Review by TheCaddyManV2

"A new regime in the handheld market has risen... the regime of the PSP!"

Before I go on, I would like to state that I own both a DS and a PSP, own 8 games for the DS, and enjoy it very, very much.

I was looking forward to the battle between the DS and the PSP. The DS got released around September of 2004. Decent games kind of interested me, but I wanted to wait for the PSP. Half a year later, when the PSP came out, a very lackluster showing of games persuaded me to get a DS. Around July of 2005, I got a DS. I got it, thinking that the DS had a better selection of games and was more original and innovative than the DS. For the most part I was right, and I enjoyed the DS very much. But, as time went on, more and more great games were being released on the PSP, so after a couple guilt trips to my parents, and at a very expensive price, I got the PSP from my friend, along with Star Wars: Battlefront 2 and a 128 MG memory card, and bought Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City stories later that day. I have since then bought Megaman Maverick Hunter X, Megaman Powered Up, and Major League Baseball 2k6. Needless to say, the PSP is here to stay.

First Impression 7/10
When I got my PSP from my friend, the batteries were out, so I had to wait to get home to try it out. When I got it out, I put in GTA and tried to play it. I was moving the D-Pad and Tony wouldn't move. I was thinking "WTF?!", until I realized you moved with the Analog Nub. After playing a bit, I liked it, but it wasn't the same as the console versions. I tried Battlefront 2, same thing. So, for the 1st month or so, the DS was getting more playing time then my PSP, though I was using my PSP for music. However, one game caught my eye: Megaman Maverick Hunter X. I was able to get it(it only cost $30), and I was blown away. The graphics were clean and crisp, and the gameplay was what I came to love and expect from Megaman. The next month, MMMHX kinda of died down, so I was thinking the PSP would end up being more of an MP3 player(And not WMA, god damned security-enabled router), and not a gaming system. Then came Megaman Powered Up.

The turn-around 10/10
Megaman Powered Up blew me away. The robots were so damn cute! And not only that, it had Megaman, Megaman with Charge and Slide, Unarmored Rock, along with Protoman, Roll, AND all 8 Robot Masters as playable characters! It also had Easy, Normal, and Hard modes, AND a level editor! Say that with me: MEG-A-MAN-LEV-EL-ED-I-TOR! I also got MLB 2k6, which, while not a mind blower, is a very great portable baseball game(with the exception of the butt-ugly graphics. ew). These last 2 months have redefined the PSP for me, and I play it a lot more than my DS.

Now, I've told you enough of my personal experiences, let's get on with the overall review of the system:

Features 9/10
The PSP has a great library of games, it's a MP3 player, it can play movies, it can store pictures, it has ad-hoc and online play, it has everything! It does everything almost flawlessly, but there are two flaws that keep the PSP from getting a perfect 10: battery life and dead pixels. The battery life is decent, but compared to the DS, is minuscule. It absolutely drains away when playing UMD movies, so you can barely watch the movie before your batteries run out. But the one thing that plagues the PSP experience: dead pixels. I personally haven't had problems with it: Mine has 2 or 3. But many people have had their PSP ruined by dead pixels. What is a dead pixel, you might ask? There are thousands of pixels on a PSP screen, and a dead pixel is one that dies out and permanently stays white or black. With 1 or 2(like me) dead pixels, it won't bother you. But if you have too many dead pixels, it kills the playability of the system. Also, it costs A LOT.

Graphics: 10/10
HOLY. ****. That's all I have to say. Fully rendered 3D models, with thousands, almost millions of polygons await within these games. Almost everything is clear, and the graphics are one of the main selling points of the PSP. It blew me away.

Control: 8/10
Most games have good control, but FPSs and console-2-PSP games suffer. Because hese games are completely modeled after using two analog sticks, these games go to the late-1990's style of using face buttons for aiming. Man, I loved that with Goldeneye, but damn, it does not work here. Other than that, solid control.

Buy or Rent: Unless you are a complete Nintendo Fanboy or have to go with the cheaper handheld(which I still recommend; the DS rocks), you need to get a PSP. I'm super cereal.

PSP pros:
Great games
Suburb graphics
UMD Movies

PSP cons:
Dead Pixels
Short Battery Life
Still a lack of blockbuster games
Very pricey

Final Verdict: 9/10(Not an average)

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 05/03/06

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