First Impressions: No one can resist the PS3-PSP connectivity of Resistance: Retribution.
The leap in videogaming was once from the arcade to the living room. Now it is from the living room to a mobile world. The continuing evolution of portable gaming, and the resulting increase in hardware units sold, has changed the landscape of game development. No longer are all portable versions of games a stripped down port of their console brethren, instead they compliment releases on other platforms, tell a different story, and, at times, offer an experience that you just can't achieve anywhere else. Resistance: Retribution, the PSP debut of the PS3 franchise, is the latest title to get this treatment.
Resistance: Retribution is filling the gap between the original Resistance: Fall of Man and last November's Resistance 2. While embracing a new lead character and taking the action to a third-person perspective, Retribution will put you in control of James Grayson, a human operative (no Chimera infection here, no sir) that joins up with the European resistance to free the continent from Chimeran control. If you don't know what I am referring to with Chimera and freeing Europe, then you probably haven't played either of the PS3 Resistance offerings. There is no prerequisite to have played those games in order to enjoy Retribution, but the story will make a lot more sense to those who have.
Portable games that continue the story of their console-based big brothers is nothing new. So, what is it that has gamers and the media buzzing about Resistance: Retribution? Connectivity between Retribution and the PS3-based Resistance 2. In a loose sense, Nintendo accomplished something similar to this with the GBA and Gamecube. However, Sony is taking the concept to the next level.
Boiled down, connecting Resistance: Retribution to Resistance 2 via a USB cable is going to unlock additional content on the PSP title. Through a menu option, you will be able to infect your PSP with the Chimera virus. This infection mode will last until the PSP is powered off and will change the story of the game, offering a new experience. This enhanced gameplay will grant Grayson Chimera-based powers including the ability to breathe underwater and heal without the aid of first-aid kits. He will also have access to additional weapons including a .44 Magnum and plasma grenades. The subtle story changes will also be accented with additional voice-work that reflects your newly infected status, too.
There is also a unique PSP Plus mode that you can access if you choose to leave your PSP and PS3 connected. This mode is highlighted by the ability to use your Dual Shock 3 controller to play Resistance: Retribution. IGN reports that playing Retribution with the Dual Shock 3 uses the same control layout that you'd expect to find on any console-based third-person shooter while ramping up the game's difficulty and disabling the aim assist that comes standard with the PSP controls. That sounds like a winner to me. The odd thing about this connectivity is that video won't be transferred to your TV via the USB connection between your PSP and PS3. Instead, playing Retribution on your TV will require the use of the video output on your PSP Slim or PSP 3000. Since I only have the original PSP, I'm a little bit torqued off.