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August 11, 2005
PSP Previews & SchedulePSP UMD Movie Schedule

PLAYSTATION PORTABLE
AUSTRALIAN LAUNCH EVENT
THE SYSTEM & MOVIES

Well here we are for the second part of our PSP launch coverage. If you missed Part One in which we covered the presentations then check it out first. In this part we give some impressions of the system however also disclose the monster list of movies due out this year from Sony Pictures. Some of the titles surprised even us. Anyway onto Part Two...

THE SYSTEM

In the last couple of months we've had the privilege of playing the PSP on several occasions. Not only have we played games such as Ridge Racer from Namco, Wipeout Pure from Sony and Lumines from Q Entertainment but we have also sampled movies such as Spiderman 2 and Kill Bill Volume 1. This, however, was our first opportunity to not only spend considerable time with the system, but also look at many upcoming movies.

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This is it... PSP.
When talking about the system there are a couple of things that really shock people the first time the handle it. I loved watching first reactions and listening to comments. "It's a lot smaller then we thought" or "It's so light" or "The screen is fantastic" were phrases heard several times during the event from members of the press that had never seen the system.

Indeed the system is as slick as any other videogame, music or movie hardware ever released. The system is remarkable small with dimensions of 17cm by 7.5cm and a depth of only 2.5cm. It really is small enough to slip into your pocket as Sony kept reminding us. Now, we've already gone through the tech specs of the system in the past (and can be read here) however it's not until you see the system in action you that you truly appreciate just how nice the LCD screen is. It's bright, vibrant and, more importantly, extremely sharp. We did have some concerns about how well the display could show small details such as the tennis ball in Virtua Tennis World Tour, however it turned not to be an issue in the slightest.

THE MOVIES

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Director's Cut...
We already covered the commitment from the movie studios with, unsurprisingly, Sony Pictures showing the biggest commitment to the format. On the show floor the company had many movies on display including the likes of Hollow Man, Anacondas: Hunt for Blood Orchid, XXX: The Next Level, Spiderman 2 and SWAT among others. It was a wide variety and while we didn't spend too long looking at each movie - we hope to review some of these following the systems launch - what was there was very impressive. The images were extremely sharp and even in fast action scenes the PSP is more then capable of reproducing the finest details. Sound quality was a bit hard to test given the noise in the room, but seemed very good to us as well.

The big surprise, however, was confirmation of Sony Pictures of their movie release schedule until the end of the year. Their releases are as follows...

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On UMD before DVD!
MOVIES AVAILABLE AT LAUNCH:
A Knight's Tale, Anacondas: Hunt for the Blood Orchid, Bad Boys, Be Cool (launching prior to DVD release), Charlie's Angels, Ghostbusters, Hellboy, Hitch, Hollow Man, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Resident Evil: Apocolypse, Steamboy, S.W.A.T., The One, The Punisher, XXX, XXX: The Next Level (launching prior to DVD release) and You Got Served.

MOVIES AVAILABLE IN OCTOBER:
The Amityville Horror (2005), The Animal, Godzilla, The Mask of Zorro, Thir13EN Ghosts and Black Hawk Down.

MOVIES AVAILABLE IN NOVEMBER:
Bewitched, Kung Fu Hustle, Ringers: Lord of the Fans, Beauty Shop, Stargate Atlantis: Season One Pilot, The Longest Yard, Big Fish, The Fifth Element, Christmas with the Kranks, Jumanji, Seinfeld Seasons 1-3 (TBC), Snatch, Coyboy Beebop, Monty Python & Holy Grail, Hackers, Heavy Metal, Bad Santa, Species and The Terminator.

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Hitch, quite a funny movie.
MOVIES AVAILABLE IN DECEMBER:
Stuart Little, Stuart Little 2, Stuart Little 3: Call of the Wild, Lords of Dogtown, Layer Cake, Final Fantasy 7: Advent Children, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, The Dark Crystal, Labryinth, Mr Deeds, Big Daddy, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Welcome to the Jungle, Walking Tall, Spiderman, Suspect Zero and Robocop.

That's about it from the movie front from Sony Pictures. This aspect of the PSP is one which we have become more and more excited about every day, taking episodes of Seinfeld on the road would be an awesome option - let's hope they decide to do it! There are plenty of other big movies from other studios as well so don't think this is all of them either.

The third part of this coverage will look at the games. Stay Tuned.


CONTINUE TO PART THREE WHERE WE LOOK AT THE GAMES.