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PSP Fanboy review: N+

Andrew Yoon
Andrew Yoon|@scxzor|August 28, 2008 9:00 AM

Beneath its simple exterior lies a cruel, sadistic gaming beast. N+ is known for its brutally simple, addictive, ninja-inspired platforming. The goal of the game is ridiculously simple: get to the exit. However, each level in this challenging title will test your nerve and will push you to that strange land where frustration and euphoria meet.

There are a number of obstacles that can get in your way -- all of them deadly. Whether it be explosive mines, homing missiles, or heat-seaking lasers, death lurks in almost every inch of N+. The combination of clever level designs and obstacle placements make each level like a puzzle: players must think of interesting ways to get to the goal. Players will be able to perform incredible feats of acrobatics, bouncing off walls, racing past rockets, and jumping past deadly lasers. Players must learn how momentum works, as many of the levels require pixel-perfect jumps.

If challenge is what you're looking for, then you've obviously come to the right place. The PSP version of N+ features quite possibly the most devilish collection of levels in the series so far -- and there are a lot of them. The amount of content featured on this disc is staggering, with the levels reaching into the hundreds. It won't take long before players encounter levels that will make them want to hurl their PSPs in anger. However, that's also the source of the game's greatest joy: successfully completing a series of levels can feel incredibly rewarding.

While we doubt the amount of content in the game will have anyone complaining (especially at its budget price), the developers at Metanet have added the potential for unlimited content through its community integration. There's a level editor built in to the game, and players can create levels and upload them online for the entire world to see and play. Jumping online is a breeze: players simply create a username and password and they're instantly granted access to the community area. Here, players will be able to stream levels to their systems, rate them and then download their favorites to Memory Stick. This kind of functionality makes N+ the LittleBigPlanet of our system -- and it's a feature that's sorely lacking in other versions of the game.

Considering the smartly implemented and easy-to-use online features, the breadth of content, and the incredibly affordable price ($20), it's hard not to recommend N+. There are a few gripes we have with the title: multiplayer is included, but there's no Game Sharing functionality. It's hard to tackle cooperative levels without this key feature. Also, why isn't this title available for download on the PLAYSTATION Store? We'd love to have this gem on our Memory Stick and get rid of the miniscule (but still existant) load times.

While we'd tell everyone to go out and buy N+, it's clear that it's not meant for everyone. This game is simply much too challenging for the average gamer. However, hardcore players must pick this up, and experience the world of N+ on the go. Even those familiar with the franchise should pick up the PSP version. The online functionality, and the superior D-Pad of the PSP over the Xbox 360 controller, make it without a doubt the best version of N+ available. With content already available for download from the community, we're eager to see more players jump online and share their creations. Do not let this title go unnoticed, PSP fans.

PSP Fanboy review: 8.0