Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PSP)
Action 01 November 2006
Another spin-off to the legendary series of sandbox action games, developed by Rockstar Games for the PlayStation Portable console. As the title of the game suggests, its action is related to GTA: Vice City. The title takes place in 1984, two years before the events shown in the other game. The main protagonist is Victor Vance – an ex-soldier who currently works for various gangsters. By completing various jobs given to him by mafia bosses he slowly rises through the ranks of the criminal underworld. The gameplay isn’t very different from other installments of the series. However the developers added many new features such as the ability to swim, fly a helicopter or enter buildings. This made the game mechanics even more similar to the mechanics of full-fledged installments in the series. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories offers a large number of weapons and gadgets as well as a varied soundtrack that accompanies the player while driving cars.
Star Wars: Battlefront II (2005) (PSP)
Action 01 November 2005
The second installment of the multiplayer shooter series developed by Pandemic Studios. Once again, the players can participate in spectacular battles, where the forces of the Galactic Empire clash with the Rebel Alliance. The multiplayer mode allows up to 60 players to fight on one of 12 different planets, in the interstellar space and aboard massive space cruisers. Apart from standard infantry units, the battlefields are full of a variety of war machines – from X-wings and TIE Fighters to Star Destroyers and YT-1300 freight vessels. At some point during the playthrough, one can face the legendary Jedi Knights and the Sith Lords. Interestingly enough, players who prefer a more individual experience can also find something for themselves in this game, since Star Wars Battlefront II offers a number of non-linear missions with a well-written backstory.
Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (PSP)
Action 20 October 2009
A spin-off to the bestselling Grand Theft Auto series, at first developed for Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable handhelds and later converted to mobile devices as well. The story takes place in Liberty City, a place well known to the fans of the series. As Huang Lee, member of a Chinese criminal group, the player is trying to prove his worth, avenge the death of his father, and reclaim a valuable sword that for centuries was the symbol of his family’s power. The gameplay mechanics are similar to previous installments in the series, except for the missions being slightly shorter and the fact that the player can repeat failed actions. Other important changes include an auto-aim system, simplified driving mechanics, and the necessity of destroying police cars. A new interface and various mini-games were added to the game as well. The graphics of the game utilize cel-shading technology, combining the classic top-down view and isometric perspective.
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PSP)
Action 25 October 2005
A spin-off to the iconic Grand Theft Auto series. The game was first developed for the PlayStation Portable handheld console. The story of Liberty City Stories takes place a few years before the events shown in GTA3, on the streets of the same metropolis. During the game player becomes Tony Cipriani who after coming to the city is caught up in the dirt of corruption, mafia wars, and drug traffic. The objective of the game is to work for the Leone mafia family, increase its influences and build up Tony’s reputation in the criminal underworld. The gameplay of GTA: Liberty City Stories employs the well-received mechanics of the series and offers an open world filled with story missions and side activities alike. As always in the series, there are many vehicles (including motorcycles, motorboats, trains and ferries) and weapons to use. However, due to the limitations of the PSP console, some things were slightly simplified.
The Sims 2 (PSP)
Simulation 08 December 2005
A sequel to the bestselling human life simulation game – The Sims (2000). The Sims 2 was developed by Maxis Studio (SimCity, EA Land, and others) in cooperation with the Electronic Arts company. Players again take care of virtual characters leading them through their entire lives – from early childhood till elderly age. The main goal is to achieve as high Life Score as possible, which stands for how well a sim leads his/her life. When compared with its predecessor, The Sims 2 offers much more complex character creator and a wider array of available objects. A new, more efficient game engine allowed for presenting the life of the sims in fully 3D graphics.
Need for Speed Carbon: Own the City (PSP)
Racing 01 November 2006
The tenth installment in the bestselling racing game series originally launched back in 1995. The game lets you play as the main protagonist of the previous game. He returns to his home city only to find his domestic street racing scene taken over by rivaling gangs. As you take on new racing challenges, you take back your home town one district at a time. The game’s mechanics employ the well-proven solutions introduced by its predecessors, while introducing several new elements at the same time. Those include, first and foremost, canyon duels, which require much attention, as it is possible to run through the traffic barriers and roll down the slope. The other novelty is the team; you can assemble your own crew, and its members can aid you during races, e.g. by blocking your rivals. Additionally, the game features cut-scenes with real actors, several dozen licensed car models, as well as vast car customization options. Regarding the latter, Autosculpt module lets you modify almost any element of the car body.
Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (PSP)
Action 29 April 2010
A hand-held spin-off to the popular series of stealth games developed by Konami. The game was developed for PlayStation Portable and builds upon 2004's Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. The story of the game shows further life of Big Boss. Together with an army of mercenaries under his command, he travels to Puerto Rico to investigate why the US government, together with CIA, is backing up a military group present on the island. The gameplay mechanics don’t vary very much from the main installments. However, this time the developers focused on a cooperation mode supporting between 2 and 4 players. The players can complete missions together and help each other during difficult battles. A completely new feature introduced in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker is the option to manage Big Boss’ military base. During the game, player can recruit new soldiers, assign them to various sections and send on missions across the world.
DiRT 3 (PSP)
The third full-fledged installment belonging to the incredibly popular racing-themed franchise developed by Codemasters. The DiRT subseries has cultivated traditions initiated in the late 1990s by the Colin McRae Rally series. After the previous game, which emphasized off-road competition, DiRT 3 constitutes a return to the original concept behind the main Colin McRae series, bringing back rally competition in its most classic form (the game uses the official WRC licenses). However, this third iteration still introduces a massive number of novelties, such as stunt arenas from the X-Games competitions, or a completely new type of contest, that is the so-called Gymkhana - it was popularized by one of the most famous drivers in the world, Ken Block. Gymkhana is all about being fast and showing off at the same time - a designated route has to be completed as quickly as possible, but the player is rewarded with points for performing various stunts along the way. As usual, a wide set of licensed cars is at the player's disposal here, many of them originating in different time periods. Also, DiRT 3 features buggies and pickups - those are typically used in off-road competitions.
Tekken 6 (PSP)
Fighting 24 November 2009
Another installment in a series of popular fighting games and the first one to be released on platforms other than PlayStation. The plot has its roots in the events of Tekken 5. Jin Kazama is the new antagonist here - the great-grandson of Jinpachi Mishima, who took control over Mishima Zaibatsu. G Corporation led by his father is the only thing standing in his way to obtain the absolute power. Soon, the sixth edition of King of Iron Fist Tournament is announced. Tekken 6 offers over forty playable fighters, including nearly all of the characters from Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection and eight new ones. Each fighter has their own style based on real world martial arts and requiring the player to employ different tactics. Among the innovations, the players will find the ability to block aerial attacks and the Rage System, allowing the players to prevent their fighter from losing. Battles take place on three-dimensional arenas with destructible elements.