PS Vita - Too Gimmicky or Hardcore Device?

by Gaetano 'Xbot' Prestia Featured 22 Comments 23 Votes 4002 Views 22/12/2011 Back to Articles

Sony's PlayStation Vita launched in Japan over the weekend, bringing with it 24 launch titles, arguably the largest and broadest range of videogames for a hardware launch in history. One of the men at the center of it all, Sony's first party studio head Shuhei Yoshida, has discussed the handheld's long time in development, its features and, most importantly, its demographic.

Interestingly, he makes mention of the "core" PlayStation fanbase, and how "hardcore gamers...hate it when [Sony] try to shove new technology down their throats." What exactly he means by the "core" market we don't know, but we do know that any features aimed at a "casual" consumer are probably gimmicks best implemented in cheap, ultra accessible family games.

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The implementation of Augmented Reality (AR) in Vita, for example, is something Yoshida is concerned will be perceived as a gimmick. It certainly raises the query as to what market Sony is actually hoping to attract with Vita, as aiming to create a product for a "wider group of people", as Yoshida says, isn't really appeasing the "hardcore" core group of players: creating a game that can be enjoyed by your grandparents probably isn't going to entertain your typically Battlefield 3 player for very long, for example.

The entire "hardcore", "core" and "casual" ideas that are so often thrown around really rely on simplistic generalisations similar to the one I used above, although they are more often than not widely used terms that help differentiate video game market demographics, like the ones Yoshida mention's.

The inclusion of Twitter and Facebook, as well as an aggressive push for digital content and cheap games, certainly make Vita more appealing to a "casual" user, or someone that might not be prepared to play through all 8-hours of Uncharted: Golden Abyss. What is most interesting about Yoshida's comments, though, is that he appears to allude to the fact that hardcore gamers are turned off by any appeasing of a casual market, no matter how many "hardcore" games are available for the hardware.


Whereas a company like Nintendo is seemingly going out of its way to grab hold of this "core" market -- despite still offering a fantastic range of first-party content -- Sony seems concerned that it will lose the very market both it and Microsoft tried to attract with Move (for PlayStation 3) and Kinect (for Xbox 360) respectively.

Sony's concerns certainly seem unnecessary considering the price of the handheld, which is probably the only thing holding back prospective buyers. If you're worried about your product being too gimmicky for a hardcore audience, you can probably rest assured that the price itself will keep the Vita community exclusive and "core".

Price aside, you also have a pretty "hardcore" launch lineup on the horizon, and as long as there is a steady flow of Uncharted's, Ridge Racer's, UMvC's and Blaz Blue's, no amount of gimmick's will ever hold back the "core" PlayStation gamers.

Yoshida's acknowledgment that "core gamers" hate having new technology rammed down their throat suggests Sony is intent on maintaining its fanbase while still offering new features for a casual audience. It did it with Move, and certainly seems set to do the same for Vita.

By Gaetano Prestia

Which Vita feature are you most interested in, and is there anything, aside from price, that turns you away?

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PS Vita - Too Gimmicky or Hardcore Device? Comments

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Vita looks like it will be far away from the PS3 'NO GAMES' policy. That's a win in my books.

abuu91 said: Vita looks like it will be far away from the PS3 'NO GAMES' policy. That's a win in my books.



You mean for the launch period?
I like the idea of the Vita. However its simply too expensive for a handheld. Fail.
It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.
milo
+

barters81 said: I like the idea of the Vita. However its simply too expensive for a handheld. Fail.


I agree, i mean there's hardly any difference in price from the wifi to the 3g, and if they just kept it as a gaming unit, that would be good as every one can facebook etc on there phones and ipads ...i hope it works.. good luck to them
why do people complain about $350? yet i don't remember people complaining about the 3ds on release for what $330?



3ds was also $350
The Vita is worth it and will be worth it much more when it gets custom firmware and can run PSP, PSX and PS2 ISO straight from the memory card.

BlazeX said: The Vita is worth it and will be worth it much more when it gets custom firmware and can run PSP, PSX and PS2 ISO straight from the memory card.


Why would you want to do that though?

SONY said: It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.


HD

SONY said:

BlazeX said: The Vita is worth it and will be worth it much more when it gets custom firmware and can run PSP, PSX and PS2 ISO straight from the memory card.


Why would you want to do that though?


Because I already do it with my PSP and i'll be happy to spend a little extra for a memory card for the Vita so i can run PSP, PSX and PS2 ISOs on it.

I don't see why its a big deal, alot of people who has a PSP does it and they don't complain.
you do have to love the people who are bagging the psvita because it does not have 3d built in.

It is the only thing the 3ds has going for it & i have used one and thought it was shit 3d anyway.

Dusty Lids said: you do have to love the people who are bagging the psvita because it does not have 3d built in.
It is the only thing the 3ds has going for it & i have used one and thought it was shit 3d anyway.


I have a 3DS and I don't even use the 3D since its a gimmick that DOESN'T enhance gameplay at all and is if anything a cheap attempt at making the graphics look better to compensate for cheaper hardware.

I'm looking forward to the Vita cause well chances are it can emulate PS2 which means more fantastic undubbed RPGs to play on the go [Derp]

Dusty Lids said: why do people complain about $350? yet i don't remember people complaining about the 3ds on release for what $330?

I don't get this either. I'm prettysure the PSP was around $400 (maybe even more) on launch too, and that didn't have near as much as the Vita. In comparison to that and the 3DS's launch price this is cheap for the type of system we're getting.

conduit28 said:

SONY said: It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.


HD


You're from Melbourne too, so why not come around and watch teh porns with me? *_*

SONY said:

conduit28 said:

SONY said: It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.


HD


You're from Melbourne too, so why not come around and watch teh porns with me?


With pleasure *_*
Still remember buying my PSP-1000 for $388 in 2006, still have it and works ;)
I still got my Gameboy pocket with Donkey Kong Land and Pokemon silver all for free, and it still works! (*)
I want the bloody awesome Vita [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [MOG] [MOG] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage] [Rage]

Dusty Lids said: why do people complain about $350? yet i don't remember people complaining about the 3ds on release for what $330?


Hence the $100 price drop due to public disapproval?

Genius investigative work again, Columbo

SONY said: It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.



where?.... melbourne central toilets?

DPkrass said:

SONY said: It's well worth it, imo. I use it to watch teh porns on the internets.


where?.... melbourne central toilets?


On the tram, bro *_*

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