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To All The Vita Haters: Remember When The PSP Started Slow?

The PlayStation Vita hasn't sold as well as anticipated, and there are plenty of legitimate reasons for its slow start.

For the most part, the skeptics and naysayers have a lot of ammunition, and good reason to be concerned about the future of Sony's new portable device. However, the rampant negativity surrounding the handheld reminds me very much of the first year of the PSP's existence.

The doom and gloom was even bigger for that one and unsurprisingly, many cited the same culprits: It was too expensive and there weren't enough games. Some of the more hostile and caustic flat-out laughed at Sony's attempt to enter the handheld market, especially when Nintendo had a veritable stranglehold on that corner of the gaming industry. You could find at least one article a week that predicted a premature end for the PSP and if you check around now, you can find essentially the same reactions to the Vita.

But hey, it seems to be the norm for Sony over the past seven or eight years. The PSP, the PS3, the Vita...they all face the same sort of slings and arrows, and they all end up doing just fine. The PSP ended up selling quite well and it even outstripped the DS more than a few times during the last couple of years. All told, the PSP has gone on to sell over 80 million units worldwide and that isn't exactly the hallmark of a failure; in fact, it's precisely the opposite. Of course, the Vita has the mobile market explosion to deal with so that's a whole new problem, but my point remains.

Crucifying the Vita early on, especially when haters are basically using the same arguments we've heard over and over for different Sony platforms (platforms that have done very well), seems like a bad idea. Just sayin'.

Tags: vita, playstation vita, psp, playstation portable, vita sales

12/11/2012 12:25:46 AM Ben Dutka

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Comments (52 posts)

SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:12:59 AM
Reply

So I just got the Vita two weeks ago and I gotta say...It's incredible! The OS is brilliantly designed, the screen is amazing, and I'm enjoying the games I got on it (currently playing Gravity Rush and Uncharted). I have a couple more vita games (that came with the bundle) but haven't played them yet. Already looking forward to it though.

I'm really glad I bit the bullet and bought one.

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Cesar_ser_4
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 6:31:45 AM

Yes it is an incredible little device indeed. The only thing I have against it is the damn digital air bubbles. I'm referring to those parts of the screen that look blacker than the rest of the screen, which Highlander says its just the technology of the oled screen. But other than that it's a beautiful piece of technology to own.

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SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:06:48 PM

So THAT'S what that is! Man, I noticed those. I can only see them in just the right super-dim lighting when the screen itself is black, I thought it was some weirdness with the screen protector. Interesting.

But yeah, I love the Vita!

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firesoul453
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:22:12 PM

You only notice it when the screen it pretty much completely black (and backlight on).
If thats your biggest nitpick then you know its an awesome device.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:17:08 AM
Reply

What qualifies to be a Vita "hater"? It it everyone who don't "love" it? Or everyone who sees a dark future, or no future for it? Or those who *want* it to fail? Are everyone who points out what they believe is the problem with something a "hater"? Or... Do you need to truly hate something to be a "hater" (like those who hate anything Microsoft)? What is the definition of a "hater"?

Am I a hater? I'm not optimistic about Vitas future. Does that make me a "hater"? I don't think the problem is the price, or the software. Had it been that easy it would have been much simpler for Sony, cause then the remedy would be clear.
But does this make me a "hater"? What exactly is it?


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/11/2012 1:18:51 AM

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SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:22:46 AM

If it's not an issue with the price or the software, then why so pessimistic about the Vita's future? Economy? Smart phones?

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:33:07 AM

It isn't that complicated, Beamboom. I say anyone's a hater who dismisses the Vita as a failure...and a whole LOT of people are doing that already.

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sawao_yamanaka
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:44:27 AM

Well considering that every article on the vita you are negative about it then you are a "hater".

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Beamboom
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:57:19 AM

Hehe - ok, so a "hater" is essentially someone that is critical to something without knowing the turnout. Okie dokie. It's not how I would define "hate", but oh well. I'll go with the flow.

But do this rule apply to all products, or just Sony? Like, if I don't believe in the WiiU and think the sales will drop drastically the moment the next consoles are launched, am I then a hater? Or if I think a subscription model for COD would be a total disaster? After all, I don't *know* how this will turn out either...?

@SaiyanSempai: I'm sorry but I can't tell you, cause that would make me a hater. And noone wants to be a hater, you know. We don't like haters around here.


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/11/2012 5:04:51 AM

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Phoenix
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 5:23:39 AM

So, we have legit reasons why the Vita isnt doing so well right now, which in turn gives us doubts about its future, and you're calling us haters because of it?

That is just silly, people have made proper arguments about the Vita, and you simply dismiss it as nonsense. Now, call me crazy, but that sounds like fanboyism to me.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 8:20:39 AM

I don't think it is right to resort to namecalling either way Phoenix. It doesn't lead to anything good.

But yeah, I do think it's kinda immature to throw labels at each other just because it's about a Sony product. Cause everyone knows that obviously noone would be called a "hater" had it been a Microsoft handheld that was the topic of the discussion, or a tablet, an Android console, a PC accessory, or anything else.

Had my reasoning for my doubts about the Vita been along the lines of "kuz it suxx, joo f00lz" then sure, call me a hater. But I'm not like that, never has been.


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/11/2012 8:26:42 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:14:36 AM

Phoenix: Learn to read. I said haters are people who dismiss the Vita as a failure, not people who use rational arguments to explain why it isn't doing so well.

If you can't tell the massive difference between the two, that isn't my problem.

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Phoenix
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:04:50 AM

Hahaha, true enough Beamboom, but then again we are on a site dedicated to playstation so it's to be expected to get backlash when we dont praise thier products. That's not to say that it would be different on an xbox site, just saying =P.


Well, while it stands at this moment, the Vita in my eyes is a bit of a let down, while it remains an amazing piece of tech, it's still lacking in the software department for me and the memory card prices are a bit steep aswell. But, as its been pointed out by several, give it another year or so, and then we can decide if it's a failure or not.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:13:45 AM

Oh well hold on a sec there, Benny boy. One could dismiss the Vita as a failure based on a handful of rational arguments and predictions about the future. "Failure" is just a conclusion, not an argument.

I've called Vita "the wrong product at the wrong time". But I am not saying so with a grin on my face, nor am I happy about it. Heck, I even wish that I myself wanted a Vita! I just don't, and that is for the very reasons why I believe Sony has a gigantic challenge in getting the Vita out there. It's not cause of the price. It's not even cause of the software. Had I believed in it I would be sure the games would come, eventually.

But I don't *hate* neither the Vita nor Sony.


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/11/2012 11:17:59 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:02:39 PM

Phoenix: I've called out the Vita, PS3, and PSP throughout the years, even more often than sites that aren't centered on PlayStation. In fact, I'd say I've taken Sony to task more often then praising them in editorials over the years.

Beamboom: You're still not getting it. If anyone concludes the Vita is a failure - we all know what the definition of "failure" is - this early in its lifespan, especially when the PSP and PS3 were in very much the same boat during their first years, and considering the LONG lifespan of Sony platforms, that person is a blind hater. Done.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 12/11/2012 12:02:58 PM

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Underdog15
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:03:22 PM

I remember Ben writing an article during the PSN hack that basically called out Sony for their silence. So, I believe Ben. I've never known him to be unreasonable. Even on occasions where I didn't agree, he still made rational arguments to support his stance.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:12:29 PM

But that depends on what context the conclusion is based on, Ben! I really wish you could stop being so insanely categorical.

What you are saying is that it's way too early to draw a final - FINAL - conclusion that the entire product is a failure. I get that, Ben. I am - despite popular belief and widespread suspicion - not stupid.

But if the discussion is for instance the launch of the Vita, then you bloody well can call it a failure seeing how they initially expected, was it 20 million sold the first fiscal year? And they seem to end up on roughly four, worldwide? That might on all accounts qualify as a "failure".

If the topic is the Vitas potential ahead, one thinkable scenario could be that the Vita never gets a foothold in the market, is abandoned by the 3rd party developers and ends up as a money drain for Sony, accompanied by arguments why this might happen.
It most definitely can be discussed as one possible outcome. And if so then it can't be described as anything but a failure.

So to say "anyone who says it's a fail is a blind hater" is just way too categorical. One have to look at what is actually said.


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/11/2012 1:52:14 PM

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Excelsior1
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:36:15 PM

I think Beamboom brings a lot to the discussion that I agree with. His point on how BADLY the Vita has missed sales projections is valid. All I know is after the poor and extremely negative PS3 launch it pains me to see another Sony product struggle.

Last edited by Excelsior1 on 12/11/2012 2:37:32 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 4:04:07 PM

Beamboom: Then we're arguing about nothing. I was only referring to the stupid people who draw the final conclusion too early, and only because they hate Sony. I wasn't talking about you or anyone else who logically and rationally discusses the Vita, as I've done many times in the past.

I don't know what's so complicated about this. You're trying to turn this into something that it isn't. We're not even disagreeing.

Excelsior: You've got no call to return here, although I'm not surprised in the least that you choose to blindly bash Sony again when you do so. It's basically all you ever did. Now leave...again.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 12/11/2012 7:20:35 PM

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 6:19:03 PM

LOL

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Excelsior1
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 6:22:07 PM

Hehe. I'm a member that saw a topic that interests so that was my call I suppose. I'm not sure what I said that was bashing Sony in that post. I am not a Sony basher but openly admit I'm harder than most on them. I do think the PS3's launch was bad like lots of people. I am not happy about their financials BUT considering their early misteps this gen they are doing good with the PS3. They seem humble now and say the right things. Just wish they hadn't made things so damned hard on themselves early on. Conequences for that PS3 launch are felt to this very day especially here in NA.

All consoles have early teething problems I suppose. Sony had two great generations and I guess I kinda of got used to that...them being on top. They have had a lot of success this gen too and did a great job of turning aound the PS3. 70 million PS3s sold is a success. It's a successful system. So was the PSP.

I don't know about the Vita yet. I'm not even calling it a failure. It has underperformed in sales badly. It's not bashing to point that out. If it was even doing decent sales wise I would not say a peep.

Until it starts seilling both it and Sony are fair game in my book. It's nice to be back Ben. Thanks for noticing.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 7:23:20 PM

I wasn't asking you to leave before. I was telling you. You only exist to cause problems. But you've never respected me or anyone else here, so why should I expect you to listen?

So fine, fair warning- I even catch a glimmer of your crap again, and I'll just perm-ban the account. Everyone was sick and tired of you before...don't resurrect the clash.

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:12:48 PM

Whatever you do, do not talk about sales. If you do, I'll get you.

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SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:19:46 AM
Reply

Oh, and the white version is so much nicer looking than I thought it was going to be. I was really kinda worried when I picked it up; I mean, I'm really all about the black when it comes to these kinds of things. But I couldn't pass it up and dare I say it, I like the white version more! Consider me converted!

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sawao_yamanaka
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:45:12 AM

Congrats on your new purchase :). It is an amazing piece of technology.

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gumbi
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:48:15 AM
Reply

Exactly Ben! How easily they forget...

Nearly everyone I know who's given the Vita a chance has loved it. It just needs more people to give it a chance.

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BikerSaint
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:15:13 AM
Reply

I think the easiest way to convert a non-believer, is to just put a Vita in their hands & watch how fast they whistle a different tune.

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CrusaderForever
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:17:59 AM

^This!

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AcHiLLiA
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:27:09 PM

that's weird, biker get's 2 downvotes and u get 0.

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BikerSaint
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 9:12:33 PM

AlexanderTHEGR8,

I don't think it's what I said, it's rather that a few people here just don't like me, probably cause I'm outspoken & tell it like I see it.

And ya know what, I don't live my life for them & they mean nothing to me, so if that's the case, then f*ck em.




Last edited by BikerSaint on 12/11/2012 9:13:44 PM

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AcHiLLiA
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:05:45 PM

aw I see.

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homura
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:24:46 AM
Reply

Me, I still don't have a Vita. I rather buy PS3 games with that money. But it will just take one awesome JRPG exclusive Vita game that somehow I can't resist for me to purchase a Vita. Until then, I'll just wait for it to become more cheaper. But sadly, Smart Phones do really hurt the Vita sales. My friends who have Smart Phones, and they are hardcore JRPG gamers in the past, they're the ones introduced me to JRPG, they don't want a Vita they are pretty satisfied with the RPG games in their Smart Phones, (Zenonia and etc...) they can only play for a few hours outdoors by the way and it's a pretty cheap alternative. But if they really want to play hardcore, they would rather buy a new PS3 games. And don't forget that good games doesn't have to be a bad ass in terms of graphics, sometimes it just need a good story and a good gameplay that feels like the old JRPG days. But I still hope for Vita's success. I'm still a Sony Fan, just not that rich. Hehe.

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Killa Tequilla
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:17:59 AM

P4G

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cLoudou
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:41:33 AM

^This, cant stress enough about P4G.

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telly
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 3:36:29 PM

Getting it for Christmas, so effin' excited

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homura
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 7:47:53 PM

Actually the one game that interest me more is God Eater 2. Hehe.

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___________
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 4:29:50 AM
Reply

and thats what staggers me with the vita.
the PSP had a rough launch, and a rough life because they supported it so poorly!
so i really thought the vita would be the complete opposite, but so far i thought wrong!
difference is the PSP survived thanks to third parties, there were so many third party exclusives on the PSP, and really good ones which carried it through.
if the PSP was to rely on its first party support, like the vita has to, it would of fallen flat on its face!
PSP flourished because of the third party exclusives, the vita is not going to have that luxury because third parties are not going to support the vita like they did the PSP, sadly third party exclusives are rare as hens teeth.
also the market has changed, customers use to look at handhelds as another platform to get different experiences on.
now customers look at it as a hindrance.
if i had a nickel for every person i heard say i wish AC liberation was a ps3 title, the vitas just holding it back, id be a billionaire by now!

people have not forgotten the rough start the PSP had, if anything they remember it far too well and are weary of it!
not to mention the only thing the psp had to compete with was the gameboy, now its a whole other kettle of fish so its going to be even harder.
as ive said a million times vitas success lies souly on $ony!
the ONE advantage the vita has, and its not really a advantage because theres now handhelds out there more powerful but anyway, is its hardware.
its the portable core system, $ony says its a console in the palm of your hands so they need to bring the console games in the palm of your hand.
if they do that, and a multitude of them, and they dont feel like there held back they could be so much better on the ps3, than the vita will be fine.
if not, well......

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CrusaderForever
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:10:33 AM
Reply

I obviously love the Vita and I am proud of my purchase. I would have paid more for it had I known the enjoyment I would receive from this great little device. All I will say is that all the people that predict doom and gloom and hate on the Vita yet haven't played it or don't own it are ridiculous. I will leave it at that.

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sawao_yamanaka
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 10:38:38 AM

Preach on crusader lol

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CrusaderForever
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:30:23 AM

:) Just my 2 cents

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SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:30:41 PM

You said it Crusader! For me, getting the Vita was an eventuality. "maybe when the price comes down," I thought. I finally got it two weeks ago and man, if I had known I would enjoy it this much, I would have got it much earlier!

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Bonampak
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 11:29:35 AM
Reply

"But hey, it seems to be the norm for Sony over the past seven or eight years"

And it's been a much longer norm for Sony's competition: Nintendo.

Ever since the N64 was abandoned by 3rd party devs, the 'Nintendo is doomed' thing has become a meme in this industry for many years (Michael Pachter has made a career of it).

Who doesn't remember the "Wii will die within a fiscal year" predictions back in 2006? Same thing is happening now with the Wii U.

So I don't think its something unique with Sony. If Nintendo can deal with the hate (and still survive and thrive) so can Sony. Sony is a much stronger company.

The Vita just needs games that are unique to it and that offer something you cannot get anywhere else. The PSP had that by way of Monster Hunter. The Vita doesn't have that. Not yet.

So we cannot really compare the PSP and Vita and assume that Vita will have a similar outcome as the PSP.

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SaiyanSempai
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:48:06 PM

It's funny that you should mention that it needs games that are "unique" that you can't get anywhere else. First of all, I agree. BUT...The PS3 can do everything the Vita can with the exception of the touch interfaces. The accelerometers in the DS3 can be used the same ways they are used in the Vita. By that token, the Vita can do (pretty much) everything the PS3 can do.

But don't you see? that's the beauty of it! You can take these things with you on the go! Sure, Gravity rush could be done on the PS3, and many experiences on the PS3 can be done on the Vita. But you can take the Vita with you.

You are not confined to the living if you want a full gaming experience. And that right there is a great thing.

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tlpn99
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:17:53 PM
Reply

I love my Vita and glad I bought it now. Granted I am not playing it as much as I should be as I am always on the PS3 and 360 at the moment.

It will pick up in speed in time im sure. Like most things some have a slow start, some don't. If you don't like it don't buy it but don't moan about it to everyone else.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 12:45:30 PM
Reply

I'm open to taking somebody's Vita for free so that I can be a big fan.

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sawao_yamanaka
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 3:01:48 PM

Sure world. Just give me 200 and you can have it for free to be a big fan.

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AcHiLLiA
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 1:34:25 PM
Reply

I'm not a hater, I just ain't into true portable gaming systems as much as I use to. I will just longboard instead and snow is up in the mounatins, who needs a freakin vita yep, hahaha.

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telly
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:17:43 PM
Reply

I sure do hope Sony finds a way to make Vita at least a modest success. They needs great games -- lots of them -- to make that happen, but we have almost no idea what's coming next year for the system. Pretty scary, considering 2013 is just a few weeks away. They also need to drop the price, but I suspect at least a $50 cut isn't too far in the distance. Really, though, it's games games games in my opinion. Lots of people are totally ok with spending a few hundred bucks on a new platform if great, unique content is available. I don't know if a dedicated handheld can be a rousing success in the smartphone/tablet era, but I think the 3DS has made it abundantly clear there is certainly still a market for them.

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frostface
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 2:41:06 PM
Reply

I've got a Vita, absolutely love it and don't regret for one minute taking a leap of faith and picking one up. I admit I was sceptical at first but after taking the plunge I never looked back.

But it's not perfect. I mean the console is fantastic in itself, but memory cards are too expensive and I'll argue that point to the ground with anyone who says different.

Also we need more games but it's still too early in it's lifetime to be worried about the lack of software. I strongly believe that 2013 will have a crap load more games coming out then 2012. I believe this because given the development time to turn out a quality game (not a rushed 6 month CoD:Declass job), there's potentially a shed load of games just not announced yet.

Ok, that's just speculation and mixed in with a dash of hope, but I do believe the console will see a lot more to come.

So as much as I really do love my Vita, I see the nay-sayers point and calling people 'haters' for not taking a leap of faith is certainly an over-reaction. I really wasn't going to get the Vita, I'm glad that I did and I recommend the unconverted to take a chance. It's worth it, more than you think and it will get love in the future, it's just a slow burner.

Last edited by frostface on 12/11/2012 2:42:42 PM

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vatoloco47
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 6:15:48 PM
Reply

I just got myself a vita a few weeks ago and while it does lack game atm its still an awesome unit. And i love the fact i can play all the ps1 classics while on the train to work and back. Can start to play all the good Final Fantasy games again. Just a shame that the Aus psn store doesn't have breath of fire 4 to purchase :(

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Axe99
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 6:59:33 PM
Reply

Got my Vita around launch and still loving it. No idea why it isn't more popular, but I reckon it'll do alright in the long run. It's an excellent piece of kit, and apparently easy to put games together for and deploy on.

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ZettaiSeigi
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 @ 8:04:22 PM
Reply

What I fi

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