Lead art designer Ryuta Ueda and composer Hideki Naganuma have both stated that while many of the characters look similar (though usually not quite the same) to those of Jet Set Radio, JSRF's story takes place "(with) other characters, in another world, in another timeline", meaning it is not simply set chronologically after the first game. This is evidenced by the fact that the characters have seemingly never met in this game.
Jet Set Radio Future is set in Tokyo-To, Japan, in 2024, where a street gang known as the GG's is fighting for control over the streets against rival gangs, as well as the big and powerful corporation known as the Rokkaku Group, led by Gouji Rokkaku. The Rokkaku Group is attempting to sieze control of Tokyo by force and convert it to a totalitarian police state.
The game initially puts the player in control of YoYo, an aspiring member of the GG's, who has to pass a series of simple tests to join, essentially forming a tutorial for the player. Once this is complete, the player is free to explore Tokyo-to and start the fight against the Rokakku Group and rival gangs as either YoYo, Corn or Gum, and play as up to 21 other unlockable characters throughout the game.
List of Characters
List of gangs
- The Golden Rhinos (Special police unit)
Inline skating culture
The game has several references to aggressive inline skating. Players can grind on rails and skate backwards. When a player is skating fast, they can come to a quick stop by performing an advanced inline-skating move called the powerslide. Several characters also appear to have removed the middle two wheels from their skates, a slight modification usually done to make grinding easier.
JSRF received critical acclaim, with high scores in gaming websites and magazines. IGN gave the game a 9.1/10 and called it "one of the coolest titles around", but found that it fails to reach classic status because it was "not enough of a challenge." GameSpot issued an 8.7/10, describing it as "one of the better Xbox games to date" and disagreeing with IGN, claiming the game "offered a serious challenge." Despite positive reviews, JSRF did not end up reaching very high sales, landing it the title of the most unfairly ignored game in the OXM UK awards the year of its release. However, the game still has a fairly large cult following.
- JSRF is backwards-compatible with the XBOX 360, however, if you play it on a 360 instead of the original XBOX, the game will have many areas (99th Street, Fortified Residential Zone, etc.) in which the entire game will slow down for a few seconds. Whichever character you're playing as will effect this, for example, playing as Beat will keep the game running relatively smooth, playing as Corn will cause brutal instances of slow down, likely because of his flowing jacket.
- It was rumored that 3 unused characters by the names of Wave, Numa and Check were in the game folders only in the Japanese version. However, this rumor was proven false by a fan, who checked the files in the Japanese version, noting that there is no difference whatsoever, except in the language files. There is no mention of any of these rumored characters.