September 29, 2001
Space Channel 5 - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Rating Players Price

Oh... she's so fine.
For some strange reason music/dancing games haven't made much of an impact outside Japan at all, even though some of the titles such as Bust-A-Groove and Pa Rappa the Rapper are excellent games in their own right. Last year Sega released this game, Space Channel 5, on the Dreamcast, and while it still didn't sell as well as hoped it did receive some very positive reviews and favourable comments from those who played it. This is one of the funkiest games ever seen on a console, and it's got Ulala, one of the hottest girls ever seen in a video game. What more could you want?

The game has MPEG backgrounds.
The story of Space Channel 5 is a little weird but here it is. When the Morolians invade, ace reporter Ulala is on the scene to scoop the story for Space Channel 5. The hip-hopping aliens are zapping citizens right and left into a hypnotic dance trance. However, beat girl Ulala proves to be their ultimate match. So they challenge her to a dance battle, and she busts out her grooviest moves in order to free the captives. Well the story may be a mouthful but when it comes down to it, this is a rhythm dancing game. The gameplay is simplistic with buttons on the controller providing the moves. Of course as the beat gets faster the game becomes very difficult.

Visually, Space Channel 5 is a treat. The dancers, while not the most detailed ever seen in a video game, are wonderfully animated with a wide variety of moves. The game includes an amazing 78 characters, each with their own unique moves and bios. There is even a guest appearance by the gloved on himself, Michael Jackson.

Dancing in the crowd.
Being a dancing game one of the most important aspects is the music and this game does not disappoint. Space Channel 5 includes soundtracks from a variety of artists and certainly add a funky dance atmosphere to the game. In fact many people have said that the music in this game is by far the best ever heard in a dancing/music title. I can't really disagree after playing the Dreamcast game. The PS2 version is likely to include the same music, if not a few more tracks due to the added space provided by DVD.

Space Channel 5 is one of those games that is an instant classic that will probably sell fewer games then it deserves to. But for those people that do splash out and buy this game, you are unlikely to be disappointed. Sega are yet to pencil in a release date for the PS2 version, but mid 2002 seems the safest bet at the moment.