Playstation Network Wrap-Up for April 22nd, 2010

Normally, I judge these updates on the games that come out. If more good games come out than bad games, I give it a thumbs up, and vice versa. But one would notice that I almost never talk about auxiliary things like downloadable content or premium themes unless something is significant. My focus is more on educating consumers about new products than pointing out that old products have a few new toys.

This is the rare exception where a non-game download is the highlight of the week, at least in my eyes.

Major League Baseball today released the app. For subscribers to the service, this allows streaming of any baseball game from your PS3. When I say any game, I mean any game from the 2010 season. I could go back right now and watch the opening night game between the Yankees and the Red Sox if I wanted to, though it should be noted that blackout restrictions are still in play for live games (meaning, I can’t watch live Yankees, Red Sox or Mets games in Connecticut, but I could watch their replays). In short, it’s an amazing package, and though I’m unsure of just how good the quality is – this is streaming from the internet, after all – it’s heartening to see that the majority of the feeds I see are in HD.

One caveat I must point out is that while this particular application is free, an subscription is necessary for this; you won’t get anywhere without one, and they’re a minimum of $100 for the year and $20 for a monthly package. That’s steep, but for baseball fans, I can’t think of a better deal. For me, I was waffling between the $120 yearly subscription for, the $200 subscription to Extra Innings, or just sticking with the $15 iPhone app I’ve already bought which allows for gameday audio. This made my decision, as it’s not only $80 cheaper than Extra Innings, it allows me to watch archived games on my TV, in HD. This is huge because otherwise, to get work done, I’d have to either have the game on in the background, or use my laptop to write. This app might mean absolutely nothing to non-baseball fans, but for people like me that love the game, this is a must-have that not only makes the PS3 the best option to watch baseball, it also makes Extra Innings extinct. If the NHL does something similar to this, I might shit myself.

Now, let’s talk about things that the majority of our reader base actually care about. There are a few games out for the service this week, starting with yet another retro remake in the form of After Burner Climax. Naturally, this is a revisiting of original arcade hit After Burner, only without the insanely awesome cabinets (links to the game’s Killer List of Videogames page). Naturally, because the PSN’s system is demo-retarded, I had to try the 360 version so I could get a taste, and let me assure anyone scared that AM2 screwed this up: the demo made me fall in love with this game more than I ever fell in love with the original. This is absolutely an arcade game with the assistance of modern technology, so don’t go in expecting a deep experience like Microsoft Flight Simulator. But for those of you that think Ace Combat is “too heavy”, this is definitely up your alley, and worth $10.

Also out is Konami’s rip-off of Puzzle Quest, Puzzle Chronicles. It’s actually a little unfair to call this game a “rip-off”, considering it was developed by the same people that created Puzzle Quest, but the fact remains that this is so similar to the latter game that it’s hard to separate them. Aaron Sirois reviewed the PSP version, and was ambivalent about it. It only costs $10, but there are better games to be had for that price.

There’s also Secret of Monkey Island Special Edition, also available for $10. This is a reimaging/remake of the original Secret of Monkey Island, the 1990 PC game from Lucasarts, back before they just shat out Star Wars games. As nice as this game is, fact is that anyone that was truly interested in it picked it up for Steam when it was being given away for free. I would wait for one of Steam’s crazy, 80% off sales before investing in this game unless gaming on a PC isn’t possible. Finally, we have a YABC called Hyperballoid HD. Yawn. Again, if you have a PC that can play games, spend an extra $5 and get Shatter instead.

On the demo front, we actually have some news! There’s an online multiplayer demo for Lost Planet 2, the sequel to the Capcom hit from a few years back. I never did play the first game, but I’ve played with the multiplayer demo a bit, and found what might be the stiffest, most unbalanced, inefficient console shooter I’ve ever played. For some reason, by the time I got into the game, everyone I played against was an expert on the game, and the game’s grappling mechanism, so I spent my entire time trying to shoot people, and getting blown up by grenades. Don’t take this as an indictment of my playing ability – I dislike console shooters, but I’m not unable to play them – but someone would throw a grenade, and I would try to lumber out of the way and vainly grapple my way out of danger. The guns – unless you end up on a turret – are 100% useless, and I spent every game session either wondering how I died, trying ineffectively to shoot people when one well-placed grenade is all it ever takes, or getting kills purely by accident before being blown up by a stray grenade. I hated this game, but maybe people that are used to console shooters – or finding the one way to win said console shooters – would like this more. The demo is free to try, so judge for yourself, but I couldn’t want to get done playing it.

In terms of sales, we don’t have much this week. This week’s Spring Fever sale involves two action games being sold at 50% discounts: Ratchet & Clank Quest for Booty ($7.50) and Revenge of the Wounded Dragons ($5). The former is a game aimed squarely at my heart: a good purchase for someone that isn’t into the series, but needs an affordable introduction. Robert Capra was high on the game back when it was released, and $7.50 seems like a great price point for it. Other than that, it’s all Ubisoft games:

Tom Clancy’s HAWX: European Assault Pack Sale (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Tom Clancy’s HAWX: US Eagles Pack Sale (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Petz Dogz Family Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)
Petz Hamsterz Bunch Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)
Petz Saddle Club Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)

All I have to say about this is that anyone that willingly purchases a Petz game is a bad person. Seriously, find a DS and a copy of Nintendogs instead. Don’t buy this derivative, poorly made, over-publicized crap. Please.

Everything from this point forward can be smushed into one paragraph. The one PSP game we received is Uno, the same game as the PS3 version, which is decidedly inferior to the 360 version, and also $3 more expensive at $8. Finally, there’s PS one “Classic”: XS Moto. I wish Sony would stop screwing around and either release something worth playing – the last quality PS one release was back on February 25th – or just come out and make it official that the PS one Classic series is just a more expensive alternative to PSP minis. Enough of this garbage.

Still, we have a couple of decent PS3 games, the 6,000th Breakout clone, and an awesome service for baseball nuts like myself. Plus, we have a shooter for those that like to play console shooters. I’ll call this week a success based on those facts. Until next time, this is Christopher Bowen, who looks at the AL East standings right now, and sees only Oakland ahead of the Mariners. Let’s just say I find them vulnerable.

EDIT: There’s one more strange thing I’m noticing that isn’t related to the PSN update, but did come about yesterday. A mandatory update for PS3 firmware was put out yesterday; according to the Guardian, this added 3D capabilities to the Playstation. While this is OK for the future, what this seems to have added for me is the lack of ability for my controller to connect wirelessly. Since the USB cable that comes with the Playstation is about three feet long, it makes any kind of portability impossible for me. Am I the only person having this problem?

The full Playstation and Comic Store updates are after the cut.

I’m excited to show everyone the new MLB.TV application for the PS3 that will be available from PlayStation Network, in both U.S. and Canada, later today. This app allows MLB.TV subscribers to watch every regular season game live in HD (local blackout restrictions do apply), with tons of new interactive features designed exclusively for PSN.

This week Spring Fever highlights Action games. 50% off Ratchet & Clank Quest for Booty (sale price $7.49, reg. $14.99) and Revenge of the Wounded Dragons (sale price$4.99, reg. $9.99) Download today! Offers good through Wednesday, 4/28/10.


Ubisoft Game Sale:

Tom Clancy’s HAWX: European Assault Pack Sale (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Tom Clancy’s HAWX: US Eagles Pack Sale (now $2.49, original price $4.99)
Petz Dogz Family Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)
Petz Hamsterz Bunch Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)

Petz Saddle Club Sale (now $14.99, original price $29.99)

Downloadable Games

Hyperballoid HD ($4.99)
Welcome to the future! Hyperballoid HD is a next-gen brick breaking game that features two visually stunning game worlds complete with animated levels and realistic physics.
As you break apart these complex creations, you’ll enjoy using outrageous new powerups and will be surprised by the game’s smooth controls.
Amazing art and animation, along with a bass-heavy techno soundtrack, will immerse you in the psychedelic world of Hyperballoid HD!
ERSB Rated E

File size: 84 MB

Puzzle Chronicles ($9.99)
Enter the dark and savage lands of the Ashurin Empire as you battle to avenge the atrocities the Empire brought upon your tribesmen. On your heroic quest to topple the Empire you will fight fierce beasts and battle hardened warriors in this new Puzzle RPG hybrid game. Featuring an active puzzle combat mechanic, deep story, and robust character development Puzzle Chronicles will bring you into the next era of Puzzle RPGs.
ERSB Rated E10+
File size: 664 MB

Secret Of Monkey Island Special Edition ($9.99)
Pirates! Adventure! Monkeys! Relive the hilarious swashbuckling misadventures of the wannabe pirate Guybrush Threepwood all in HD as he attempts to become the most infamous pirate in the Caribbean! Featuring a re-imagined contemporary art style, complete voice over by members of the original Monkey Island™ franchise cast, a re-mastered musical score, plus scene-for-scene hot swap to transition between Special Edition and Classic modes at anytime.
ERSB Rated E10+

File size: 433 MB

After Burner Climax ($9.99)
The classic arcade game After Burner has now returned for a new generation of gamers. After Burner Climax is fast and frantic action, putting you in the cockpit of the world’s fastest fighter planes. Dodge planes, rockets and bullets while trying to target multiple on-screen enemy aircraft. Take to the air and blaze through a branching storyline and over 20 stages!
ERSB Rated E10+
File size: 527 MB

Psone Classics

XS Moto ($5.99)

Take control of the Superbike and race your way to the top! Download this PS one® Classic today!
ESRB Rated E
File size: 59 MB

Game Demos (free)

Lost Planet 2 Multiplayer Demo
Join 15 other players in this multiplayer demo for the Turbulent Jungle map. Choose from either Elimination or Post Grab modes and use all the new VSs, weapons and support items from the Campaign mode. Grab your weapon and get into the heat of battle with players from all over the world!
ESRB Rated T
File size: 368 MB

Add-on Game Content

BUZZ!: The “Ëœ00 Quiz ($5.99)
Relive the greatest moments of the first decade of the 2000’s! Laugh and compete with your friends over trivia that defined the 2000’s in this BUZZ!: The “Ëœ00 Quiz pack, featuring hundreds of questions to play in your favorite BUZZ!: Quiz TV and BUZZ!: Quiz World game modes. Download this quiz pack today and challenge friends and family with new questions and “Show “Ëœem Your Trivia!”
File size: 46 MB

UNCHARTED 2: Among Thieves – Siege Expansion Pack ($5.99)
UNCHARTED 2: Among Thieves is under “SIEGE”! This new DLC Pack for 2009’s Game of the Year is loaded with 2 new multiplayer maps, “The Museum” and “The Highrise”, 11 new multiplayer Trophies to win, 6 multiplayer skins, and an intense new Co-op game mode, “Siege”! Can you hold your ground under the “SIEGE?”

Download the “Siege Expansion Pack” now!
File size: 242 MB

Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing DLC 2 – Metal Sonic & Death Egg Zone Track ($7.99)
Get your telescopic limbs, jet engine and Black Shield forcefield ready and race as new character Metal Sonic with this exclusive download! Also speed around new track the Death Egg, a huge orbital fortress created by Dr. Eggman, containing some of his most diabolical creations. Take care not to fall off the edge in the frantic battle for cosmic first place! Download the character and track pack now!
File size: 149 MB

Guitar Hero 5

For all song credits please visit

  • “Everything Is Everything” by Phoenix ($1.99)
  • “Lisztomania” by Phoenix ($1.99)
  • “1901”³ by Phoenix ($1.99)
  • Phoenix Track Pack ($5.49) – Downloadable Track Pack featuring “Everything Is Everything”, “Lisztomania”, and “1901” by Phoenix. Please Note: Many songs are available both as singles and as part of a Track Pack, so please carefully consider your purchases before downloading.

File size: 28 MB – 41 MB (singles), 369 MB (track pack)

Rock Band
Build your Rock Band library by purchasing these song game tracks. For song credits, visit

Rock Band DLC:

  • Coheed & Cambria Pack 01 ($5.49) – Build your Rock Band library by purchasing this song game track pack: The Used Pack 01. This pack includes “Blood On My Hands,” “Born To Quit,” and “The Taste Of Ink” by The Used.
  • “The Broken” – Coheed & Cambria ($1.99)
  • “Guns of Summer” – Coheed & Cambria ($1.99)
  • “Here We Are Juggernaut” – Coheed & Cambria ($1.99)
  • “American Music” – The Violent Femmes ($1.99)
  • “Peek-a-Boo” – Siouxsie & The Banshees ($1.99)
  • “Sun Hits the Sky” – Supergrass ($1.99)

Rock Band Network:

  • “Australia” – The Shins ($1.99)
  • “Code Monkey” – Jonathan Coulton ($1.99)
  • “Drunken Lullabies (Live)” – Flogging Molly ($0.99)
  • “Even Rats” – The Slip ($1.99)
  • “For the Love of God (Live)” – Steve Vai ($1.99)

File size: 23 MB – 47 MB (singles), 109 MB (track pack)

Game Videos (free)

MLB 10: The Show – Opening Day Trailer

See the Opening Day trailer! Brought to you by the most realistic baseball game ever, MLB 10 The Show.
File size: 76 MB (HD) 127 MB (1080)

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Mod Creation
Join United Front Games Associate Art Director, Roberto Oliveira, in a three part Tutorial Video series. In Part 1, Rob reveals the easy to use Mod Studio and its powerful character creation features. Players will start with a blank slate and customize every feature of their Mod. Learn about the handy features and shortcuts that will make your Mod come to life in minutes.
File size: 384 MB (HD)

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Kart Creation
Welcome back to Roberto Oliveira’s Tutorial Videos! Part 2 shows how easy it is to build a kart from scratch. Watch Rob reveal some of the handy tools that make kart creation a breeze, from color matching to visual effects. You’ll see a sampling of the hundreds of parts and accessories players can choose from to fully express themselves.
File size: 332 MB (HD)

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Track Creation
Jump in behind the seat of the revolutionary Track Studio! Roberto Oliveira wraps up his Tutorial Videos by showing you how you can drive your own track into existence. Learn about the Auto Complete and Auto Populate features that make track creation a breeze and let you start test driving right away. The deep edit tools let you tweak every part of the track that you want.
File size: 307 MB (HD)

3D Dot Game Heroes: Promo Trailer #2 Most Interesting Hero In 3D
Meet the “Most Interesting Hero in 3D” and learn how you can be just as interesting! Retro chic meets modern sleek in this, the ultimate love letter to retro gamers. Seamlessly fusing new and old, the golden era of gaming is felt in every detail of this adventure.
File size: 42 MB

Lost Planet 2 Developer Diary: Story

Get the inside scoop from Producer Jun Takeuchi as he describes the Story of Lost Planet 2.
File size: 40 MB (HD)

Red Dead Redemption: Gentlemen And Vagabonds
“Gentlemen & Vagabonds” is an introduction to just a few of the men of repute and dubious valor you’ll meet across the frontier – including Nigel West Dickens, Seth Briars, Professor Harold MacDougal and many more.
File size: 53 MB

Red Dead Redemption: Lawmen
Meet The Law – the men who aim to enforce justice against the outlaws, bandits and crooks in the wild frontier and burgeoning towns of Red Dead Redemption.

File size: 60 MB

Red Dead Redemption: The Women
Through our Red Dead Redemption video series, you’ve met John Marston, you’ve come face to face with the Law – now it’s time to meet the women of Red Dead Redemption: Sinners, Saints and Survivors.
File size: 63 MB

Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days – Debut Trailer
Get a glimpse of the stark circumstances facing gaming’s two most notorious criminals in the highly-charged debut trailer.
File size: 70 MB (HD)

Tecmo Bowl Throwback Trailer
The legend is back! Tecmo Bowl Throwback is a remake of the classic Tecmo Super Bowl, with the same rules and fast-paced gameplay as the original, but with the option to play it in brand new high definition 3D graphics. Switch it back to old school in real time with the same graphics and music from back in the day!
File size: 35 MB (SD) 38 MB (HD)

PS3 Themes

ModNation Racers: PS3 Tag Theme (free)
File size: 1.54 MB

ModNation Racers: PS3 Jez Theme (free)

File size: 1.21 MB

American Flags ($1.99)
File size: 5.69 MB

Tentakill ($1.49)
File size: 4.74 MB

Underwater Disco ($1.49)
File size: 6.03 MB

NBA Premium Themes (x16) ($1.99)
File size: 5.00 MB – 5.48 MB

PlayStation Store for PSP

Downloadable Games (also available from PS3 Storefront)

UNO ($7.99)
Get ready to call “UNO” on your PSP (PlayStation Portable) system! The world famous card game is faithfully reproduced for the PSP system and also features exciting new rules. With a multiplayer mode played locally between up to 4 PSP systems or on PlayStation Network, UNO has never been so fun and easy, so be the first to get rid of all your cards!
ESRB Rated E

File size: 29 MB

PSP Minis (also available from PS3 Storefront)

Monsters (Probably) Stole My Princess! ($4.99)
ESRB Rated E
File size: 101 MB

Hysteria Project ($1.99)
ESRB Rated E

File size: 83 MB

Homerun Hitters (PSP Only – $1.99)
ESRB Rated E
File size: 7.02 MB

Shogi (PSP Only – $1.99)
ESRB Rated E
File size: 10 MB

Charge! Tank Squad! (PSP Only – $1.99)

ESRB Rated E
File size: 7 MB

Add-on Game Content (also available from PS3 Storefront)

The Eye of Judgment Legends Card Expansion Pack Volume 2 ($1.99)
Expand your digital card collection with the second add-on card pack! Give your duels an upper hand with 5 unique cards not found in the full game, including rare and ultra rare cards. Add these cards to your deck for unique combinations to win battles against the computer, or head-to-head online against other players. Unlike other cards, these can’t be traded or earned any other way.
Download the add-on cards today!
File size: 1.51 MB

Game Videos (free)

MLB 10: The Show – Opening Day Trailer
File size: 13 MB

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Mod Creation
File size: 61 MB

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Kart Creation
File size: 52 MB

ModNation Racers – UFG Tutorial: Track Creation
File size: 52 MB

3D Dot Game Heroes: Promo Trailer #2 Most Interesting Hero In 3D
File size: 5.16 MB

3D Dot Game Heroes: Natural Sword Enhancement
File size: 5.82 MB

PSP Themes (also available from PS3 Storefront)

NBA Premium PSP Themes (x16) ($1.49)
File size: 352 KB – 406 KB

American Flags PSP Theme 1 ($1.99)
File size: 482 KB

American Flags PSP Theme 2 ($1.99)
File size: 548 KB

PSP Wallpaper (also available from PS3 Storefront) (free)

DJ Max Fever Wallpaper 5
File size: 35 KB

DJ Max Fever Wallpaper 6
File size: 28 KB

DJ Max Fever Wallpaper 7
File size: 34 KB

DJ Max Fever Wallpaper 8

File size: 34 KB

Strikers 1945 Plus Wallpaper 5
File size: 20 KB

Strikers 1945 Plus Wallpaper 6
File size: 21 KB

Comic Store Update

  • 2000AD Prog # 1676
  • Archie # 2
  • Sonic the Hedgehog # 1
  • The Beagle Boys and the Eco-Friendly Day
  • Donald Duck and Fethry Duck: “Operation Seaweed”
  • Donald Duck and the Ultralight Challenge
  • Magica De Spell and the Unscheduled Trip
  • The Mystery of the Black Pond
  • Scrooge McDuck and the Gastronomical Bills
  • Scrooge McDuck and the Mystery of the Sunken Ship
  • The Strange Case of Doctor Duckell and Mister Duckhyde
  • Superduck # 11
  • Ultraheroes # 4
  • Powers (2000) # 1
  • Powers (2000) # 2
  • Powers (2000) # 3
  • Powers (2000) # 4
  • Powers (2000) # 5
  • Powers (2000) # 6
  • Army of Two # 4
  • Bill Willingham’s Pantheon # 3
  • Dead, She Said # 1
  • G.I. Joe # 14
  • G.I. Joe Origins # 14
  • Kill Shakespeare # 1
  • Locke & Key: Crown of Shadows # 5
  • Runes of Ragnan # 4
  • Transformers: Movie Sequel: The Reign of Starscream # 5
  • Transformers: Nefarious # 1
  • Vampire Hunter D Volume 1 # 3
  • Kong: King of Skull Island # 2
  • Ritual # 2
  • Serpent Wars # 1
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 1
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 2
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 3
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 4
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 5
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 6
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 7
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 8
  • Marvels Vol.1 (1994) # 9
  • Abyss # 4
  • Atomic Robo Vol.2 # 3



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