Sony: La Vita loca

85 percent awesome.

Get ready to empty your already near-desolate bank accounts. Sony’s new portable system, the Vita, is finally here. It offers graphics and gameplay that just about rival current gen systems and, best of all, allows you to play on the toilet. Here are reviews of two standout launch titles.

‘Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational’
Console:?Playstation Vita
Company: Sony
Grade: 4/5

This series is a weird mix. Aesthetically it’s a loud, often cacophonous, hodgepodge of Japanese tomfoolery. Below all of that, though, lurks one of the most realistic and fun golf sims on the market. This version could easily fool people into thinking it’s for the PS3. It looks great, plays great and offers up robust Internet functionality. The controls alone are enough to make you swear off tablet and smartphone golf games for life. It’s a pleasure to plan and execute shots using real buttons with no worry of touch-screen accidents. The game’s only downside is its steep difficulty. Even Sam Snead would have trouble getting a gold medal on the later stages.

‘Uncharted: Golden Abyss’

Console: Playstation Vita
Company: Sony
Grade: 4/5
Can a portable version of Sony’s biggest blockbuster franchise offer up the same cinematic thrills as its console counterpart? Well, just about. Using our comparo-tron supercomputer we have ascertained that this new “Uncharted” is about 85 percent as awesome as the PS3 versions. Still, 85 percent in the palm of your hand is pretty astounding.

What’s right? Almost everything. The graphics are unreal and make you want to nudge the person next to you to check it out. The story and voice-acting are as great as you remember, sending Nathan Drake in search of a lost city of gold. Ditto for the gameplay. It’s the same mix of action and puzzle-solving you know and love only, well, smaller. The game does lack some of the “holy crap” set-piece moments the series is known for, though.


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