Customer Reviews: BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger - Sony PSP
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on March 12, 2010
Let me start by saying that I absolutely adore BlazBlue. It was easily my favorite fighting game of 2009 (possibly my favorite game period of 2009), and is right up there with the Guilty Gear series as my favorite fighting game of all time. That being said, I was overjoyed after hearing that a portable version of BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger was heading for the PSP. The idea of being able to take BlazBlue with me wherever I go was an exciting thought. So now that I actually have my copy of BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger Portable, I can in fact say that my excitement was justified.

If you've never played or even heard of BlazBlue before, it's a fast and complex 2D fighting game featuring a cast of 12 highly unique characters. Even though the size of its character roster is often criticized for being "small", the characters contain more depth and personality than other fighting games with twice the roster size.

All the modes from the console version of BlazBlue make a return here in the portable version: Arcade mode which is your standard "fight a ladder of 10 opponents", Versus mode which lets you battle against the AI with the stage and background music of your choosing, Score Attack which makes you face the entire cast of characters in a row to aim for a high score, Training mode which gives you several different options to try out combos and tactics on a customizable AI opponent, and even the entire Story mode (including the hilarious Teach Me Miss Litchi (Booby Lady)) that lets you learn the story of BlazBlue and its characters.

The Portable version also contains a new mode called Legion which was not in the console version of BlazBlue. Legion plays kind of like a tactical survival mode. You select a character and move around a series of connected areas that contain one or more enemies that you can fight. As you fight and defeat these enemies you get the chance to add some of them to your growing army. Your characters only regain a little bit of life after a match, and if they die, they're gone for good (hence the similarity to a survival mode). The objective is to take control over the entire map to win. I personally didn't find this mode to be anything special. There really isn't a lot of strategy involved while moving around the map other than "fight and collect characters you are good with". The biggest draw back here is that there are only 3 maps to play on (easy, normal, and hard) and they are not randomly generated, so it's the same map with the same enemies every time. There's not much reason to come back once you've beaten it.

The other addition to the portable version is the new Shop mode. Here you can unlock locked content (Gallery images, Unlimited (boss version) Characters, Astral Heats, character scenarios, and Teach Me Miss Litchi episodes) using an in game currency called PD. You gain PD by doing pretty much anything in the game. The locked content is reasonably priced too, so it's not overly difficult or too easy to unlock stuff. An additional note here is that the portable version contains unlimited versions of all 12 characters (the console version only had unlimited versions of Ragna, Rachel, Hakumen, and v-13 unless you purchased the DLC).

There is also a Network mode like in the console version. Here you can create or join customizable lobbies for up to 4 people and fight. Unfortunately, this mode is local only, meaning no online play. I suppose one could use the Play Station 3's Ad Hoc party mode to go online and play, but if you're that close to your PS3 to begin with, why not just play the console version of BlazBlue which has a fantastic net code?

If you're curious about how the game play is in the portable version, I can gladly say that it's almost identical to the console version. The most noticeable difference here is that the graphics (primarily the character's sprites) took a major hit. This is of course expected seeing as how beautiful and detailed the console and arcade versions of BlazBlue were, but the graphics here may look worse than you expect. I had seen screenshots of the game prior to its release thinking "the game will surely look much better when it's packed onto the PSP's smaller screen." Unfortunately it still looks pretty rough. The game's backgrounds were also stripped of the 3D objects and don't contain as much movement. In comparison I found it to look inferior to Guilty Gear Accent Core Plus for the PSP. All this being said though, BlazBlue contains a lot of flashy action on the screen at any given time, so the graphics were likely scaled down for something far more important: silky smooth game play. The great news is the game plays just as smoothly on the portable version as it does on the Console and Arcade versions. I was able to pull off large combos and tricky maneuvers without hassle. Even though the graphics have been scaled down, it shouldn't interfere with how you play the game at all.

As for controls, the game fortunately let's you map its 4 attacks (A B C and Drive) anywhere you want on the PSP. This is helpful for characters that require simultaneous and/or held button presses (like Rachel, Arakune, and Carl) so you can have a more ideal setup, like 2 attacks on the PSP's triggers, and the other 2 on the PSP's face buttons for instance. Like the console version, the portable version also has a "cheat stick" which lets you pull off special moves by pressing either up down left or right on the PSP's nub. This means that the nub cannot be used for movement. I did find it tricky to pull off more complicated special moves like a 720 using the PSP's directional pad (I'm used to a fight stick) but I highly doubt that's the fault of the game rather than a need for me to practice more with the Directional Pad.

In summary, BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger Portable is a great release. If you don't own a PS3, 360, or have access to an arcade with BlazBlue in it, this is a great way to experience a brilliant game. Despite the new features like Legion and Shop, the portable version doesn't offer an enhanced experience over the console version. The main draw here for the owners of the console version is being able to take BlazBlue with you wherever you go, and let's face it, playing BlazBlue while waiting for an appointment or while driving a boring commute is a great time passer (I hope I don't have to point out my sarcasm in that last example). Either way, BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger Portable is great way to experience the great BlazBlue universe. NOW GIVE ME CONTINUUM SHIFT!
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on June 23, 2016
Why did this get so many stars? I mean, I really don't like this game at all. The anime artwork is beautiful (I also do artwork for video games) so who ever did that, very much props to you, you hold this game together. I'm not happy that the cutscenes don't have moving characters, it's literally just talking while a picture is on the screen, but I mean I'm not going to dock stars for that since it's personal preference. HOWEVER, the voices on this.. my god... Really sound like some cheap youtube dub. For those who watch anime subbed, you know when you come across one dubbed, REALLY bad, where you feel like your ears are bleeding from listening to it, you just can't.. This is it, I really don't like the voices, don't like the story section because it's just bad.. I almost turned it off just because of that, but I wanted to see what the game had to hold. The fighting is literally street fighter style, nothing special. I know there is an original BlazBlue on a system somewhere, but I didn't play it, so I can't compare this to that. But really, if the voices weren't so bad, I'd give it 3 stars. If the story was better, 4-5... but just no..
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on April 26, 2010
BlazBlue Portable is a great way to have this game for travel. The only thing truly lost with it being portable is that I can't dual my friends easily. With none of my friend even owning PSPs this game looses a lot of value in it simple versus mode. Not being the biggest fan in fighting the AI. Though the Ai in this game is overly smart and even by me could be beaten. It comes down to more of how strong a character is and their ability to move around then just blocking and countering like in the "Tekken 6" game. Which just got painfully frustrating or boring, not totally sure which one. But I haven't played it for a good while and pretty sure I won't until a friend want to.

But, with that one falling is still has the story line to follow. And the story mode so greatly makes up for the lack of friend versus that I can sit on the bus for hours just going through each characters story and the different combinations that this can create. Is the story mode is the same for the console I can not say, I've only played this game in arcades with Korean dialog before I got the English version for my PSP. And I don't speak Korean worth a lick, so that said. I find the stories to be fun. Sometimes a little annoying but the English dubs are good, and the characters are fun to follow.

Though I do worry that when I finish the last story in the game that I will have nothing else to do. The legion mode is more like an epic versus mode, but nothing really more interesting then the simple versus mode. This just has a little Pokemon going on with capturing the other people's characters when you win a battle.

That said if you're looking for a good fighter fix for your PSP, BlazBlue is the way to go. Fun, great characters, relatively non cheating Ai. And with all the wireless internet stuff going on with it fighting random real people is a snap.
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on June 24, 2011
Most fighting games lose their charm after you climb the initial tree and beat the final "boss." You play through the game with your top 2 or 3 characters and then pick a few others when you have grown tired of the repetition of your "chosen" character(s).

This is where Blazblue differs. In order to see the full story, you HAVE to beat the game with EVERY character.

In other fighting games the move set is basically the same. You pick a different character and do the same move set as any other and watch a different graphic. Blazblue again is different. EACH character has a unique style and move set. You can't take Ragna's moves and apply them to Taokaka. They are two separate characters with two completely different ways of fighting. But don't let that deter you. They have added in a way to pull off every characters major moves with just the flick of the circle pad. There are only 12 characters, but each of them are so unique and endearing (except Carl...I hate Carl and you should too)that you will want to see how they fit in with what is going on. Which leads me to my next point...

Aksys made a fighting game that not only LOOKS stunning, but has a brilliant storyline. The story behind Blazblue is not just "Hey everybody let's fight grrrr" or "There is an ultimate fight club that is exclusive with weird ninjas that throw ice"

Yes there IS an ice thrower in Blazblue, but he isn't there to win an invisible trophy that strokes his epeen. None of the characters are. Like their brilliant game 999 (also by Aksys games) Blazblue sets up WHY it is these characters fight on a continual basis. It makes sense why these characters repeat gameplay.

And there is so much to do in this game. There is story mode, Arcade (which opens up an alternate ending than the one in story mode), Versus, and something called Legion. Basically it is a mode that you start with one character and choose a path to fight different characters. When you beat that character you have the choice to add him to your army. Then when you face the next opponent(s) you can add them etc. You will face up to 4 enemies back to back and you will draw from your army you have amassed. No resets. If your characters are beaten you lose them. If they lose half their health in one battle...They start with half their health at the start of the next battle.

Tons of unlockables that will keep you going....

I cannot recommend this game enough
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on March 19, 2011
After giving the Samurai Shodown Anthology a try, I had little hope for any fast action fighting game on the PSP. Then walking around Anime Expo 2010 I saw Aksys booth running a sale on this, picked it up.

This game just completely makes a mockery of poorly ported fighting games by being an almost near perfect port from the big consoles. Granted it is a 2D fighter but still, this game is fast and fluid. It even retains all the moves and abilities of it's console big brothers, without any slow down.

Impressed? Well I was. So much so I couldn't believe I was actually playing a PSP game. To make it better, this game contains some of the updates of Continuum Shift and allows you to unlock charts which help you unlock 100% of the storylines. No more looking online to figure out all the endings, just unlock the one you want on PSP and have it on while you are playing the big version.

The only fault I can really give it is that the sprite quality has been lowered, but that is to be expected for a handheld. It has to fit on a tiny screen after all. However, you can still make out all your favorite characters real well.

If you are a fighting game fan and can ignore the almost incomprehensible story of BlazBlue, pick this up. The story isn't all that bad, its just more or less confusing as to what all is going on. Best recommendation, play as Taokaka and laugh at her antics as much as possible to fill your need for story.
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on August 6, 2010
Storyline - Funny, creative, and detailed. Even thou there are only 12, each character is very unique and the storyline works very well in setting up the relationships between each character. The story also finds a way to tell you the little secrets about each character by implying them through the dialogue of other characters, rather than just blurting out them out. Should keep you engaged for a long time if you bother getting 100% for each character.

Gameplay - Pretty fast paced, each character has a unique play style, strengths, weaknesses, etc. Easy on beginners too, you can pull off flashy Distortion Drives with their analog stick system. Once you get deeper into the mechanics and get good at it, game gets even better. I have spent literally hours in training practicing combos, and i enjoyed every second of it. The satisfaction you get once you master one makes the effort worth it. I'd say you'd need online play to really enjoy the game to its fullest, seeing how you'll never really get a chance to test yourself without it, but its meant for on-the-go and can't really judge it based on that.

Graphics - The sprites took a pretty hard hit when the game hit PSP, but the slightly lacking detail in their faces is something you get used to (Specially Ragna).

Overall, i thought this game was great, i had tons of fun. They're is a TON of content for you to unlock, such as "Teach me Ms. Boobie Lady" videos. Only complaint i had was the somewhat cramped directional pad controls, your fingers might hurt if you play for awhile, and the drop in graphics. Anyhow, this game is awesome, i went ahead and picked up Continuum Shift for PS3 (next in series) the moment it came out and i don't have any regrets.
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on January 15, 2012
I've been playing 2D fighting games since the days of Street Fighter 2, Samurai Showdown and World Heroes. This game is what I've been hoping for, its like playing an anime, I think they've nailed it with this series.
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on March 25, 2011
I am a gamer 29yrs old & bought this just to kill time when i get on a flight to travel & this game looks amazing & is fun, i highly recommend for your kids or yourself.
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on July 19, 2010
This is a must have if you're into 2D fighting games. It lacks the online fighting that it's big brother on the PS3 has, but still has everything else packed into it. This game is easy enough for button mashers but is even better for those that like a little bit of the complex combos that are in here.
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on May 18, 2014
Bought this for my brother and he loves it. It's one of the best fighting games out there. Take it on the go!
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