Massively explains Warhammer Online to the dedicated WoW player

Preview: NBA 09 The Inside

Glenn from the PS Nation podcast, the official podcast of PS Fanboy, took some time to play NBA 09: The Inside for PSP. Here's his impressions of the upcoming game.

I'll be the first to admit I really haven't paid attention to the NBA for a couple of years. I still root for my Milwaukee Bucks, and even still use them in video games, but I rarely watch them play any more. Lately, if I'm playing a basketball game, it sits firmly in the "arcadey" category. I even own a full-sized NBA Maximum Hangtime arcade cabinet.

When I opened the small package that I received from Sony, and realized that this was the first pre-release game that they sent to us here at the PS Nation Podcast, I was shocked and excited. I may not spend an insane amount of time on Basketball games like I do for other titles, but I do play them. There's a lot to cover here, but I'll tell you this--what I've seen and played so far is surprisingly good!

Gallery: NBA 09: The Inside (PSP)

Continue reading Preview: NBA 09 The Inside

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Pipemania

Laying down pipes is a tough job. It's not only for overweight guys with a problem keeping their butt cracks covered up, it's a job for puzzle lovers and thinkers, too. Don't agree? Well, if so, that's because you haven't played Pipemania yet. We've put in some time with the pipe-centric puzzler, playing up the DS version which, while having a different interface than the PSP, will have the exact same core gameplay and game modes.

The main objective of the game is to build pipes and keep fluid called "Flooze" from flooding the game grid. There are two designated squares which will represent 1) the beginning where the Flooze will flow from, and 2) the end where the Flooze needs to be brought to. To bridge these two points together, you'll have to make good use of a prearranged line of differently shaped pipe pieces. You'll only be able to use pipes in a fixed sequential order; however, you'll be able to view the next few pieces in line to plan ahead. This sort of preset arrangement maintains a consistent difficulty, providing balance to the progressive difficulty of the game as more gameplay elements and stricter time pressure appear.

Gallery: Pipemania

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: Pipemania

Hands-on: Buzz! Master Quiz

It's a rather difficult challenge to write hands-on impressions for a game like Buzz! Master Quiz. Sitting all lonesome on a table at Sony's E3 booth, it went by unnoticed by many that simply passed it by. Perhaps the lack of enthusiasm comes from this simple fact: Buzz! Master Quiz can be summed up rather succinctly -- a portable version of the popular quiz franchise, Buzz!

Progression through the game is rather simple. Simply partake in a variety of themed challenges. Perform well on one, and you'll earn a medal which can help unlock other challenges. Considering the quiz select screen fits on one menu, we're a bit concerned that the amount of content on the disc will be on the light side. With thousands of questions programmed in, we're certain these concerns are unwarranted.

Buzz! Master Quiz doesn't need to push the PSP hardware in any way, and that's exactly what we're getting with this simple, easy to look at game. At the very least, the presentation appears to have all the trimmings of its PS2 brethren.

Gallery: Buzz!

Continue reading Hands-on: Buzz! Master Quiz

Hands-on: Super Stardust Portable

What is Super Stardust Portable? Well, it's exactly what it sounds like. It's a PSP version of Super Stardust HD, ready to play anywhere you go. The PSN download-exclusive title is making the big jump from PS3 to PSP, and Housemarque (developers of the original SSHD) have succeeded in creating an authentic Stardust experience for the handheld.

There are obviously going to be two big questions on everyone's mind regarding SSHD. Firstly, the controls. PSP may not have a second analog stick, so how will this work? Well, you simply use the face buttons to shoot in the direction you'd like. It may take a little while to get accostmed to, but SSHD vets will be boosting, bombing and shooting in no time. (ProTip: To do a circular attack with the Gold Melter, press all the face buttons at once.) Secondly, the graphics. While the visuals are obviously toned down from the PS3, the PSP version is able to render a surprising amount of enemies on screen while maintaining a silky smooth framerate. It may not be PSP's best looking game, but for a quick pick-up-and-play title, SSP offers more than enough detail.

Gallery: Super Stardust Portable

Continue reading Hands-on: Super Stardust Portable

The stunning vistas of Valhalla Knights concept art

PSP is getting yet another exclusive RPG in the form of Valhalla Knights 2. IGN has some stunning concept art on display, showing the various locales players can expect to visit whilst on their quest. However, we remind our readers that unfortunately, the game doesn't look quite as detailed as the art. Hopefully, the majesty featured in these stills will find its way into the spirit of the game's storytelling.

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Fading Shadows

When Agetec announced they were going to release Fading Shadows in the US, they invited us to their NYC offices to try the game. We spent a good deal of time with the game -- over 10 levels -- and thoroughly enjoyed this excellent addition to the PSP library.

Yes, one of the game's leading charms is its story. To sum things up shortly, the player becomes a magical beam of light and must direct a girl who's transformed into a magical orb through a series of puzzles. It's strange, we know, but we wouldn't have it any other way. The nonsensical premise is what spurs a mellow, easy-to-understand puzzle adventure game, that's oozing with style.

The interplay between the light and the orb is well constructed. The orb is attracted to the light, and cannot move without it. At first, the light is used simply to get the orb from point A to point B. However, the game becomes more complex. The orb can transform into a variety of elements: wood, glass and metal. In its metal form, it can jump when a strong beam of light is placed on it. Wood can float across water, and glass can traverse its depths. However, players must be careful: overexposure to strong light will burn wood, and shatter glass.

Gallery: Fading Shadows

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: Fading Shadows

PSP Fanboy hands-on: B-Boy

Another game from New York Comic Con was B-Boy, a game based on break dancing. It's also a title that came out for PAL regions two years ago; however, it will be, for the first time, coming out this June in North America. The game is set for both the PS2 and the PSP. PSP Fanboy went hands-on with the PS2 version, which should be nearly identical to the PSP one. Both games use the exact same controls since the game does not utilize the L2 and R2 buttons missing on the PSP. In fact, the controls are rather simple and only really use the D-pad and face buttons.

Now, when you start kicking those fly moves, you'll notice that there are dots circling around at your character's feet. These dots serve as an indicator for when you need to hit your next move and keep your dance in rhythm. To do different moves, you need to input a combination such as "right-right-triangle." Keeping in step may prove kind of difficult as you'll be trying to constantly make combo strings one right after another. Things can get quite hectic.

Gallery: B-Boy

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: B-Boy

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Naruto Ultimate Ninja Heroes 2

If you haven't read our other hands-on previews over at PS3 Fanboy, then you wouldn't have known that we were at the NY Comic Con this past weekend. On the PSP side of things we got some quality time in with Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes 2 which was one of the big draws over at Bandai Namco Games' booth.

We of course wanted to try out the all-new Mugenjo story mode, but the demo at Bandai Namco's kiosks didn't have the mode completely ready for play. We did dive into it anyway, and while gameplay wasn't ready, the story was already fully dubbed and can be listened to. The English voice acting was pretty much spot on with those from the anime. One very interesting thing about the voice acting is the option for Japanese audio. If you're an anime elitist who can't stand listening to English dub, this is for you.

Gallery: Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Heroes 2

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: Naruto Ultimate Ninja Heroes 2

PSP Fanboy hands-on: flOw

Within the PlayStation Lounge at GDC, we were able to try out the upcoming PSP version of flOw. The game starts with an interesting attempt to connect to the Network. Interestingly, this is done outside of the usual PSP Network interface. We can only hypothesize that the PSP is looking for other systems to play with, if any happen to be nearby. Unfortunately, no one was able to comment.

From the very get-go, one will see the seriously toned-down graphics. The screenshots initially released don't accurately convey how poorly the transition to PSP has affected the visual presentation. Pixelation is very present, and in spite of the small screen of the PSP, nothing looks very sharp. The framerate didn't seem silky smooth like the PS3 original, either. It doesn't look bad per se, but we were rather disappointed.

Gallery: flOw

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: flOw

Digital Comics come to life with the Cryptics this Thursday

Ever find yourself thinking: "gee, I want to read comic books, but I hate the feeling of the ink and paper on my fingers"? Seems like Sony's PSP has yet another use and solution for your troubled minds: digital comics. On Thursday, D2 Comics and D2C Games are unveiling The Cryptics, a nine-episode comic by Steve Niles and Ben Roman following the adventures of young versions of famous monsters.

The entire nine-episode series will put you back $2.99, and will last about half an hour. That's about the same as a single comic book. The digital comic will advance automatically (assuming you don't pause, rewind, or fast forward) and display what you need to be looking at, with text bubbles popping up on their own. There are also sound effects and slide transitions. So it's sort of like an advanced comic book. Comic Book Plus. At the end of each episode, you can watch an interview with the creators or check out some biographies and explanations on the history of the idea.

It sounds pretty neat, but of course, comics aren't for everyone. The purist will want the physical product, and the skeptics won't take any chances. It's up to you guys: will digital comics grow in popularity?

PSP Fanboy hands-on: N+

N+ is one of the most stressful games ever made. Its simple exterior hides some of the most gruesome platforming challenges we've ever had to face. There are so many ways to die: fall from to far a height, you die. Get hit by lasers, homing rockets, bombs, mines, flying orbs -- you name it, and it will kill you. Even the most skilled gamer will find themselves getting completely destroyed by each of the game's 200 (!) levels.

While there were clear moments where we felt like simply throwing our PSP systems on the ground, we couldn't help but continue trekking onward. Strangely, you do feel like a ninja while playing the game, and when you're able to successfully complete an episode (which contains multiple levels), you feel truly accomplished. Like any good ninja, your character will be able to make some truly spectacular jumps. Over time, you'll learn how to exploit the wall jump and fly long distances like a pro.

Gallery: N+

Continue reading PSP Fanboy hands-on: N+

Phantasy Star Universe getting a PSP port

We should add a disclaimer -- when we say port, we mean port sans a true online mode. Yeah, it's what makes Phantasy Star Universe tick, but if you've been a loyal Phantasy Star phan, you'll have played the story mode of the original as well as episode 2 and the beginning of 3 with the Ambition of Illuminus expansion. It's not the best dialogue or narrative, but the concepts and twists of the story are pretty cool and true to the franchise in terms of tone, believe it or not.

Unless you think that playing as one character, then moving past him to play as your own to fight an evil organization (who houses the main bad guy, who actually turns out to be nothing but a pawn) is lame. Sound like Kingdom Hearts, a little bit? Did KH force you to participate in a planetary genocide? Did it cause an entire race of robotic beings to get hacked and run a space fleet into your satellite which crashes onto another planet? Face it -- Phantasy Star Universe is a cool and constantly changing experience. And the PSP is getting a port.

The port is basically that: Ambition of Illuminus on your PSP, with some added missions and story points. While there's no true online mode, you do get 4-player ad hoc play. Commence the groans. The port is being handled by Alpha Systems, who is pretty unknown. Check out the scan from Famitsu if you'd like and hope this hits shores outside of Japan.

Another Gundam game for all your mech fetishes

Have you ever casually approached a friend and asked, "Want to play a game of Kidou Senshi Gundam: Giren no Yabou, Axis no Kyoui?" We doubt it, but come February 2008, you might. Well, you'll refer to it by its English title, Mobile Suit Gundam: Giren's Ambition, Threat of the Axis, which is still a mouthful. This is the first Giren offshoot title in five years, and it's coming straight to your PSP.

The game is a hexagonal strategy game, distributing your forces and moving them about in a strategy phase, then battling enemies in turn-based combat -- sort of like Fire Emblem titles. But with gigantic robots. In this game, you'll find scenarios from plenty of other Gundam franchises to play through, so no matter which Gundam floats your boat, you'll find something to enjoy. That is, if promises of a 20-30 hour game with 400 robots hitting PSPs at the end of February isn't exciting enough.

R-Type Tactics: when space-shooting goes wrong

What we've heard of R-Type Tactics is minimal, but today we've got a more comprehensive update for you to munch on, in between tidbits of PSP sales skyrocketing. Seems the concept of turning one of the more difficult side-scrolling space shooters into an SRPG was good on paper, but according to 1UP, something was lost in the creation of this hex-based tactical adventure.

The game plays out like a hexagon-checkerboard-style Jeanne D'Arc -- that meaning you generally move from the left to the right of a given map, issuing commands to all your units in one "phase". Each unit has a plethora of innate abilities and the options are, well, there are a lot of options for even the simplest of missions. This can prove frustrating, unless you're very much into the intense micromanagement of classics like Ogre Battle. Also, load times are horrendous: waiting for an attack animation to load every single time would probably grate on your last nerve after a few minutes. This hasn't been slated for a release outside of Japan, but let this serve as a warning to the SRPG importer -- this one might be a bit much to handle, even if you've got a pretty good grasp of Japanese. It's a shame, we would've liked to see an R-Type game of a different genre stand out.

PSP Fanboy hands-on: Medal of Honor Heroes 2

Will Medal of Honor Heroes 2 become the best FPS on PSP? To be honest, that's not a very difficult task to accomplish. The system has struggled to get a decent FPS game on it, as many developers have long forgotten how to make a game of that genre without a second analog stick. Developers are slowly learning, and as Medal of Honor Heroes 2 proves, they may have finally nailed it on the head.

The original Medal of Honor Heroes was an impressive technological showcase for the PSP platform, and its sequel is no different. The graphics are noticeably better than the original's, although there's still some way to go before this looks as good as a PS2 game. The controls also feel tighter, letting you easily move around the environment and fight enemies. Using the analog stick for movement and the face buttons for aiming is fairly traditional PSP FPS fare. However, the aim-assist has been reduced, making for a better, skill-based game. Using L to zoom in and fine-tune your aim works well. Even better, running up to a barricade, taking cover, and then peeking out to take a shot. The controls are intuitive, and easy to pick up.

A majority of the complaints for the PSP original involved the slow pace of the game, and unimpressive AI. Well, you still move at a snail's pace [Update: There is a run functionality that we didn't discover. It's there, though.], but there's a lot more action on screen this time around. Enemies still don't have advanced attack patterns, but they come in good waves, ensuring the action never slows down. With far improved graphics, tighter controls, and better presentation, Heroes 2 is a much better game. While we didn't get a chance to play it, the 32 player online multiplayer is still the franchise's biggest selling point -- something we'd love to get our hands-on soon.

Gallery: Medal of Honor Heroes 2

Ask PSP Fanboy (40)
Demos (55)
Podcasts (18)
Theatre (49)
Wallpapers (35)
Downloads (129)
Fan Stuff (394)
How-tos (54)
Imports (213)
Interviews (171)
Metareview (50)
Mods (25)
News (1970)
Peripherals (186)
Previews (15)
Reviews (83)
Software (256)
Store (113)
Video (724)
Ape Escape (25)
Beaterator (1)
Bleach (18)
Buzz (8)
Coded Soul (7)
Devil May Cry (1)
Disgaea (28)
DJ Max (23)
echochrome (24)
EyeToy (1)
Final Fantasy (172)
God of War (87)
Gran Turismo (13)
Grand Theft Auto (61)
Gundam (21)
Hot Shots Golf (26)
Kingdom Hearts (16)
Loco Roco (68)
Madden (4)
Metal Gear: Graphic Novel (8)
Metal Gear: Portable Ops (53)
Midnight Club (1)
MLB (10)
Monster Hunter (86)
N (9)
Naruto (27)
NBA (10)
Patapon (36)
Phantasy Star (13)
R-Type (19)
Ratchet and Clank (51)
Resistance (3)
SOCOM (35)
Sonic (23)
Star Ocean (29)
Star Wars (42)
Super Stardust Portable (1)
Syphon Filter (26)
Tales of... (35)
Wild Arms (14)
Wipeout (40)
WWE (12)
Yggdra Union (10)
Yu-Gi-Oh! (5)
Yuusha (9)



Powered by Blogsmith

Featured Galleries

NBA 09: The Inside (PSP)
Prinny: Is It Okay If I Am The Main Character?
Let's make the PSP better
Final Fantasy Agito XIII
Mytran Wars
Buzz! Brain Bender
PSP-3000 series
Blue PSP Unboxing
Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep


Most Commented On (14 days)

Recent Comments

Other Weblogs Inc. Network blogs you might be interested in: