So, yeah, I did it. Bought a PlayStation 3, specifically the new “Classic White” bundle, which is a pretty stellar deal overall. You get the top-loading console, a controller, 500 GB of storage, and a free year’s worth of PlayStation Plus, which is a service that seems, so far, heads and tails above Xbox Live. Alas, the GameStop I was at did not have any copies of Ni no Kuni, and neither did any other local stores. My time for JRPGing will just have to wait, as I’m working on some art projects for MegaCon 2013 that I should get done sooner than later as time is ticking down. So I returned home without any physical game discs to stick in my system, but no worries–with PlayStation Plus’s wide offerings and a number of free-to-play games to download, I had more than enough to try out on the new console for the first time.
And so, yes, the first game I downloaded and played was…Jetpack Joyride. And I kept playing it. Over and over and over again. For the folks that don’t know, I’m generally late to every party–hence me getting a PS3 at the end of its “life cycle”–and so I’ve never used an iPad or iPhone (or any kind of advanced iOS phone) before, missing out on all those popular touch games that are free or like a buck and instantly addicting. Sure, I hear about them a lot, like Temple Run, Space Team, and Canabalt, but that’s as far as it goes. This was my first experience with the cartoonish and silly runner, and it’s pretty great.
Basically, you are a dude named Barry Steakfries and you steal a jetpack from some scientists, trying to fly as far as you can, avoiding electrical charges and missiles. You can never stop moving, but you can change how you move, with different items equipped, new types of jetpacks, and special vehicle pickups. My favorites are the dragon and bird mobiles. As you go and aim for a new distance record, you earn coins and slot machine tokens, as there is a store to buy lots of items, like costumes and new jetpacks and one-use power-ups. To level up and earn coins faster, you always have a trio of missions to complete, and they range from silly challenges like high-fiving 15 scientists to mobile-based, and everything is tracked as it happens, which is really nice. It keeps the not-yet-monotonous running alive with new ways to play, such as not picking up any coins. Now, you can totally spend real money to buy more digital coins to then buy better upgrades, but that’s not me–I’m enjoying this as a free thing, which I will play until I feel I’ve experienced enough.
As I played Jetpack Joyride like a wide-eyed fiend, I downloaded some other stuff in the background, which I will check out later down the road. Namely, Retro City Rampage, Mega Man 9, Mega Man 10, Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One, and some foosball game. There’s more to download, but the problem with downloading full retail games is that 14 GB does not happen with the snap of one’s fingers. I think Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One took around six to seven hours to download. Fun times there.
So, in short, I bought a PlayStation 3 and am really enjoying this free-to-play game that was clearly built for touch-based devices as there’s only one button in use. Life is strange. Genesis does what Nintendon’t.