Day 195: Jet Moto

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Jet Moto is twenty years old.

Jet Moto is twenty years old.

Of course, I’ve played games much older than that and will continue to, but… man. For some reason, this one hits me harder than most. There seems to be a dividing line in my mind from the launch of the original Playstation to everything that came before, still remembering the odd feeling that came over me the first time I heard that generation of gaming referred to as “retro”.

It still doesn’t feel right after all of these years, even though I’m referring to a time when Resident Evil FMV was considered cutting edge stuff. Jet Moto in particular is pretty blatantly a product of the 90s, carried by little more than the most basic of dudebro sportsing and liberal advertising. As someone that unironically enjoys a Mountain Dew to this day, I’d like to think that I was above being influenced by such transparent pandering, but revisiting Jet Moto has forced me to admit that it really doesn’t hold up. I tend to roll my eyes at critics that snub their nose at older games by default, always wondering aloud what anyone ever saw in those games in retrospect, but rarely does that seem justified. This would be the exception.

It’s a shame because my brain would always default to Jet Moto whenever the question of “what series should make a comeback” arose. Through modern eyes, it’s impossible to see a reason to play for longer than an hour, but even trying to put myself back into the slightly smaller shoes of my twelve year old self, I’m struggling to think how it was possible that it held my attention for so long. I destroyed the game as a kid, unlocking everything and going back for repeat runs after the fact. Though I have no doubt that most of my time playing was spent with my trusty Walkman, even the sweet vocal stylings of Dru Hill shouldn’t have been enough to distract me from the horridly unfair AI and jittery control. I also feel like I would have noticed that all ten of the tracks were essentially the same assets reused over and over.

Sorry, I’m having a bit of a crisis of conscience at the moment. If you’d asked me yesterday if I wanted a new Jet Moto, I would have likely thrust a single arm into the air in the most uncool white dude manner possible whilst yelling “certainly!”. Now, I’d have to think about it.

Maybe some things are better left in the past.

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