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Jan. 2, 2006
Mark Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
17/2/2006AtariThe Collective1$89.95

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The main character, Trane.
Make no mistake, Mark Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure has two certainties. The first is that the game has a stupidly long name, and the second is that it's likely to stir up plenty of controversy prior to, and after release. Indeed there has already been calls in Australia to have the game banned - and that was before all the whingers have probably even seen the game.

Written by Mark Ecko himself the game sees you playing the role of Trane (voiced by hip-hop artist Talib Kweli), a "toy" graffiti artist with the street smarts, athletic prowess and vision to become an "All City King" - the most reputable of all graffiti artists. Along your quest, uncover the mayor's deep, dark secret and use your fighting talents and high-wire graf to expose the city's leader as a corrupt tyrant.

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Look, it's Ice Hockey.
As you struggle to save a neighborhood from an oppressive government, one question stands out: What if graffiti could change the world? Risk your life battling city authorities and rival graf gangs, mere obstacles in your attempt to get your tag up. And in this city, not just any tag will do. You'll have to "Get IN, Get UP and Get OUT".

Split up into eleven distinct city environments, and 20 gameplay levels this game is really a combination of several different genres with the ultimate goal to rule the streets. Trane is able to graffiti the game world with a variety of tools including Aerosol, Rollers, Markers, Wheat Paste, Stickers and Stencils. To add authenticity to the title The Collective has enlisted the aide of more than 50 real-life graffiti artists, six of whom appear in-game as mentors. Contents Under Pressure includes a digital 'black book' to store unlocked tags and images. It's not all smooth sailing as Trane will often have to fight enemies, including rival gangs who will be none too please to see you tagging their area, using a combination of punches, kicking, grappling and improvised weaponry such as a crowbar, 2x4, Brick, Wrench, Trashcan Lid or Baseball Bat. At times he will have to sneak past enemies and infiltrate areas to complete missions.

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Look, it's Ice Hockey.
One aspect of this title which has really generated interest is the stunning list of actors used to voice the characters in the game. These include;
Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs - a pop culture icon, composer, producer director and actor, P. Diddy lends his voice to DIP, a member of Trane's rival crew, Vandals of New Radius;
Rosario Dawson - famous for her roles in Sin City and Men in Black II, she plays the voice of Tina, the girlfriend of Gabe, the leader of the Vandals of New Radius crew;
Brittany Murphy - has appeared in 8 Mile and Little Black Book, she will voice the aggressive and ambitious television reporter, Karen Light;
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City detail is impressive.
George Hamilton - known for his roles in The Godfather: Part III and Hollywood Ending, he will voice Mayor Sung, a cagey politician who's risen to the top slot in the city of New Radius;
Giovanni Ribisi - featured in films such as Boiler Room, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, and Cold Mountain, Ribisi will voice KRY1, a member of Trane's Still Free crew;
Adam West - the original Batman from the television series lends his voice to the Chief William Hunt character;
Andy Dick - comedian who appeared in Zoolander and Old School, Dick plays the voice of Aunt Beth, a ruthless female boss of the Vandal Squad;
Charlie Murphy - best known for his appearances on 'Chappelle's Show,' Murphy is the voice of White Mike, another member of Trane's Still Free crew;
The RZA - The founding member of hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan now known for composing the music of films such as Kill Bill: Volume 1 and Kill Bill: Volume 2, he will voice the character Stake, leader of the Wrong-Way Assassins; and
Michael 'M.C. Serch' Berrin - previously part of the hip-hop duo 3rd Bass and featured in the film Bamboozled, he will voice one of the main characters, Gabe, leader of the Vandals of New Radius crew.

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Don't fall off there!
Atari have a lot of hope in Mark Ecko's Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure but we're still a little on the fence for two issue. The first relates to my own morals (yes, I do have some) that say that this game isn't going to be for the social good of the country. Most kids (and I'm talking young teenagers mainly) understand that murdering people is unacceptable, but when we start pushing games that promote 'tagging' the ideals between acceptable and not may be a little less clear cut to them. Having said that this isn't the first game with graffiti by a long shot - Jet Set Radio had an almost identical theme. The second thing we're unsure about is the overall quality. Only weeks before release and we've still only seen some screens and videos which, while looking good, don't really give a good impression of the gameplay. Expect a release in February (with free controversy).