hot  /  reviews  /  video  /  blogs  /  forum

Handheld gaming

Nintendo 2DS photo
Nintendo 2DS

Celebrate Kirby: Triple Deluxe's European release with Pink + White 2DS


I think it could fare to be pinker
May 16
// Brittany Vincent
Kirby: Triple Deluxe has landed in Europe, and Nintendo wants you to celebrate the event with the Pink + White 2DS, an adorable slice of fluff that's Kirby pink. Oh, and it's not available in the US. And it doesn't come with ...
Nintendo 2DS photo
Nintendo 2DS

Pick up a 2DS now through May 17 for just $99


I don't care if it's 'for kids,' I still kind of want one
May 14
// Brittany Vincent
Looking for a reason to pull the trigger on a 2DS but can't bring yourself to because of the price? Nintendo has tweeted a special deal via Target just for you. Starting right now through May 17, pick up the curiously-shaped...
Soul Sacrifice Delta photo
Soul Sacrifice Delta

Here's a trailer to remind you Soul Sacrifice Delta launched today


Reminder that it's also digital only
May 13
// Brett Zeidler
I was never able to really get into Soul Sacrifice when I played it around this time last year, which probably had something to do with Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate still getting plenty of attention from me at that point in tim...
Nvidia Shield photo
Nvidia Shield

Portal on Nvidia Shield next week, Half-Life 2 coming too


Okay then
May 08
// Brett Makedonski
Hey, have you played Portal before? It's supposed to be pretty neat. I won't spoil anything for you, but there's a lady that's really funny and she talks about a cake. On the off-chance that you have played it, do you wa...
Xbox handheld? photo
Xbox handheld?

Phil Spencer doesn't think Microsoft will get into gaming handhelds


That's probably wise
May 06
// Brett Makedonski
Nintendo and Sony seem to have a lock on the dedicated gaming handheld scene, with the former doing much better than the latter. Of the three major console manufacturers, Microsoft is the odd man out, as it's never shown any ...

Happy 25th Anniversary, Game Boy!

Apr 21 // Brittany Vincent
Eventually, Dad surprised me with Pokémon Yellow and a green Game Boy Pocket a few years later. Then, when my cousin bragged about his purple Game Boy Color, I knew I had to have one too. It only snowballed from there.  But there's one thing that has never changed: the admiration for this handheld that's stuck with me through dalliances with the Game Gear and other technological goodness. I thought the Cybiko might be my new love briefly, but I was blinded by the ability to have mobile AIM for all my RPs. I was stupid. On May 18, I will be the same age as my favorite handheld gaming system, and it's pretty cool to say I grew up with it. So buy yourself an entire cake and eat it, Game Boy, because we've had a hell of a time, you and I. What about the rest of you? What are some of your stories? Favorite games? Join us in celebrating and let us know!
25 years of Game Boy photo
We're almost the same age!
With fond memories of SolarStriker and Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, today I wish the original Game Boy a very happy 25th anniversary. The little handheld that could came into this world kicking and screaming, setting a...

 photo

Vita getting God of War & Sly Cooper Collections this May


God of War 1 & 2, and Sly Cooper 1, 2, & 3
Feb 10
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Hey look Vita owners, more ports! Yay. God of War Collection will contain the first two God of War games, and will be out on May 6 for $29.99. Sly Cooper Collection is also on the way for the Vita, and that will contain Sly C...
Dustforce PSN impressions photo
Dustforce PSN impressions

Dustforce feels right at home on the PS Vita and PS3


Dustin' makes me feel good
Feb 05
// Brett Zeidler
Believe it or not, it's been over two years since Dustforce originally hit the PC. Even more surprising is none other than Capcom helping the fine folks at Hitbox Team bring their dusting platformer to PlayStation 3 and PS Vi...
 photo

Unity 4.3 now supports the PlayStation Vita


That's a good thing!
Jan 16
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
The latest version of Unity will now support the PlayStation Vita. Now developers licensed with Sony can use the engine to create Vita games, making use of the handheld's features from the cameras, rear touch pad, motion sens...
PS Vita photo
PS Vita

Amazon is selling Crystal White PlayStation Vitas


Without Assassin's Creed III: Liberation bundled in
Jan 09
// Jordan Devore
Huh. Amazon is selling standalone Crystal White PlayStation Vitas for $199 right now. These are the same Wi-Fi models that are available in a bundle with Assassin's Creed III: Liberation which, say what you will about the gam...

The winner of Destructoid's best of 2013 portable game

Dec 24 // Steven Hansen
Tearaway I made my love affair with Tearaway clear when I reviewed it. It's such an unbelievable, special little game for so many different reasons. From a technical level, its papercraft aesthetic is realized perfectly. Seeing paper ripples as I skipped across a paper puddle made me giggle more than a realistically rendered sea of polygons could. The level of detail is staggering. It feels, fittingly, handmade, like a warm beam of sunshine on an afternoon catnap. The big picture narrative, about story-telling, winds its way from endearing awareness to surreal exploration, culminating in a remarkably poignant, affective end.  Tearaway is affirming. It makes me like games a little bit more. It makes me like myself a little bit more. It'd make me like you a little bit more, too, if you'd go buy it. It deserves as much. That was our pick for best portable game of 2013. As for our community poll, you all voted Fire Emblem: Awakening as your number one portable game of 2013. That was followed by Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, and Tearaway.
GOTY: Portable photo
Best of 2013
I think I played -- and loved dearly -- more handheld games in 2013 than I have since the days of Game Boy. Or at least since last year, which gave me two of my favorite games ever, Gravity Rush and Persona 4: Golden. Still, ...

Sup Holmes photo
Get to know the people that make great videogames
Last Sunday on Sup Holmes (now on iTunes) we were talking to Taron Millet and Kristofor Durrschmidt of Crazy Viking Studios -- two developers with some of the most interesting origin stories in gaming. Taron got his sta...

Runner 2 Vita impressions photo
Runner 2 Vita impressions

Runner 2 plays exactly how you would expect on the Vita


And that's only a good thing
Dec 19
// Brett Zeidler
Bit.Trip Presents Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien launched very early on in the year for just about every platform under the sun. We reviewed it, and really liked it. Not long after that, Gaijin Games announced that R...
Best Portable Game 2013 photo
Best Portable Game 2013

Nominees for Destructoid's best of 2013 portable game


Best of 2013
Dec 16
// Steven Hansen
I know what you're thinking: "Any game is a portable game if you try hard enough." Fair point. But, I don't know about you, but my 2013 was off the wall busy and I appreciated a good, proper handheld title that didn't require...
 photo

Looks like there's a Mario and Luigi 3DS XL bundle coming


Special branded 3DS with the game pre-installed
Nov 28
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
A Target ad has let slip an upcoming Mario & Luigi: Dream Team 3DS XL bundle coming out just in time for Christmas. The bundle will go for $199.99, includes a black and silver colored system with special branding of the h...
Tearaway demo photo
Tearaway demo

Tearaway demo will launch alongside the game on Friday


If you like it, you can unlock it right from the demo
Nov 20
// Brett Zeidler
Did you know Tearaway is coming out this Friday? Did you know we really, really liked it? Good, because I wasn't going to let this one slip right past you. That's not happening on my watch. I don't think Sony is going to let...
Tearaway trailer photo
Tearaway trailer

There wouldn't be Tearaway without the Vita


Truly a match made in heaven
Nov 14
// Brett Zeidler
In yet another behind-the-scenes video for Tearaway, the fine folks at Media Molecule today explain the importance of the array of options the PlayStation Vita offers that make the game what it is today. Since it acknowledge...
Tearaway's music photo
Tearaway's music

Here's a taste of the incredible music in Tearaway


Head of audio Kenny Young goes behind the music
Nov 13
// Brett Zeidler
Every time I see a new aspect of Tearaway in more detail, I'm just taken aback by how incredible of a game it's shaped up to be. Today is no exception, because Sony has posted a new video as part of a series of behind-t...
The Legend of Zelda photo
The Legend of Zelda

A Link Between Worlds custom 3DS coming November 22


Comes with a copy of A Link Between Worlds
Nov 13
// Alessandro Fillari
During this morning's Nintendo Direct event, the platform holder issued a reminder regarding its plans to release a custom 3DS XL to celebrate the launch of the recent entry in the Legend of Zelda series, coming out November...
New Tearaway video photo
New Tearaway video

All of Tearaway is constructed from one sheet of paper


Well, virtually at least
Nov 06
// Brett Zeidler
A new video for Tearaway explains the fundamental idea behind the paper in the game. The really freaking cool part about it all is that every individual piece inside the world is virtual paper, folded up exactly to the artis...
Tappingo photo
Tappingo

Tappingo looks a bit like Picross, comes to 3DS eShop


Tap, tap, tap-aroo
Nov 05
// Darren Nakamura
I've been clean for a few years now, but not too long ago, Picross was my digital cocaine. I consumed Picross DS in unhealthy amounts, and when the game was exhausted and I thought I could finally be sober again, Picross 3D c...
 photo

Now you can play games on flights without interruption


FAA relaxes electronics use rules
Oct 31
// Dale North
I fly at least 120,000 miles a year, every year (this year I'm at almost 170,000!) and I'm playing games on every flight. My 3DS looks like tornado debris from heavy use! A little secret? I NEVER shut my games off. When the f...
Nintendo 2DS photo
Nintendo 2DS

2DS commercial reminds you it has some pretty good games


Other than that, it's kind of boring
Oct 15
// Brett Makedonski
This commercial for the 2DS gets straight to the point -- Nintendo has some solid titles for its handheld systems. Dropping heavy-hitting names like Pokemon X/Y, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, and Mario and Luigi: Dream Team, th...
Nintendo photo
Oh, yeah, the 2DS is out now!
In this pleasant little video from Family Gamer TV, nine Nintendo handhelds are battery tested including the brand new 2DS. The results aren't terribly surprising -- the 3DS line all kick off fairly close to one another, at ...

 photo

English version of the Pokemon Origins anime in the works


Go back to where it all began
Sep 26
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Okay, first of all that remix of the Pokemon Red/Blue theme is pretty damn great. So yeah, the Pokemon Origins four episode anime will be coming to North America. The show will air on Pokemon TV on November 15, and will foll...
 photo

3DS passes lifetime sales of the Wii in Japan


12,752,731 units sold in Japan alone
Sep 26
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
The 3DS is king in Japan right now. The handheld has just passed the Wii's lifetime sales, hitting 12,752,731 units sold to date. The Wii by comparison has sold 12,698,878 units in Japan. These figures come from sales trackin...
New 3DS colors photo
New 3DS colors

Black/white 3DS being replaced with blacker/whiter 3DS


In Japan
Sep 25
// Steven Hansen
Japan is getting two "new" 3DS colors on October 10, Pure White and Clear Black. The units will retail for 15,000 yen (~$152) and replace the discontinued Ice White and Cosmo Black. Check the comparison below. It's more evident in the black. Also, lol. Pure White And Clear Black 3DS Colors Coming On October 10 [Siliconera]

Review: Nvidia Shield

Sep 25 // Jim Sterling
Nvidia Shield Manufacturer: NvidiaReleased: August 29, 2013MSRP: $299.00 The first thing you'll notice about the Shield is how it refuses to compromise on the things handheld gaming systems most commonly acquiesce. This is a big lump of plastic -- it can just about fit in the pocket, but you'll look like you've got the world's worst thigh tumor. It's chunky, and possessed of not inconsiderable weight, but that's because it's a screen sat atop a full-fledged, console-level controller. There's very little difference between it and an Xbox 360 controller, with its full-size, clickable dual analog sticks, face buttons, bumpers and triggers on the shoulder, and D-pad. The center of the controller also features a large button to access Tegra Zone, a back button, a start button, an Android home button, and a button to bring up volume controls. The obvious downside to having a full-on controller as a handheld is that you're, well, carrying a full-on controller around with you. The upside, however, is you've also got the most game-capable handheld system ever made, able to do things other systems simply can't.  [embed]262335:50645:0[/embed] Where it's taken the PlayStation Vita over a year to get one first-person shooter to get it right, and even then it has to compromise, the Shield launches with a rock-solid alternative right out of the gate, one that doesn't have to skimp on functionality in the least. While Dead Trigger isn't exactly the most impressive shooter ever made, it's nonetheless thoroughly enjoyable to be able to play a handheld FPS that actually feels like a real FPS, rather than a developer's noble approximation. Games like Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Sonic the Hedgehog, and The Bard's Tale are all simply better here than they are on other Android devices, making the Shield a viable choice for those who want to try some of the souped-up Android releases, but aren't into the idea of touchscreens.  This is also where the Shield humiliates its closest comparative system, the Ouya. Like Ouya, the Shield is a dedicated gaming system that gives you physical controls for Android-powered games. Unlike the Ouya, the Shield's native controller is responsive, the system itself is incredibly powerful, games feel like they belong on it, and the system is overall just more pleasant to use. The Shield also has full access to the Google Play store, with a real Android OS that can run any app. Of course, games not designed specifically for Shield controls are awkward to run on a touchscreen with a great hunk of plastic hanging off it, but the fact it has the option to access so much more than the Ouya makes it a superior alternative.  Comfortable in the hands and capable of running games at their highest settings, Shield is a lot of fun to play around with -- and this is not taking into account its ability to run a range of emulators for old games that you totally already have the physical copies of.  So far, my only real complaint with the physical design of the thing is the D-pad. The Shield really did elect to imitate the Xbox 360 controller in every way possible, including a rather dreadful and imprecise directional disc-thing. For the most part, it's not too much of a problem to deal with, but it can make twitchy platform games more of a hassle than they should be, and it certainly doesn't make playing something like A Link to the Past any easier.  Android games specifically designed for the Shield are thinner on the ground, and while more Tegra-powered games are appearing on the Shield Store, it's going to need a lot more support. There are already some solid titles worth getting, with the aforementioned Dead Trigger, Vice City, and Bard's Tale all good choices, but there's a very real risk at this stage that the game's library could suddenly dry up. I hope it doesn't happen, but it's not uncommon for a handheld system to become a software wasteland in a short span of time.  As well as the physical controls, the Shield's screen supports multitouch, and you can even use the right stick as a mouse, bringing up a cursor for menu and web browsing. The left stick acts as a traditional console controller would, meaning you have three methods of input and can interact with the system as you would a console, PC, or smartphone.  The screen itself is a five-inch display that flips up and rocks a 1280x720 resolution. On top of such a large controller, it feels comparatively flimsy, but it's all solidly built stuff. Games, naturally, look pretty damn good on the screen, and it does a more than adequate job of showcasing the Tegra-4 titles it was built to support. Audio is where I was really impressed, however. The two front-facing speakers are situated neatly above the face buttons and D-pad, and are capable of blasting out some damn loud sound. Handheld systems typically fail when it comes to providing sufficient audio, but these speakers are frankly incredible.  Another plus point is the battery life. Up to 20 hours of life can be gotten out of the system when streaming content from a PC, with a fair few hours of regular use available too. I want to say you'll get at least five hours from the thing if you're running games from the device itself, and altogether I found this machine working far longer than any comparable device.  As well as utilizing a full Android OS, the Shield also run's Nvidia's own little playground, TegraZone. Here, you get quick access to your Shield game library, as well the Shield Store, which collects those Google Play games customized specifically for Shield controls. Not all of these games are as elegant as they could be -- some confusingly utilizing touch-only menus or requiring a full recustomization of the buttons (looking at you, Shadowgun Deadzone) -- and some of them are straight-up garbage. Still, the titles worth getting are really worth getting.  TegraZone's biggest feature, however, is its "PC Games" section, allowing users to stream games from their PC directly to the system using Steam. The feature is still in beta, something Nvidia warns users about with good reason. While a fantastic idea, it is currently unreliable, as well as a complete pain to set up. To even get a game to work, it requires diddling around on your PC first. You'll need to make sure everything is updated, download TegraZone to your computer, run your desired games at least once, ensure you've a fast enough wi-fi router, and potentially fiddle with your Firewall and DPI settings. Even when you have everything in order, sometimes messages can pop up on your PC that interrupt streaming, or the connection could terminate for unknown and seemingly arbitrary reasons.  The beta status also limits the amount of games that currently work, and even among the ones that do, only a few work very well. Sleeping Dogs, for example, puts a mouse cursor in the center of the screen while it streams, and an attempt to move it using the Shield's touchscreen will disable all controller input. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is just laggy, and suddenly stopped working completely after only two successful attempts to get it running. Also, the less said about Half-Life 2, the better.  However, all complaints aside, when the planets align and the thing actually works as intended, it's seriously impressive stuff. BioShock Infinite runs pleasantly, with only vaguely perceptible controller lag, while Borderlands 2 is almost perfect. If it weren't for the mouse cursor issue, Sleeping Dogs would also be triumphant, looking lovely on the Shield's screen and running at an impressively silky pace. When everything comes together smoothly, there's definitely a magical quality to the process.  A lot of critics have been down on the Nvidia Shield, but I honestly don't know why people have been so harsh. Games look great and run superbly, the controller is big but beautifully functional, and its wide range of features makes it superior to dedicated systems like the PS Vita in several ways. It delivers on several of the Ouya's promises better than the Ouya ever did, and while the PC streaming is still highly problematic, it at least works, and one would hope its post-beta performance is far better. Of course, it has to be said that it's an expensive little toy, with an asking price of $299, and that's really going to be the dealbreaker for a lot of people. For an Android system with an unsure future and no guarantee of continued software support, three hundred bucks is going to be too rich a gamble for most. As a piece of hardware, I feel the Shield fully justifies its asking price, but these days it's so much less about the hardware, and more what you can do with it. That said, having full access to Google Play, and its range of emulators (most of which work with the physical control options) severely opens up what the Shield can do beyond its "official" uses.  The Shield's biggest feature needs to get itself out of beta soon, and it will need a lot more Tegra-powered games under its belt before it can be a real competitor. However, the device is quickly becoming one of my favorite handheld gaming systems to date, and as a generally big fan of portable gaming, that says a lot. It was never going to appeal to everybody, but to the right buyer, the Shield may be the perfect handheld.  You've just got to be the really, really niche type of buyer it's gunning for. 
Nvidia Shield review photo
Come back with your shield, or come back on it
[Disclosure: Nvidia has provided Destructoid with a number of computers for PC game review purposes in the past. If you feel that may make our reviews of any of their products "biased" or "paid off," you are welcome to.] The ...

So you just got a Vita? Here are some recommendations

Sep 20 // Chris Carter
PSOne Classics There are 213 PSOne Classics currently on the PSN, and a lot of them are must-plays. Despite the fact that everything hasn't aged as well as one would hope, there are a ton of amazing games that can be enjoyed on the go with enhanced Vita features. Sadly, not all of them can be transferred to the PlayStation Vita without a PS3, but there's still a decent amount of compatible games in general. For starters, it's important to get Final Fantasy VII, VIII, and IX out of the way, as well as Resident Evil 1-3. Then you have Tomb Raider II (which has aged considerably better than the first game, although you can get the original in the form of Tomb Raider: Anniversary by way of PSP compatibility), Tomba!, Twisted Metal 2, UmJammer Lammy, Vagrant Story (this plays wonderfully on the Vita and takes up hardly any space), Xenogears, Threads of Fate, Silent Hill, Oddworld 1-2, MediEvil, Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, Jumping Flash!, Dino Crisis 1-2, and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Beware of Square Enix-related PSOne remakes such as Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy V, as they tend to preserve the long load times of the PSOne disc originals. Final Fantasy Tactics PSOne is totally fine however, as it's the PSP remake titled War of the Lions that has a ton of slowdown -- go figure! Mega Man 1-4 are also available by way of the PSOne Import section. PSP games and minis This one comes with another caveat -- PSP games must be purchased from the PSN, meaning UMD-only PSP titles that are not available digitally such as Crisis Core, Mega Man Powered Up, or Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep cannot be played on a Vita. It's a major bummer, but the good news is the amount of direct PSN purchases is much higher than PSOne Classics. Plus, there are still a lot of great PSP games to choose from, and games like Peace Walker PSP can make use of the Vita's second stick (or you could just buy Peace Walker HD!). My personal recommendations include Ape Escape: On The Loose, Capcom Classics Collection 1-2 (requires a PS3), Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles, Crash Tag Team Racing (requires a PS3), Daxter (requires a PS3), Disgaea 1-2, Dissidia: Final Fantasy 1-2, Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection, God of War: Chains of Olympus, God of War: Ghost of Sparta, Half-Minute Hero, Jeanne D' Arc (requires a PS3), Knights in the Nightmare, Lunar: Silver Star Harmony, LocoRoco 1-2, Me & My Katamari, Mega Man: Maverick Hunter X, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, Parappa the Rapper, Patapon 1-3, Peggle, Phantom Brave: The Hermuda Triangle, Power Stone Collection, Prinny 1-2, The Red Star, SMT Persona 1-3, Street Fighter Alpha 3 Max, and Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together. Phew! There's also a few great PlayStation minis games worth playing, like Where is my Heart?, Canabalt, Mighty Flip Champs! DX, and Monsters (Probably) Stole My Princess. The PSN and PlayStation Plus Okay, so we're out of the land of caveats and into the real meat of the PS Vita: the PSN and PlayStation Plus. Yep, that's right -- a little after the Vita's launch, Sony announced that PlayStation Plus would work on both your PlayStation 3 and your Vita, which is a great sign. You'll get a few free games a month, including several solid ones in the Instant Game Collection like Gravity Rush, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, and WipEout 2048. If you own a PS3, PlayStation Plus is absolutely worth it without question. As for the Vita's PSN itself, there are gems like Guacamelee!, Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R, Jet Set Radio, Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD, Orgarhythm, Pixeljunk Monsters Ultimate, Sine Mora, KickBeat, Dokuro, Sound Shapes, and Uncharted: Fight for Fortune. The Vita is also an indie port machine, with high-profile titles like Fez (coming soon), VVVVVV, Thomas Was Alone, Spelunky, Hotline Miami, Retro City Rampage, and many more seeing Vita ports. In fact, playing indie games on the go is probably the one major advantage the Vita has over the 3DS. Retail games My favorite game on the Vita is far and away Gravity Rush. I've torn into nearly every bit of the game, including all of its DLC, and I still wanted more. You can play this by way of PS+, so I recommend you pick up that subscription. If you're not down with subscriptions, you can also pick up Killzone: Mercenary, Muramasa Rebirth, Soul Sacrifice, Persona 4 Golden, Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, LittleBigPlanet Vita, Lumines: Electronic Symphony, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (Cross-Buy), Dragon's Crown, Rayman Origins, Rayman Legends (wait until they patch the missing content in though), PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale (Cross-Buy), Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward, Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, and Disgaea 3: Absence of Detention. While I don't consistently play my Vita as much as my 3DS, the fact of the matter is it has a solid library, so don't count it out just because of low hardware sales.
Vita buyer's guide photo
The Vita has no games you say?
The 3DS had a chance to shine with a recommendations article and now it's the Vita's turn. With the release of Killzone Mercenary and a tidal wave of indie ports on the way, the Vita has quite a few titles under its belt. Wha...

Vita/Monster Hunter sales photo
Vita/Monster Hunter sales

The Monster Hunter deficiency is kicking the Vita's butt


Missed Monster sales
Sep 19
// Steven Hansen
I bet Sony is kicking itself (in its butt) over its inability to wrangle up a Monster Hunter game for the Vita. Despite promising a Monster Hunter game would come to Vita in 2012, the system is barren when it comes to that fa...

  Around the web (login to improve these)




Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter?
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -