Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters (PSP) – Review

Size Matters Cover“Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters” is the 5th game in the popular shooter/platformer series, though while the previous entries were created by Insomniac Games, this installment comes from High Impact Games, which does include a number of former Insomniac people, and is also the first to appear on the Playstation Portable. While the game has every element of a Ratchet and Clank game, there’s just something out-of-place with it due to how the elements are combined that make this title definitely lacking from it’s previous namesakes.

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Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters (PSP) – Initial Impressions

So far, so good – there’s always worries in taking a game that was built for the Dualshock and making it into a PSP.  ‘Daxter’ did a good job of this, and I’m glad to say that R&C has made the transition to PSP as well.  The controls allow you to move with the analog nub or the dpad (as you see it), the other control being strafing.  You can also set the camera to be dynamic and thus remove the usual need for the second analog stick.  Everything else seems to be standard for the game, save for a twist in dealing with jumping issues.

All the usual elements are there are well, so despite not being a Insomniac title, it looks like it will be good.

Every Extend Extra (PSP) – Initial Impressions

The little freeware game Every Extend gets a port by Q Entertainment (the same people that made Lumines and Meteos) into a nice little game that works well on the PSP.  If you’ve not played the original (free to download from the above link), the idea is that you beat the game by blowing your ship up as to create chain reactions of the various objects that fly across the screen; you each more ships with more points, so you always have to be looking for large combos to score with.  The play in EEE is little different, but now they’ve added ‘drives’ similar to Lumines’ skins with music (and game play tied to the music like from Rez) and graphics to keep each level fresh.  It works fine with the PSP controls.  It’s a nice change of pace from the usual PSP fare.

Lumines II (PSP) – Initial Impressions

Gameplay is for the most part the same as Lumines, but with the visual improvements that the Lumines Live adds (better visual indicators of score bonuses).

The one big thing is that among skins (including exisiting ones with updated graphics from the first game, and likely some of th new ones in Live) is that there are licensed songs with their music videos running behind the normal play.  Unfortunately, it looks like instead of switching to a new level after clearing so many squares with a video skin, you have to keep playing on that skin until the video completes (there’s still musical beats when you drop and clear blocks that work with the music).  The two videos I’ve hit aren’t hard skins, but I’m wondering if that’s true for all the cases.  More time is necessary to determine this.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories – Initial Impressions

 

Got a few hours down into GTA:VCS today. So far, it’s pretty good:

  • You can change the control scheme to use the dpad for movement and aiming instead of the analog nub. THANK GOODNESS.
  • There’s some hints that they’ve listened to critiques about the GTA series (in general) and maybe have taken from Saints Row (though given the release of that with the development time, I’m guessing they had similar ideas). When you end up at a hospital, you have the taxi to take you back to the last mission (as from GTA:VC), as well as the option to buy back the weapons you had before you entered the hospital for a ‘small fee’. There’s several facilities that you want to take over; to do that, you need to do several missions for them which will increase your reputation with that facility, and will earn you more cash on a daily basis (no more running between all the properties you own to collect this as well). VCS
  • You start near the airport (effectively the complete opposite side of the city), so you get to explore this area more. Unfortunately, the entire map is not open at the start, but save for going into or out of buildings, I’ve yet to hit a loading screen while just driving around.
  • Most of the missions have been the same-old, same-old. Nothing yet really ‘new’.

Still got a ways to go on the game, but so far no annoying accurate aiming missions yet like an early one in GTA:LCS.