14 Mar 2012

Jet Set Radio HD detailed

The original Dreamcast version of Jet Set Radio (Jet Grind Radio if you're American) was released nearly 12 years ago and it is still probably one of my favourite games, it was so beautiful and infuriating at the same time, it paved the way for cell shaded games and boasted an amazingly varied soundtrack full of very listenable tracks. I’ve been hoping for a port of the game every since Sega announced that they were releasing the Dreamcast versions of Crazy Taxi and sonic Adventure on XBLA and PSN.

For anyone who didn’t have the chance to play the original or the 2002 sequel on the original Xbox, the premise of the game is a fairly simple one, you ride around on your super powered up skates tagging various areas of cities with graffiti to gain control of them, often covering up the work of rival gangs whilst trying to avoid the unwanted attention of the swat teams who seemingly want to pull you down and hug you to death in a large a group as possible, later the threat of hugging swat teams is seemingly blown out of all proportion by their unrelenting use of tanks, but as a futuristic skater your armed with the means to speed away from them, when it’s not the Swat teams getting you down there’s the threat of the Rival gangs themselves who will do everything they can to stop you from marking your territory.  (I swear it’s more appealing than I make it sound, watch the trailer at the bottom)

As the very open “summer 2012” release date approaches Sega are revealing bits about the game along with some new screenshots. The HD remake means that the game can be played in a full widescreen mode rather than the 4:3 format that the Sonic Adventure port mustered up.  Also as modern controllers have two thumbsticks as opposed to the Dreamcast’s solitary one Sega has added the ability to control the camera with the right analogue stick which means no more annoying follow cams which get stuck at corners meaning you can’t see what’s ahead of you. Also unlike some other Dreamcast ports the soundtrack is very much intact, it currently stands that 70% of the original music will be in the game with Sega working on getting the rights for the remaining songs before release time rolls around.

One of the notable features of the original game was for users to share their custom graffiti tags across Sega’s network, sadly this feature has bitten the dust but we are being treated to 18 new pieces of custom artwork thanks to a contest currently being held in the UK and US.

Expect arrival anytime between May and August on Xbox Live Arcade, Playstation network and PC


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