Super Stardust Portable
As a score shooter, it’s the best “just one quick go” experience I’ve had in years. My favorite used to be Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved on the Xbox 360, and the PSP flavor of Super Stardust beats that – while it isn’t quite as polished, it has a lot more variety and the vastly quicker games are appreciated. I also find myself in the market for a quick shooter more often with a PSP in hand than when I’m sitting on my couch.
Based on Stardust, the game is about you controlling a space ship blowing up asteroids and various kinds of more dangerous enemies. You upgrade your weapons, get all tactical about your scoring, and try to do it a little bit faster and a little bit better than the last time.
It looks great, sounds great and plays very well. The PSP’s ergonomics are something of a problem, but it never really hampers my enjoyment of the game. You move with the analogue nub and shoot with the face buttons. The tricky part is managing to hit the shoulders for a boost or a smart bomb, or the directional arrows or select button to change your weapon. With a bit of practice, it does work well.
I haven’t played enough to see whether the scoring holds up in the long run, but so far I’m getting constantly better and climbing up the very well working global leaderboards. There’s just enough of levels to play in and just enough of variety to keep it interesting. A superb game at just 8€ on the PSN – I can’t think of a better way to use your PSP right now.