RPGs, Space, and the Sony PSP

Anyone who knows me, who talks with me for an extended period of time on the subject of video games, knows that I’m a fan of role-playing games that allow the player to become the character he or she is playing as. This is especially true of the RPGs made by software-development company BioWare. I think it started back when I first played their Knights of the Old Republic, an RPG based on the Star Wars franchise. It told a beautiful tale of the battle between good and evil, of love and hatred, of teamwork and betrayal.

Though the second KotOR game was developed by Obsidian, BioWare continued to make phenomenal games; Jade Empire was, to me, KotOR in ancient China. I do not mean to say that the story is, in any way, not on par with that of KotOR. I mean to say that the gameplay is almost identical. BioWare’s latest game, Mass Effect, is everything I had ever wanted in an RPG. I’ll make you a list of all the things this game has going for it:

1.) Complete player customization – yes, you can actually build yourself into a character for this game.

2.) Awesome story – okay, maybe not ‘awesome’. But really freaking epic.

3.) Space – it’s a space-oriented game that has absolutely nothing to do with Star Wars.
It doesn’t get cooler than that.

4.) Dialogue – you don’t get to choose your character’s line, but you do get to choose his/her emotion and then hear the character speak!

5.) Gameplay – this is something of a new thing for BioWare’s RPG line. The battle system is real-time, with guns. Frantic firefights abound.

And that’s it. But isn’t that enough to classify it as a truly amazing game?

You may be asking yourself, “Where’s he going with this?” I must confess, I have been trying to lead up to a point. That point is this: These RPGs have a gameplay system that I think would carry over very well onto a portable system such as the Nintendo DS or the Sony PSP, especially the PSP. If you ask me, I think it’s far past time for BioWare to put such an RPG on one of those two handheld systems.

Now, they are currently working on an RPG based on Sonic the Hedgehog; having already had this idea back in 2006, I can’t say I’m surprised by the move. I do, however, hope sincerely and with all my heart that they don’t fuck it up.

What I’m trying to say is: Come on, BioWare. Cut the crap and put a game on the PSP.

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