Aaaand I jinxed it. No Blur today.
Just wanted to share a few thoughts. E3 was not only the point where I decided I’d adopt the Move controller as early as possible, but the moment where I would give up an old friend. The PSP is, in my mind, one of the great triumphs of this generation, but its lack of real support outside of a new marketing campaign and a few trailers here and there seems to be the signal where I give up a machine I’ve owned since launch. It’s certainly not a celebrated triumph, though. I’m one of the staunch defenders of the system – and cradle the sleek thing every time it gets slammed (lovingly) on the EBP. But, the time has come.
If there ever was a company to jump into the handheld market and take on the plumber and co., it had to be Sony. A long history of solidly built portable tech, they certainly set the bar high with the PSP on a number of fronts. Great screen, a fine analog nub (lousy for some folk, granted), removable storage media, multimedia functionality, a well-rounded online multiplayer infrastructure (in many genres, too. The SOCOM squad-strategy title Tactical Strike is, to this day, the most intense and gripping multiplayer I’ve had – like Full Spectrum Warrior, but better), an internet store etc., etc.,
The strategy of the machine was rather lumpy for a while, certainly in regards to marketing what it was. Strange NA commercials involving squirrels and carpet lint (?!) seemed to do more damage than good, especially when Chris Cunningham’s (unreleased?) commercial tapped into the trendy gamer vibe the machine should have been directed at strongly in the first place (see here: http://bit.ly/9shs8g ).
In any case, the lack of a decent marketing campaign right out of the gate seemed to help promote the idea that the PSP was nothing but a port machine – and in part, that’s true, especially when it comes to a lot of Japanese RPGs and the more niche titles that find their way to Western localisation through the PSP. That doesn’t discount the slew of unique and interesting titles exclusive to the system.
But it is time to hang up the hat and put the trade to good use. I’m not sad to see the thing go, but the memories will be cherished. Friday night Killzone Liberation matches with friends, the Ridge Racer rivalries, discovering the machine had its own Crimson Skies game (MACH) and could gameshare to eight players from one UMD, internet bouts of Tactical Strike/Warhammer 40K/Field Commander, the list goes on. I’ll be there with bells on for PSP2, but for the time being, it’s adios to the machine and hola to a curious glowing ball on a stick.