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March 25, 2003
Space Channel 5: Part 2 - Review
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Ulala is a stunner!
Forget Lara Croft. Ulala is the real deal. The one girl that you'd most want to show off to your mates. Fun, good looking, sexy, good looking, a great dancer, good looking, a singer and oh, did I mention good looking? Anyway Space Channel 5: Part 2 is a rhythm dancing game set in outer space. Guess what, there's a storyline as well.

The Galaxy has been invaded by the mysterious Odoridans, led by the infamous Purge, the best dancer in the Universe. Purge's action commander, Shadow, is overseeing the mass kidnapping and brainwashing of mankind, enslaving everyone through the power of dance. Ulala, on the scene reporting on events as they unfold for Space Channel 5, must confront Shadow and ultimately Purge, beating them at their own dance in order to save us all from disco-damnation. Meanwhile, with the help of her new boss, 'Space' Michael Jackson, Ulala must overcome competition from Space Channel 5's rival broadcasting station, and ensure that the channel's Audience Ratings remain high.

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Damn she moves well.
Gameplay is rather simplistic in style with the object to press the directional button corresponding to what the "enemy" has done on screen. He presses 3 ups, you press 3 ups. Of course there is a little more to it then that. These button presses must also correspond to the music and at times you will have to press the circle or square button which correlates to the enemies calling out "Chu" or shoot enemies or "Hey" to rescue friends. While the game starts at a leisurely pace by the end if the first level you'll be having a harder time of it. The game includes six levels in total each becoming progressively more difficult. The 2-player mode allows you to "battle" a friend to prove who ahs the best rhythm. This alone will keep you engrossed for hours.

Niggles for this game are almost identical to the first game. The biggest problem is that once again the game is just a little on the short side. Those of you with good timing should breeze through the game in a couple of hours, although it is a lot harder to get a good score in this game. The game also includes many items and bits of information to unlock, something which is welcome, but could have been a lot better. Perhaps some behind the scenes footage, or some footage from those Japanese Ulala look-alike competitions.

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Japanese version - ours is identical.
Graphically Space Channel 5: Part 2 remains very faithful to the previous title. The major difference is the streaming MPEG backgrounds have been replaced with polygon generated backgrounds making the action blend together a little more. The characters aren't the most detailed ever seen however their animations are simply amazing. Just wait until you see Ulala dancing her way through the levels.

Sound plays a vital part in this game and from that respect Space Channel 5: Part 2 is a winner. Despite only including stereo sound the focus of this game is the music beats to hit the buttons in time with. The music is generally Japanese pop but also includes bouts of electronic guitar playing. The singing is solid enough, although the actual words leave a lot to be desired. Ulala's commentary, and indeed that of the TV station boss, is upbeat and sets the mood of the game superbly. Fun.

Another solid title from those wacky developers at Sega/United Game Artists. It's titles like this that makes Sega such a great developer. Perhaps not technically the best, but certainly unique, and a lot of fun. If you like your dance rhythm games then this game must be considered.

Review By: David Warner

GRAPHICSRealtime backgrounds, adequate modelling, but excellent animations.
SOUNDSome terrific music let down by dodgy singing, nice enough effects.
GAMEPLAYDespite the simplicity this is one very addictive game.
VALUENot overly long but the 2-player mode will certainly have you back.
OVERALLAs a music rhythm game Space Channel 5: Part 2 is probably among the best on the market. With a dance mat this game could be a terrific amount of fun, but through the controller it still lacks a bit. Still, if you like electronic women you can't go past Ulala.

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