Guest Author - James Shea
A revamp of the Playstation Portable, the PSP Go is lighter and more ergonomically designed, and trades the UMD drive for a purely downloadable set of games. While in many ways it's an improvement, it's not the best for people who already have a collection of PSP games.
The PSP Go is smaller than the "normal" PSP, but this is in large part due to the removal of the UMD drive. The screen itself is not much smaller, and the lightness and size of the PSP Go makes up for the loss of the drive. This is compounded by the PSP Go's sliding screen: normally, the directional pad, analog stick, and main buttons are covered by the screen. The screen is slid up when in use, and slid back down over those buttons when not in use. It slides easily into most pockets, unlike its bulkier predecessor.
Due to its lack of UMD support (at least without a peripheral device), the PSP Go gets all its games online through the Playstation Network Store. The hard drive can hold up to 16 gigabytes, but the size of the games varies: MGS: Peace Walker, for example, takes up 1/10th of the entire system. The download process takes a while, but is arguably more convenient than having to go pick up and find a hard copy, especially when it's done right from the handheld itself.
The PSP Go is capable of connecting to the PS3 to share images, video, and even games (if you'd rather download from a hard-line connection instead of playing around with the PSP's wireless). It's also possible to use the PSP connection to play the PSP Go through the PS3 (as in, it shows up on a big screen). This is a neat idea, but the low resolution makes this not exactly worth it. On its own, the PSP Go is also capable of internet browsing, internet radio, and Skype.
The PSP's price (roughly $200) is probably its hardest selling point. While this current price is better than it was in the past, it's still a pretty penny. The multimedia features seem intended to justify this, but they feel like more of a sideshow than the main event (since it's easier just to buy an MP3 player for those kinds of things). The PSP's library at this point is large enough to make it worth it, and the graphics are generally of a higher quality than the DS. In short, the PSP Go is a marked upgrade compared to the older model PSP, and works well on its own merits.
We purchased the PSP Go from a gaming store with our own funds.