There are a lot of things I would love to do for Throwback Thursday, ScienceFiction.com’s ongoing column dedicated to the great science fiction of the past. But when I took out my old PS2 games the other day, I knew the second I heard “Ulala’s Swinging Report Show” that this game needed to be featured.
The game? Why, ‘Space Channel 5’ of course.
On the surface, ‘Space Channel 5’ may strike you as a ridiculous game. It’s features a 1960s version of a space reporter who dances her way to defeating a strange alien race that kidnaps people, and forces them to dance. That’s the surface… and the depth. So basically, this game is silly. Even more silly when you realize her dancing is basically a memory game where you have to dance the moves the aliens are doing. If you mess up, your ratings go down! You succeed, you save people, and they join your ever-growing entourage of backup dancers. One of which, and I’m not joking, is Michael Jackson.
You also have to go up against rival dancing reporters to show the universe that ‘Space Channel 5’ is the show to be watching.
The game takes only a few hours to defeat, depending on how bad you are (I’m pretty bad), but have no fears. they made sequels.
Okay, but Boom, you say, this game sounds great, but is it really science fiction? Well, by the barest of margins, yes. It has space and aliens… but no commentary on technology or the human condition, unless you think the human condition is dancing (bringing The Killer’s question of “Are you human, or are you dancer?” to a whole new metaphorical level).
So if you’re in for a little fun, mindless gaming, and taking a gander at all of Ulala’s awesome space outfits, this is definitely the game for you. Originally created for Dreamcast (which you can find fairly cheap these days), there is also a compilation of the two games created for the Playstation 2. I also hear tell that you can buy it for your PSN, so don’t worry. There are plenty of options to get this very original game.