PS Mini Reviews

Reviews of PlayStation Mini titles.

hp2 title

Title: Hysteria Project 2
Developer: Sanuk Games
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 91 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Direct Download

EU Availability: Digital Download | Direct Download

Horror games on handhelds have been somewhat of a thing since the last generation of handhelds.  Way back in the days of the Game Boy Color, Capcom had intended, and nearly finished, a GBC port of the original Resident Evil game.  However, that didn’t come to light.  Since then, there have been other horror games trying to bring horror-themed games into the handheld market, like Resident Evil Gaiden.  Many of these games did have horror aspects to them.  However, they weren’t the least bit scary.

The PSP and DS generation is when it kicked off, with the Nintendo DS being able to handle games like Resident Evil: Deadly Silence and Dementium The Ward, the real place for horror games in the handheld market fell onto the PSP with games like Silent Hill Origins, pulling the creepy gameplay of Silent Hill straight, and faithfully, into a handheld game.  However, another contender was there as well, one that swapped consoles as well.

Hysteria Project had launched on Mobile platforms to provide a realistic, first-person, live-action horror experience of a hero escaping an axe-wielding killer.  The game later came to the PSP through the PlayStation Minis library, which we recently reviewed.  Along with this, it spawned a direct sequel that launched on Mobile as well as PlayStation Minis.  Here is our official review of Hysteria Project 2!

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zenonia title

Title: Zenonia
Developer: Gamevil USA
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 22 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Direct Download

EU Availability: Digital Download | Direct Download

Ever since the platform had become available on the PSP, the PlayStation Mini library had become home to many games that were like Mobile games, but also games that were Mobile games.  Looking back at games we have reviewed like Young Thor and Tehra Dark Warrior, it’s pretty clear that some of these games were taken straight from the iOS and Android libraries and brought over with button controls for the PSP and PS3 to play.

There were a lot of games like this in the PlayStation Mini library.  Even the ever-popular Angry Birds franchise had managed to slingshot its way onto the PSP, though I am certain playing that game would be a little different with not having the options for touch controls like it did on the iPhone.  It was part of a library slowly growing in size to the 200+ games that it has today.

Another rather iconic Mobile game that came to the PlayStation Mini platform is an Action RPG called Zenonia.  Merging Zelda-like gameplay with gameplay of Action RPGs, Zenonia launched and caused quite a fuss on Mobile.  Did it do the same when it came over to the PlayStation Mini platform, did it not get ported over well?  Your answers are here and waiting for you.  Here is our official review of the PlayStation Mini, Zenonia.

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Title: Tehra Dark Warrior
Developer: StormBASIC Games
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 50 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download | Direct Download

EU Availability: Digital Download | Direct Download

When PlayStation Minis had first come out, they were like tiny Mobile-like adventures on the PSP and, later, the PlayStation 3.  There were games like Tetris and Monopoly and more unique games like Monsters! Probably Stole My Princess.  Most of these games were, as expected, 2D games.  They looked like they were hand-drawn Flash or Mobile games that you could find something similar in a Web Browser.  For many of the library, this is true.

However, this is not true for all of that library.  Every so often, you would not only see a new game coming out on PlayStation Minis, but there were some 3D games that came to the platform.  Some of them not only were 3D, but some of them had visuals that were right on par with some of the full PSP games that were releasing at the time.  Not on the level of, say God of War: Ghost of Sparta or Dissidia: Final Fantasy, but still exceptional.

As we look through the Minis that are available for the Vita, we take a look at one such title that released with 3D visuals that would have looked decent for a normal PSP game, let alone a tiny PlayStation Mini.  Having released on the iPhone only four months before the PSP, here is our review of the PlayStation Mini Action game, Tehra Dark Warrior.

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Title: Vibes
Developer: Laughing Jackal, Inc.
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 58 MB

NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Digital Download, Direct Download

Ever since the PlayStation Mini platform had launched back on the PSP, it was to offer a lot of different types of games.  However, a lot of the games seemed fairly similar, mostly consisting of action and adventure games, than anything else.  Even the last PS Mini we reviewed, Hysteria Project, could be considered as an adventure game.  One thing that the platform needed was variety.  It did take some time, but variety did happen for it, with various types of games eventually coming to the near-200 games currently available for the platform.

There have been many genres that came to the platform, but there was a specific genre that still didn’t get a lot of love on it: Rhythm Games.  Rhythm and Music games have been loved by the gaming community ever since the explosion of Rock Band and Guitar Hero on the PlayStation 2.  Since then, music games have been highly used as casual little time-wasters when you’re not playing with friends.  Boot up a small game and enjoy some music while playing the game.

While there were few, PlayStation Minis did get a few rhythm and music games.  One such game was a small five-dollar game known as Vibes.  Flashing into the PlayStation Mini platform with flashy backgrounds and a variety of different music, here is our official review of the PlayStation Mini title, Vibes.

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Title: Echoes
Developer: Halfbrick Studios
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 23 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Digital Download, Direct Download

When PlayStation Minis first launched, they were simply “PSP Minis”.  Despite the fact that they are available on the PlayStation 3 as well as the PSP and PS Vita, they were meant to be a portable experience.  As such, they are full of games that emphasize less on story and more on bite-sized bits of gameplay, much like Mobile games.  In regards to that, there are some Mobile games that got ported to that platform, like Angry Birds and Zenonia.

As such, they are very visually-light games, much like some early games done by Indie developers.  They’re bite-sized games for bite-sized prices that are meant to be little time-wasters, rather than deep experiences.  There are many bite-sized experiences available on the platform as well.  The last Mini we reviewed, Hysteria Project, was a thrilling experience, but it also was bite-sized, being able to be completed in as little as 20-30 minutes.

Among the earlier minis, there were games that were exclusive to the PlayStation Mini software, like Echoes.  Echoes was a game that was unique that it came at a time where most of the Mini titles around were very unimpressive.  While Echoes didn’t win any major awards, it definitely caught the eye as being one of the cheaper Minis.  As one of the Minis available on the PS Vita, here is our review of the top-down game, Echoes.

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Title: Hysteria Project
Developer: Sanuk Games
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 83 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Digital Download, Direct Download

There are a lot of backwards-compatible games for the PlayStation Vita.  It can play Vita games, but it can also play a lot more.  If you start diving into the PlayStation Network, there are four other types of games the Vita can play.  It can play PlayStation Classics, digital versions of PS One games like Final Fantasy VII and Resident Evil 2.  It can play PlayStation Portable games, digital versions of PSP games like Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker and Dissidia 012: Duodecim Final Fantasy.  It can also play PlayStation Mobile titles, like Super Crate Box or Chaos Rings.

One library that is often overlooked, though, is the PlayStation Minis platform.  These were bite-sized games made initially for the PSP and were eventually enabled for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita.  They were small, Mobile-like games.  They were short adventures and normally weren’t too graphic-heavy.  In essence, you could call them a precursor to what eventually became PlayStation Mobile.  There are still a lot of PS Mini titles out on the store to download, though.

Even we at the PS Vita Review Network, have overlooked many of these.  To this day, we have only reviewed 3 or the 187 available PlayStation Mini titles.  While all three have been good games, we need to step our game up and get more out there.  With our current goal of getting at least 10 reviews of each game type up on this site, it’s time to start working harder on PlayStation Minis.  Originally a Mobile title, here is our review of the PlayStation Mini Survival Horror title, Hysteria Project.

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Title: Monsters! Probably Stole My Princess
Developer: Mediatonic
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 100 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Digital Download, Direct Download

PlayStation Minis is really a finalized breed of games.  While they clearly were the first step towards PlayStation Mobile that we have now, there has not been a single PlayStation Mini release in some time.  Even so, there is a pretty wide selection of games available to it and, when it was active, there were some really interesting and unique games that came to the systems they are supported on.

Many PlayStation Mini games are 2D games that look similar to Flash-like games used in browsers.  A more accurate similarity would be Mobile games.  While they were still coming out, though, there was a big focus on some of them.  Many of them came out with interesting gameplay and quick-bursts of gameplay.  This was a very niche field back then, but it worked for what it was.  Minis offered short bursts for a small amount of money.

One game that had a trailer and a lot of hype going for it when it was in development was a platformer game by Media Tonic.  Filled with Comedy, Princesses, Monsters, and an egotistical Vampire, Monsters (Probably) Stole My Princess was a big anticipated title on the PlayStation Mini platform.  Here is our official review of that game.

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Title: Monopoly
Developer: Electronic Arts
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 66 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Currently Unavailable

There is one kind of game that everyone knows how to play, whether you’re young or old.  Video games span a huge crowd, but there are many people who just don’t like to play video games, or don’t play them.  It’s not that they don’t like games, but not that kind of game.  However, there is one kind of game that even people who hate video games can get into.  Games that were around before that you played on a tabletop.  Board Games.

Board games come in several varieties and there are many different types that many people can recall from memory.  From my childhood, I remember playing the likes of Sorry, Candy Land, Chutes and Ladders, and more.  Out of all of the board games, however, there is one game that stand above the rest.  Monopoly.  Monopoly is the property-buying giant that became so popular that there are still themed variations of the game coming out, from Star Wars to Super Mario.

Monopoly holds a special place in many people’s memories.  This writer’s family used to play Monopoly countless times during family get-togethers.  There would be long sessions with food and equally long arguments on whether or not my sisters were cheating and stealing money from the Bank when no one was looking.  When PlayStation Minis were still releasing for the PlayStation Portable, Electronic Arts and Hasbro made a Monopoly game that is now available on the PlayStation Vita.  Here is our review.

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Title: Young Thor
Developer: Frima Studio
Game Type: PlayStation Mini
Download: 53 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download, Direct Download
EU Availability: Digital Download, Direct Download

In celebration of the introduction of our site’s new category, we’ve prepared our first review for that section.  The new section is for PlayStation Minis, something that Sony started in the PlayStation Portable era, cramming bite-sized games into small, downloadable files for the PlayStation Portable and later made compatible with the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita.  Some of these games were similar to Mobile games, not unlike some titles in the PlayStation Mobile categories.  Some were not.

PlayStation Minis some believe is a failed experiment from Sony.  It is possible that the Minis eventually led Sony to making PlayStation Mobile.  Some believe this as some of the games in the Mini library were Mobile titles.  A couple examples of this are Angry Birds and Zenonia.  Whether it is or not is a mystery, but the PlayStation Vita has access to these titles and can be enjoyed on it.

There was a game that sparked our interest back then that was released as a PlayStation Mini.  Among titles in this category, there were very few Role-Playing Games, or games with RPG elements in them.  The title in question did both, in a way.  It’s an Action RPG, but it’s also a casual, side-scrolling beat-em-up game.  Straight from Norse Mythology, here is our review of the PlayStation Mini, Young Thor.

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