Updated: July 12, 2021 3:17:47 pm
Sony first launched the iconic PlayStation Portable in 2004 and over the years, the company revised the console and released various variants. The final version PSP Street was released in 2011. While the console is no longer manufactured today, the sheer support and ecosystem of PSP is a gamer’s delight. Back in the day, buying a PSP game was expensive.
But as I found out, if you wish to play PSP games on your smartphone, you can do so using an emulator. PSP offers a wide catalog of games and if you still have your collection, you can easily load them up using an Android emulator. I used to play a lot of games and my favourite consoles were the PSP and the Nintendo DS Lite. So I tried revisiting the experience by downloading the PPSSPP-PSP emulator app from the Google Play Store, on my OnePlus 7T. Here is everything you should know.
Steps to download the PPSSPP app
1. Visit the Google Play Store from your android smartphone
2. Search for PPSSPP in the Store
3. Select the standard PPSSPP app.
4. Tap on install.
Note: There are two versions of the app available on the Play Store; a standard version and a pro version (paid). Both the versions offer the same set of features. You can download the standard version first and if you like the experience, you can get the pro version later, to support the developer.
After you have installed the game, you can virtually play any PSP game on your Android smartphone. If you have access to PSP games from your collection in ISO format, you can run them on the app.
How was my experience playing PSP games on my OnePlus 7T?
Playing PSP games on my OnePlus 7T was nostalgic. But the experience was a mixed bag. I tried playing games GTA Vice City Stories and Dragon Ball Z – Shin Budokai 2. While the games ran smoothly and I couldn’t notice much jitter, the experience of actually playing them was not smooth. This is with regards to the limitations of the app setting up virtual buttons to replace the PSP’s physical buttons.
The app creates a virtual image of all the controls that are found on the PSP, but getting a hang of these controls using a smartphone is not easy. While using the PPSSPP emulator, I was not able to get a hang of the controls to the degree I would have liked.
The main issue that I faced was with regards to the placement of the virtual L and R buttons. While using a PSP, these buttons are easily accessible. But when using the PPSSPP emulator to play PSP games, the placement of these virtual buttons on the screen was hard to get used to.
The experience using the virtual analog key was not very pleasant. While playing GTA Vice City Stories and riding a car or a bike, the button didn’t register my movements a lot of times which was due to the limitations of working with a virtual analog key.
I should add that the games run smoothly and it doesn’t seem like the emulator is half baked by any sense of the word. The issue with regards to the control placements is a learning curve that one will have to get used to, to enjoy the experience.
Finally, the visual quality is unimpressive for this day and age. At its prime, PSP was known to offer a full console size experience, but the resolution for most games is set at 480×272. Over the last decade, display tech and screen resolution has witnessed a tremendous evolution with most smartphone games running on a much higher resolution.
So after my initial testing, I returned to play the same games on my PSP 3000. Though the PSP was missing its back battery cover and had me worried, I was pleasantly surprised as the console switched on. The gaming experience on the original PSP was as fun as ever and this had me confused. Playing a PSP game on a PSP was as good as ever and the experience is still better than playing native smartphone games on your device.
What it lacks in resolution when compared to the norms in today’s day and age, the PSP compensates with great controls, game mechanics and games that are structured well. So to sum it off, playing PSP games on a smartphone, is not an unpleasant experience by any means, if you wish to relive your childhood. But if you want the best experience, you would be better off sticking to the original console itself, if that is still a possibility.
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