Shuhei Yoshida Says Climate Isn’t Healthy For Vita Successor

Sony’s PS Vita hasn’t managed to reach huge success, but has drifted along in its almost four year existence. It has faced competition from both Nintendo’s 3DS range and the continuous rise of mobile gaming. In fact the latter may be the reason a Vita successor may not ever happen, and Sony’s Shuhei Yoshida discussed that possibility during a Q&A session at EGX.

People have mobile phones and it’s so easy to play games on smartphones. And many games on smartphones are free, or free to start. I myself am a huge fan of PlayStation Vita and we worked really hard on designing every aspect. Touch-based games are fun – there are many games with really good design. But having sticks and buttons make things totally different.

So I hope, like many of you, that this culture of playing portable games continues but the climate is not healthy for now because of the huge dominance of mobile gaming.

The slow sales are also why Sony decided early on to make Gravity Rush 2 a PS4 game instead of a Vita title. Earlier this week Shu commented on that too.

As for Gravity Rush 2, Sony made the decision “very early” to make it a PS4 exclusive. This is largely because it’s an open-world game and “the vision has really large potential in terms of realizing higher performance.
The team did a really good job to create an open-world game with the first Gravity Rush on a portable, but when we’re able to show more about what Gravity Rush 2, I’m sure people will totally understand why we made it PS4 only.

Source: Eurogamer/PlayStation LifeStyle

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15 Comments

  1. Talks about the volatile handheld market, kills of PS mobile.

  2. What a bunch of douches they can be sometimes. I seem to remember them saying ‘Console gaming in the palm of your hands’, and if only they backed it and backed it properly it could have done well. I don’t remember mobile gaming ever really coming into the equation, except with PS Mobile, and ironically they ditched that. I wonder why they would ditch that service in a ‘mobile dominated’ market.

    PSP did well in its time, as has 3DS now, so I can’t help thinking the old ‘mobile dominance’ argument is getting lazy and boring. Sony could make a new handheld that could dog’s bollocks of handheld gaming and it’ll still fail because barely anyone would trust Sony to maintain full support for it. PSP started to decline, but Sony kept with it and revived it enough to carry the console to the end of its life cycle. As soon as things looked bleak with Vita, they passed crummy comments like ‘PlayStation Pets is a AAA game’, and otherwise ignored it during the past few E3 conferences.

    If only Sony just came out and admitted they didn’t do a good job of it, and they let down those faithful buyers of the console down. But PR, continuing to sell the console and all. Rant over.*

    *rants are now guaranteed with any discussion of Vita.

    • To be fair to Sony, it’s not like they didn’t try to support the Vita. In fact, they released some of the very best games on the console, including Killzone: Mercenary, LittleBigPlanet PS Vita, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, WipEout 2048, and even new IPs like Gravity Rush and Tearaway.

      That isn’t a bad first-party line-up by any means, so it’s a little harsh to claim that Sony didn’t back the console properly. If those titles weren’t enough to entice gamers, what else could Sony have done?

      • The media killed the Vita. They were against it from the start and it never had a chance.

        That fact that everyone is so connected these days doesn’t help. You hear enough people say something is a flop or a failure and it puts you off. Why would I buy something when there are so many negative articles about how lacking it is. Once that negative momentum gets going, it’s hard to recover.

        Wii U found itself in a similar situation.

      • It’s not so much that they didn’t back it at all, it’s that there was a point where Sony outright stopped backing it and essentially said “we can’t be bothered anymore”. As I said, PSP had similar problems and Sony packed a punch and got it moving again. They didn’t abandon it.

      • At the end of the day, Sony is a business, and they have shareholders to keep happy. It’s clear that they didn’t make much money from the development of any Vita games, which has to be at least part of the reason why Sony closed down Bigbig Studios, Studio Liverpool and Zipper Interactive soon after the Vita’s launch. Can you really blame Sony for not supporting the Vita, when it contributed to the closure of three of its studios?

  3. I love Vita. However it seems pitching a console to a more mature audience (as opposed to kids) does hit smartphone users. Nintendo has done well not just due to its support but it’s much higher appeal to non smartphone owning kids.

    Vita had an amazing launch line up but suffered from a high price, a poor memory card strategy and the launch of next Gen within a fairly small window. Sadly Big Screen experiences on the small screen aren’t really a thing of mass appeal…

  4. So why are Nintendo doing so well with all their DS’s? The vita is a fantastic console but when the triple A games disappeared so did my reason to not sell it. Only Killzone, Uncharted & Wipeout really lived up the the promise of PS3 quality games.

  5. It’s unfortunate, but it is reasonable. Sony isn’t in a position to fight effectively against both Microsoft on one side and Nintendo on the other. Their circumstances are improving, and it’s possible that in five years they’ll be able to keep up game development for two platforms at a time – just not at the moment. Let’s face it, Nintendo have had an exceptionally good run with the 3DS, keeping up a stream of quality releases with only a few dry patches since day one. Even if the Vita had been cheaper, it would have been an uphill battle that could easily have been lost anyway.

    Even if I’m right about that, I don’t suppose a lot of people would exactly be glad to hear it.

  6. Avenger, I’m with you, Sony didn’t try hard enough and every time they make any comment about the Vita’s failure I feel so frustrated and need to rant too! I’m rubbish at good rants though so here’s a mini one: Needs more console ports, two big Sony games a year, support for micro sd, to be £99, appealing for indies to band together and release physical collections and to come in pink here in the west. There, fixed it :)

  7. Kind of going over old ground to mention the price of rhe memory cards but for me it got to the point where i stopped buying games as i didnt want the expense of buying another card. This pricing fed the negative publicity from the start as mentioned above.

  8. By saying that, they show that PS Mobile’s end is a silly move. By also jumping away so quickly from the Vita from the outside it doesn’t feel like it was really given a chance. I came late to the Vita and have utterly enjoyed it so far. The memory card prices are stupid but I’ve invested in it because the indie games are fun and the RPG’s that appear on it are interesting enough to be engrossed in. Also there’s a load of Japanese rhythm games that have become my staple gaming!

  9. The price tag, the memory card problem etc. they all added up. I mean in a world where I can have a phone with 32GB storage you are making me pay ridiculous prices for memory cards. In a world where everything is leaning towards digital you can’t have things like this.
    Maybe Vita tried to be too much. It wanted to be AAA game platform, it wanted to have touch controls, it wanted to have Remote Play. Just focus on 1 thing Sony and to that right.

    Quite a few of my best gaming experiences have been with Vita – Hotline Miami ( a masterpiece), Guacamelee, finally playing an MGS game.

  10. I predicted the Vita would be the last proper handheld when it first came out.

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