Born Jayceon Terrell Taylor, rapper The Game was born into a life of violence and hardship in Compton, CA. Surrounded by gang-related crime, he was placed in foster care as a child, though his foster parents noticed the young boy's intelligence early on. At 13, Game's older brother received a record deal, but was shot dead at a gas station before he could act on it. The pain and loss of losing his brother would help motivate the teenager to further pursue a life outside the dead-end world he was born into, but this was a hard goal to fulfill, especially when he was placed back with his mother at the age of 15. The pressure in high school to embrace gang life was hard, but Game devoted himself to athletics, winning several scholarships and eventually deciding on Washington State University. Unfortunately, Game succumbed to the pressures of the world he was raised in, and his scholarship was revoked within a year amid drug allegations.
He moved in with his brother and became heavily involved with the drug trade, but one night, a drug deal went sour and Game was shot five times. The near-death experience awakened him to his true goals, and he began religiously studying hip-hop music. He recorded a demo which made it into the hands of record-company producers, and soon, he was signed. In 2005, The Game released his debut album, The Documentary, and became one of the most important influences in West Coast rap. In the mid-2000s, he began an acting career as well, appearing in such movies as Waist Deep, Tournament of Dreams, and Street Kings.