Friday, May 25, 2012
Jet Set Radio Set to Groove on the Vita
Ever since its announcement, Jet Set Radio [HD] (I guess they're not saying HD anymore, despite being HD) for PSN, XBLA and PC has been quite the thing to anticipate as it was one of those dreadfully missing gems from the previous batch of Dreamcast games that were ported to the above systems. And I, in my deepest hopes, timidly imagined a day where I might experience Dreamcast games on my Vita beyond PSP ports of games (If I wanted to buy Crazy Taxi that way, for instance), though didn't expect it to materialize for a while yet. But, to my great surprise, that day is going to come sooner than expected, specifically sometime this Summer, when Jet Set Radio releases for the Vita alongside the other versions of the game. Despite my hopes, I can honestly say that this is something that surprised me completely, and when I saw it in my LiveTweet updates, I didn't know what to think. Of course, that got straightened out really quickly, as what I need to think about is simple: How to fit this game into my schedule and how awesome it's going to be that I'll get to play it.
I don't recall much of my time spent with Jet Set Radio back in the day when I played it on my Dreamcast (which I still own both the game and console), but I chalk that up to not being very good at it, meaning that I didn't play it quite so much. I attribute that mostly to me just being not that great back then, or at least not willing to exert a little bit more in an attempt to really crack into a game to find the creamy goodness that is fun within. Especially during that era as, and I shit you not on this, I almost passed on Skies of Arcadia because the first boss kicked my ass because I wasn't even really trying. I bought it, played to that minimal point, lost and promptly threw in something else. When talking about it with a friend of mine later, I told him about that, to which he lost his shit. "Go play that game right now, goddamnit." he said and reluctantly, I complied and went on to enjoy the experience of one of my favorite RPGs to date. (Make no mistake, I don't mean to throw that title around, even though it might seem it what with the Trails in the Sky review last night and now this.)
There's not a whole lot of information about the game that's available at the moment beyond the already announced fact that the soundtracks won't be completely untouched from their original releases (licensing issues, unfortunately, meaning some tracks will be cut), and that the Vita version will include some features for the cameras and touch screen. The latter of which will most likely, if not assuredly, be implemented into the Tagging, whether it's for the actual -doing-, the customization (if you'll be able to do that) or both, making it just a touch (ha!) different from its console counterparts, but not terribly so. I imagine that it might also see something similar to Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time, framerate-wise; as in if the Console versions run at 60 fps, we can likely expect the Vita version to run at 30, though I hope this isn't the case. Still, I don't think I notice the jump from 30 to 60 and so long as it's locked, I can't say I'll care too much. It's when framerate starts to dip and fluctuate that it bothers me, as I imagine is the case among many.
With the official announcement and reveal of the title for the Vita, as well as an affirmation of my hopes, I can't help but let that flourish and now expect more. Why should/would it stop with just Jet Set Radio? Should we expect that the rest of this next batch of Dreamcast games will see Vita versions in the line-up alongside the console ones? What of the games that are already out like Sonic Adventure (one would expect Sonic Adventure 2 is part of this second batch, so to get the second before the first would be....strange) and Crazy Taxi? Maybe after this batch fills/pushes out, we can expect some late-to-the-party releases of the four games already out, though I certainly wouldn't be too fussed if we just saw Sonic Adventure on the portable from the first batch. Now, with this second batch rumored to include Shenmue 1 and 2 and Skies of Arcadia.....yeah. I'm waiting for it. I'm expecting it. Don't disappoint me, Sega, even though you're oh so good at it.