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Vita May Resonate With Older Gamers

So sue me, I happen to really like the PlayStation Vita. But I'm starting to figure out why.

I've mentioned the available software before, and that amazing screen. However, there are plenty of other factors at play here, and it leads me to believe that older gamers will be enticed by Sony's new portable.

First and foremost, I really believe those who have been playing games for several decades are more resistant to gimmicks. It's a general rule of life that the older we get, the more resistant we are to change and this is no exception. For instance, while I think the PlayStation Move has a ton of potential, I really don't care about it. I like that motion-sensing has gotten millions of gamers moving, which is probably a much-needed feature for a weighty population.

But I'm sorry, for me, playing games is a sedentary hobby (I get my exercise elsewhere), and other gimmicky features just aren't doing it for me. That includes 3D and the integration of "social" websites like Facebook and Twitter into our games. I'm hardly the only one my age who thinks this way; those over the age of 30 just don't put as much stock in this stuff; our priority is - and always has been - the games. So although the Vita has plenty of nifty options and features, the focus is on games and furthermore, it's a focus on traditional gaming.

We've got the sticks; we've got just about everything we have when holding the PlayStation controller in our hand. Very much the same controller, by the way, that we had 15 years ago, and remains similar to other old-school gamepads. On top of which, the somewhat prohibitive price of the Vita means those who are more settled in life are likely to pick it up immediately. You should - ideally - be making a little more money than you were in your early 20s, and although time might be an issue, your bank account should be able to handle the cost of the unit.

Lastly, you've got the types of games: Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Wipeout 2048, Shinobido 2: Revenge of Zen, Dungeon Hunter Alliance, Ninja Gaiden Sigma Plus, etc. are all geared towards a slightly older age group. At the same time, we do have plenty of family-friendly options, but the point remains: this software lineup doesn't look like Nintendo's. When you combine all these factors together, you get a machine that might - at the start, at least - appeal to the 25-40 crowd rather than the 13-24 crowd.

Tags: vita, playstation vita, vita games, older gamers, gaming culture

2/23/2012 9:22:04 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (39 posts)

tes37
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 9:37:41 PM
Reply

I'm going to be picking up one pretty soon. I have a few things to take care of first, but I've already started downloading demos of games in anticipation of the device. I want the Vita strictly for the games and cross gameplay with the PS3.

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JackDillinger89
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 9:57:26 PM
Reply

I got a chance to try ps vita at best buy i have to say im impressed. It truly is a portable ps3 in the palm of your hand. It feels durable and is quality made. If it wasnt for the costly price i would of walked out with one. The games are a bit pricey too. $50 for U:GA and others plus the memory card. Its a shame ps vita is a luxury that many people cant afford now myself including. It deserves to succeed but the price will seriously hurt the vita. Soon as vita matches 3DS price i swear by the will of sithis its a definite purchase! If anyone that can afford the vita but is hesitant and awaits user feedback trust me u wont regret it its worth the money if you can afford it.

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Jawknee
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 10:01:58 PM

I disagree. The build feels kinda blagh to me.

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Jawknee
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 10:01:07 PM
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I finally got my hands on one today at Target. Cool tech and Uncharted looks even better than I imagined. Though I am kinda surprised at the build quality of the hardware. It felt kinda light and fragile to me. It doesn't feel at tough as my PSP-1000 or even my 3DS. I still can't wait to get one.

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Cesar_ser_4
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 10:32:59 PM

I feel it has the right weight for a portable console, as for the feel of it. To me it feels better than my PSP-3001 felt. Sturdier and a bit heavier. It feels like a handheld for grown ups compared to the PSP-3000. As to the build quality, not all companies can afford to put "the same glass they use on helicopters" hehehe ;).

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FatherSun
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 10:51:36 PM

The VITA has weight to it. I know that for some of the more delicate hands out there it will be a factor. It can and may someday be lighter ans stronger. VITAS just a baby right now. Wait till it grows up.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 12:17:10 AM

Uh...it's way heavier than my PSP.

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Jawknee
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 1:00:48 AM

Than the 1000? It feels beefier than the 3001, that's for sure.

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Shams
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 1:19:42 AM

I've owned both the psp-1000, and traded it in for a psp-3000, which I still have at my bed side. To me, Vita feels heavier than the 3000, and about the same, if not a bit more, than the 1000 if my memory serves me right. It definitely has more "premium" feel and look to it than either of psps. I can't say much about the DS, as I haven't used one, but I have used a 3ds, and it looks toy'ish as compared to the Vita. Just my opinion.

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gumbi
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 8:57:01 AM

The PSP-1000 was a tank, and had remarkable build quality. The 2000+ series PSP's are much lighter and are certainly more fragile. I dropped my 2000 once and it exploded, took all afternoon to put humpty dumpty together again.

I'm quite happy with the build quality of my Vita. It's lighter than I expected and it feels quite sturdy. I might not put it up there with the PSP-1000, but again, that thing was a tank.

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Highlander
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 11:16:34 AM

The build quality is good, but I don't get quite the same bullet proof feel from it that the PSP-1000 has. It's good, but not that good.

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BikerSaint
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 3:05:58 PM

Since I own all the different PSP models & version upgrades, I decided to do an actual unscientific "Vita vs PSP" comparison for everyone.

BTW, the Vita is only close in size & weight with the very first PSP 1000, so I eliminated the PSP 2000 slim, PSP 3000, and the PSP GO.


The Vita & PSP 1000 basically are about the same thickness(maybe a few millimeters difference in favor of the Vita)

Everything else in size & bulk, goes straight to the Vita......

I weighed them on a postal scale that I set to ounces
I then stood the Vita & PSP 1000 straight up & placed them up against each other, back to back.

Vita = 10.10 ounces
PSP 1000 = 9.92 ounces

The Vita is about a 1/2 inch taller than the PSP 1000.

The Vita is also about an inch longer end to end than the PSP 1000.

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Neo_Aeon666
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 5:09:36 PM

Errr the 3ds feels cheap and vita is rock solid should be the accurate version XD

Well you have your opinion but we have different views of *sturdy*. My 3ds screen and the one of my gf feels *slack* and the console is plain plastic. The D-pad is not at a good spot and the console crys when we push the buttons XD.

Kind of weird you did not notice that. 3DS is a good console and I like it but... It cannot be compared to the Vita in any way.

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FatherSun
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 10:48:43 PM
Reply

The VITA can cater to as broad an audience as Sony wants it to. The more I use it the more my confidence that it will succeed grows. So much potential. I wondered why Android was not immediately evident. It is a open platform so Sony will gate Apps thru the PSN. Of course to control quality and security. Which is fine because I wouldn't want an abyss of endless/useless Apps. Google is in there too beginning with the MAPS App. VITA will evolve just like the PS3 has and at accelerated rate. Don't be surprised if the PS4 is already in your hands or maybe one more home console and the PS5 will look this way.

I agree with you Ben that this is a GAMING First console but I see VITA2 as a Thinner, Lighter, Stronger, 4G, SSD, Dual 10 Megapixel Cameras with 3D thrown in. Give or take a spec or two. Now that Sony has incorporated Mobile Communications they will be manufacturing phones possibly on a yearly basis. What's to stop Sony from putting out VITAS every couple of years. Just Like Apple does. In a slight way VITA feels like a test run just as the PSPGO was but a much more fleshed out product. As i have been saying lately, technology is on a verge. The next few years will amaze us.

Last edited by FatherSun on 2/23/2012 10:53:47 PM

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BikerSaint
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 11:18:16 PM
Reply

Well, Vita would've resonated with me but for 2 days now, I'm about fed up that I can't get my G3 model to recognize there is even a "online" at all, either by G3, Wifi, or even hooking it up to my PS3.
Plus, my Vita says it needs to FW updated, but I can't do it with no online capability.

So, I'm almost ready to throw in the towel & just return all my Vita stuff & get my $450+ back.

BTW, you can see all my problems trying to get it online, over in the "Vita Social Club/Playboy Bunny" a few threads below this one.

Last edited by BikerSaint on 2/23/2012 11:20:48 PM

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sdragon001
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 11:31:45 PM

hook it up to your PC and install content manager an d it will update your vita through your PC connection

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Beamboom
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 3:04:08 AM

I replied to your comment in that article, Biker. But seeing what you write here I'm not so sure if what I wrote was of any real help. If you can't even connect to the ps3 then it more sounds like there is something wrong with your Vita. That can happen too.

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___________
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 5:34:34 AM

your not in the startup menu right?
when you first turn your vita on and setup the settings, then when you go link it to your PSN account it will ask for a connection and link to your PSN account but it cant because theres a FW update required.
its really stupid how $ony has set it up, they should of made it that it checks for a FW update first, but what you have to do is let it create a dummy account, then you finally get to the home screen and you can update the FW from the settings menu.

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BikerSaint
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 2:17:09 PM

sdragon001,

"THANK YOU, IT WORKED"

You're my new hero!!!!
---------

Beamboom,
Thanks for your help too, I did see your reply & I just replied back in that thread...
Anyway, some good news, & some more of the same ole news...
------------

__________________, Yeah, I thought that was crazy, you can't do anything till you've updated the FW, but you can't online to do the FW update.
That was a real "Catch-22" moment if I ever had one

And if it wasn't for the PC suggestion made above, I would've never been able to update or use it.

OH, another thing that baffled me was that although I could NOT get my WIFi to connect(& I hadn't done AT&T's G3 data plan at that time), my Vita still was able to connect to to their signup website without a hitch????
What, for over 5 hours I can't get on-line, but somehow my Vita knows how to get itself on-line instantly in order to get AT&T my money????
WTF was up with that happening???

Last edited by BikerSaint on 2/24/2012 2:36:25 PM

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sdragon001
Thursday, February 23, 2012 @ 11:27:31 PM
Reply

Ok I'm just suffering around on the interweb tonight, and behold I saw pokemon world online and just thought to myself I Remember this for the gb way back in the day. so i looked it up to see what it was like for an online game, and well it looks the same as it did on the gb, now if $ony was smart and said hey we can get the younger crowed and try to get a license for this kids can game with all there friends with the 3g/wifi and near functions, that would piss of nintendo alot for stealing some of there market core youth gamer..

what a long night time for escape plan and bed.........

Last edited by sdragon001 on 2/23/2012 11:29:39 PM

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Jawknee
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 12:10:39 AM

Nintendo owns the rights to Pokemon so...

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JackDillinger89
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 12:36:25 AM
Reply

Its a LOT more durable than older psps i had the psp 3000 that bundled with portable ops. Its definitely a psp on steroids. I like the fact also the screen is big and wide enough to see clearly without having to squint my eyes and look so close to the screen like the older psps. Im convinced WITH a PRICE DROP and a continuos stream of quality software releases vita may dominate the portable gaming market and turn out successful as sony hopes.

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Bonampak
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 1:26:10 AM
Reply

Vita needs to cater to EVERYONE. I really don't subscribe to this "let's make it a machine for older people" mantra. That only limits its appeal.

If Sony goes about promoting the handheld as such, it could backfire. Some devs will think twice before supporting the system. Since they will have to consider the handheld's demographic/user base. They'll go: "Oh, wait... this game won't work on that system... let's cancel it or move production to iOS or 3DS". Screw that.

I mentioned the 3DS... Well, notice that that doesn't seem to happen on the 3DS. There you got games for everyone - kids (Pokemon, Mario, Nintendogs), teens and adults (Kingdom Hearts, Monster Hunter, Metal Gear, Resident Evil, Spirit Camera, Zelda, New Love Plus, etc.) and even for really old people (Brain Training games). Games for everyone right there. Therefore, with the 3DS devs don't have that stigma of having to worry finding an audience on that system. I see no apathy toward that system coming from Japanese devs.

So why would anyone would want to give that stigma to the Vita? Why limit its appeal to a certain age group? Its ridiculous to even go there in the iPad/iPhone era. There is so much competition out there (direct or indirect its still competition).

Vita needs mainstream gamers to succeed. Not just us core gamers supporting it.

And BTW, Sony should not be afraid going head-to-head with Nintendo. They have beaten them before and for many years. Sony should look into getting into the kid market with Vita. Heck, that market alone was precisely what made Kinect a hit on X360. Kids have no cash, but they have parents that do!

Anyway, IMO Vita being a universal hit with everyone should be Sony's goal.

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Beamboom
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 3:16:27 AM

I disagree with you here.
I believe that if you want to create a machine that cater to everyone, well then you don't go create a dedicated, expensive (relatively speaking) proprietary and closed gaming handheld: You make a device based on the Android platform. That or the Apple alternative is what "everyone" wants right now. That's catering for everyone.

So if - IF - at first Sony *have* to make a product like this then I believe their marketing guys are doing the right thing profiling it as a toy for the "rich, big boys", with Playboy models etc. That's making the best out of it, imo.

Personally I'm just not too optimistic about the market potential for this device. But that's beating a dead horse by now around here.


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/24/2012 3:33:15 AM

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Rogueagent01
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 5:28:35 AM

I think catering to the older gamers "at first" is the right choice as it was released outside of a holiday timeframe and older gamers have played just about every genre or type of game you can imagine. In a way older gamers are more open minded about the games that they will buy/play. I am not saying younger players dislike any specific genres, it is just us older gamers have been playing since the earliest eras of gaming, and can sometimes appreciate games that seem to be marketed towards specific age groups(no matter what age group).

I know 40+ year olds that play Pokemon games just as an example, and the older gamers seem to be far less disappointed if a game doesn't have brilliant up-to-date graphics, making it a little bit easier on devs at the moment. The only drawback going towards older gamers is we are sticklers for gameplay and if it isn't good then we will bite your head off. And like I said being that it isn't a holiday season younger people that don't have the money will have a much tougher time trying to talk there relatives into buying one for them.

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Beamboom
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 6:08:21 AM

What you say there goes against everything we know, Rogue.

It's the exact opposite: The old boys want things the way they are used to have it. They want to play what they are used to play using what they are used to use to experience it how they are used to experience it. They are anything *but* open minded, while the kids don't mind new stuff.

That's how real life is in general, also - but not only - when it comes to gaming. And the Vita is oldschool - it's how we are used to have portable gaming.

Last edited by Beamboom on 2/24/2012 6:10:51 AM

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Highlander
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 10:24:16 AM

The hardweare has every option known to man except dual screens and 3D. It caters to any and all gamers. The game that are available at launch ate the games that the early adopter market will buy. Established franchises, old favorites and graphical powerhouses.

If you want kids games, or casual games, watch this space, because they will come. Oh, and BTW, there are free games with the Vita that are more tech demos than anything else. One of them is a fireworks display that uses AR to put the fireworks wherever you lay the AR card. It's fairly casual as games go, and free, and I think demonstrates that the unit is not simply about twin stick shooters.

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Rogueagent01
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 7:54:20 PM

One reason I disagree with you Beam is I am a member of the clan "Old School Gamers" and it isn't just a name. The majority of our membes are older and when you look through their trophy lists you see everything from Free Realms to Demon's Souls on the lists. The only closed minded aspects I see with older gamers has already been brought up in here, and that is the Facebook/Twitter type integration which I also am not a fan of.

Even when I am up at games shops I see the older players looking at the backs of all kinds of games where the younger players come in and no exactly what they want. Again I am not picking on younger gamers in any way, and I also am not trying to imply that all older gamers are open minded, but many of them are.

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Beamboom
Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 9:28:50 AM

@Highlander:
It's an *amazing* spelling error in that post of yours there, Highlander. I'd... I'd never expect such a thing from someone of your calibre! :)

@Rogue:
I am sorry for saying so Rogue, but the fact that the older you get the more "stuck" you are in how things used to be, well that's a universal fact for as long as man has walked on the face of this planet. It's never the older generation who first adapt to new technology, new trends, new culture or new products. Never.

It's the exact same with music, technology or even humour! Humour changes with the generations, and typically the new generations humorists/comedians are looked down upon by the older clan. Just like the new generation music, "it ain't what it used to be for sure". That you don't see this all around you is just amazing!

But I'll not rub it in. Or, as a local Norwegian writer once put it, "If you take the life lie from an average man, you take away his happiness as well.".
(Henrik Ibsen, 1828 - 1906) :)

(PS I am 42 myself!)

Last edited by Beamboom on 2/25/2012 9:38:14 AM

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Rogueagent01
Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 10:38:24 PM

I don't feel that your rubbing it in. You are one of the few people on here that I can have a conversation with and not feel that we are getting mad. Hopefully I am not getting under your skin either as I don't mind these kinds of conversations.

I agree that the majority of people are that way, but that only means anything over %50. And these last couple of generations have all but turned around on that true close minded aspect. Real conservatives aren't as powerful as they used to be and the only reason is many other people are starting to be more open minded and seeing logic in trying something or thinking about it in another way.

And in a way it may be regional, I mean look at certain drugs or certain types of marriages. If we still lived in that close minded society that we used too have those things wouldn't even be talked about let alone passed in certain places. The only thing I can say is that the world you are describing doesn't exist everywhere, some places have broken out of the mold.

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Fane1024
Sunday, February 26, 2012 @ 1:37:32 AM

The points you guys are making are not directly contradictory: Rogue is talking about breadth of taste, while Beam is talking about adaptability.

Young people very much tend to believe "their thing" is better than all other things (even when they have no knowledge of those things), while older people tend to have developed wider tastes. Older people, however, tend to reach a point (eventually) where they stop engaging new trends, whereas the young people tend to follow the new trends as they come and are therefore more comfortable with the "new" (though not always the "old").

One can see both effects clearly exhibited on the Rock Band Forums when the weekly DLC is announced: the kids complain about anything that isn't current or their favorite genre, while the fogies are lukewarm about the current stuff, but happy about a wider variety of music.

In other words, you're both right.

Last edited by Fane1024 on 2/26/2012 1:44:53 AM

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___________
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 5:32:40 AM
Reply

thats exactly what ive been saying for months!
allot of people are not interested in new features, new ways to play games, new things to do, they just want what there use to!
i wish companies would stop adding in this useless crap into our games like facebook for instance.
if facebook was not on the vita, those developers could of been used to make a new game for it.
i know which on id choose!

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sdragon001
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 7:30:22 AM
Reply

is anyone else experiencing facebook issues error code NP-13144-3 wont connect? everything else works for the interweb and psn

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BikerSaint
Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 10:34:51 PM

sdragon001

FYI: According to the PS Blog, there were a few changes made with FB, & something screwed it up.

But but they're working on fixing it.
They also said they'll have it corrected shortly

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I007spectre
Friday, February 24, 2012 @ 3:46:52 PM
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Love my Vita, but I really need E3 to bring some awesome new game announcements. Looking down the road at what is currently announced, and all I see is Resistance and CoD.

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Fane1024
Sunday, February 26, 2012 @ 1:56:08 AM

Do you seriously expect a bunch of game announcements in the week(s) that 26 games are launching?

If there are other games coming soon, we'll hear about them after the launch marketing has diminished. There's only so much bandwidth.

Hopefully, there won't be an extended drought, but that is pretty much S.O.P. in the first year of any system.

p.s. You left out LBP.

p.p.s. I did not intend to sound confrontational; apologies if I did.

Last edited by Fane1024 on 2/26/2012 1:58:34 AM

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LanceNLT
Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 1:36:30 PM
Reply

While I don't challenge the accuracy of this statement, I do question the reasoning and implications behind it. Ben, you seem to imply that young people are not as capable of appreciating pure games as older people are. I may not be able to speak for my entire demographic but I am 18 and I have never liked Call of Duty, online gaming, or spending lots of time on Facebook and such. My closest are friends the same way so I do also know that I am not the only outlier. I am holding my new PS Vita in my hands at this momemt and I love it for all the same reasons you listed above: the traditional control scheme and the focus on quality gaming experiences. And while I also love the Netflix app and the browser (I don'have a smartphone so It sorta fills that hole), I would never have gotten the Vita if it weren't for the first and foremost focus on the games. I also have a 3DS and while I like its Nintendo Video app and StreetPass functions, I love it for its games (of which there ARE now many good ones by the way) I have always appreciated quality games and classic games (I especially love etro throwbacks like 3D Dot Game Heroes, and I did indeed recognize many of the loading arts and I understand most of the references in that game) and I have always hated social games and smartphone games; I hate to even call them video games. I suppose my point is that even though I am, according to you, too young to have an interest in the Vita, I do immensely so. Perhaps instead of generalizing age groups you could have just said the Vita appeals more to serious gamers or those who appreciate all form of quality games, as opposed to the iPhone and Facebook crowd, without regard to age.

Last edited by LanceNLT on 2/25/2012 1:37:29 PM

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LanceNLT
Saturday, February 25, 2012 @ 1:36:30 PM
Reply

While I don't challenge the accuracy of this statement, I do question the reasoning and implications behind it. Ben, you seem to imply that young people are not as capable of appreciating pure games as older people are. I may not be able to speak for my entire demographic but I am 18 and I have never liked Call of Duty, online gaming, or spending lots of time on Facebook and such. My closest are friends the same way so I do also know that I am not the only outlier. am holding my new PS Vita in my hands at this momemt and I love it for all the same reasons you listed above: the traditional control scheme and the focus on quality gaming experiences. And while I also love the Netflix app and the browser (I don'have a smartphone so It sorta fills that hole), I would never have gotten the Vita if it weren't for the first and foremost focus on the games. I also have a 3DS and while I like its Nintendo Video app and StreetPass functions, I love it for its games (of which there ARE now many good ones by the way) I have always appreciated quality games and classic games (I especially love etro throwbacks like 3D Dot Game Heroes, and I did indeed recognize many of the loading arts and I understand most of the references in that game) and I have always hated social games and smartphone games; I hate to even call them video games. I suppose my point is that even though I am, according to you, too young to have an interest in the Vita, I do immensely so. Perhaps instead of generalizing age groups you could have just said the Vita appeals more to serious gamers or those who appreciate all form of quality games, as opposed to the iPhone and Facebook crowd, without regard to age.

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ulsterscot
Monday, January 21, 2013 @ 8:35:38 PM
Reply

its a dangerous game they play ..

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