Sunday, February 19

5 PSP games that you must download to your PlayStation Vita

Recently, Sony released a list of PSP titles that are compatible with the incoming PlayStation Vita via the PlayStationBlog. There were some notable omissions (Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories causing the greatest distress) and the promise of further additions down the line. While some of my favourites didn't make the cut, here are five PSP games that will help Vita early adopters stave off the post launch blues.

Note: It took a fair bit of restraint to pick anything other than fighting games. The PSP has some quality JRPGs in its library, however, I found that the portable catered to fighting fans best of all.

Soul Calibur: Broken Destiny
Soul Calibur IV in the palm of your hand. Well, sans the questionably included Star Wars characters and the ability to fight online. Broken Destiny may not have been heavy on content, but its gorgeous, fluid visuals and novice friendly approach are the perfect place to start the Tale of Souls and Swords. The Gauntlet mode introduces all of the mechanics of the storied fighting series and tells an interesting, though nonsensical story all the while. A full-bodied character creation suite and the Trials mode will be sure to soak up as many hours as you're willing to give, while Quick Battle mode is perfect for a few fast fights on the go. That varied cast - which includes Sony mascot, Kratos and humorous Dampierre - is probably the best the series has seen and this game simply demands a spot on your memory card.

Note: You can currently purchase Soul Calibur: Broken Destiny and Tekken 6 together in a bundle on the Australian (and presumably, European) PlayStation Store. Tekken 6 is well worth the extra twenty bucks and it's just as good, if not better than its home console counterparts.

Half-Minute Hero
On a system with several hardware generations worth of Final Fantasy instalments, Half-Minute Hero stands apart - and at times above - this hallowed franchise with charm, humour and a no nonsense approach to questing. There's also six legitimately different experiences on offer in this game and - while some are more worthwhile than others - I guarantee that you'll find something to love here. Hero 300 may just be the greatest test of time management and budgeting skills ever seen in a videogame, while other modes will present twists on real-time strategy, dual-stick shooting and tower defence. The speed metal soundtrack and suitably pixelated visuals are further reason for Half-Minute Hero to score a place your Vita's proprietary storage device.

This will all be over in a second
God of War: Chains of Olympus
Ready at Dawn provided no greater proof that they were masters of Sony's handheld and its limitations than God of War: Chains of Olympus. Distilling all of the sex, beauty and gargantuan scale violence into the PSP's smaller screen and limited control set up, Chains of Olympus is still my favourite installment in the popular action adventure series. While some may argue that it was too easy and too short, I found it to be infinitely replayable and it still impresses me to this day.
 A game to silence all trolls

Monster Hunter Freedom Unite
Ever worried that your latest purchase won't have enough meat on it to justify the purchase price? Even if, like me, you picked it up at launch and paid the full price, Monster Hunter Freedom Unite will keep giving until you're satisfied that you got your money's worth. Featuring what are arguably the most technically-impressive visuals seen on the PSP and enough depth to drown in, you will never conquer this game; even with the help of three friends or your cat-like companions. Creatures great and small await death by your blade, axe or ridiculously-large bow. It may not be the smoothest experience, but it offers more questing than you could possibly hope for. 

Dissidia: Final Fantasy
The final scenes of Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children present an airborne battle between protagonist Cloud Strife and the reincarnation of much-loved villain, Sephiroth. It's a spectacular confrontation that nearly makes up for a couple of hours of indecipherable narrative. Dissidia makes such gravity-defying melees commonplace and even with your favourite Final Fantasy characters careening through columns and other structures, the frame rate never skips a beat. The cast is composed of one good and one evil character from the first ten instalments of the storied franchise with move sets that include each of these characters' most memorable attacks, spells and Limit Breaks. It's not the deepest fighter (or RPG for that matter), but it offers hours worth of melodramatic pugilism in wonderfully rendered, destructible environments. There's also a persistent reward system that encourages sustained and repeated play, so free up some space for this addictive fighter. 

 Finally! A scenario in which I can actually defeat Ultimecia!

Are there games on the extensive list that you feel are more deserving of a download? Is your favourite PSP game currently supported by the Vita?


  1. I don't know if it's available on the Oz/PAL PSN, but Gladiator Begins is 10 bucks and well worth it. Essentially an expanded version of Colosseum: Road to Rome. A brawler RPG and stunning to boot. Shadow of Rome might have had the ridiculous action, but Gladiator Begins is the real heavy-duty title.

    1. No luck on Gladiator Begins, old friend. Not even sure that it got a physical release in Australia.

  2. I've never even heard of Half-minute hero before. Looks really cool

    1. It is. I started my first playthrough at about 11pm on Easter Saturday in 2010. Didn't put it down until I beat every mode.

      So yeah, probably didn't get to sleep until about 10 the next day.