Whoops! There goes my buttons.

User Rating: 9 | BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma VITA

Blazblue Chrono-orgas...errr..phantasma is better than ever. It's the kind of a fighting game where technicality and brawn mix very well together. The end result is a frantic game with a hint of dashing strategy.

Sorry for the long words. Had to put an opener up there.

The first thing to commend about Blazblue CP is its story mode. It's still convoluted but CP takes great effort to explain it all - even having an extra story mode to recap past games. The gist of the story is that the world of Blazblue is stuck in a time loop and it's only in the event during BB: Calamity Trigger that there's hope of breaking the cycle. And there's the issue of timelines, possibilities, parallel universes and whatnot. An extensive search on wiki sites is needed for those who want to know more.

As for the gameplay, CP retains most of the modes found in previous titles such as Continuum Shift II. Important modes such as Training, Challenge, Arcade, V.S., and (probably) Abyss are still there. Blazblue is reminiscent to other 2d fighting games out there. There are some changes in the mechanics but for those who have played the previous games will quickly adapt to CP. The core mechanics is retained that it's hard and even irrelevant to remember what the changes where.

Blazblue's colorful set of characters has always been an interesting and fun part of the game. It gets better every series. While characters share the same command concept of having a light, medium, heavy, and drive attacks, each one delivers differently that there's a lot of ways to change or to cater to your fighting style. With this you can "learn all but master none" or "go with just one and commit his/her moves to muscle memory". Blazblue, even if it took a great deal of tweaking to have a balance roster, is never all about that. As unbalanced as it may seems, it's all about finding your play style.

Chrono Phantasma still has its two type of control schemes: stylish and technical. Stylish simplifies combos with just button presses while technical is more hands-on. Both are comparable to auto and manual shift cars with the technical layout involves some heavy duty d-pad sliding - which is pretty much like how you drive a manual- shift car. Using the technical layout, Blazblue has one of the most unforgiving combo mechanics to ever grace the fighting arena. There's mostly a little window of opportunity to execute subsequent moves during a combo. Failure to execute a full set of combo might be forgiving against even the harshest AI but during online plays it's another thing. Even minor lags could disrupt the timing and could mean winning or losing a round.

And speaking of online gameplay, Blazblue: CP kinda falls short of its expectation. It's not the game itself is at fault but rather the community supporting it. Considering that Sony's console is popular than its handheld nowadays, there's a handful of players to contend with. With all the of Sony's "cross" schemes, it's a wonder why they haven't thought of putting a cross-platform play on this one. This is just based on my experience so it's kinda subjective.

As for content, I presume that there are 7(?) new characters added to the roster. The in-game currency - P$ is used not only in unlocking single-player content but avatars for online gameplay as well. Offline content includes character art and galleries. The bgm's have been rearranged. They're good to listen to but I miss the original version, especially Hazama's rock-out theme "Gluttony Fang". \../. There's a replay feature where you can record matches. Much like the past installments, you can still change the voice language and text from Japanese to English and vice versa(base on US version).

Blazblue: Chronophantasma is still an enjoyable fighting game on the PSVita even if the online gameplay is scant. But you might reconsider of getting this if you're focus on the online aspect.