Providing cool on a funky level
Jet Set or Jet Grind (as it is known as in NA) is a funk/hiphop-esque rollerskating series developed by Sega. This series takes place in Japan which is rendered using a cell-shading graphical style. Jet Set Future is the sequel to Jet Set Radio which was originally released on the Sega Dreamcast.
You play a member of the GGs who are a skate graffitti gang in Tokyo. You mark your territory by skating toward landmarks and spray painting your signs. A rival gang known as the Rokkaku have decided to control territory around Tokyo-to and have once again left there mark .
The gameplay, for the most part has been kept in tact with the addition of a new boost mechanic. The gameplay is fast-paced and fun with arcade style controls as you can grind on pretty much everything from guardrails to electrical lines with little effort. This is what makes Jet Set so unique amongst other skate games. As you collect spray cans throughout each area you visit you must spary over marked territory which is indicated by floating arrows.
Once in awhile there will be segments where you must follow someone by mimicking what they do to reach certain places; the camera will quickly focus on the character and show their route and movements and switch back to you to follow suit. Paying attention here should be key as sometimes it can be a bit quick and once the camera reverts back to you it may be facing a different direction which can be disorienting. The police make a return but in a less core manner. This time around they will be segments where you must solely focus on spray painting all of them in a confined area as opposed to them chasing you in nearly every level in the first game.
Boss fights are also present with some better executed than others. Expect to find characters will will join your group along the way and plenty of extras such as collecting mix tapeas and graffitti souls to keep you busy along the way. This is all in all a very fun game to pick up and play which has outdone the first game in level design.
One level will have you skating through a beautiful cell-shaded render Tokyo (known as Tokyo-to in game) which is accessible by grinding down a dragon and another will have you skating up pyramids and grinding along rooftops. The level of expression portrayed in this title is astounding.
Expect some slowdowns here and there if played on the Xbox 360 due to the poor emulation involved. Some areas such as 99 street literally slow down to a crawl.
The soundtrack in Jet Set Future is fantastic and perfectly suits the funky graphical styling of this game. Hours of playing will have the songs looping in your head along with the neat sound effects construed in this game.
What you have here is a gem that was released only on the Xbox back in the day that everyone should play. The level of creativity in this title is a showcase of what current gaming today is lacking. Jet Set Radio (Jet Grind Radio) was remastered for more modern consoles so here is hoping one day this will receive a nice 16×9 HD remaster.