Squashed into the PSP like a Tiger in a suitcase, Liberty City Stories was a technical marvel - one of the world's best games, given minimal twiddling, could fit in your pocket. Now, Rockstar is giving non-PSP owners the chance to chart the rise of the Leones, but the technological alchemy is no longer there. Should you still buy it? Probably. LCS was scaled back on the PSP, but you had to expect that - flattened onto a disc the size of a mini coaster, there were always going to be compromises. On the PS2, thoughm there are disappointments. You can't swim, for an instance. The riots have gone. Skydiving, planes and dating are out. The radio station, although it's decent, offers up boy band parodies and classicla whimsy instead of licensed music. And so on. Basically, this is Vice City-level GTA, introducing the new things to Liberty City - Bikes for an instance, open all sorts of new shortcuts - but falling shourt of the do-absolutely-anything shennanigans of San Andreas. As such, it misses out on some of the best moments of any GTA - the thrills of discovering entirely new things to do, places to go or vehicles to use. Similarly, there isn't much on offer in the way of new mission types - after three hours of play, you will be seeing the same variation on escortinh, shooting, driving really fast or assassinating people again and again.
Bear in mind, too, that a lot of these are "portable-optimized," meaning that they very rarely last more than about five minutes - a little upsetting for anyone who likes thing a bit more in-depth. You might be upset at the lack of empire-building - with very few plot twists or change of employers, you spend nearly the entire game working for Salvatore Leone. Some might argue that this make things more focused, but it can also make thing bit dull. The thing is, though, Rockstar knows all this, and isn't making any apologies for it. They're really releasing LCS on the PS2 to stop people with PSPs feeling left out in playing what's, ultimately an important bit of GTA mythos and an excellent game. The slightly improved of the bigger version is just about cancels out the fact that it hasn't got the portable's version's multiplayer, the price is bargain's basement.