Essentials is a solid, refreshing trip back into the world of Splinter Cell. Will you enjoy the trip? I think you will.
The first thing that many people have raised concerns over is the control scheme. The controls are different but it is a different system. For the button configuration of the PSP, the controls work well. There is also an alternative camera set-up that is available for people who absolutely can't stand to work with the default settings.
The graphics are close to Splinter Cell: CT on the PS2. And for any of you who might've tried your hand at Splinter Cell: CT for the Nintendo DS, you will be amazed at the step up the graphics have taken for the PSP. There are some issues with textures cutting here or there when you are at the corner of a building, for example. However, all in all it is a good looking game and can probably still be polished for future installments.
If you are a fan of the Splinter Cell series and have a PSP, you should not worry about enjoying this game. It is a great SC game to take on the road or just pick up in your down time. Is it the breakthrough that Splinter Cell: CT was on the consoles? Nope. But is it a solid game with a good foundation for future SC games on the PSP. Sure.
This game is also a good tie in to the upcoming Splinter Cell: Double Agent. And fan's that just can't wait for the action might enjoy picking up this game and putting some of the missing pieces into the Sam Fisher story.