Five... great games for the Xperia Play
Top titles for the 'PlayStation phone'
iGamer Touchscreen gaming on a small screen has two inherent problems. Firstly, the very act of controlling the game involves obscuring the view with your fingers and, secondly, with no physical controls you can sometimes end up pressing furiously at entirely the wrong part of the screen as you get cut down like a dog, squashed flat, crash in a fireball or fall off a cliff.
Sony Ericsson’s Android-based Xperia Play gets around both problems with a slide-out control pad that will be instantly familiar to anyone who has ever played a game on anything with the word "Playstation" in is name.
Of course, you can’t just play any old games with the Xperia Play’s slide-out controller. A game has to support the physical controls, and many don’t. Secondly, it has to play in landscape. You can play portrait games on the Play, but only with it snapped shut which rather defeats the object.
So limber up your fingers and thumbs, and kick back as Reg Hardware runs, jumps, power-slides, creeps, crashes, burrows, builds and hacks it’s way through the best the Xperia Play has to offer.
Asphalt 6 Adrenaline
Referencing aspects of almost every arcade racer you care to think of, not least the previous five versions of Asphalt, Adrenaline is high-octane macho silliness with some racing thrown in for good measure. There’s a good selection of cars, tracks and scenery and you can even pick a Tesla if your want to race with your eco-warrior helmet on.
Of course, some will say that the perfect way to control a driving game is with the accelerometer but I for one quickly get tired to looking at a gaming screen that’s bobbing between 30-odd degrees either side of true so I’ll take a more conventional game-pad any day of the week. If you want to race against real people A6 can be networked over Bluetooth or the web.
Download Android Market
If Tim Leary has designed Sonic this is what it would look like. The eponymous hero is a little TV-headed character that you make run, jump and swing through a luxurious cartoon-like world collecting stars and powering up terminals. You can also get bonus points for finishing levels in under a certain time, something I’ve never once managed to do so tight are the time limits.
The graphical richness and sense of movement is wonderfully exaggerated by a wandering point of view that swoops around and pans in and out almost but not quite enough to make you feel a little dizzy. With so much time spent with the run and jump keys depressed the Xperia Play and Cordy could have been designed with each other in mind.
Price First four levels free then £1.30 via in-app purchase
Download Android Market
Next page: Dead Space
It would be nice if the market had a way to more accurately describe what each app is doing with the listed permissions, so that less people were scared.
While I don't know Asphalt itself, "Read phone state and identity" /can/ be something as innocuous as checking whether you are currently connected to non-WiFi Internet (all the better to warn you of possible charges and speed issues).
Coupled with the "Change wifi status" and "Full Internet Access" permissions, sounds like Asphalt is going to download a ton of texture maps and wants to warn you if it'll take an age to do so and give you the option to enable WiFi without leaving the app.
I agree with you, the permissions can be a little too coarse and easy to fret over. The above, for example, could also be used by an app to track your exact location using WiFi APs as extra positioning info...
Was I the only one reading this as "great games for the Five Xperia Play users"?.
> Was I the only one reading this as "great games for the Five Xperia Play users"?.
With the recent drop in price (locked to O2 for £149 and unlocked for £179-£189) then I think there are a lot of new users out there at the moment
I wish more games manufacturers would allow those of us who have keyboard phones to reprogram the controls as well as for the Xperia Play. E.g. have the Xperia Pro and it's great for emulators, (I use W for up, A for down, Q for left, and S for right - a bit quirky being at an angle but when you get used to it, it's just as good as a dedicated game pad). Sony should be encouraging some of the PS Suite games onto the Pro too!
Asphalt 6 and Dead Space are currently free downloads .... as are a couple of versions of NFS and Battlefield 2 (+ I think FIFA12 when it comes out).
As for: "Read phone state and identity", "Change wifi status" and "Full Internet Access"
Think this means "need to check that the game has been bought for this phone", "turn on wifi to download the 400MB game data on first run" (install from market just downloads a small driver/installer porgram) and "need internet to install the game, check for updates and possibly send data to highscore lists etc"