Handheld Gaming Guide

Things have come a long way since 1989, when the godfather of modern handheld systems, Nintendo's GameBoy, hit the streets. The screen was a reflective LCD featuring black figures on a green background. There were two action buttons, an eightPSP'>DS vs. PSP Buying Guide.

DS, DS Lite, and DSi

Nintendo released the DS in 2004 and replaced it with two redesigns: the smaller, lighter DS Lite in 2006 and the multiWii'>Nintendo Wii. This includes access to DSiWare, original games and software created to be downloaded and saved on the DSi. As time passes, the DS Lite is increasingly being referred to simply as the DS, as it is more prominent in the marketplace than the original DS. The DSi is usually referred to by its full name to distinguish its extra features.


We’ll start with the DSi. The revised hardware models feature the same functionality as the original but are much lighter and smaller in their dimensions.The DSi also adds new features, such as cameras, an SD card slot and a music player and photo editor. The more traditional Nintendo GameBoy franchise is still hanging on with its latest iteration, the PSP, which stands for Playstation Portable. The system sports a gorgeous TFT LCD screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio: in other words you’ll be able to view content in widescreen format. The controller configuration is similar to the original Playstation controller (sans analog sticks, which came later in the console’s life cycle) in that it uses the standard circle, X, square and triangle action buttons along with a directional pad and two shoulder buttons. The original PSP was replaced in 2007 by the PSP 3000, which has vastly improved screen quality, new buttons, and a microphone. Additionally, the PSPgo, an entirely new model with a different design and controls, will be sold alongside the PSP 3000 beginning at the end of 2009. This new PSPgo will not have a disc drive like the other PSP models, and its games will all be downloaded from the PlayStation store over the internet.


This is likely one of the heaviest factors to be weighed by most consumers, and in this regard Nintendo has the edge. Its Game Boy Advance SP and Game Boy Micro can be had for well under $100, and the Nintendo DS Lite and DSi retail for $129 and $169, respectively. On the opposite side of the spectrum, the PSP retails for $169. Additionally, PSP games cost $30DS'>protective armor will increase the bill; fortunately, you can find steals on bundled products that get you well into the world of handheld gaming without breaking the bank.

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