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Posted by Brad

With today's release of the PSPgo, perhaps you're looking for some new PSP games to anticipate. How about Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars? The acclaimed DS game from earlier this year is on the way to PSPs of all stripes later this month, and, believe it or not, it seems to have smoothly made the transition between these two very different handhelds.


That's probably because at its heart, the DS iteration of Chinatown Wars followed the overhead, d-pad-driven gameplay model established by the original Grand Theft Auto games eons ago (in the '90s). So the core of Chinatown Wars transferred easily to the PSP and its similar control layout, and I can report from playing through a couple of missions in the PSP version that if you ever played any of those original GTA games back in the day--or heck, if you think you can handle driving cars and running little criminal dudes around from an overhead perspective--you'll be able to get down with Chinatown Wars on the PSP.

Of course, the DS did have some touch-controlled elements, including a number of minigame-like challenges when you wanted to do things like hotwiring a car. Those have all been brought over to the PSP and adapted to the more traditional control scheme, save the tollbooth bit where you slid money over to the agent with the stylus. So you aren't really missing out on any content here by playing the PSP version of the game.

On the contrary, you're gaining better visuals, since Rockstar Leeds has used the PSP's extra horsepower to beef up things like texture resolution and lighting effects. It didn't look like a whole new game from what I played, but it did look a bit sharper. Here's a few new shots so you can take a gander, and Rockstar says some video of the PSP version is on the way soonish. Game is out on the 20th of October, so you won't have long to wait on this one.  
 

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Posted by eroticfishcake

Keeping the overhead perspective I see.

Posted by Szlifier

I can't wait for it. It's a great DS game and PSP only makes it better.

Posted by MrKlorox
@eroticfishcake: it's the same game dude
Posted by JJOR64

If I end up getting this game, I think I'll get the DS version.

Posted by eroticfishcake
@MrKlorox: I gathered that. I just thought they would've changed it more to the perspective of Vice/Liberty City Stories, that's all. 'Course, I have no problem with this one.
Posted by ryanwho

I really don't know why they thought this would help the game, porting it to a less popular console. The reality is the GTA people want to play isn't overhead and doesn't take place in Chinatown.

Posted by Tirrandir

Hrm.  Will I buy this again?  Chinatown Wars might actually be my favorite of the GTAs I've played (everything from GTA3 onward).  But ... why buy it again? 

Posted by AgentJ
@Tirrandir said:
" Hrm.  Will I buy this again?  Chinatown Wars might actually be my favorite of the GTAs I've played (everything from GTA3 onward).  But ... why buy it again?  "
For people who only have PSPs, the game is most certainly worth it. For people who own the game already for the DS? I can't see any good reason.
Posted by animateria

Seems a bit backward if you consider the other PSP GTAs being in proper 3rd person.

Posted by AjayRaz

i hate myself for stopping my game playing about 10 missions in. the game is fucking awesome, but i.. just lost interest. one day i'll have to pick my DS up and play it again. I did get it on release date, too so there's no excuse for not beating it :( 

Posted by Dan_CiTi

I'm glad they'e keeping it overhead. This looks to be the best portable GTA by far.

Posted by Tirrandir
@AgentJ: Oh, I don't disagree with them releasing it on PSP.  Though, like ... in my head, everyone owns a DS.  How could you be up on games and not have one?  Lol.  I mean, just look at your avatar!
Posted by AgentJ
@Dan_CiTi said:
" I'm glad they'e keeping it overhead. This looks to be the best portable GTA by far. "
It already is :P
Posted by AgentJ
@Tirrandir said:
" @AgentJ: Oh, I don't disagree with them releasing it on PSP.  Though, like ... in my head, everyone owns a DS.  How could you be up on games and not have one?  Lol.  I mean, just look at your avatar! "
It's hard for me to understand too. Unfortunately, some people have an impression of Nintendo that prevents them from buying it for fear of their own reputation. (i.e. they think it's for kidz)
Posted by catalystex
@animateria said:
" Seems a bit backward if you consider the other PSP GTAs being in proper 3rd person. "
Well if you consider the fact that the game was designed for the DS it starts to make sense.
Posted by catalystex
@ryanwho said:
" I really don't know why they thought this would help the game, porting it to a less popular console. The reality is the GTA people want to play isn't overhead and doesn't take place in Chinatown. "
I think it has been proven that more mature games don't too as well on Nintendo systems (see sales for just about any mature rated Nintendo game). There may be fewer PSPs than DS handhelds, but I'm sure there's a bigger market for these games on the PSP.
Posted by Kayrack

not really that interested. I played the ds one for a bit and haven't picked it up again. Its fun, but just not my thing

Edited by Emilio

BUY THIS GAME!!!!

 
Seriously, guys. I had a huge blast playing the DS version, and since I don't own a PSP, I won't be able to try the PSP version. BUT, for those of you who do own a PSP and no DS, get this game! 
 
Please think of it as an extension to GTA. If you loved the 1 & 2, and are fan of 3 and its expansions, and of course if you loved going through Liberty City in IV, this is really a solid game for you. The driving controls are awesome, the mayhem is everywhere, and they even added some old weapons like the minigun and flamethrower, while adding a taser. 
 
In the DS version you would use your PDA to buy weapons, which then get shipped to your nearest hide out. 
 
The drug money game is also really fun. Basically you just cruise around the city while not in a mission looking for dealers buying and selling all sorts of fun drugs. These guys can make you big bucks for buying weapons and armor. And there's an added feature where you can replay ANY mission you just took.
 
Hey, even if you don't like the Grand Theft Auto series, you can still find a lot of enjoyment from this game. 
 
Oh, and I'm sure you can expect some free extra missions and unlocks from Rockstar's Social Club. 
Posted by GreggD
@Emilio: Got enough bold in there?
Posted by Moztacular

those graphics do look sharper, but i really enjoyed playing it on the DS with that touch screen stuff. Definately a good game

Edited by Ravenlock

It was a fantastic experience on the DS, so I can only imagine it's just as enjoyable on the PSP. Highly recommended if that's your portable of choice. The mechanic where you crash cop cars a la Burnout to lower your wanted rating was the most fun driving idea GTA's ever had, and deserves to make its way into the console titles.

Posted by Emilio
@GreggD:  
Sorry, I tried to edit it but it just keeps bolding.
Posted by Media_Master

I'll probably still get the DS version.

Posted by tmlim

Guess one of the big questions is:  Is it worth it to get it if you already have the DS version.  Right now, I'm saying probably not.

Posted by JoelTGM

I don't know about that overhead perspective... I found vice city worked really well on the PSP.  To me the fun of it is smashing cars and flipping stuff over in a 3D world, and a 2d overhead perspective loses all that.

Posted by GreggD
@Emilio: I wouldn't worry about it, too much. 
 
@DOUBLESHOCK: It works really well. The cars have physics, as if it were in 3D. In fact, it is in 3D, just with a top-down perspective. Once you get into a cop chase in that game, you'll know what I'm talking about. :)
Edited by animateria
@catalystex said:

" @animateria said:

" Seems a bit backward if you consider the other PSP GTAs being in proper 3rd person. "
Well if you consider the fact that the game was designed for the DS it starts to make sense. "
Actually, it doesn't because nobody normally does a DS to PSP port.
 
Top down perspective works for the DS's limitations. The PSP can handle much more.
Posted by Meowayne
@animateria said:
" Seems a bit backward if you consider the other PSP GTAs being in proper 3rd person. "
Seems like a giant leap forward considering the top-down GTAs are significantly better than everything that came after and Chinatown Wars is wideley considered the best GTA ever.
Posted by Karmann
@Meowayne: nah, not really, GTA4 won pretty much every GotY award out there, ChinaTown won squat.
Posted by Emilio
@animateria:
The DS can also do a third person perspective like the GTA Stories games. What Rockstar did with this title was something different. You're Vice City Stories and Liberty City Stories are what they are. They're just expansions to Vice City and GTA III. Chinatown Wars is an entirely new game, with a new story, with new characters, and new mechanics, set in a familiar setting.  
 
If a demo comes out for the game, I hope you at least try it.
 
@Karmann:  
Because nobody bought it. But find someone who played the game and they will surely tell you that it at least is better than every other GTA. 
Posted by FuzzYLemoN

I feel like such a chump for buying the DS version now. :\

Posted by Emilio
@FuzzYLemoN:  
Did you have a blast with the DS version?
Posted by FuzzYLemoN
@Emilio said:
" @FuzzYLemoN:  Did you have a blast with the DS version? "
It was pretty meh. I haven't finished it.
Edited by Al3xand3r

It looks sharper but it also looks very different. It doesn't have the cartoony styling anymore and looks off.

@Emilio said

"@Karmann:  Because nobody bought it. But find someone who played the game and they will surely tell you that it at least is better than every other GTA.  "

Um, it sold over 700k copies so far. I doubt the PSP version will do much (any?) better, save for the expected bump thanks to the GTA fanbase having one for past games, exactly because most people want GTA in III style. If Rockstar expected more, they were out of their minds to do so.

@FuzzYLemoN said:

" @Emilio said:

" @FuzzYLemoN:  Did you have a blast with the DS version? "

It was pretty meh. I haven't finished it. "
So how does a new version that plays almost identically make you feel like a chump "now" then? You'd enjoy it more just because of the platform change? If it was meh on the DS, then it's meh on the PSP, with slightly sharper visuals on top. You should have felt like a chump before.
Posted by fillmoejoe

Will this have voice acting?

Posted by sublime90

looks nice, but i'll just stick with my DS version

Posted by LordAndrew
@animateria: It can handle much more, but does it need much more? I have yet to play it, but Chinatown Wars is considered by many to be a fantastic game. PSP owners should be glad they're getting it.