July 20th, 2006, 15:38 Posted By: wraggster
Chubigan posted this article in response to the recent PSP is Dead Article posted a few days back:
Did you hear? The PSP is dead. Itís a handheld with no reason to exist. You own one you say? Better sell it while you can. Itís all over.
Wait a minute, you say. Who am I to say that itís all over for the PSP? Well, I do have Joystiq on my side. And didnít you see that Gamespot one year anniversary special video? Nearly all of them comment how they havenít touched their PSP in weeks, months, etc.
You know this isnít true. Here in the states, the PSP and DS sales have been neck and neck, with the PSP outselling the DS in May, only to have the DS take the lead in June. In Japan, the DS is a cultural phenomenon, yet the PSP overtook all consoles to be second in sales. Worldwide, the PSP has sold over fifteen million (yes, SOLD and not shipped). There are hundreds of PSP titles currently in development.
Yet nearly every week, thereís a gaming site that has nothing but dire doom for the PSP. This begs the question...why do gaming sites hate the PSP?
There are a certain number of things that journalists love to say about the PSP. Iím not confusing fact with opinion here...obviously anyone can say, ďI donít care for the PSP library,Ē have their reasons, and be exactly right. What I donít understand are the certain connotations pinned on the PSP, and the certain phrases that seem to be a quick cut to the PSPís jugular, yet obviously make no sense either. To name a few...
ďThe PSP lacks a killer app/doesnít have a good library.Ē
Killer App. Every console has one. The DS has New Super Mario Bros. The Xbox has Halo. Sony has...not a single one.
Well, letís back up and define killer app. Itís the game that everyone wants when they buy a console...if youíre buying a DS, you better get NSMB. Right now the 360 doesnít quite have a KA, but come Halo 3 everyone will be rejoicing for their exclusive title. The PS2 lacks a clearly definable killer app, if only because many of them have gone multiplatform. Is Grand Theft Auto really the PS2ís killer app even though it has appeared on the Xbox? What about Metal Gear Solid? Yup, that one went multiplatform back in the day as well...and even though it looks like MGS is solidified as the exclusive Sony franchise, it still canít be the one title that defines the PS2 (the PS3 is a different story). So where is the PSPís one game that everyone can agree is the absolute must buy?
Metal Gear Ac!d 2...one of the most underrated games on the PSP.
Unfortunately, no one can agree. And I say unfortunately because people who see that no one can define a PSP KA automatically assume the handheld doesnít have one.
Is it Wipeout Pure, whose graphics are incredible and downloadable content has spanned an entire year? No, because the handling/gameplay is a unique one that doesnít appeal to everyone. What about Syphon Filter, whoís online multiplayer/voice chat and excellent story rival that of even console games? Why not Daxter? Hey, yeah...why NOT Daxter?
Oh Daxter, how you woo me with your fuzziness.
Daxter unfortunately lacks the character to carry a system. The game is amazing, but as far as Daxter being the definitive mascot for the PSP...no, he just doesnít fit. For an example of someone who does fit, I turn to the long lost Crash Bandicoot. Remember those great Nintendo bashing commercials Crash used to do? He oozed mascot potential. The moment he went multiplatform was the day that the entire franchise slowed to a crawl...and the opportunity was lost.
Just looking at this game puts a big smile on my face.
Could Loco Roco be the killer app? It all depends on Sony. When you see a DS, Mario is not far from it. Sony needs to get as many Rocos around the PSP as possible, and MAKE the game the killer app. It has potential. It will sell well. It will be awesome.
ďMy PSP has been gathering dust over the last few months...Ē
My first reaction is always, ďwell, maybe you should find a less dusty place for your PSP then.Ē
This is something that comes up time and again. The connotation, of course, being that since their PSP is gathering so much dust, the game library must be slimí pickings. Unfortunately if youíre not playing with your PSP every day of the week, then itís obviously the PSPís fault for not keeping you entertained, right?
Hey, my 360 has gathered dust over the last few months, but it was never an issue for me. I knew there would be a game released sooner rather than later that would get me back to my 360, and that game happened to be Prey. Quite the awesome game.
So why do so many make it a point to address how dust ridden their handheld gets? Itís a simple little jab that doesnít mean much, but over time itís gotten a little bit silly. Yes, your PSP is dusty. Thatís why Sony included a cloth with every PSP, idiot. Use it and get back to me later.
ďAll Iíve been doing with my PSP lately is watch movies and listen to music.Ē
One of the more idiotic and ironic comments you can find all over the message boards...and itís completely ridiculous. People love to say this as a way to jab into the PSP, almost as if there arenít any games worth buying so theyíre forced to, you know, take advantage of the other features Sony has put on the PSP.
Think about how insipid that comment is for a moment. Sony put the music and movies functionality so, you know, people would actually use it. So when you DO use it...how the hell can you complain about it? Do people actually watch movies on the PSP while simultaneously thinking, ďman this sucks...I wish there were some decent games to play on the PSP.Ē If I ever thought that while watching a movie, Iíd put my PSP down immediately, go outside, and enjoy the summer air. Thankfully thatís never happened to me and my skin is a radiant white that hasnít mixed with those deadly UV rays you hear in the news these days (thereís a reason the PSP doesnít play well in the sun: Sony is protecting you from global warming. Yet another reason why everyone should own one.)
I want to take a quick moment to point out something that everyone seems to glance over. The PSP has AMAZING functionality. Take a look at this amazing table I created thanks to a year of computer lab training on Excel-
But seriously, that damn computer lab taught me nothing.
Yes, I realize that last feature is a low blow, but seriously MS...fix it!!
Obviously that chart doesnít tell the whole story. The browser is a bit limited and slow at times. Some stuff needs to be addressed (like jumping anywhere in a music file). The movie functionality needs improvement, as itís a bit hard to put movies on the PSP without reading up on it first.
But for a handheld, thatís freaking amazing. Freaking. Amazing. But who the hell cares when there arenít any games to play on it, right? Am I right?
ďThe PSP library pales in comparison with the DS.Ē
That statement is more opinion than fact, yet I see that printed as fact more often than not. Thankfully itís easy to prove otherwise.
Using Gamerankings.com (which averages a multitude of respected and large gaming sites review scores), 22 PSP games scored in the top 80%. 21 DS games scored in the top 80%, and Iím being generous since Nintendogs is listed three times. (Three DS games made the top 90% however, whereas no PSP game has just yet.)
Opinions may vary, but thereís the cold hard evidence right there: journalists agree (whether they realize it or not) that both systems have a great selection of games.
ďUMDs are dead.Ē
Yeah, UMDís are dead. People are quick to blame the movie studios for putting UMDs at DVD prices with no extras...but Iíll go one step further and blame Sony. They priced their first UMDs at $20, with no extras, and kept that price and structure for every single one of their movies. They ruined the UMD movie format, and because of that the PSP got a bad rap for being another failed Sony product (even though itís only the UMD movies that arenít selling, and nothing else). This will pass eventually, as long as Blu-Ray keeps the promise of being the next-gen DVD format everyone hopes that it will.
When will this sexy beast come to the states anyways?
Right now itís easy to see why the PSP is getting so much flak. Sony is going into the PS3 with a huge attitude of being number one. Well, they are number one. Will the PS3 keep them there? No one knows. But hey, the PSP isnít number one...so letís report on that and show how Sonyís arrogance (ďtaking handheld gaming out of the ghettoĒ) got them in second place!
It is easy to see how journalists arenít touching their PSPs. After a five day working schedule of doing nothing but playing games, reviewing games, playing more games, working under deadlines, etc...would you really want to come to your PSP over the weekend and play some X-Men Legends? The PSP delivers the console experience for many, something that journalists donít even consider wanting. Does everyone remember how unexcited IGN was about the PSP before it was released?
Now look at the DS. Itís mostly incapable of delivering a console experience. Thatís not the purpose of the handheld. The purpose is to deliver exclusive games that you canít play anywhere else, and itís easy to see why game reviewers love it. I canít see myself playing Tomb Raider Legend on my PSP when Iíve played it several times on my 360, wrote a review on it, and then get home only to play it on the PSP for fun, can you?
Obviously this journalistic mentality will go away once the console wars are in full swing. But to declare the PSP dead, when sales, developers and sometimes even the websiteís own review scores declare otherwise...well, itís ****ing ridiculous.
Long live the PSP.
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