With PSP2 expected to be announced soon it seems like a good time to analyze what some of the possible characteristics of this anticipated hand-held might be. Some controversy has arisen between distinguishing whether it’s going to be part of the PSP phone that’s been making headlines lately or there will be a separate entity altogether. It appears that they’re not going to be the same and the PSP two will be something far greater than just a phone. Here’s what we have so far to digest.
On January 27 it is rumored that there will be an announcement in Tokyo debuting PSP2 to the world. This comes right after the 3DS event showing off the many launch titles and features of the Nintendo 3DS. There have been public statements made that developers already have prototypes and test units as well as a multiple variety of games in production for PSP2. These statements were made by the producers of Mortal Kombat amongst others so it’s safe to say that great games should be expected.
One game franchise in particular that found its way onto 3DS is Resident Evil. While a Resident Evil game was in development the original PSP that was later canceled. It doesn’t take a great leap of logic to assume that this might be landing on the PSP2 instead with much more power behind it. There was also an Elder Scrolls Oblivion game in development with the focus on more dungeon exploring the fit the mobile gamer play style of pickup and play action.
As far as the hardware goes it is rumored that the cell processor has been shrunk to a level that will allow it to be placed in a hand-held. It’s also rumored that the cell to be used for PSP2 will be multi-core and range between 50% to 150% of the power that the PS3 cell holds. Sony has been rumored to be working with NVIDIA directly on the graphics side of things. Ram is expected to be anywhere from the same amount of the PS3 to double what it currently has. If this is true this would definitely be the most powerful hand-held ever take be seen from the gaming market.
There also pictures of an alleged prototype PSP2 that have surfaced recently which, if real, suggest that the PSP2 has a touch pad on the back as to not impose on the screenplay of the game by blocking it with your fingers. These pictures have also revealed two analog nubs, a much demanded feature which would improve the playability of many genres especially first person shooters and action games. There is also a high chance that the system will support not only HD graphics but also 3D graphics.
Check out the images in this slideshow showing off the various Fan Art, Alleged Concept Art, and even Allegedly Leaked Prototype images as well as the image of the PlayStation Phone which is also said to be revealed soon by Sony Ericsson.
It goes without mentioning that most people expect a PSP2 to have trophy support as well as an improved network experience. Some even predict an online download store similar to the Amazon Kindle which would operate in 3G anywhere you are (without a fee for access) allowing you to buy games anytime, anywhere. In addition to all of this the Nintendo has announced motion control, 3D camera input, and of course a microphone for the 3DS, all of these have also been rumored to be in consideration for the PSP2.
If even half of these rumors come true, the PSP2 will be a serious beast of a hand-held. The biggest mystery at this point would be what format the games will be on. Some say it will be download only while others expect a new form of UMD to be debuted. Another possibility is that of Nintendo style cartridges or the memory sticks that Sony already produces and uses for memory cards in the current PSP.
Even though it may seem impossible to add to this list features I do have some ideas of my own but I hope would have been considered by Sony’s internal team. For a long time cross game chat has been requested feature for PS3, and Sony has yet to deliver on despite promises. Great way to show that they still care about this request would be to see it come out with the newest addition to the PSP family PSP2.
One feature that wasn’t used as much as it could have been with the original PSP was remote play between the PSP and PS3. With PSP2 supposedly matching the power of the PS3, or surpassing it, being able to play PS3 games on your PSP2, PSP2 games on the PS3, and generally having the two systems being able to interact with each other in exciting new ways would be a major benefit to owning both. Sony is in a unique position to make this happen if the specs are in fact in the correct neighborhood.
One thing is for sure, lots of gamers out there are unfortunately going to be faced with a decision soon. For many of us in this heart economy it’s either the 3DS or the PSP2, most likely not both. The main factor in the decision making on this for those who are following the news and compiling their own information, rather than just going on ads alone, will be the game selection upon launch.
We already know that Nintendo has what it takes to keep gamers occupied after launch playing interesting games. We also know that Sony’s hand-held is capable of doing pretty much any game concept better if the developers put the work in. There are rumblings of a Resident Evil, Mortal Kombat, and even Uncharted title for the new system, lord knows what other wonders have yet to be divulged. The question then becomes, will the games be ready in time?
When the PSP2 does drop, you can be sure there will be a line a mile long at the Boston GameStop to pick it up at midnight. My advice? Get there early and wear comfortable shoes, a blanket may also be in order if it is Winter time.