If your most-played game on PSP so far is the explosion-filled romp that is Metal Slug Anthology, you're about to get a little tickle in your tank-loving heart - but only if your PSP sports a model number in the 1000-3000 range. After 15 months of exclusivity on the DS with Metal Slug 7, an upgraded version will be appearing in UMD format as Metal Slug XX, with a Double X superimposed for good measure.
This release points to a number of trends in publishing lately, some of them favorable. For one thing, we're seeing games that used to be exclusive rereleased with extra content (including, in this case, 2-player co-op and the unlockability of KoF badass Leona as a playable character). Then, there's bizarre preorder bonuses, such as the Japanese version of this game winning you the curtain-like striped boxers that have been made popular by every bearded POW in the Metal Slug series (one of which you can still win in Atlus' PlayStation blog giveaway).
Finally, there's the decision to release this game on UMD only, which follows many other games recently that will be unavailable to early adopters of the digital-only PSPgo. Sony has every opportunity to require new PSP games to be released on PSN, or even to subsidize their publishing so as to make the PSPgo a more attractive option for portable gamers, but it seems that's not in the cards. Atlus has, so far, been pretty good about putting their games on PSN to be downloaded by all, so this announcement doesn't look good for Atlus fans who've already invested in the PSPgo.
For everyone else, however, Metal Slug XX looks to explode onto UMD on February 23, 2010. Pick it up and enjoy your physical copy!