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PSPGo, what's the situation after a month

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Ok, so PSPGo is almost one month old. We, fans and Playstation Portable users, were expecting a huge revolution in portable gaming systems. Many of current "classic PSP" users were affraid that Sony will discontinue UMD support (Fortunately it didn't happen). Many of them were thinking about changing their current PSP system to PSPGo.. How this situation looks after a month?

New hardware?

Almost every reviewer of PSPGo admits that this is a very good piece of hardware: great screen, built-in microphone, wifi 802.11b, bluetooth, 16BG internal memory + ability to extend it via memory stick micro. But also, almost every of those reviewers claimed about price. PSPGo is definitely expensive. It's cost only 50$ less than PS3 Slim 120GB, and 80$ more than existing PSP3000. Personally, for that price I can't say it's just a portable console with audio/video playback support, like I could say about PSP3000. PSPGo should be called "portable entertaining system" or "not-home entertaining system" :) Maybe Sony is copying Apple's marketing.. "Even if our product has the same specs as it's predecessor, let's make it's price high - people will believe it's a better and newer technology". Phenomenon of early adoption is working.. Customers are buying new child of Sony's portable systems line. But PSPGo isn't selling as it should be. Why? Let's back to reviews of this system. Why in 85% of reviews, PSPGo is compared to old, PSP2000 which has no microphone, worse wifi antenna and worse screen? When comparing PSP N1000 to PSP 3000 you can barely see the difference between those consoles (except size, weight and lack of UMD drive of course :) ). And what's strange - if you want to use microphone in PSPGo, you have to open it! So using Skype is way better on PSP3000. Current users don't see opportunity in upgrading to PSP N1000. There is more - PSP1000 users have the same opinion. PSP fat is 4 year old, FOUR year old. I think they and people who don't have portable console should be the target. Bluetooth is great - wireless headphones/speakers, home theater system connectivity - this sounds very useful. But this is the end of technical innovations. Why they didn't upgrade wifi standard to 802.11g/n? Why they didn't add full HD video output or just fullscreen game video output, people are so disappointed about this in PSP3000. There are so many things, they could improve in new model and make it very desirable. I don't say PSPGo is a crap, but I think they could manage to create system with newer technology. Why Blizzard is creating Starcraft2 and Diablo3 with fans? Because they're creating products that will suit to customers expectations.

Lack of UMD drive - Digital Era is coming!

This is the heart or even the soul of PSPGo :) It's dedicated only for downloadable content - no optical drive. Every game must be purchased in PSN Store and there is no other way to get them. It means that you won't be able to loan games or sell your old ones. It's really great idea - finally no UMD case in your backpack or pocket. I often find changing UMD discs uncomfortable, especially in train or bus. Choosing games downloaded from PSN Store is easy and very, very quick. It has also a good influence on battery life, loading times and noiseless work. Sony did a mile-step into a future (yes, PSP3000 can do that too, but PSPGo is created only for this). While device is excellent prepared for digital distribution, the distribution itself isn't supported/managed/organized well. PSN Store is the only place for purchasing games, however for me - it's a real horror. I mean REAL HORROR.. Prices are totally taken from space or some other weird place. Game prices in PSN are sometimes as high as two UMD versions of the same game. This is really pain in the ass for PSPGo users. You're getting GoW for ~16€ and next day your friend with PSP1000/2000/3000 is buying the same, used GoW game for ~7€. After a month he sells it and buys another game. PSN pricing is a big mistake - games should be 10%-20% cheaper than it's UMD versions. Sony has created "Special Offer" tab in PSN Store, so sometimes you can get let's say "a little cheaper games". Ok, but even if I buy something it's often hard or impossible to download. Store throws errors one after another, so you must download content via Account Management. This is not the best way of Digital Distribution. AppStore, AppStore and one more time: AppStore! If Sony is copying from Apple - let them do it right :) AppStore is beautifully integrated with Apple devices. It runs quickly, smoothly and users don't complain about errors ("download failed", "download failed"..). What about PSN Store content? Game library is updating every thursday/friday (depends on country), but those updates are no more than little steps in creating big store with "strong" titles. Too little steps.. Every week brings one PSP mini game, two or three "regular" games and sometimes a demo. This is not what we were expecting.. I heard that Sony has licensing issues, but they could think about it few months ago :) Why "PS one classic" section doesn't have the best games released on PSX (yeah, there is MGS, Silent Hill and RE:DC, but only in US) - what about THPS, Tenchu, Parappa The Rapper, RE2, RE3, GT2.. and many many more..? Some people think that PSN Store was created with PSPGo launch, but that's not true. Nothing has changed in PSN Store after 1 October, except of PSP minis (which are barely updated). PSP Minis is excellent idea! Short, simple and fun games. But for god's sake not, I repeat NOT "Funky Punch" or something like that or Pinball ported from Amiga. Please, give us Bejeweled and Collapse! Zuma should be good also :)

PSN Store is not exclusive for PSPGo - "classic" PSP owners can also buy games via PSN.

And there is one more thing.. Supporting online games. Two months ago I bought "Syphon Filter: Combat Ops", created only for multiplayer. After 15 minutes spent on connecting to server I wasn't able to play it online. Server has huge lags and timeouts, so playing online via infrastructure is almost impossible. Sometimes I can connect to lobby and enter chat room, where I meet people just like me - typing "@#$%@#$% game! I just bought it and it doesn't work". So why it's still on PSN Store? I really don't know, but I know that it cost the same as used Dark Mirror with full Single Player. I don't want to buy games in a store where it's used to say "I don't care about that issue, we are just delivering games".. "Classic" PSP users have choice, they can just go to first electronics store or Amazon/eBay and look for a game they want to buy. But PSPGo doesn't have that choice and therefore Sony should care about them and do it as much as they can!

Conclusion.

I definitely like PSPGo - it's smaller, lighter and seems to be very well packed entertainment system into a really small device. However I don't love it as I love PSP3000, because PSP3000 has.. emm.. "backwards compatibility"? A "backdoor", an emergency UMD drive that can help me when digital distribution won't succeed or my favorite game won't be released on PSN Store. In fact PSPGo is not cheaper solution in any way when comparing to PSP3000. This is very sad..

Future of PSPGo depends mainly on PSN Store, on how it's updated, maintained, how many games you can buy there at lower price. I pray that the very close future (including X-mas) will show PSPGo and DD in better light. Yellow card straight from fans is not a good sign..

For now I'm staying with my PSP3000. Sony has made his first step in Digital Era, but for now this step is very unsuccessful.. Care about customers, not about $$ because we're making $$, not high prices!

PSP system update 6.00 is available to download

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Yesterday Eric Lempel (Director of Playstation Network Operation) wrote a new post on official Playstation blog:

http://blog.us.playstation.com/2009/09/psp-firmware-v6-00-update/

From now PSP firmware (OFW) 6.00 is available to download. You'll find it quickly because PSN Store was "updated" to that version of OFW, so PSP with older firmware will not enter PSN Store.. :)

What's new with big update (from 5.51/5.55 to 6.00)? Honestly nothing.. Several "cosmetic" changes. I think the most important changes are "under the hood": some security upgrades, maybe Sony removed MOH exploit (which was accessible trough 5.55 though). First few days will show if this is more "anti-piracy" update or maybe Sony is preparing to important date - 1 october..

Here is the list of main changes (officially listed just before update installation):

  • Games can now be grouped and displayed in folders based on their expire date under [Game].
  • Under [Settings], [Network Update] has been changed to [System Update]. Under [System Update], you can now choose how to update the system software.
  • The number of colors that can be selected under [Settings] > [Theme Settings] has been increased.
  • Revisions to strengthen security have been added. (Internet Browser)

Number of theme colors was very important to me :P However, there are minor but still very useful updates:

- when choosing custom theme, a preview is displayed

- estimated time of download is added in download window (which is great!)

- when watching photos, Playstation button shows "XMB" instead of "Home"

And YES! you can play "Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman!" from PSN EU which required firmware 5.55+. But I cannot find this demo after 6.00 update.. :/

So... This update is not big enough for calling it "6.00". It could be 5.60, 5.80.. There is no YouTube icon, no file manager and other things that fans were awaiting.. Even PSN Store wasn't updated.. But like every system update, 6.00 bring something new to our PSPs..

Update has ~30MB. Good luck, have fun!

Good news from Sony! PS3 Slim, PSP Go!

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Next three months will be very exciting..

New PS3 Slim (1 September)

New PSP Go! (1 October)

Gran Turismo for PSP (1 October)

PS3 Price drop!

Sony is finally making good changes: new units in stationary and portable consoles. Whole bunch of new great games for both systems. They also mentioned about small update for PS3 software (sth with XMB). I think, they will add many games to PSN Store, especially from PSone.

Yeah.. If I bought DSi I would cry to death... :P

Sorry for bottom line :)

PSN EU Store update [PSP]

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Today PSN Store was updated. The new titles are:

- Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 10 (~€30)

http://www.gamespot.com/psp/sports/tigerwoods2010/index.html?tag=result;title;5

- Numblast (~€4)

http://psp.ign.com/objects/143/14348247.html

- Monster Hunter Freedom Unite (~€30)

http://www.gamespot.com/psp/rpg/monsterhunterportable2ndg/index.html?tag=result;title;0

- Donkey Xote (~€8 )

- Super Hind (~€15)

- James Pond 2: Codename Robocod [PSone classic] (~€8 )

Well.. What can I say. Some people will love Monster Hunter Freedom Unite. Tiger Woods is the one of the least desirable sports games.. Donkey Xote and Super Hind - they don't even have reviews, images or some serious info on gamespot/ign.. And "James Pond2"? Give me a break!.. It can definitely be a PSone CLASSIC, or PSone Dust Covered Classic.. Seriously, I'd rather buy Gran Turismo2 or Tekken3, or SH1 or any of RE series (from PSone classic) instead of some weird Donkey Xote, Super Hind and James Pond2 :)

I think, Sony is filling some space on PSN Store. It's always better to say "we have 100 games in our digital store". But what are these games?

I saw some gameplay videos from Numblast - it can be (i repeat "CAN BE") a game to kill some time, but it's better solution to add those €4 to a much better game!

Monster Hunter Freedom Unite costs €30.. Erhm.. Do they add some redeem codes to it? :) If I would like to buy MHFU, I'd definitely wait for UMD version (with instruction booklet or maybe some extra t-shirt with pre-order).

Thanks Sony for MHFU and Tiger Woods PGA 10 (who will buy it for €30?), but rest of the titles from this update are totally no-no..

Looking for better PSN Store updates.

Tekken: Dark Resurrection - ranking reset!

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Yep, today Tekken DR online ranking was cleared. It's time to fight against time, make some strikes in tekken bowl, earn some money in Gold Rush.. Again :) And this is the funniest thing in online rankings - you have always a chance to be there, even if it's a 30 minutes or one day of glory :) "Quick, I've got to take a picture of it! 13th place in Best Survivals" :) There is no better motivation :) BTW, there are new Ghost packs to download for Tekken Dojo.

Good Luck, have fun!

Killzone: Liberation [PSP] - getting online via Infrastructure in EU version

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For first Killzone: Liberation gamers - going online is not a very simple thing. First of all KL wasn't released with this mode, there was only ad-hoc available. To activate online mode you've got to download a patch (through "Download" game menu). It's a very great update (extra chapter 5 - about 2 hours more of gameplay and online mode). But if you've got a new PSP and european version of Killzone: Liberation you won't be able to play online just after patch installation. When you go to "Play>online" you won't find any "Create account" option. Only US versions has it. Gamers in whole Europe have to register first in www.yourgamingname.com. But, if you go to that website you'll need a Network Access Code (NAC) which was, I repeat: was included in every older PSP package (yep, it's this red piece of paper, but not that with "yourpsp.com" :) ). If you bought your PSP recently - you've got to call Sony support center first and ask them for NAC. They will provide you the code within 5 days. It's usually sent by e-mail but in some countries (like Poland) they send NAC via mail (lol). It's crazy! but I'm waiting right now for letter from Sony :) I hope it will work.. :)

So if you're Killzone: Liberation [EU] owner and you have no idea how to play online:

- contact with Sony support center and ask them for NAC (Network Access Code)

- go to www.yourgamingname.com and register your online nick using NAC

- use registered nick and pass to play Killzone: Liberation [EU]

Hope that will help someone :)

Good luck, have fun!

Gran Turismo PSP gameplay!

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This is more than few screenshots. Game looks just awesome..! Breathtaking..

http://www.gtplanet.net/stunning-gran-turismo-psp-gameplay-footage/

Gran Turismo finally on PSP!

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Wow! This is a great news! No longer playing RidgeRace or Burnout - just pure GT with 800 cars is about to show in 1 October! On E3 Sony press conference they annouced release date and declared that new GT mobile will work with full 60 FPS! Awesome, amazing..!!! There are no words to describe that! :) 60 fps means that game will be very comfortable, especially in high speeds where every millisecond is important. I've got to get some money for PSP 3000 :) For me - there is nothing more beautiful than playing the best racing game ANYWHERE. Thank you Sony for releasing GT after 4 years! :) Finally :)

Zelda Wind Waker GBA GC connectivity - First Look

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Today I've finally tried a GBA-GC link cable on Zelda: Wind Waker. After few hours playing with GBA and Tingle Tuner I must say - IT'S AMAZING! AWESOME feature, INCREDIBLE gameplay!!! It's absolutely fantastic. GBA connected to Zelda's Wind Waker appears as Tingle Tuner. From now you can play with other person - one plays as main character (wearing Link's clothes) and second as a Tingle: helpful character. Hmm.. it's not a character, it's kind of a cursor moving separately from 1st character (controlled by GC). Tingle tuner allows you to help main character - you can find a hidden items (ruppers) or use special items like: bombs, baloon, extra shield or add some health to Link's character. Every special item cost some ruppers, so you can't use them on and on. But it's superb fun - playing in "multiplayer" where 2nd player helps you in Link's journey :) Like I said in the beginning - link cable and GC-GBA feature is one of the best features ever created on the console world!!! If you have opportunity to try it - don't waste time - do it. Highly addictive :)

I'll try to post some info about Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and maybe some pictures/screens from both games. Well.. SC: Chaos Theory doesn't feels the same on GBA as Zelda: WW. Application downloaded to GBA from GC is totally misunderstood.. I'll explain it later.

Still waiting for Gamecube GBA link cable..

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Well, I am still waiting for this cable and SC: Chaos Theory + Zelda: The Windwalker. I think the cable is in the way, but GC games? I don't really know. I'm so excited :) I can't wait to see how this things work together..!

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