Best PSP Games – Push Square

Best PSP Games PlayStation Portable 1
Image: Push Square

What are the best PSP games? First released on 12th December, 2004 in its native Japan, Sony’s initial foray into the handheld arena followed years and years of speculation. The company officially acknowledged the device a year prior, at E3 2003, with PlayStation creator Ken Kutaragi describing it as a “Walkman for the 21st Century”. In many ways, the product was a trailblazer, launching several years before the first iPhone and offering media capabilities such as MP3 playback and UMD movies. It’d later receive add-ons to transform it into a satnav, webcam, and much more.

Of course, in addition that free copy of Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man 2 which was available alongside the delayed European release, the PSP played hosted to a wealth of outstanding games. Packing the kind of horsepower that its rival the Nintendo DS could only dream of, Sony marketed it as a console you could take on a road trip. And third-party support was impressive: in North America, specifically, it launched alongside games like Metal Gear Acid, Lumines, WipEout Pure, and Twisted Metal: Head-On. It would go on to receive three original Grand Theft Auto games, and even high-profile spin-offs to Ratchet & Clank, Jak & Daxter, and God of War.

Best PSP Games PlayStation Portable 2
Image: Push Square

Sony revised the hardware a number of times over the years, improving the form factor and functionality. While the PSP-2000 and PSP-3000 merely iterated on the launch model, the sliding model PSPgo was noteworthy for being the first digital exclusive console to ever reach retail. This version also introduced the ability to suspend games at any time, really enhancing the portability of the unit. It was succeeded by a budget PSP Street model in Europe only, which reinstated the UMD drive but cut back on some of the core features in order to bring the price point down.

The PSP was also notable for its pioneering XMB interface, which would later be adopted by the PS3 as well. Also known as the Cross Media Bar, this aggregated all of the system’s core media features into a series of tabs, allowing players to transition seamlessly between music, movies, and games. It also introduced the PS Store, which players could use to download demos and purchase games, including classic PS1 titles which ran flawlessly on the format. As a result of its many functions, the PSP would go on to sell 80 million units, and proved particularly popular in Japan, where games like Monster Hunter became cultural touchstones.

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In this article, we’ve rounded up the best PSP games based on your votes. This is a definitive list determined by your ratings, so if you happen to see anything you disagree with, remember you can do something about it. Please do keep in mind that a game will need at least 20 ratings in order to appear on our list, so that may explain why your favourite is missing. Nevertheless, if you would like to submit some scores, you can do so using the search panel below to do so.

Best PlayStation Games by Platform

With all that said, scroll down for our definitive list of the best PSP games, as determined by you…

34. Assassin’s Creed: Bloodlines (PSP)

Assassin's Creed: Bloodlines (PSP)Assassin's Creed: Bloodlines (PSP)

Publisher: Ubisoft / Developer: Ubisoft Montreal

Release Date: 17th Nov 2009 (USA) / 20th Nov 2009 (UK/EU)

33. Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy (PSP)

Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy (PSP)Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy (PSP)

Publisher: Square Enix / Developer: Square Enix

Release Date: 22nd Mar 2011 (USA) / 25th Mar 2011 (UK/EU)

An enhanced and expanded version of the original Dissidia, the eye-rollingly named Dissidia 012 is basically the best Final Fantasy fighting game ever made, even though it isn’t really a fighting game. Although some precariously balanced combat mechanics do dampen the fun, the joy that comes with battering your favourite Final Fantasy characters with your other favourite Final Fantasy characters is worth the learning curve. Still regarded by some fans as one of the series’ best spinoffs, and so it’s a bit of a shame that it was never remastered or ported to other systems.

32. Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (PSP)

Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (PSP)Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (PSP)

Publisher: Rockstar / Developer: Rockstar Leeds

Release Date: 17th Mar 2009 (USA) / 19th Mar 2009 (UK/EU)

31. Final Fantasy III (PSP)

Final Fantasy III (PSP)Final Fantasy III (PSP)

Publisher: Square Enix / Developer: Square Enix

Release Date: 25th Sep 2012 (USA) / 26th Sep 2012 (UK/EU)

Like the original Final Fantasy, there’s a straightforwardness to Final Fantasy III that makes it easy to play and enjoy. Crystals! Dungeons! Four heroes of light! This is an early instalment that’s been remastered and remade numerous times, but it still holds up, and the experience is strengthened by an enjoyable job system that lets you customise the party to your liking.

30. Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PSP)

Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PSP)Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PSP)

Publisher: Rockstar / Developer: Rockstar Leeds

Release Date: 24th Oct 2005 (USA) / 4th Nov 2005 (UK/EU)

A mind-boggling achievement at the time: Rockstar managed to squeeze its entire Liberty City sandbox onto Sony’s spangly handheld hardware, delivering a full GTA story on the go. Although GTA: Liberty City Stories is set in 1998, prior to the events of GTA 3, many characters from the seminal PS2 title cameo, further fleshing out Rockstar’s fictional world. The gameplay is somewhat limited compared to contemporary entries – there are no aircrafts, for example – but having an open world in your hands was simply stunning in 2005.

29. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PSP)

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PSP)Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PSP)

Publisher: Rockstar / Developer: Rockstar Leeds

Release Date: 31st Oct 2006 (USA) / 3rd Nov 2006 (UK/EU)

GTA: Vice City Stories is the second major handheld instalment in Rockstar’s crime series, and it turns back time to 1984, two years before Vice City. Playing as military corporal Victor ‘Vic’ Vance, the release sticks closely to the blueprints established by its contemporaries, seeing you building a criminal empire by purchasing rackets and compounds.

28. Metal Gear Acid (PSP)

Metal Gear Acid (PSP)Metal Gear Acid (PSP)

Publisher: Konami / Developer: KCEJ

Release Date: 24th Mar 2005 (USA) / 1st Sep 2005 (UK/EU)

27. Patapon (PSP)

Patapon (PSP)Patapon (PSP)

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment / Developer: SCE Japan Studio

Release Date: 26th Feb 2008 (USA) / 22nd Feb 2008 (UK/EU)

Pata-pata-pata PON! If you’ve played even a minute of this unusual PSP game, you’ll remember its iconic and fiendishly catchy chants. Casting you as an ethereal deity, you command a growing fleet of tribal eyeball creatures as they hunt for food, battle encroaching armies, and storm into new territory. The odd combination of rhythm and strategy, not to mention that smooth vector art style, makes Patapon wholly unique even today, but it’s the satisfying grind of building your army, mastering the beat, and leading those critters to victory that players will fondly remember. It’s since been treated to a remaster on PS4, but the short stages were built for a handheld, meaning the original is arguably still the best experience. A charming, addictive game that’s become synonymous with PSP.

26. Resistance Retribution (PSP)

Resistance Retribution (PSP)Resistance Retribution (PSP)

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment / Developer: Sony Bend Studios

Release Date: 17th Mar 2009 (USA) / 20th Mar 2009 (UK/EU)

25. Gran Turismo (PSP)

Gran Turismo (PSP)Gran Turismo (PSP)

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment / Developer: Polyphony Digital

Release Date: 1st Oct 2009 (USA) / 1st Oct 2009 (UK/EU)

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