Marc Ecko’s Getting Banned

Australia’s entertainment ratings board, the Office of Film & Literature Classification, has refused to grant a rating for forthcoming Atari title Marc Ecko’s Getting Up Contents Under Pressure – thereby effectively banning the game from sale. The same board granted the game a 15+ rating back in November, but now that they’ve had time to think about it – they’ve decided the game promotes crime via graffiti.

The OFLC has particular problems with “the realistic scenarios” where main character Trane learns about graffiti techniques and styles from five real life graffiti artists, and the fact that you get rewarded for putting graffiti on public buildings. The board also objects to the inclusion of “interactive biographies” of 56 real graffiti artists, which include details of their tags, styles and careers. Apparently, “The game detail states that all these artists began their careers performing illegal graffiti on public buildings and infrastructure and that some continue with this practice today,” and the OFLC says that’s not on.

Here in the UK, the Anti-Graffiti Association has already issued a statement slamming Atari for “encouraging an activity such as graffiti vandalism.” However, the game is still set to go on sale this Friday.