Now, before you fly off the handle, this is my opinion. And I might be completely wrong about this. _______________ The PlayStation Portable is, in my humble opinion, the best gaming device of the past 20 years, and here's why: 1. Portability and Features: The first point is a seemingly obvious one at first, but hold your horses. Obviously, the path to mobile gaming was opened by the original Gameboy a couple of decades before the PSP was on the market. But it's a completely diferent situation, and here's why: Even though the PS Vita was heralded as "console experience on the go", that was really the PSP. You had a portable gaming device with on-board storage, online store, online play, and PSX.5 power for a couple of hundred bucks. The design was fantastic (one-analog-stick-haters-FPS-fanboys aside), it had a gorgeous screen, it had sturdy construction and it wasn't even that big. 2. Power: I touched on this above, but I cannot really stress this enough: The PSP is one hell of a powerful device. While most of this was seen later in the life of the PSP (with the God of War titles, and later on with some of the CFW emulators), even in the early days you could see that the PSP was head and shoulders above the (much loved by everyone, including myself) Nintendo DS. The power was critical in some respects to the PSP, namely in that it allowed a distinction between itself (the new kid on the block) and the loveable bully, the DS (what? Nintendo not a bully? Look up the monopoly on 3rd party devs at the end of the 80s, early 90s). God of War (both of them), Tekken, The Last Birthday, Silent Hill, SOCOM, LittleBigPlanet, Call of Duty, the list goes on and on and on. This distinctive catalog was possible in large part due to the power of the device, and it help cement the success of the PSP within a (not-so-small) audience of gamers looking for a more "mature" experience on the go. 3. Backwards Compatibility: Now, I know this is not strictly 100% true (can't stick a PS1 disk in there, can you?), but long before the advent of the (even now quite poor) Nintendo Virtual Console, the PSP provided access to a wide library of PS1 titles. This meant that you no longer had the insatiable hunger to play home console classics on the go. Of course, Nintendo offered re-makes of the most popular games (Super Mario Bros Advance series springs to mind), but often with significant changes. With the PSP, the backlog remained untouched (for better or worse). Final Fantasy IX on the go? Not a problem. Hard not to love that, innit? 4. Customization: Now, this is a sore subject within the gaming community, and for good reason: custom firmware on gaming console allows for gaming pirates to play games for free, therefore leaving the developers out of their hard-earn cash. But leaving the morality of the issue aside, the fact remains that custom firmware on the PSP is the gift that keeps on giving: not only can you play the complete PSP catalog and most of the PSX catalog, but you can also use emulators to play just about all the gaming consoles (big or small) up to the N64 era (just). That means the residual value of the PSP is greater than that of Steve Jobs, a Ferrari and Buckingham Palace put together. Is it right to do this? It's not for me to say. But the fact that it can do it at all is not only something to wonder at, but also a huge source of simply... pure nostalgic love. Obviously, the PSP isn't perfect. The very issue of customization and CFW can be said to have caused a big income drop for devs. The memory was very expensive (thankfully, the Vita continued in the same steps /sarcasm). First-party game development was negligible, and it always lived in the shadow of the Nintendo DS, which had a much wider appeal (and commercial success). At the end of the day, however, very few consoles can boast most of these achievements, and I think none other can boast all of them. That's why, if I had to choose one gaming device to last me the rest of my life, it will be the PSP. It's quite simply, for me, the best gaming device of the past 20 years.