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Boom! Sony Announces PSP2 and Looks to Mobile Gaming

January 28, 2011

It’s been a long time coming and has often been called “the worse kept secret in games” but finally the PSP2 is unveiled.  Now there is much about this I can’t say, so my comment is going to be mainly based around the public announcements on this.  So first off there’s the PSP2 – aka NGP or Next Generation Portable:

Sony has unveiled the successor to the PSP, codenamed the Next Generation Portable.

The console boasts dual analogue sticks, front and rear touchpads, Sixaxis motion control, a three axis compass and 3G and wifi support.

It also features a physical media slot for a card format and the familiar Dpad and PlayStation buttons, a 5 inch OLED display claimed to be four times the resolution of the PSP and front and rear cameras.

The system is due for release during the Christmas holiday season this year, according to Sony.

“Our goal is to transform every aspect of your everyday life into entertainment,” said Sony’s Kaz Hirai during the PlayStation Meeting in Tokyo today.

'Sony lifts lid on Next Generation Portable console' Screenshot 1

Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida demonstrated a number of games for the system including Golf Next, Gravity Daze and Killzone, augmented reality software, and a title in the Uncharted series, highlighting the use of touchpads and motion control.

Now Sony were always going to do a new handheld. The question was just when and what. The thinking is good; lots of Augmented Reality systems, touchscreens and Sony’s now trademark feature – a powerful visual engine. They are looking to sell it for around $300. Another positive is that this device is now looking to the networked world, rather than trying to build an enclave within. So Sony are embracing Android (though not running the PSP2 as I understand it) but also looking to allow greater portability and connectivity. This is a good step and a shot across the bows to the growing gaming behemoth of Apple (thanks to iPad and iPhone).

As ever with such things, the devil is in the detail – how good the games are, how connected it is, how easy the shop/app system is to use and the ease of access for both developers and gamers. The response so far from developers is reportedly positive, so that is a big plus. It’s going to be an interesting gaming world with the PSP2 in…

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