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Ten handhelds that suffered a fate far worse than ours

We're pretty sure that no one calls the PSP a failure anymore. In fact, over the past few months, as more and more games release on our handheld, we've seen less and less flame comments from rabid DS fans -- maybe they realized that two handhelds can happily coexist?

Courtesy of GamePro, here's a list of the ten worst selling handhelds of all time. Thankfully, Sony's PSP is nowhere close to being on the list:
  • Gizmondo (<25,000 sold)
  • Zodiac (<200,000)
  • (<300,000)
  • Lynx (<500,000)
  • Nomad (1 million)
  • NEC Turbo Express (1.5 million)
  • Neo-Geo Pocket (2 million)
  • GBA Micro (2.5 million)
  • N-Gage (3 million)
  • Game Gear (11 million)
PSP has sold at least twice the amount of the Game Gear, and with the redesign coming out later this year, the system will sell plenty more. (Too bad the Neo-Geo Pocket didn't do as well ...)
[Via digg]

Californians can celebrate Veteran's Day with Medal of Honor

If you live near Alameda, CA, you may want to check out GamePro's Medal of Honor: Heroes tournament. You don't need to have a copy of this well-reviewed PSP-exclusive WWII FPS, but you do need to bring your system. All participants will get a free copy of the game and a t-shirt, making this event totally worth your time. If you're able to survive the 32-player multiplayer matches, and make it to the end of the tournament, you'll find yourself winning a subscription to GamePro (boo!), Shure E2-cn earphones (yay!), and more. If you're interested, head over to the registration page.

Metareview: Death Jr 2

Death Jr. gets a bit more attention than it may deserve, simply because it was the first PSP game ever to be shown. We were wowed by its impressive non-GBA quality graphics, but when we got our hands on the original, we were a little underwhelmed by its gameplay. The sequel was supposed to fix the problems of the original game, but it appears that the critics are still a little negative on this franchise. Maybe they focused too much on the tech? Let's find out:
  • IGN (71/100) wants to believe in the franchise, but they end up disappointed: "The game is still sloppy in execution despite its best qualities -- it's time for DJ to grow up and scythe straight. The story again makes little sense, despite some funny sequences, and it feels short with only three bosses and little to revisit stages for on your second play."
  • Games Radar (60/100) fails to find any originality in the gameplay: "You know that game where you run around and hit things repeatedly? It's the same one with floating platforms, simple combos and a camera that almost gets it - ringing any bells yet? Oh wait, that's practically every third-person run-and-jump game made in the last eight or nine years, and even though it's a marked improvement over the original, Death Jr. 2: Root of Evil still falls squarely in the "pretty OK" department."
  • GamePro (80/100) loves the game, more than GTA: "Death Jr. 2 is definitely a game that works for those of you who just love hacking at things. Levels spawn swarms of enemies with complex AI that keep coming at you unless you attack their regeneration area. The creative randomness of the enemies is delightful. After all, not too many games have llamas, chickens, hamsters, gorillas, possessed trees, gigantic centipedes, and mechanical spiders going for you all at once.."

There's a pretty wide range of opinions on this game so far, but one thing's clear: this game is much better than the original. But does that say much? The game is now available.

Metareview: Loco Roco

The last time PSP Fanboy did a Metareview, it covered another one of my most-wanted games: Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins. It didn't fare too well, with the critics bashing its much-too-high level of difficulty. Garnering only a 73 average, many felt a little disappointed, myself included. [Andrew's note: the game is pretty damn good, but then again, one of my favorite games last generation was Ikaruga.]

The other game I've been obsessing over, Loco Roco, has just been released and although it got some poor initial reviews from Gamespot and a nine year old girl, the critics seem to be in agreement that Loco Roco will make you cucoo for Cocoa Puffs. Here are excerpts from the critics:
  • IGN (90/100) - "You'll discover playing Loco Roco is a lot like eating candy, only without the stomachache after an overdose. That sounds absurd but it really gets the point across. It's vibrant, cheery and serves no other point than to make you smile. But, like candy, Loco Roco also ends sooner than you want it to end."
  • The New York Times (90/100) - "With imaginative levels on snowy landscapes or inside whales, Loco Roco uses charm and simplicity of design to create something near perfection. But it's a small perfection, charming in its childlike whimsy but as insubstantial as a summer breeze."
  • GamePro (60/100) - "So much of LocoRoco is so clever and original that it's almost perplexing when it stops being any fun. The fun does run out, though, long before the game is over -- in that sense, the experiment has to be called a failure."
Well, it looks like the people of GamePro don't like candy. But, the rest of us can be proud of Loco Roco's impressive 84 average from the critics.

First-ever GTA: Vice City Stories screenshots

GTA: Vice City Stories
is a game that's so important, that we're willing to do box art stories on it. Every single morsel of info that trickles down to us seems so very precious. Well, it appears that the Australian version of GamePro has a cover story on Vice City Stories, and thanks to the beauty of the Internet, all of us can share in the details:
  • The game takes place two years before PS2's Vice City: 1984.
  • The game will feature multiplayer, similar to Liberty City Stories.
  • VCS is "much bigger than Vice City."
  • Helicopters now join the list of usable vehicles!
  • Unlike Tony, you won't drown instantly in water: you can swim!
  • New weather effects, including hurricanes.
  • Better graphics: more crowded streets, better animation, greater draw distance, more variety of character models.
I have to admit, just thinking about all these features makes me giddy with anticipation. You can read more at PSP Hacks, and then check out screenshots here.

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