Written by Erik Kubik, kube00 Tuesday, 18 October 2011 05:00
Looking back at the PSP, a lot of gamers say that its a failure. Why? Because it never outsold the Ds? Considering most hand held systems that went toe-to-toe with Nintendo, the PSP was very successful compared to the likes of the Game Gear, the Lynx, and the Neo-Geo Pocket.
First off, the PSP has sold 71.4 million units worldwide. I’d call that a success. The Game Gear sold 11 million units, the Lynx sold 4 million, and the Neo-Geo pocket sold 2 million. Breaking down where the PSP has sold, it was slightly more successful in the United States than Japan. The PSP sold 17 million units in the US and 15 million units in Japan.
The PSP serves a purpose as an all-in-one media device with wi-fi. You could watch movies, play games both single player and multi player, surf the web, read digital comics and even skype. At the time -- the PSP was released in 2005 -- there weren’t any iPod Touches yet and most people’s smart phones couldn’t do what they do today. Compare this to Nintendo’s Ds and the PSP and a lot more multi use functionality. I still know people who take their PSP’s with them on flights and car trips as well as their Ds and smart phones.
There is a strong home brew community. I know a lot of gamers who put custom firmware on their PSP’s to run games from the memory sticks and play with emulators. But some of the other features are much more appealing. Such as playing home brewed games like Doom and Quake, share music, print photos, watch videos from streaming sites such as YouTube, and run additional video formats originally unsupported by the device. Probably one of the best features was running psx games on the PSP. Until Sony released PlayStation 1 games on PSN there wasn’t really an easy way to take PlayStation 1 games on the go.
What about the games? The PSP has a ton of games covering every genre and franchise. I could write an article just on this. Some of my suggestions include Metal Gear Acid 1 and 2, Me and My Katamari, Power Stone Collection, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, LittleBigPlanet, FF IV Complete Collection, any of the Monster Hunter games, LocoRoco, Valkyria Chronicles II, Tekken 6, Persona 3 Portable, God of War, Rock Band, Resistance: Retribution. The list can go on and on.
The PSP wasn’t perfect. It was a little bulky to carry around in some people’s pockets, even with the later hardware redesigns that slimmed it down. The battery life wasn’t long enough, 4-7 hours. The PSP used Sony’s UMDs which nothing else uses. The screen on the early models were prone to dead pixels. There was no dual analog stick and many gamers complained about the analog nub. The screen can also get smudged.
So want a PSP? You can find them as cheap as $100 or less shipped on eBay. I would recommend picking up a 2000 or 3000 series. Both of these are lighter and have bigger screens then the original as well as video out. Unless you can find the PSP Go really cheap I’d pass on that for now too. So what are you waiting for, go get a PSP and get into this portable system that Time called the 2008 must-have gadget. I think I may have to get one again.