Jet Set Radio Review

By , on November 29, 2012

Jet Set Radio
  • Publisher: SEGA
  • Genre: Action
  • Released: 29 Nov, 2012
  • Size: 523.5 MB
  • Price: $2.99
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5


  • The Dreamcast classic in a portable, swipe-able form.
  • Custom graffiti options give the game that personal touch.
  • Sharp visual style and thumping soundtrack.


  • Controls that were always a bit stiff now border on nightmarish.
  • Smart camera regularly gets caught behind the scenery.
  • Frame rate issues give the game a clunky appearance.


While we'd love nothing more than to say Jet Set Radio is the game we know and love, it just isn't so; unrefined controls and framerate issues plague this initial release, making it hard to recommend.

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

Some games stick in your mind, not because they were particularly fun to play, but because it managed to grab you through its artistic expression. Strangely this isn't an uncommon thing, especially amongst games in the Indie scene, but Jet Set Radio is far from a small title and despite its age there's still something almost unquantifiable about its appeal.

However, porting over a title comes with risks and challenges, especially when talking about the iOS platform and while much of the game remains enjoyable, clunky controls make an already stiff to control game a living nightmare at times.

Lets backtrack a bit though and discuss the game itself. You and your graffiti gang have joined other hoodlums in running around, evading police, and tagging every available surface. A virtual stick and four buttons provide the basic controls needed to sprint around each cityscape, while generous collision detection helps you to grind on rails, pipes, and wires to reach ever-more obscure locations.

New gang members (each with their own graffiti style and stats) can also be earned if you overcome their copy-cat style challenges, but for the most-part you'll be claiming new territory and defending your own from rival gangs. Meanwhile the police are sending out reinforcements that don't kid around at all, with everything from riot-gear to helicopters being used to hunt you down.

Unfortunately all of this is predicated on you actually being able to reach target graffiti locations safely, something that's made harder thanks to controls that make it hard to see where you're going and (at times) have a mind of their own as you're flung off grind-rails at odd angles.

Fortunately for the nostalgic fans out there 'HD' console versions of the original have recently been released, but if you're adamant on playing Jet Set Radio on the go, we recommend you spend time in the practice mode before making a mockery of yourself in game.


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