Video Game Appreciation 101: New Additions – DS & PSP Stuff!

DS_PSP_stuffA few more games for the library, this time a few Match-3 puzzle games: Bejeweled 3, 7 Wonders of the Ancient World, 7 Wonders II and the recently reviewed Jewel Master: Cradle of Egypt 2. On the PSP front, Taito Legends: Power-Up and The Chikyuu Boueigun 2 Portable (in English, that’s The Earth Defense Forces 2 Portable). Of the puzzle games, of course Bejeweled 3 is the master class in fun, accessibility and replay value, as the game hooks you right on in from the beginning and keeps you playing thanks to its wide variety of mini-games and rewards galore as you play. The music is pretty killer as well. The two 7 Wonders games show an interesting progression, as the sequel fixes some of the issues from the first game while also adding new content.

As for Taito Legends, it’s a great collection of a few (OK, 25 isn’t “a few” unless you realize that Taito’s output was fairly massive in terms of arcade games) of the legendary company’s many arcade hits with four updated remakes that play exactly the same as the originals (which is both good and bad). Overall, the set of games is fantastic, but it’s a bit tricky to  find a screen size that works perfectly for some of the games. If you have those AV cables for the PSP and a nice HDTV, I’d go for playing games such as Space Invaders, Qix, Lunar Rescue and a few more) on a bigger screen. Other games come off quite well on the handheld and I didn’t realize until now that Raimais and Space Dungeon have light RPG elements in them that drive the fast paced action.

On to EDF 2, which was somehow squeezed whole onto Sony’s portable back in 2011 by developer Sandlot with new menu screens, a wee bit too much fog in some stages and a frame rate that’s hurtin’ until you get used to it. Complaints aside, it’s really incredible that they were able to get the game on the system at all. Still, I’d LOVE to see them do a new remake on the Vita, as it’s hard to play this game for too long after EDF 3 Portable and it’s smoother frame rate and zero fog messing with my eyesight. Perhaps the coolest thing about the game is this is The Best reissue version which was $30 cheaper than the original and has a reversible cover (shown in the photo) that’s the same as the original release! So you can spend less and look like you weren’t such a cheapskate. I actually didn’t care which version I got, but knowing the reissue has this bonus is a very nice thing indeed…

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