The cruiserweight version of SmackDown has come into criticism from fans over the last few years for its crushing loading times, which, when combined with a typical match length, only ever really made it suitable for excursions to the Kuiper Belt. It’s a problem no more; this year’s load times are down to a miniscule 10 seconds, and the bite-sized, episodic nature of Road to Wrestlemania makes this an ideal takeaway WWE game.
There’s still no commentary in the matches – instead, it’s a random mishmash of theme songs and generic rock – but it remains a faithful replication of the PS2 game in all other respects. The controls (same as last year’s) circumvent the lack of a right analogue stick competently if not with much finesse. The analogue nub is used to activate taunts, wrench your opponent’s spine during submission maneuvers and to gee up the crowd for a hot tag (by furiously rotating the nub until your fingers, too, are tiny little nubs). It’s still an experience best served on the big screen, but there’s plenty to like about SmackDown on PSP.
Oct 31, 2008