Pac-Man Championship Edition (Namco Bandai)
Everyone loves Pac Man. There, I’ve said it. This Championship Edition takes the classic and adds a new twist to the gameplay. Visually it adds a generous splash of psychedelic colours bringing the maze to life, while turning the game on its head. Now played against a time limit with dots only appearing on part of the screen at a time until you collect fruit, it intensifies the pace of the game making it even more of a challenge.
Vector TD (Frima)
While we’ve seen a plethora of tower defense games appear on the PS Vita, this hi-tech release is arguably my favourite. With it’s bold neon visuals, thumping soundtrack and intense gameplay it’s the one that I’ve returned to more than all of the others I have purchased combined. It may only have three maps but it will take a long time before you beat those and even when you do, you’ll still be back for more.
Doodle Fit (Gamelion)
The real beauty of handheld gaming is the fact that there are countless titles out there designed specifically for quick pick-up-and-play sessions, ideal for gaming on the go or when you just want a ten minute fix to pass some time without worrying about whether you can fit it in to your daily schedule. Doodle Fit is one of those games and and is a fantastic little puzzle game that’s easy to pick up yet fiendishly addictive. The concept is simple – you’re presented with an empty geometric shape, and a set of pieces that you have to fit into it to fill it up. Do so and you move on to the next puzzle. Pieces can be moved and rotated and most puzzles have more than one possible solution giving the game extra long term appeal. With addictive gameplay, neat hand-drawn sketch-style visuals and great sound, this is one for puzzle fans everywhere.
Dracula Undead Awakening (Chillingo)
The PSP isn’t the first system that immediately springs to mind when you think about twin-stick shooters but it’s managed to deliver a few titles that have been accomplished shooters in their own right. As well as the PSP port of Super Stardust, Dracula Undead Awakening is one of the hidden gems on the platform. Using the action buttons to control the direction of fire and the analogue stick for movement, it’s you against wave after wave of the undead (with the occasional appearance from old Dracula himself). Armed with just a small pistol to start off with, you can collect coins from corpses as they fall to buy bigger and better weapons for your arsenal along with ammunition, boost your weapons and your own abilities as your character grows as you hope to survive each onslaught.
With several game modes to choose from, spread over different themed areas the solid gameplay is backed up with great graphics, a superb soundtrack and spine-chilling sound effects that really bring the game to life.
Fighting Fantasy – Talisman Of Death (Laughing Jackal)
The PSP was fortunate to receive not one but two Fighting Fantasy games as part of the Minis range. More of the same and yet another essential purchase for fans of the series. From a gaming point of view, these could really be thought of as the forerunners to visual novels and they won’t be to everyone’s tastes but if like me you grew up on these books in the 80s then they’re a must have.