Know you gonna dig this – Jet Set Radio Future celebrates its 15th anniversary!

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It’s fifteen years later and we’re still trying to understand the concept of love. That’s right, on this date SEGA and Smilebit’s Jet Set Radio Future released in Japan to Microsoft’s Xbox! Just a few days later, on February 25th, the game hit the Americas (thankfully not retitled Jet Grind Radio Future) and then on March 14th those in Europe got to see what those in Japan and the Americas were raving about.

Jet Set Radio Future was a dramatic shift for the franchise for a number of reasons. As the first direct sequel (the Game Boy Advance game was more of a downgraded – but still highly enjoyable – remake), JSRF looked and played very differently. The entire universe had a new art style, characters were very different both in look and allegiance, and the game played less like an arcade game and more like an open world adventure. But hey, what can you expect? It was the future!

SEGA Memories: Playing Jet Set Radio Future for three days straight in 2002!

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2016 is a big year for milestone SEGA anniversaries, and while the Jet Set Radio franchise didn’t make our mega list (which you can check out right here), I’d be remiss as a Jet Set Radio fan if I didn’t tip my hat to the sequel Jet Set Radio Future which turns 14 today in North America. As an all-encompassing SEGA fan, I don’t really pledge allegiance to one franchise. Everything from Space Channel 5 to Guardian Heroes to Valkyria Chronicles pull at my SEGA fan heartstrings. But one franchise that gets to me more than any other is Jet Set Radio. Playing the first game on the Dreamcast was more than your typical “yay, a new game” experience. Jet Set Radio introduced me to a crazy new world where bright colors, catchy music and offbeat street culture melded together into a game that I couldn’t stop playing. It wasn’t so much the gameplay the grabbed me, as it was the world of Tokyo-to. Popping the game into my Dreamcast was another free trip to explore my favorite video game world.

So you can imagine my excitement when Jet Set Radio Future was announced, featuring a much larger world and even better graphics. The only catch? It was on a console I had never intended to buy at the time, Microsoft’s Xbox.

SEGA Retrospective: The Music of JSRF – Singing a Tune that’s both Unique and Familiar

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Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future were two incredibly different games, each with a style all its own.
Considered by some to be a sequel and by others to be a reboot of the original, Jet Set Radio Future set itself apart from its Dreamcast predecessor in a variety of ways, one of which being its incredible soundtrack.

In celebration of Smilebit month, I sat down and listened to the Jet Set Radio Future soundtrack in its entirety, taking it all in and really trying to gauge why it seems both so alike, and yet so different, from the tunes that made up the music of its predecessor.

SEGA Retrospective: Jet Set Radio Future and The Latch Brothers

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Jet Set Radio and its sequel Jet Set Radio Future are often cited as having some of the best music to come from SEGA thanks in a large part to Hideki Naganuma and Richard Jacques. While in-house talent played a large role in creating such memorable soundtracks, the soundtracks also consisted of licensed music from artists that included Guitar Vader, Cibo Matto, Deavid Soul and others. This week on SEGA Tunes (the feature formerly known as Tuesday Tunes) we’re focusing on a third type of Jet Set Radio music contributor: The Latch Brothers.

The SEGA Five: Places to Go for an Awesome Day in Tokyo-to

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Well, you may have overslept, but there’s still time to catch what looks like a gorgeous day.

The sun, positioned high in a cloudless blue sky, beams down upon the bustling metropolis, its light casting a slight shimmer on the horizon. On most days your schedule’s packed; from time spent racing through the city streets, fighting off the Rokkaku Police and rival gangs, and doing everything in your power to recruit newbies, those in the GG’s rarely have time to slow down and appreciate the scenery.

Today was different, though. Today was your day off, and you figured you’d make the most of it and visit some of your favorite locales in the great city of Tokyo-to for a very different type of adventure from your typical day-to-day craziness.

The merchandise of SEGA’s Jet Set Radio: Collecting that Uki-Uki-Waku-Waku feeling

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Unless you’re a Sonic The Hedgehog fan, collecting merchandise from SEGA franchises can be a difficult venture. Some games simply have little to no merchandise. Bug!, for example, only has a windup figure from SEGA’s Jack in the Box kid’s meal and a few Saturn era promotional pieces. Ecco the Dolphin and Toejam and Earl merchandise is almost non-existent; the former also had a Jack in the Box kid’s meal toy and the latter is just now getting products thanks to the recently funded Kickstarter campaign. Japanese franchises, like Phantasy Star Online, have quite a lot of collectibles but much of it is Japan only and requires importing and ebay hunting. Other franchises, like Shenmue, have had quite a bit of merchandise in the past and in recent years, but good luck finding any of it for a low price point.

Jet Set Radio, meanwhile, has quite a bit to offer fans when it comes to collectibles with several items releasing outside of Japan and many of them being surprisingly affordable. Seeing as Jet Set Radio is one of my favorite franchises, I’ve amassed a small collection over the years which I wanted to show off both because I am incredibly conceited and because I thought it would serve as a nice guide for those wondering what sort of Jet Set Radio merchandise is out there.

Developer Retrospective: The wonderfully unique games of SEGA’s Smilebit

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SEGA’s development team Smilebit existed in the public eye for only four short years, yet in that time they managed to create one of the company’s most unique franchises, revived a classic Saturn franchise, contributed to a long running series of popular Japanese sports titles, and managed to create a few new franchises that have gone on to become true hidden gems. It’s fitting that we follow Team Andromeda Month with Smilebit, as Smilebit was actually the bringing together of the SEGA AM6’s Team Aquila, Team Andromeda, and G9 Team (though some staff ended up moving to United Game Artists). This mix of talent lead to Smilebit being primarily tasked with the Let’s Make series of sports titles, franchises that were largely confined to Japan. Utilizing former Team Andromeda staff, the team spearheaded the latest (and thus far last) Panzer Dragoon game. But what really made Smilebit unique were their new franchises including the Jet Set Radio games, Gunvalkyrie, and Hundred Swords.

All month long we’ll be celebrating Smilebit’s eclectic mix of games, celebrating the classics, the lesser known titles, and the ones that never left Japan. Ready to look back? Let’s go!

SEGA Channel Retro: Independence Day Stream Archive

Originally broadcast the day before today, I check out a couple of fan favorite SEGA games on the original Xbox console in favor of America’s 4th of July celebration. Watch me play the first hour of Jet Set Radio Future and take notes on how I try to woo the ladies of OutRun 2. Finally I stretch my freedom as far as possible by playing Mario Kart Arcade GP 2 which released on the Triforce Arcade Hardware, which was a cross production between Nintendo, Namco and SEGA.

You can check out our live streams on our Twitch channel or catch the archives on our YouTube channel. You can also expand this article to check each listing for each video, with our Twitch videos reaching 60 frames per second. Also be sure to check out highlights of our previous streams in the related posts!

Round Table: We look ahead to Jet Set Radio’s future!

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Jet Set Radio Week enters the final boss battle that is the SEGAbits Round Table! Despite containing only a few games, Jet Set Radio and its sequel pack in a lot of unique ideas and feature an amazing art style and selection of music. With all this unique content, it’s a shame that the franchise has only seen two and a half games (the half being the Game Boy Advance version). This week, our writers have assembled in the GG’s garage to share their ideas for the Jet Set Radio franchise’s future, and seeing as we’re SEGA fans, we can’t help but reminisce and share a few memories. After the break, join us as we look to the future!

SEGA Retrospective: Over the ‘hood, through the streets and right into your brain – It’s Jet Set Radio

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We’re transmitting our signal straight to you! Y’all got your antennas on?
Welcome to Jet Set Radio Week – a week long celebration of SEGA’s off-kilter cel shaded Dreamcast classic! Past SEGA Franchise Weeks focused on more than one game, but Jet Set Radio Week is going to be different. Rather than splitting our time between the Dreamcast original and its radically different Xbox sequel Jet Set Radio Future, we’re devoting the next seven days to simply Jet Set Radio. But don’t fret, Jet Set Radio Future will have its own week soon enough!

Like Sonic The Hedgehog on the Genesis, and NiGHTS on the Saturn, Jet Set Radio on the Dreamcast turned heads with amazing visuals, memorable music, and unique gameplay mechanics. Jet Set Radio (Jet Grind Radio in America) may not have taken off like SEGA had hoped, but it did do well enough to warrant the previously mentioned sequel and has since become a SEGA cult classic. After the break, let’s take a look back and how such a crazy concept for a game came to be.

Ryuta Ueda leaves SEGA after 19 years of service

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Ryuta Ueda leaves SEGA after 19 years of service. While at SEGA he contributed to some masterpieces including being the chief graphic designer for Jet Set Radio, enemy art designer for Panzer Dragoon Orta and  he also worked on the Yakuza series.

Ryuta Ueda shared the news via his Twitter account this morning and as you know, he is going to be missed; the art design behind the Jet Set Radio series was totally ‘Next Level’.

EDIT: According to Hideki Naganuma, Ueda left SEGA on March 31st.

So, what is your favorite game that Ryuta Ueda worked on? 

SEGA releases several Hideki Naganuma soundtracks onto iTunes

There is a God! While we’ve been expecting the Naganuma-centric version of the Jet Set Radio soundtrack to hit, not only did we get that, but Sega also included a JSRF soundtrack with all of Naganuma’s tunes and the soundtrack to Ollie King! Ollie $#@king King! Why are you still reading this?! Shrink this window, go to iTunes, buy the soundtracks, listen, then come back here and comment!

…DO IT NOW!!

Jet Set Radio HD achievements revealed – game to include JSRF tunes?

Achievements for the upcoming release of Jet Set Radio HD have been revealed, and with them comes a hint towards a bonus that SEGA has yet to speak of. At the top of the list of thirty achievements is one titled “Back to the Future” with the description “Unlock all songs in the bonus menu”. To my knowledge, there was never a bonus menu that unlocked songs in the original game. There was a sound test, but that was complete from the start. No unlocking necessary. The achievement’s title mentions “future”, which of course was in the title of the franchise’s second game Jet Set Radio Future. Could SEGA be adding an option to play select tunes from Jet Set Radio Future? Or is it simply a nod to the sequel and nothing more? After the break, the full list of achievements.

Swingin’ Report Show #30: SEGA – Ten Years of First-Rate Third-Party Games

This week on the Swingin’ Report Show we celebrate SEGA’s 10 year anniversary as a third-party publisher. George, Barry the Nomad, Nuckles87, and Shigs discuss great third-party SEGA titles like Jet Set Radio Future, Panzer Dragoon Orta and even Outrun 2. But don’t worry we also discuss stinkers like Shadow the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 06 and Virtua Quest. Sit back and get a large drink, this is going to be a long one.

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