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Talking Point: E3 2012 is Vital for Vita

Posted by James Newton

Let the games begin

This time last year, PS Vita was known as NGP and everyone on the web was buzzing. Here we are on the verge of E3 2012, and Vita needs another big show to ignite its sales for the rest of the year.

We've already talked about what we expect from Sony at E3, and while PS3 will have some great games on display — everyone is excited about The Last of Us — it's Vita that will dominate headlines, good or bad.

Nobody with any sense would call Vita dead if it has an underwhelming E3, but if it can drum up the same levels of excitement as last year, it could be just the shot in the arm it needs.

Vita Statistics

Last year Sony wowed us with Vita's horsepower, and we'd be extremely surprised if the next wave of Vita games didn't look even better than its launch titles. But what Sony needs to reinforce is just what got us all excited about the machine in the first place: that glorious OLED multi-touch screen, the twin analogue sticks and everything from a camera to GPS. It's still a real powerhouse, packed with more technology than you can shake a Move controller at, and trumps practically everything on the market.

Nobody else has a handheld console on the way — Vita is the undisputed power king of this portable generation. Like PS3 before it, Vita is a hardware investment that will last, a machine built for a marathon, and what seems like a lot to pay now will prove its worth in years to come. Sony shouldn't shy from shouting about Vita's grunt even now we're all familiar with it.

Ready for Deployment

Stacks of big franchises were announced for Vita last year — Call of Duty, BioShock, Killzone — but we've seen precious little of them since. Sure, they're all first-person shooters, but they're as different to each other as MotorStorm is to Gran Turismo. With Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 sure to dominate, perhaps now's the time for Activision to reveal the first details of its portable partner.

We all got giddy at the sight of those twin sticks, and now it's time to see them put to good use in some solid shooters, the sort PSP arguably never had. Unit 13 is a decent starting point, but there's better titles ahead to be sure — we just need to see them.

Keep Calm and Carry On

More than anything, though, Sony just needs to stand by Vita. Yes, the system's off to a shaky start, but Sony still believes in it and developers do too. A strong line-up of games, repeated emphasis on the console's strengths and a few big franchises should make sure Sony comes out of E3 2012 ready to sell millions of units of a reinvigorated Vita.

What do you make of Vita's chances this E3? How should Sony ensure it recaptures the headlines for the right reasons? Join the debate in the comments below.

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User Comments (19)

Squiggle55

#1

Squiggle55 said:

All I need to hear is that PS+ is gonna start giving me some Vita games and discounts. And some simple multiplayer goodness like Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes. And maybe that old rumored port of ffxi. An MMO would be nice.

Oh! and I forgot what would actually be the best news: remote play working!

rjejr

#3

rjejr said:

It seems to me Sony could do right by Vita more by doing what they've already said than announcing anything new - PS+ and remote play. And a memory card in the box shouldn't be a special bundle, it should be a given. It's a price drop w/o actually having to have a price drop, which the Vita probably needs at this point (anybody see today's world economic news?)
So yes, E3 is vital I think. While it may be the handheld powerhouse, we are moving into a tablet/smartphone world. Having the best horse drawn carriage may not be enough.

CanisWolfred

#4

CanisWolfred said:

Yup, if they screw up their Vita showing, I'll be saying to hell with the Vita and getting a Neo Geo Pocket Color instead. And I wish I was kidding...

Squiggle55

#5

Squiggle55 said:

I really hope they throw open the floodgates and say: "PS1 classics and remote play now work, go check your Vita."

gambitttt

#6

gambitttt said:

I think its going to turn out like the 3DS. I got it like a month after it launched and almost a year later I only had one game. I now have titles like Mario Kart 7, and Super Mario 3D Land. With games like Heroes of Ruin and Kingdom Hearts 3D coming out soon I'm exited to have a 3DS. Right now the Vita is like the 3DS when it first started. It barley has any titles and nobody knows what it is. I'm guessing I could go up to 10 people and only like 4 of them would know what the vita is. The vita needs bigger and better titles. Uncharted GA isn't going to sell systems. It's a REASON to buy the Vita, but I'm not going to spend $300+ to play one game. I'm not blaming Sony for this sort of. It takes time to develop games especially good ones. I think if you want a great launch then you don't need to announce later when the games are developed. Not when you barley have any titles. So I really hope when they launch the Wii U they have an awesome line up. I mean they have to be smart enough to avoid the mistakes of the 3DS AND the Vita. If the didn't they are going to really dumb.

gambitttt

#7

gambitttt said:

Also I think they need to add a feature to be able to use the vita as a controller on ALL games

Mandoble

#8

Mandoble said:

RPG (without any J) is certainly missing, having Bethesda supporting Vita would be the most significative sign of future success for me. But a good option in the hands of Sony would be a dramatic price reduction of the memory cards, 87€ for 32GB is absurd. I guess they can compensate this reduction with the corresponding increase of PSN sales. Also, if they believe that if you have a Vita, then surely you will have a PS3, this will be a big mistake. Having the Vita with a performance close to that of the PS3 allows them to have multiplatform exclusives where one of the versions should be an easy port from the other.

ShogunRokAdmin

#9

ShogunRok said:

Well said, and I agree with all the comments here too. Sony need to have a BIG showing at E3 - really it hasn't even been THAT long since the Vita launched, yet the console just seems so dry.

It's a damn shame because I (and surely everyone else who owns a Vita) love the system. It's sleek, the controls and layout are great, even the OS is a step up from the PS3. Yet without the games, what am I really going to spend most of my time doing on it? Reading tweets? Using Near?

Also, the PS Store has a looooad of PSP JRPGs, most of which are under £10. I've been playing a couple recently, and I've put more time in with my Vita because of it. But then I stop and think... I'm playing old PSP games on a console I only bought a few months ago.

SonyFACE

#10

SonyFACE said:

Unless Microsoft does something unexpected, it'll be a close battle between Nintendo and Sony to "win" this E3.

gambitttt

#12

gambitttt said:

I think Nintendo will win this E3. As long as they have good launch titles and lots of them and show how the Wii U can be used in awesome ways. The only thing Sony has is games to show off. Since we know so little about the Wii U it's like they are announcing a new system almost. Can't wait!

CanisWolfred

#13

CanisWolfred said:

Nintendo? Good launch titles? Where have you been? And you talk like you need new hardware to "win" E3 (like this is some kind of competition, which it really isn't). Nintendo had the Wii U at last years E3, and I can't exactly say I was blown away by their presentation the way I was with Sony's last year. Honestly, I'd be more worried for Sony if they did have hardware to show off.

Mandoble

#17

Mandoble said:

An extra option that Sony, as well as the others, should apply is to have a full set of mini games already installed within the console. Any PC or Smartphone comes with a set of preinstalled games ready to use, and with many others for free ready to download: sudoku, chess, solitaire, majong, minesweeper, etc. As well as a full set of mini apps.
Sony may also add an adapter for a card reader that the Vita may use as a backup media to sync files with the internal memory card (same as with PC and PS3) and to store music, vids, pics and docs so you can use the uber expensive internal card just for games only. The device would be much more attractive for many people this way.

isnchz

#19

isnchz said:

Well, three(!) new games that Sony announced during their press conference for Vita isn't something to get excited about.

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