of an old fashioned gangster. He simply aims to destroy all the other gangs around him and uses others to get this to happen. Hammond has no choice but to complete the errands that Jolson has set for him, regardless of whether
they mean stabbing his ex-gang in the back or starting fights with other gangs. Otherwise, as Jolson puts it, "Your boy will be all over the news by ten".
While Hammond is aiming to save his son, DC Frank Carter is aiming to take down Jolson. The two plots frequently intersect. Initially, you are responsible for arresting Jolson's son, who then is able to get out of any sentencing on an unknown condition. The plot then continues to run on, until it culminates aboard an abandoned cargo ship.
The Getaway takes some of its gameplay elements from other successful games of the same ilk, such as Grand Theft Auto. Vehicles in The Getaway are fully licensed, so there is an opportunity to drive around in recognizable cars, such as Nissans, Rovers, and Vauxhalls. The Getaway was an early adopter of cover mechanics and uses an innovative regenerating health system which requires the character to lean against a wall to recover from gunshots as well as a HUD-free setting. This means that the gun-play is a case of firing until out of ammo while trying to pick up new weapons and a character's health state is represented by their posture and ability to walk properly.
The Getaway uses an accurately modeled London, and was supposedly so realistic that it was used for a survey for London's 'black cab' drivers to see which part of the brain is used to navigate. Not only this, but The Getaway features official retail outlets, adding to the realism.
Mark Hammond Walkthrough
- The Frightener
- Burning Bridges
- Art Appreciation
- Aiding and Abetting
- Taxi for Mr. Chai
- Out of the Frying Pan
- Filthy Business
- A Touch of Class
- The Cowgirl and the Cash
- A Cat in a Bag
- The Prodigal Son
- Aboard the Sol Vita
Frank Carter Walkthrough
- Bargain Basement
- Show Some Remorse
- Disturbance in Soho
- Painting the Town Red
- Escort Duty
- The Vigilante
- Stalking McCormack
- Do the World a Favour
- The Jolson Files
- Meet Mark Hammond
- Showdown with Jake
- Land of Hope and Glory
There are two different versions of The Getaway cover art. The UK box art shows all the main characters of the game on a black and white background - the characters are presented in black with white detailing, and the background is white. However, for the US box art, it shows Mark Hammond holding a handgun, and is blended in with an image of a TVR. The US box art has a backdrop of London's financial district, as well as Yasmin, and DC Frank Carter.
According to Metacritic's 49 critic reviews, the game has a score of 72/100. The top review was given by GamerWeb Sony, who rated the game 90/100, and have the quote:
This game deserves a look at, even if just to admire the scope to which Lindon was recreated and the movie-like feel.
However, the lowest score given was by Entertainment Weekly. They gave the game 25/100 and wrote:
The level of detail is extraordinary... but the slickest graphic presentation can't cover for Getaway's flawed script... In a game infused with more humor and less pretentious aspirations, these flaws would be more forgivable.
Meanwhile, the reception received by other mainstream gaming sites is displayed in the below table:
In Popular Culture
Lou Ferrigno mentions The Getaway in an episode of the King of Queens. In the episode "Gym Neighbors" (Season 7, Episode 12), Lou mentions that the Getaway is his favorite game. This is one of several references to video games throughout the episode, an episode in which the plot revolves around the main character bribing Ferrigno with video games to get out of his workout sessions.