Fat Princess: Fistful of Cake is one of those rare PSP multiplayer games that won't leave you cursing Sony for leaving out a second analog stick. There are no awkward controls or weird button compromises to bother you here; it's just straight-up multiplayer mayhem. Like the PS3 game, this is basically capture the flag, only instead of flags, you’re fighting to protect a lovely princess, who gets chubbier and chubbier if you keep stuffing her with cake. This isn’t merely to get her a job at the circus sideshow – shoveling slice after slice of sugar-topped sugar into her highness’s gob makes her heavier – which, in turn, means it’ll take more enemy soldiers to carry her away.
The PSP version offers the same class-based blend of tactical and chaotic capture-the-flag gameplay seen in the PS3 version, with a few new maps and modes to boot. Like before, you can change your class (and the corresponding skill set) at any time by swapping hats. These come from two primary sources: a hat machine in your base or from a downed enemy on the battlefield. You can whittle the enemy forces as a warrior, chopping fools down one by one, or you can spend time upgrading your fortifications as a worker, making it tougher for enemies to infiltrate your base. You can also take on the role of ranger, priest, or mage and handle long-distance assault, healing, or area-of-effect attacks, respectively.
The humorous single player story mode is fleshed out on the PSP, and serves as a guide to the different modes and maps. It's a fun distraction, though still not as good as playing with real people. You can hop online and fight it out with up to eight other players. That’s the only real downside, as this is a big drop from the 32 player matches on the PS3, which is a bit of a downer. However, smaller maps and four new modes that foster more frantic, action-oriented gameplay help make up for the smaller teams. Our favorite new addition is the inspired Grim Reaper mode, in which players try to rack up kills while wearing a special hat that turns its wearer into a energy-stealing, sickle-swinging Reaper. The catch? There is only one Reaper hat, so if you want it, you’ll have to take it from its current owner’s cold, dead cranium.
Aside from the downgrade in players per match, nearly everything about Fat Princess: Fistful of Cake is as good, if not better than the PS3 version. It's got the same cute-yet-violent visuals and solid multiplayer action with a handful or new maps and modes to keep you busy. Like cake itself, it’s delicious both at home and on the go.
Apr 23, 2010