Capcom Classics Collection Remixed Updated Impressions: Multiplayer

We take a final look at what promises to be Capcom's best classics compilation yet.

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We've been keen on Capcom's upcoming PSP compilation of greatest hits, Capcom Classics Collection Remixed, since we got our hands on the title at their press event last month. Though the compilation's title may lead you to think it's simply a port of the console compilation released late last year, but that is definitely not the case. Though some of the titles seen in the console game appear in the PSP compilation, you'll find an impressive array of new content that actually outstrips its console cousin in many ways. We took a near-final version of the game for a nostalgic trip down memory lane and were pleased by how it's come together. The biggest perks of the title are its unique use of the PSP's Wi-Fi capabilities, versatile display options, and unlockable extras.

There are so many good games in this compilation, you won't know where to start.
There are so many good games in this compilation, you won't know where to start.

The game retains the "sketchbook" presentation of its console relative and gives the appearance of flipping through a scrapbook. The 20 titles that make up the compilation are listed in alphabetical order. As each is highlighted, you'll be able to use the triangle button to call up saved high scores, the square button to go into options for that particular title, and the circle button to pop into the bonus menu. The options for each title are pretty standard but do let you go in and reassign the button configuration for your tastes and even turn on rapid fire for some titles. The bonus menus consist of four tabs, history, tips, art, and music, for each title. While you'll be able to check out the history of each title immediately, the tips, art, and music tabs must be unlocked. The system to unlock the features is reminiscent of the system you'd find on Xbox 360 games, as each of the locked tabs will tell you what you need to accomplish in order to open up a given feature.

The multiplayer component of the games in the collection is called out as you highlight the games in a red tab next to their name. The tab alerts you to whether the game is two-player cooperative, two-player alternating, or, in the case of Captain Commando, four-player co-op. The smartest aspect of the feature is the way it makes use of the PSP's Wi-Fi capabilities. The game sets your PSP's Wi-Fi to "on," unless you have the switch on your unit set to "off," allowing you to instantly hook up with anyone nearby who has the game at any time. So, for example, if you're playing a single-player game that supports two or more co-op play, you can have a friend hop in at any time, which isn't a bad portable approximation of how things would work in the arcades back in the day. As far as the games go, you'll find a remarkably solid array of some of Capcom's finest, such as 1941, Final Fight, Forgotten Worlds, and Strider, mixed with lesser-known but appealing titles such as Block Block, Captain Commando, Quiz & Dragons, and Three Wonders.

Some of the games let you use your PSP's screen vertically.
Some of the games let you use your PSP's screen vertically.

The visuals in Capcom Classics Collection Remixed are all well-done re-creations of the classic games that are nearly perfect. The game makes smart use of the PSP's large screen by allowing you to cycle through several different display modes, two of which let you play games swapping the image vertically to take advantage of the screen length. You'll find that the image quality holds up well regardless of how it's being stretched. The audio in the collection should strike a chord in gamers of a certain age, as CCCR offers a rich package of nostalgia. Besides the pitch-perfect recreations of the music and effects from the classic games in the compilation, you'll hear the audio equivalent of "comfort food" in the form of the classic Street Fighter II chimes as you pop around menus. Though such minor details may not seem like much, they do reflect the compilation's overall level of polish.

Our time with this near-final version of Capcom Classics Collection Remixed left us quite impressed with what a tight package it's shaping up to be. The solid re-creations of the original arcade games look and play well on the PSP. The multiplayer options are arguably the coolest use of the PSP Wi-Fi we've seen yet, although we would have been extrahappy if we could play via infrastructure mode. Finally, the unlockable ability to download tunes to your PSP's memory stick is an extremely cool extra. If you're looking for a tasty compilation to add to your PSP library that features a strong mix of titles, you'll want to keep a look out for Capcom Classics Collection Remixed when it ships later this month for the PSP. Look for our full review shortly.

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