Space Channel 5 is a series of music games published by SEGA. The games were developed by United Games Artist under Tetsuya Mizuguchi's lead. The player must copy a series of dance moves performed by the computer.
|Space Channel 5|
|Developer(s)||United Game Artists|
|Release date(s)|| Japan: 16th December 1999
USA: 6th June 2000
Europe: 8th October 2000
|Followed By||Space Channel 5 Part 2|
Space Channel 5's star is a heroine by the name of Ulala, reporter for Space Channel 5. The gameplay requires the player to copy the opponent in a dance battle so that Ulala will be victourious. For example, if the opponent goes "Up! Up! Up!", the player must repeat the commands with the exact same timing. If the player goes out of time, or misses a beat, then they fail that part of the dance. There are five commands in the first game. "Up", "Down", "Left", "Right" and "Chu". The control stick must be pushed in the respective button of the command, and the A button must be pressed for "Chu".
"Chu" involves Ulala extending her arms forward. The player is given a number of hearts for each dance, and if they lose all the hearts, the player fails that dance. When a dance is failed, Ulala slumps over and begins walking slowly and pathetically, with the music taking a mocking tune. But if the dance is won, Ulala will taunt the opponent and strut across the level, with the music playing more cheerfully. Another type of gameplay is a shooting style, where Ulala must shoot the enemies with the A button. But hostages also appear, and must be rescued with the B button, also "Chu". The B button is never used in a dance battle, save for one boss fight. The player does not receive hearts for this gameplay, instead being able to go right till the end, even if they did horrible. In the second game, a new command was added called "Hey". "Hey" replaced the B button in the shooting sections and also became a dance command. Ulala steps back and thrust her arm backwards for this command.
In the second game, a new gameplay was introduced, an "Instrument Battle". Ulala would face an opponent with a certain instrument, i.e Guitar, Drums and the player would have to move the control stick "Down" in time with the beats of the instruments. (Although the game doesn't mention it, the control stick can go in any direction.) "Chu" and "Hey" are mixed into these battles. Ulala tends to have a helper who does the instrument while she goes "Chu" and "Hey".
In order to beat the level, Ulala must beat the boss at the end of each level, and also have attained a certain rating. In Space Channel 5, the goal is to gain a certain rating by the end of a level. (For example, you must gain 25 percent to beat the second level of the first game.) If Ulala does well at a dance, her rating will increase. If she misses commands, she will lose ratings. If Ulala does not have a good enough rating by the end of the level, the player fails the level and must go through it again.
Each level is split into different sections. (For example, the first level of the first game goes from first floor lobby, to control tower, to launch pad.) Each section has different people to save.
Extra Mode: Edit
When the player completes the game, they unlock Extra Mode. Extra Mode involves going through the game again, but with numerous changes. In the first game, the levels had different sections. (For example, on the Space Channel 5 level, you now go to the recording studio instead of the control room.) Different people also appear only in these sections.
In the second game, certain people again only appeared in Extra Mode, but the levels weren't changed. Instead, the dance/shooting/instrument battles were made to be more difficult.
Saving People Edit
When Ulala saves people, they join behind her and strut along to the music, with Ulala leading them. But there are also certain types of people, referred to as Dancelings, who are generally saved in dance battles instead of shooting ones, where they perform their own unique walk. Space Tourists for example bend down and stomp forward whilst taking pictures, while another is a Space Diva who places her hand on her hip and walks forward like a model on a catwalk. Even stranger is that Ulala can come across dogs who must be saved, who then hop forward on two legs. Everyone else copies these people, while Ulala tends to do her own strut, but sometimes, she also does the same strut as the Dancelings she just saved.
Another type of people Ulala can save are Musicians. They carry instruments and that instrument is added to the music when the player saves them. Musicians did not appear in the second game.
The people who are saved end up in the "Character Profile" with a model of them and a short profile on them. If you do not save someone, you will have to either have to wait till they appear again, or do the level over. In the first game, they are divided into "Main Characters" (The main characters such as Ulala, Pudding, Jaguar and Space Michael) "Earthlings" (Generic people you usually save in shooting sections) "Dancelings", "Musicians", "Morolians" (Aliens who have a key role in the first Space Channel 5) and "Bosses".
Some people don't actually appear unless you have a certain rating. (For example, Space Grandma won't appear in the second level of the first game unless you have a rating under 90 percent by the time you save the Space Captain.)
Space Channel 5 (Dreamcast/PS2) Edit
Space Channel 5 takes place 500 years in the future, in 2499. Around this time, strange colourful aliens known as the Morolians launch an attack on Earth, invading Spaceport 9. With laser guns, they began to zap any humans they could find, and forced them to dance.
Meanwhile, in outer space, Space Channel 5 is introduced. The station is currently in hot water as Space Channel 5 has been suffering poor ratings. Fuse, the producer of Space Channel 5, sees the Morolian invasion as a great way to gain recognition and ratings for Space Channel 5. He decides to send Ulala, the only Channel 5 reporter not to have been taken captive by the Morolians in the attack. Ulala and Fuse take off and head towards the Earth.
When Ulala arrives at Spaceport 9, the place is in chaos; tourists are fleeing for their lives from the Morolian attack. Ulala calmly struts forward and proceeds to save several hostages. She then heads to the control tower; and discovers Channel 42 reporter Pudding trying to steal her limelight. Ulala and Pudding face off in a dance battle. Afterwards, Fuse tells her to "take it" to the Launch Pad. When Ulala drops down, Fuse warns her that a UFO is approaching from above. The UFO drops a strange, large pink robot Morolian known as Coco-Tapioca, the first boss of the game. Ulala defeats Coco-Tapioca and strikes the 5 pose before leaving Spaceport 9.
In an unknown location, the Morolian's boss is angry that their attack failed. He isn't interested in the other's excuses, and demands to know the next plan. A Morolian stands up and informs him that their tactics were too straight-forward. So they will divise a new plan; "Cowardice with Elegance". The Morolian boss agrees and a new dancing robot they have prepared is shown on a monitor.
Fuse then receives word that the Luxury Spacecraft G is under attack by Morolians. Ulala heads towards the Spacecraft and docks, before going to the cock-pit. After this, Fuse tells her to go to the Dining Hall. Ulala arrives in the Dining Hall, and shortly afterwards, a strange black ship cruises next to the Spacecraft. The show is adruptly cut, albeit shortly, and Fuse discovers that a pirate broadcasting station is trying to steal their show. Three of the pirates walk in, and the leader, Jaguar, introduces himself as the "Voice of Truth". Ulala and Jaguar dance off before Jaguar takes off to the Viewing Platform, with Ulala in hot pursuit.
The Morolian motherships are retreating, and Jaguar takes off in his ship after them. Ulala cannot pursue them for she is attacked by the level's boss. Ulala sucessfully defeats the robot and heads back to Space Channel 5 HQ.
Meanwhile, the Morolians are panicking; Jaguar has discovered their secret base in an asteroid belt, and a ton of reporters are intent on getting there first. A Morolian stands up and quickly reassures everyone that the base will be fine; dancing asteroids have been placed outside the base, there are defenses inside and they've pulled out their ultimate dancing robot. The Morolian Boss is satisfied that no reporters will get near the place.
However, Fuse and Ulala have arrived on the outskirts of the asteroid belt. Fuse urges Ulala to "catch the scoop" and to shoot everything with her twin lasers. Ulala flies through the belt, avoiding attacks from Pudding and Jaguar. The three reporters all end up entering the base.
Ulala is attacked by two Morolians and engaged in a dance battle, but things take a turn for the worse when it discovers they're forcing Pudding to dance. However, Pudding escapes unscatched and Ulala manages to make it into the head office. Ulala then discovers a giant monitor. Fuse urges her to be careful; the aliens are in the monitor! Ulala brings them out and battles them, but she struggles with two on one. Jaguar then arrives and the pair agree to take down the aliens together. Thanks to Jaguar, the aliens are defeated.
Ulala is about to end her show, but Fuse suddenly notices that the monitor is giving out a strange signal...and the Morolians prepare to attack Ulala! Surrounded, she quickly shoots the monitor, and that's when the truth is discovered; the Morolians were being brainwashed!
There's no time to ponder things, as the base suddenly begins to collapse. Ulala and Jaguar race out and are split up, with flames approaching Ulala at an insane speed. As Ulala approaches the exit, Jaguar discovers that the brainwash signal is in fact coming from Channel 5. Fuse is shocked at this, as Ulala and Jaguar escape the base just in time. They then decide to head for Space Channel 5, along with Pudding, and discover what's going on.
Meanwhile, the Morolians are shocked to discover they've been brainwashed. The Morolian boss is in denial and asks everyone to think rationally about this. Another Morolians reveals they have a new robot that will end all robots. He prepares to show them, but just at that moment, Ulala, Pudding, and Jaguar walk in...the Morolians's were working at Space Channel 5 all along!
Ulala promises her audience that tonight, she'll reveal the whole story behind the Morolian invasion; Chief Blank, Channel 5 CEO, was the one responsible for brainwashing the Morolians. Blank chuckles and orders the Morolians to attack the trio. In the confusion, Blank flees and Ulala, Pudding, Jaguar and the Morolians pursue him. They discover Space Michael has been taken hostage and rescue him. At this point, Fuse has discovered that Blank has escaped to the control room. Following a narrow escape with a tampered security system; Ulala and co arrive in the control room. Blank makes himself known, declaring that "I didn't know we employed such a skilled reporter..." He orders Ulala to follow him if she wants the truth, and orders a last ditch attack by the remaining Morolians, including the Morolian Boss. Ulala successfully rescues them and heads for the main antenna.
It's pitch black when Ulala, Pudding, Jaguar and the others arrive. Blank then unveils his lovely creation, a robot based on Ulala...The Ultimate Reporter, Evila. Fuse is outraged that Blank thinks that "A reporter without soul can out-dance Ulala". Ulala and Evila face off, with Ulala sucessfully beating her robot clone.
But Blank isn't through yet; with a giant Evila robot, he captures the broadcasting ship with Fuse inside, and Ulala, Jaguar and Pudding fly into outer space in order to take on Blank. However, the battle takes a bleak turn when Pudding and Jaguar are knocked away, and Ulala is blasted back by an explosion.
Jaguar catches her, and Ulala turns to face Blank. Sucessfully saving Fuse, Blank actives the "Blank dimension" and duels Ulala. At that point, everyone Ulala saved in the game arrives to give her support. Ulala escapes the dimension thanks to the help of the crowd, and Blank is in a bad way. Fuse tells everyone that now is their chance to finish him. Ulala and Jaguar tell Blank respectively that "Your selfish motives will destroy you, Blank!" and "You're an enemy to truth, and all that is good!" while Pudding remarks "I feel so...so used!"
With the crowd keeping the beat of the music, they power Space Channel 5's antenna, which blasts Blank and sends him hurtling into space. He swears vengence on Ulala and co, while everyone now knows the Morolians weren't the bad guys after all. Ulala and co strike a 5 pose before marching to the end of the galaxy.