The handheld Nintendo DS has a new four-star game on the market: Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars.
If you're familiar with the GTA brand, you know what GTA: Chinatown Wars is all about. It's about killing, hijacking cars, dealing drugs and completing missions for mob bosses, who want you to...steal cars, deal drugs and kill people.
What's striking about Chinatown Wars is it's a big game on the little DS, with its two little screens. The DS game disk is, as usual, the size of a postage stamp. You'd never expect the disk to supply the artistry and game play of GTA's giant Liberty City.
But it does so on a small scale. Most of the typical GTA elements are here and are way fun, and morally bankrupt. You travel a whole city, up and down streets. The camera angle is from above, so Liberty City looks like it's populated by tiny Weebles firing bullets at each other.
One of the DS screens displays single-cell cut scenes of characters talking to each other. You don't hear them. You read dialogue. You can drive taxis for fares. Slay pedestrians. Listen to midi-esque radio songs. And you can play multiplayer, head-to-head or in cooperative mode.
Yet another pretty good handheld game out now is Resistance: Retribution, a Sony PSP game based on the Sony PlayStation 3 shooting series, based on the "alternative history" that aliens successfully invaded Earth in 1951 and built forts everywhere.
Retribution is fun and easy offline and online. You play as a private in a military force of sorts, led by the French (the French!), who are spearheading the fight against the alien Chimera - on piers, in forts and in cities, from the Netherlands to Germany and beyond.
Basically, Retribution works well as a Rambo-style shooting adventure, blowing away bloated-headed aliens and evil bugs with machine guns, sniper rifles and a very cool gun that slings blades.