September 25, 2000

Jet Set Radio - Preview

Release Date Publisher Developer Rating Players RRP

Jet Set Radio is definitely one of the most interesting games to hit the Dreacmast this year. Using a new cell rendering technology Sega have created a unique look for this game. While the characters and levels look two dimensional and cartoonish they are actually wonderfully presented in a huge city with as much detail as seen in any other game.

Jet Set Radio also has an interesting storyline behind it. The government is attempting to silence the kids of Tokyo, but with their Overdrive Magnetic-Motor Skating Shoes, the cops will have to catch them first. The Jet Set Radio program keeps the kids unified and inspired to fight for their rights of expression, which includes graffiting the city. You will have to protect your territory from other gangs that want to take over your neighborhood and what better way then to join up with like-minded hip individuals that will help you keep your area the way you want it. The cops will be after you of course, so you'll have to be quick.

This game, which was developed in-house at Sega of Japan, includes 10 cartoon styled characters to select from and 19 different missions to complete. Jet Set Radio incorporates 3 game worlds which are split up into zones which become unlocked during the game. Each of the 10 characters has his/her own unique set of tricks to perform in the game world. Tagging the walls is done with a simple press of a button on the controller, but timing is essential. It is also possible to create your own graffiti logo with different colours, letters and special effects.

One of the most amazing things about this game is the interactivity of the game world. Almost everything that can be seen can be skated on or tagged by the skaters. Rails, cars, walls, and signs can be affected which makes the game so much more realistic. The game worlds are populated with people as well as cars which often require some very quick maneuvering to get around.

Although receiving high scores in the press sales of Jet Set Radio in Japan have been less the stellar. Fortunately the game probably more geared to an American audience due to the hip-hop soundtrack and roller blade theme of the game. Jet Set Radio will be a welcome addition to any Dreamcast library, if only because of it's coolness. Fortunately, Jet Set Radio is also choc full of gameplay to keep you happy.