One of our regular guest contributors, OrigamiKiller kindly decided to share his thoughts again. This time around he’s taking a look at Sony’s new portable contender, the PS Vita.
Portable gaming has never interested me. This has been quite clear to me as my PSP, bought at launch, has never had its fair share of my gaming playtime over the past few years. It is probably my lifestyle that has never captivated my interest for portable gaming. I don’t travel a lot or more importantly I don’t experience situations for which portable gaming is intended for.
Sadly this has meant the PS Vita hasn’t caught my eye over the past few months. If I was to own one I know that it wouldn’t get much use; at home I would always choose to play on the PS3 if I wanted a gaming session. The only real situation I would use it on is long journeys and in my life these don’t occur too often. However, in the last week my interest for the Vita has risen considerably.
[drop]There seems to be something special about the Vita. For one it looks fantastic, both in terms of its physical appearance and the visuals of the games. The styling for me can be best described as slick, something very characteristic of a Sony product. It was a major factor in my decision to buy a PSP instead of a DS all those years ago.
From gameplay footage the Vita’s visuals look stunning and are easily on par with the capabilities of the PS3. Uncharted and Wipeout highlight this best for me. It’s not just the visuals though, there are so many other technical details that should win me over instantly, like the introduction of a touch screen.
It is not this that interests me about the Vita though. The main nature of my newly realised excitement comes from the actual games that are on offer. Ironically it is not the “big games” that interest me as to be honest I have more than enough of them for my PS3. It is those games which look to be adopting the pick up and play style – something that has never interested me before.
This pick up and play style gaming is something which is on the rise in my gaming life. Recently I have discovered Temple Run. What a great little game that is. The way you can have a quick go here and now has come into great use in the past few weeks. After watching Little Deviants and Ridge Racer footage I can see those two games providing the same play style for me, switching them on for a quick race or level every now and then.
[drop2]It’s this that’s really tempting me to put a preorder in for the Vita. It feels strange how a device that isn’t even out yet can change my views on portable gaming. Sure my iPod Touch and the App store have dosed me with the pick up and play style for many years now, but the Vita offers that bit more. You don’t get PS3 visuals and online play on Apps (excluding a few) for a start. I can now look back at the view conveyed in my first sentence and say that portable gaming has begun to interest me with the potential of the Vita.
I sound pretty much sold on the Vita, but there’s one big hiccup – the price. In my opinion portable gaming needs to be at a low price. The thought of the initial price of the Vita plus memory cards and games on top is daunting. It feels overpriced to me. Whilst the difference between in cost between the iPod Touch and the Vita hardware might not be that much, it’s the exceptionally low cost of Apps (many are free) that make me feel Sony may find it difficult to enter the market that iOS and Android devices dominate; it’s fortunate that the Vita does offer much more than this. Sadly that “much more” is not what interests me about the Vita and for the time being I think I will keep to my iPod Touch and the App store.
Is it only me that has become increasingly interested in portable gaming with the prospect of the Vita? Also what excites you most about Vita – is it that pick up and play style gaming or something else?