Playstation Download Wrap-Up for January 21st, 2010

Looking back at my piece on last week’s Playstation Update, I came to a conclusion I don’t normally come to when it comes to my writing: I don’t think I was hard enough on Sony. I haven’t been paying attention to Playstation updates until recently due to the fact that I haven’t owned a system until recently, so I don’t think I truly appreciated, or at least conveyed, how pathetic last week’s update was. I was so excited about the Lunar demo that I forgot about everything else. Consumer reaction around the internet was that last week’s update was possibly the worst ever.

Unfortunately, in terms of new content, this week isn’t much better than last week, if at all. Thankfully, fans of sales will be pleased.

The big news is that ten different games, spread out over the PS3 and PSP markets, have gotten 50% price slashes for the next week. The games affected are as follows:

PS3
Gravity Crash (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
ZEN Pinball (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Critter Crunch (now $3.49, original price $6.99)
Braid (now $7.49, original price $14.99)
Burn Zombie Burn (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Tank Battles (now $3.49, original price $6.99)
Uno (now $3.99, original price $7.99)

PSP
Savage Moon: The Hera Campaign (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Crystal Defenders PSP (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Creature Defense (now $3.99, original price $7.99)
Kurulin Fusion (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Thexder Neo (now $4.99, original price $9.99)

It should be noted that, among the games involved, Kurulin Fusion and Creature Defense were particularly enjoyed by DJ Tatsujin, whereas Alex Lucard has told me that Critter Crunch is outstanding, and absolutely worth the asking price. Everything else is forgettable, or for genre fans only. In particular Alex was very hard on Thexder Neo in his review of the game.

In terms of downloadable PSP games, the new release this week is Konami’s Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment for $15. For those unaware, Vandal Hearts is a line of strategy RPGs similar in vein to Fire Emblem, which came out during the Playstation One era. This version is a prequel to the first game, which was released in 1996. Personally, I was a huge fan of Vandal Hearts – something that should be unsurprising for the biggest-name Fire Emblem fan in America – and look forward to seeing how this one turns out. Thankfully, our own Michael Merhar will be reviewing the identical XBox 360 version, so look for that sometime next week.

The other “big” change is actually not a game or a re-release, but a way for people to shop for particular content. Sony is releasing the SingStar Viewer, which allows people to shop for SingStar DLC, as well as give them a way to navigate the bustling SingStar community and rate uploaded videos and songs. I’m not a fan of music games, but I like what Sony’s doing here to set their community aside from those of Rock Band and Guitar Hero, games that, from an outsider’s view, don’t really embrace their users so much as use them. If I was into music games and could sing worth a damn, this would be a check mark in SingStar’s favour. For those interested, they have a video of how it works on the Playstation Blog.

The PSP got three downloadable games this week, or at least, three things people can spend money on. The most notable name is the Metal Gear Solid Bundle. For $30, you get the two Portable Ops games as well as the digital graphic novel. Fans of MGS likely own all three already, but if not, considering the prices that both Portable Ops games are going for, $30 is a good price for the bundle. There’s also the downloadable release of Valhalla Knights 2: Battle Stance, which is basically a patched version of the original UMD version with reduced party sizes (how is this a good thing?) as well as warp points for fast-travelling. The game costs $30, and though we haven’t reviewed the game, the rest of the internet had very negative things to say about it, so buyer beware. Finally, DJ Max Fever is $20, and though we don’t have a review of it, our resident music game expert (and real life DJ) DJ Tatsujin had this to say in our 2009 Year in Review Staff Commentaries:

Rolling in at number 10 is PM Studios’ DJ Max FEVER, one of the first games released for the year and heavily marketed as a Sony PSP exclusive in what could be called, “the year the PSP finally got serious.” From the Korean development team Pentavision, the company had long supported the system and arcades with exclusive titles and this year finally brought one of the more interesting music games developed in a while to the United States. The reason I admire the release so much is because it didn’t cave in and try to cater to an unproven North American audience. PM Studios knew it already had an existing fan base, given how the DJ Max series is easily one of the most-imported portable titles, and it brought an exclusive, easily accessible version of what these players have been experiencing for a handful of years. FEVER combines player favorite songs from DJ Max Portable and Portable 2 along with a few other surprises and tightens up the game’s career-like system. The gameplay is intense and challenging and the art and music comes from some of the best in Korea and at the price of $20, perhaps only Rock Band Unplugged can rival FEVER on the Sony PSP when it comes to music titles.

Finally, as far as PS one downloads, we get Championship Bass. When we think of EA Sports, we usually don’t think of fishing simulators, but the company tried branching out into fishing simulators in 2000. For what it is, it actually does the job pretty well. There’s a career mode as well as a regular mode – the equivalent of “exhibition” modes you see in EA’s standard fare – and each mode, regardless of where and when, requires you to drive your boat to the best fishing spot, use the right lure, and cast your rod in the best part of the lake to cast in. Once there, you have different ways of managing your line and bobbing your lure, and though actually catching a fish isn’t very intuitive to this newbie – I found the fishing game in Suikoden II to communicate better with me – it’s one of the best fishing simulators I’ve seen in terms of realism. That said, this is definitely not a good game for an arcade-like experience; catching fish can take hours of in-game time, and you’re going to spend a lot of time reading undersea cameras and standing around with your lure in the water. That, and the graphics definitely show their age; this game has NOT aged well. Overall, it’s a good simulation for fans of the sport during the winter months, but actual fans are probably going to be out on a river – or in my area, ice fishing – instead of playing Playstation.

Overall, while this is a relatively week update, the price cuts are bound to have their fans. Furthermore, there are a lot of videos, and the downloadable content for the music games is extensive. Until next week, this is Christopher Bowen, who is now tempted to get SingStar if only to see how long he can go before he receives a noise complaint or a threat of bodily harm.

The full PS Store update, including the comic update, is under the cut:


Price Updates
Gravity Crash (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
ZEN Pinball (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Critter Crunch (now $3.49, original price $6.99)
Braid (now $7.49, original price $14.99)
Burn Zombie Burn (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Tank Battles (now $3.49, original price $6.99)
Uno (now $3.99, original price $7.99)

Savage Moon: The Hera Campaign (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Crystal Defenders PSP (now $4.99, original price $9.99)
Creature Defense (now $3.99, original price $7.99)
Kurulin Fusion (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Thexder Neo (now $4.99, original price $9.99)

PS3 Store

PS3 Games
Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment ($14.99)
ESRB Rated T
File size: 581 MB

PS one Classics (Also playable on PSP)
Championship Bass ($5.99)
ESRB Rated E
File size: 151 MB

Add-On Content

SingStar Viewer (free)
File size: 93 MB

Dragon Ball: Raging Blast Warriors of Justice (free)
File size: 116 KB

WWE SmackDown vs RAW 2010 Stone Cold Steve Austin DLC ($0.99) (I believe this is the same DLC that Gamestop was giving away as a preorder bonus – CEB)
File size: 5.02 MB

Guitar Hero (# denotes a track pack)

* “Broken Man” by Scott McKeon ($1.99)
* “Lonesome Road Blues” by Joe Bonamassa ($1.99)
* “Who I Am” by Tyler Bryant ($1.99)
# New Blues Masters Track Pack ($5.49) – Downloadable Track Pack featuring “Who I Am” by Tyler Bryant, “Lonesome Road Blues” by Joe Bonamassa, and “Broken Man” by Scott McKeon. Please Note: Many songs are available both as singles and as part of a Track Pack, so please carefully consider your purchases before downloading.
* “Laser Cannon Deth Sentence” by Dethklok ($1.99)
* “Still I Rise” by Shadows Fall ($1.99)
* “Twilight of the Thunder God” by Amon Amarth ($1.99)
# Metal Track Pack ($5.49) – Downloadable Track Pack featuring “Still I Rise” by Shadows Fall, “Twilight of the Thunder God” by Amon Amarth, and “Laser Cannon Deth Sentence” by Dethklok. Please Note: Many songs are available both as singles and as part of a Track Pack, so please carefully consider your purchases before downloading.

Rock Band

* “1901””” Phoenix ($1.99)
* “Lisztomania””” Phoenix ($1.99)
* “Blue Jeans””” Silvertide ($1.99)
* “A Woman in Love (It’s Not Me) (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
* “Breakdown (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
* “Century City (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
* “Jammin’ Me (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
* “Nightwatchman (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
* “The Waiting (Live)””” Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers ($1.99)
# Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers Live Anthology Pack 2 ($9.99) – Build your Rock Band library by purchasing this song game track pack: Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers Live Anthology Pack 2. This pack includes: “A Woman in Love (It’s Not Me) (Live),” “Breakdown (Live),” “Century City (Live),” “Jammin’ Me (Live),” “Nightwatchman (Live),” and “The Waiting (Live)” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.

Game Videos (Free)

Pulse 1/21 Edition
Join host Christina Lee for PULSE presented by the PlayStation Network. This edition features the massive action of MAG, the new billiards simulator Hustle Kings, add-ons for Assassin’s Creed II and WWE SmackDown vs. Raw, new video releases, and a taste of PlayStation Network’s new reality series, The Tester.
File size: 260 MB (HD) 451 MB (1080)

Dante’s Inferno Developer Diary – Fraud
File size: 185 MB (HD)

Dante’s Inferno Developer Diary – Violence
File size: 136 MB (HD)

Army of Two: The 40th Day “Demo Trailer”
File size: 49 MB (HD)

Fairytale Fights Trailer
File size: 58 MB (HD)

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Happy Holidays Trailer
File size: 62 MB (HD)

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Adrenaline Trailer
File size: 50 MB (HD)

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Gameplay Trailer 2
File size: 42 MB (HD)

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Gameplay Trailer 3
File size: 43 MB (HD)

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Gameplay Trailer 4
File size: 62 MB (HD)

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Gameplay Trailer 5
File size: 38 MB (HD)

Hasbro Family Game Night Trailer
File size: 37 MB (HD)

Darksiders Mayhem Trailer
File size: 44 MB (HD)

Darksiders Launch Trailer
File size: 60 MB (HD)

Darksiders Heads Will Roll Trailer
File size: 46 MB (HD)

Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands Announcement Trailer
File size: 38 MB (HD)

Dynasty Warriors: Strikeforce Trailer
File size: 58 MB (HD)

Medal of Honor Announce Trailer
File size: 41 MB (HD)

PS3 Themes

Banana Girl Hook-Ups Theme ($1.99)
File size: 3.27 MB

Devil Vixen Hook-Ups Theme ($1.99)
File size: 3.87 MB

School Girl Hook-Ups Theme ($1.99)
File size: 4.31 MB

Liquid Metal 2 Theme ($1.49)
File size: 6.18 MB

PSP Store

Downloadable Games (Also available from the Playstation 3 storefront)

METAL GEAR SOLID PSP Bundle ($29.99)
ESRB Rated T- M
File size: 2.01 GB

DJ Max Fever ($19.99)
ESRB Rated T
File size: 1.38 GB

Valhalla Knights 2: Battle Stance ($29.99)
ESRB Rated E10+
File size: 696 MB

Game Videos (Free)

Pulse 1/21 Edition
File size: 50 MB

Army of Two: The 40th Day PSP Trailer
File size: 10 MB

Dante’s Inferno Game Trailer
File size: 25 MB

PSP Themes (Also available from the Playstation 3 storefront)

Liquid Metal 2 PSP Theme ($1.49)
File size: 606 KB

Dita Von Teese PSP Theme 3 ($1.49)
File size: 588 KB

Dita Von Teese PSP Theme 4 ($1.49)
File size: 556 KB

Banana Girl Hook-Ups PSP Theme ($1.99)
File size: 380 KB

Devil Vixen Hook-Ups PSP Theme ($1.99)
File size: 415 KB

School Girl Hook-Ups PSP Theme ($1.99)
File size: 367 KB

EDIT: One of these days, I’m going to remember this comic update if it fucking kills me.

Comics Update

* 2000AD Prog # 1663 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 7 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 8 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 9 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 10 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 11 – $ 1.99
* Blade (2006) # 12 – $ 1.99
* Daredevil (1998) # 90 – $ 1.99
* Daredevil (1998) # 91 – $ 1.99
* Donald Duck and Daisy Duck in: “Donald and Duckolde” # 2 – $ 1.99
* Donald Duck Replacement Lecturer # 1 – $ 0.99
* G.I. Joe: Cobra # 4 – $ 1.99
* G.I. Joe Origins # 5 – $ 1.99
* Locke & Key: Welcome to Lovecraft # 4 – $ 0.99
* Mickey Mouse and the Flavoured Bubbles # 1 – $ 0.99
* Nanovor: Game Day # 3 – $ 0.99
* Scrooge McDuck, the Blue Ice and the Song of the Sirens # 1 – $ 0.99
* Shaun the Sheep Comic # 1 – $ 0.99
* Shaun the Sheep Comic # 2 – $ 0.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 77 – $ 1.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 78 – $ 1.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 79 – $ 1.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 80 – $ 1.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 81 – $ 1.99
* The Avengers (1998) # 82 – $ 1.99
* Uncanny X-Men (2003) # 474 – $ 1.99
* Uncanny X-Men (2003) # 475 – $ 1.99
* Uncanny X-Men (2003) # 476 – $ 1.99
* Wallace & Gromit Comic # 6 – $ 0.99
* Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse: It Only Hurts When I Pee # 7 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 157 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 158 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 159 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 160 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 161 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 162 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 163 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 164 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 165 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 166 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 167 – $ 1.99
* X-Men (2004) # 168 – $ 1.99
* X-Mickey: Before the Break of the Day # 5 – $ 0.99

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