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Mobile Gaming

01 May 08

What does it mean to play portable games? When we think of video games we think of either PC games or console games such as those for the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. The average consumer is usually unaware of the fact that you can play games anywhere you want these days all via portable gaming consoles or handhelds.

So, what are they? Where can you get them? Why do people buy them? We attempt to answer some of these questions as we venture into the world of Gaming on the Go.

Humble beginnings
In the beginning, most gamers played on their personal computers (or PC’s). But there were also various consoles dating way back to the early 1980’s. Dreamcast, Sega, SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System), all of these brand names may be lost on many gamers now, but they represent the very humble beginnings of what can now be considered the ‘Console Gaming Generation’ which in turn is part of what makes the next-generation of consoles today. And from this branch of console gaming we find the portable gaming systems.

Each portable (handheld) console comes complete with its very own unique style and appeal. Some of these portable consoles carry big brand names such as the Sony PlayStation Portable (or PSP), the Nintendo DS, the GBA (Gameboy Advance) and Gameboy Micro.

a lot less bulky and will definitely appeal to those gamers out there who think ‘less is more’. Game Console turned the Sony PlayStation Lite inside out last year in one of our previous issues but to summarise, both models are equally worth the investment.
The main reason for buying a Sony PlayStation Portable is for its flexibility and expansiveness. The PSP is able to play movies, music, browse the internet, play games and that’s just touching the surface. You can also use your PSP as a remote control unit that connects to your PlayStation 3!

There is no other handheld gaming console on the market today that can do all that the Sony PSP can do. And that’s got to be a good reason to consider investing in a handheld!

The Sony Playstation Portable
The Sony PSP Standard retails for about $279.00 RRP but this price may vary slightly from store to store. The Sony PSP sells in almost every major electronics retail store in New Zealand (Dick Smiths, Harvey Norman, and Noel Leeming) as well as all good gaming stores nationwide.

Official website: www.us.playstation.com/PSP/About
The Nintendo DS
The Nintendo DS (Nintendo Developer’s System or ‘NDS’ for short) is a seventh generation handheld console first made available in November 2004. Since its release, the DS has gained substantial momentum in the console market, selling an estimated 64.79 million units worldwide (as at December 2007).

The DS is different in many ways to the Sony brand of handheld consoles. Whilst the Nintendo DS may not be as expansive as the Sony PSP, it still has the capacity to connect to Wi-Fi hubs (which gives the DS the option to go online) and has the ability to connect to other DS consoles for networked play. So, not only can you have copious amounts of fun playing single player games, but you can also share the fun with friends. The ‘Pictochat’ option also gives gamers the option to chat to other DS users via a local network connection.

The types of games on offer for the Nintendo DS range from the cute (Nintendogs) to the super action-packed multiplayer games made famous by the Nintendo brand such as Mario Party and Mario Kart both for DS.

The Nintendo DS is hugely popular with a lot of casual gamers (especially the younger demographic) and with many female gamers. The undeniable ‘cutesy’ appeal really seems to have become a part of the Nintendo brand over the years.

The Nintendo DS is available in a range of colours with a wide range of accessories to suit everyone’s tastes. The DS is available again in all good electronics stores, gaming stores and various retail outlets throughout the country.

For more information on the Nintendo DS, you may visit the official website for the product here:

Official website: www.nintendo.co.nz/

No matter what your taste in gaming, if you’re the type of gamer that’s looking for ways to play games on the go; you can’t go wrong with either the PlayStation Portable or the Nintendo DS. It all comes down to individual style and your personal choice in games.

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