The PlayStation Portable is one of the hottest handheld game consoles around. And whether you’ve got a PSP-3000 or earlier console, or a newer PSP Go, here are the must-have accessories for your PlayStation:
The PSP doesn’t have a touchscreen like the Nintendo DS, which is meant to be prodded and scratched at and played with. Instead, it has an enormous widescreen and stereo speakers, to bring a PlayStation 2-style gaming experience to a portable console.
The downside? In order to cram all that gaming goodness into a tiny machine, Sony made the PlayStation Portable fragile as heck. It squeaks, it creaks, it has fiddly plastic parts, and the screen can be scratched by a wet dishrag. (Well, maybe not, but it’s pretty close.)
You want a plastic screen protector, like the CET Domain ($18), to make sure that your PSP’s screen won’t get scratched. (PSP Go owners should try the Go-compatible protector for roughly the same price.) It’s a plastic overlay that layers on top of your PlayStation Portable’s screen. And while they always get bubbles and leave an outline on the screen, scratches show up too, believe me.
So, the screen protector takes care of your PlayStation Portable’s screen while you’re playing with it. But what about when it’s in your pocket? Meaning, in there with your keys, wallet, and other things that are a bit sharper than a wet dishrag.
For this, you want a carrying case. The DreamGear Neo Fit ($19) is a neoprene PlayStation Portable case for the PSP-3000 and earlier models. Meanwhile, the PSP Go Soft Carrying Case ($19) is–surprise surprise–designed to fit the smaller PSP Go.
Both cases are soft, lightweight and pocketable, and include sleeves for accessories.
Memory Stick Pro
Why couldn’t Sony just use normal SD cards like everyone else? Even Nintendo switched over to using them for its Wii console.
But, I digress. If you want to keep saved games or downloadable content around, you’ll need a Memory Stick Pro, or a Memory Stick Pro Duo. Go first-party here; this Sony 4 GB Memory Stick Pro Duo ($25.99) has enough space for a good-size handful of PlayStation Network games, plus a practically infinite number of saved games.
Obviously, if you’re planning on buying every one of the original PSOne’s Final Fantasy games–games that spanned multiple CDs, back in the day–you might want a higher-capacity memory stick. And if you bought a PSP Go, they come with 16 GB of storage space already, so you may not need another memory stick for awhile. On the other hand, the PSP Go has to fit every game into its internal memory…so you may find yourself picking one or two up later on anyway.