News Article

Talking Point: Is PlayStation Plus Helping or Hindering the PS Vita?

Posted by Sammy Barker

Playing the waiting game

Speculation seeping out of this week’s NPD sales report suggests that Media Molecule’s universally acclaimed PlayStation Vita exclusive Tearaway sold around 14,000 copies in North America during its release window. That number is heartbreaking for a title that not only came close to a 10/10 on this site, but also secured an outstanding Metacritic rating of 87. It didn’t perform much better in the UK either, squeezing into the top forty during its launch weekend before disappearing without a trace. But how much is the outstanding value of PlayStation Plus to blame for the poor sales?

There’s no doubt that the microscopic install base of the paper-based platformer’s parent portable is the primary culprit for the title’s tepid performance. Granted, the majority of the handheld’s owners are passionate about the machine – and that’s actually contributed to an exceptional software attach rate – but with just a few million systems sold around the world, it’s not enough for the release to compete with mega sequels such as Battlefield 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts, and Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. Speaking of which, the title’s launch date couldn’t have been worse, as it hit store shelves on the same day as the Xbox One and right in between the PlayStation 4’s North American and European roll-outs.

But there’s another problem that’s plaguing Vita software that doesn’t relate to low system sales and shoddy marketing: PlayStation Plus. Ever since the Instant Game Collection expanded to the platform last year, it’s cultivated an attitude of ‘wait and see’ among handheld owners. Rather than pick up big blockbusters like Soul Sacrifice and Killzone: Mercenary at release, numerous posters on gaming forums and websites such as this one regularly stress that they intend to stash their cash until the titles get given away as part of Sony’s subscription service. Guerrilla Cambridge’s solid first-person shooter has yet to join the complimentary collection, but sure enough, Keiji Inafune’s twisted Monster Hunter-esque demon slayer is due out imminently in Europe.

And that’s a problem that’s plaguing Tearaway, too. In addition to the sadness expressed for the title’s poor performance on sites such as NeoGAF, there are also dozens and dozens of posts pointing out that the title will be “free in six months”. It’s hard to argue either, as because the Vita’s library is so small, there will come a point where Sony will have to give away the game in order to fulfil its promise of two free titles per month. With that in mind, why would anyone ever spend money on software for the Japanese giant’s slimline system when you can almost guarantee that the best releases will be part of the Instant Game Collection at some point in the future? We daresay that a handful couldn’t wait to play Media Molecule’s latest, but the majority of you have probably got enough to keep you occupied until Iota and company march onto your handheld without any cost at all.

That’s not to say that there aren’t benefits to PlayStation Plus, of course. In a roundabout way, it’s very much a system seller. People subscribing to the service in order to play multiplayer on the PS4 may eventually realise that they’re accruing an enormous library of content as part of their subscription, and that may make the console more attractive in the long-run. It also forces people to keep interacting with the PlayStation Store, so there’s a chance that they may throw a penny or two at other titles when they go to collect their freebies. But the Vita needs big games like Tearaway to sell if it’s to have any meaningful future, and the current situation isn’t really encouraging consumers to spend money on software.

It’s too late for Sony to suddenly stop giving away Vita games to PlayStation Plus subscribers as the precedent, promise, and expectations have already been set. It’s also difficult to lament the idea of complimentary content as a consumer, because the value of the manufacturer’s service is exceptional. But we can’t help but feel that for all of the goodwill that the Instant Game Collection’s garnered among Vita owners, the consistently high quality handouts are hurting the handheld as much as they are helping it. The biggest problem is that we can’t really see a solution.


Do you agree that PlayStation Plus could actually be softening software sales, or do you think that it’s increasing them? Has the Instant Game Collection encouraged you to sit some Vita releases out while you wait for a free version? Bust your bandwidth in the comments section below.

Do you think that PS Plus is hurting Vita software sales? (61 votes)

Yes, people are happy to wait for free versions of the big handheld games

49%

Hmm, I’m not really sure

23%

No, the service is selling consoles and bringing more people to the platform

28%

Please login to vote in this poll.

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User Comments (58)

rastamadeus

#1

rastamadeus said:

All depends on your attitude towards games. PS+ has let me try games I'd never normally have played or ones I've ummed and ahhed over (Virtue's Last Reward for example) but there's also games I want and bought straight away, like Tearaway, Persona 4 Golden, Dragon's Crown and Muramasa even though I know all four of them are PS+ certainties.

My main issue with it is Sony themselves, they seem like they genuinely couldn't care less about the Vita. Where are their games? Apart from that action RPG whose name I can't remember (anime-style, time related I think) what have they themselves got coming for the machine? Not many. Then look how many games Nintendo make themselves for their handhelds - and they almost always sell well Until Sony make games for the machine consoles won't sell meaning third parties won't care meaning less games sold as we'll all just wait for them on PS+ meaning the console dies. Buck stops at Sony and I personally don't think they even want to try and turn it around, thinking remote play on PS4 will save it. It won't.

Sort of on topic, had a barney with my cousin about PS+ the other day. He's gonna cancel it as he feels it gives him nowhere near enough value for money. Seriously. His actual words: "They should give you all the DLC. All of it. If they give you a game they should give you all of it. Every game. I've paid my £40 and want it all." Yes, he was spoilt as a child.

ztpayne7

#2

ztpayne7 said:

I'm not much of a handheld gamer, and I love my psvita, but to be honest, I haven't purchased a single game for it. I'm content with playing the + games. Now this is going to change this week as I think I'm going to buy tearaway for my wife as a gift. We're still waiting for Littlebigplanet to join the IGC in the US, so I'm holding off on that.
I really like remote play as long as the buttons aren't crazy (I play resogun and lego marvel on it all the time).
My wife gave me my Christmas present early - and it was a link between worlds 3dsxl bundle. Super stoked for Zelda, but I think I'll end up using my 3ds less than my vita...even though I may not be buying games for the vita. I'll mostly be playing first parties for it.

BornOfEvil

#3

BornOfEvil said:

I think another problem is Sony, they obviously care about the Vita, but they aren't pushing their studios to develop for it. I can guarantee that Vita sales would take a huge leap if Sony announced a Naughty Dog Vita game at E3.

Third parties wouldn't be a problem if Sony went around looking for potential hits and ported them to the Vita themselves. As long as it's Sony's publishing the Vita version, 3rd party devs wouldn't have a problem with something like that.

@rastamadeus There's actually, Freedom Wars, Soul Sacrifice Delta, Gravity Rush 2 (though I'm not sure when that's coming) and MLB 14 so far.

Faustek

#4

Faustek said:

I for one love this game as well, I do not posses a poets fluttering fingers so I'll not try to write anything beautiful other than once again say that I loved this game(Tearaway).

People are still holding back on the purchasing of a Vita, saying "need more games", "better games" and such.

Yes it doesn't come close to the 3DS' library but instead it comes better purified of all the garbage.
There is a game for everyone on it, these games are good no discussion, everyone won't like all the games but if you can't find 30 titles that you'll like then...yeah see a shrink or something because something is seriously broken within you.
And it keeps on growing everyday and not only due to the marvellous Indie support (most indie games are better on the vita than on my PC/PS3) but due to the growing support of "niche" games. Perhaps some of you should widen your game libraries instead of looking forward to next years rehashed versions of today's game? Think about it.

And once again I stress how wonderful this is. Media molecule did us all a wonderful service by creating this. Don't dissapoint, buy it.

And stop being such cheap bastards, seriously.

RisefromAshes

#5

RisefromAshes said:

Disagree.

The reason why Tearaway didn't sell was because of PS4.

Also, gamers are only interested in buying a Vita for remote play. They're not interested in Vita games.

That begs the question, "Why are gamers not interested in Vita games?". The answer is simple: Sony aren't making ENOUGH of them. Look at 2013. How many blockbuster titles has the Vita had? 3? 4? 5? How many awesome titles has the 3DS had? 15? 20? 25?

PS+ isn't the reason why Vita is not selling. In fact, it's the reason why gamers love their Vita. The same reason why gamers on Xbox 360 jumped back on PS3. PS+ isn't a detriment.

Also, you only have to take a glance at GT 6's opening week sales to see what I mean about releasing games near the launch of a next gen console.

Who's to blame? Sony. Yes. This will surprise everyone that I'm pointing the finger at them, but I only speak where the truth is concerned. GT 6 and Tearaway should never have been released near the PS4. If anything, they should've been delayed 6 months to a year.

I remember a similar case with Resistance 3. Sony released it near FIFA 11, Dead Island and Gears of War 3. The game was never going to sell well when going up against those big sellers.

Mind you. Killzone: Shadow Fall sold well whilst going up against COD and BF 4 on PS4. But, that's because Killzone is the only game on PS4 which showcases next gen graphics.

I'm sure PS Vita will pick up pace once the PS4 demand lowers slightly.

Nice article. Keep up the good work.

ferrers405

#6

ferrers405 said:

No, for example I just "wait" for games that i wouldn't buy anyway, on contrary, i got Gravity Rush on plus (and i'm hyped to buy GR2 on launch), I bought Rayman Legends because of Origins and I'll buy Runner 2 because of PS3 version, so i think that people who say will wait for certain game wouldn't bought them anyway, at least not so soon.

KALofKRYPTON

#7

KALofKRYPTON said:

There are fantastic games out there for Vita. And I for one think that while the timing of the release wasn't ideal, Tearaway has been very well marketed. It's price point was perfect, and yes, I fully expect that it'll hit Plus as IGC by the Spring. I bought it as I wanted to play it in the run up to PS4 release, also, it had reviewed so well. I can't say I found it as beautiful or affecting as some - but it's a fine game.

Sony would do well to port some of the better PSN games to Vita to use as IGC games rather than the AAA games.

I suppose really, I just want to play Super Rub-a-Dub on my Vita.

charlesnarles

#8

charlesnarles said:

I just got SS for free, so there's no way I'm buying Delta just for the dlc. I was going to get the SS and RO complete versions, but there's no point now. Last game I bought for Vita was MGS1 with the $10 Sony gave me back, so there's your problem right there. I want some PSP sequels or more in that style; a real SH Vita akin to Origins would destroy

rastamadeus

#9

rastamadeus said:

@BornOfEvil Freedom Wars! That's the one. Looks brilliant. Four games is my point though, that's it ain't it? Not enough. I don't like a lot of Sony-made games (GT, God Of War, Killzone, etc aren't my cup of tea) but they need them on the machine. Individually they won't sell the console but collectively they will.

@RisefromAshes Tearaway didn't sell because almost nobody owns a Vita, nothing to do with the PS4. Using the PS4 is an excuse, not a reason. Sadly I've seen a lot of people online saying they won't buy Tearaway as they don't want "that Nintendo shit" on their console, like its beneath them.

RisefromAshes

#11

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus
Tearaway didn't sell because "nobody owns a Vita"?

Are you serious?

PS Vita is selling more each week nowadays than it's ever done before. Your point doesn't make sense on any level.

Tearaway didn't sell because of the PS4.

Want proof? Gran Turismo 6's opening week sales were poor in comparison to previous games. Why? PS4.

PS4 is the most anticipated console of all time. More anticipated than even the PS2. How can you release a game near it's release and not suffer poor sales? This isn't me saying this. There's a "consensus" in the gaming community. Sony SHOULD NOT HAVE released Tearaway and GT 6 so near to the PS4 launch. Those games were literally ASKING to suffer poor sales.

get2sammybAdmin

#12

get2sammyb said:

@RisefromAshes I definitely think that the PS4 is a contributing factor, but I do think that @Rastamadeus is also correct. If the Vita had a much bigger install base, the game would have been significantly more popular because it got amazing reviews.

RisefromAshes

#13

RisefromAshes said:

@get2sammyb

Yes. The Vita doesn't have a great gamer install base, but the PS Vita is more popular now than it's ever been.

The REAL REASON why PS Vita is suffering poor software sales is because Sony isn't supporting it enough.

Look at the 3DS. It had a rocky start. All of a sudden, it's sales exploded thanks to Nintendo supporting it with great game after great game.

I mean, where's BioShock Vita? Where's a War game for Vita? Where's Final Fantasy? Nowhere to be seen.

Vita needs more support in order to "attract" consumer interest.

You can't bring out 3-5 AAA games a year and expect huge sales for the Vita. Won't happen.

rastamadeus

#14

rastamadeus said:

@RisefromAshes You repeating your opinion again isn't proof. COD, Assassin's Creed and GTA V all came out recently and sold incredibly well (staggeringly well in GTA's case) - despite incoming consoles or does that not count? I'm afraid Vita isn't selling any better than it has done for a while and Gran Turismo is the sort of game that performs over time not initially. Bar GTA sales on all franchises have been down, PS3/360 or PS4/One so, no, it's not just down to the PS4. It's part of the problem, sure, but not the only one like you're thinking.

@Sanquine Anything colourful and cute seems to be beneath certain gamers. Pathetic really. Had hours of fun playing Tearaway. Would give it around a 7 myself as it's over far too quickly and there's no desire to pick it up again when finished.

Sanquine

#15

Sanquine said:

@rastamadeus Great points! Hmm i gave it 9 because it was something special. It was short though. My gf is playing it now. Will visit it again. I think you can replay it.

rastamadeus

#17

rastamadeus said:

@Sanquine I'm sure others will enjoy it again, maybe even I would. But with a lot if platformers I wanna got though it again straight away, Tearaway I put back in its box and have forgotten about it. Great game though.

RisefromAshes

#18

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus

You're wrong on all levels. Again.

GTA V sales never suffered because it was a game 5 YEARS IN THE MAKING. Lol. Do you think gamers were going to say, "I'll skip GTA V and get a PS4. Even though, PS4 won't have GTA V". No. No. No. No.

EVERYONE on planet Earth was talking up GTA V a full year before it came out this year. It was ALWAYS going to sell well.

COD... well... it sold poorly in comparison to previous games. Who are you kidding?

Look at the opening week sales. Ghosts had the worst opening week of a COD game for over half a decade. How do you explain that? You can't.

AC performed below par too.

PS4 is the REASON why Tearaway did badly. Heck, even Knack outsold Super Mario 3D World. LOL. Yes. A mediocre PS4 platformer outsold the greatest platformer franchise of all time.

See. PS4 isn't just selling well. It's games are on high demand too.

Just admit that PS4 is the talk of the town and PS Vita is suffering because of it and we'll end it here.

rastamadeus

#19

rastamadeus said:

@RisefromAshes Staggering. Your bit about GTA shows you're out of touch with reality. What does five year have to do with anything? Are you able to actually take things on board or are you the sort of person who is always right, even when wrong? (your second message there says it all)
Yes, COD and AC have sold worse than they have done before but it's still more than most games and it's still including next gen sales! So in "high demand," eh.
Tearaway was budget priced and still didn't sell because it's on a machine without many owners and those owners don't want that sort of game. Knack sold more as the PS4 (already) has more owners than the Wii U and was one of only a few exclusives/not on last gen games so people will try it.
The thing is you've hit on the reason why Tearawy didn't sell, not the PS4 but hype. I haven't seen a single advert (print or TV) for Tearaway whereas people who don't know games knew of GTAV ages ago but have no idea of Tearaway.

As for the last bit how can anyone say that? Why was vita struggling since release? The PS4. If your next message is just more nonsense where you repeat the same thing then don't bother expecting a reply. Get a better debate from my baby

RisefromAshes

#21

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus

Am I able to take things on board even though I'm wrong? This coming from someone who, himself, won't take things on board. LOL.

Look. GTA was built around hype. It was a game that was 5 years in the making. EVERYONE was going to buy it no matter WHEN it came out.

"Yes, COD and AC have sold worse than they have done before but it's still more than most games and it's still including next gen sales".

Stop right there. Why did COD and AC sell worse? PS4 anyone? Next gen consoles being launched anyone? LOL.

At the end of the day, releasing a game next to that of a next gen console release is tantamount to suicide.

It would be like releasing The Last Of Us next to GTA V. Do you think The Last Of Us would've sold anywhere near what it did when it came out in June this year? Not a chance. GTA V would've eaten it alive.

That same analogy applies to Tearaway and GT 6's predicament. You DON'T release a game on another platform next to the launch of a next gen console. You just don't.

Ps4all

#22

Ps4all said:

I bought tearaway day one. It's awesome. However, I often feel like I am wasting money when months go by with ps+ giving away only games I already bought. So I can see where that could be a real problem for sony when it comes to gamers with a little more patience. At least sony is pulling down $50 a year for ps+.

rastamadeus

#23

rastamadeus said:

@RisefromAshes I already agreed with you that PS4 is a factor but that it is part of the problem, not the only one. Banging your head against the wall shouting "IT'S ALL PS4" simply isn't true, no matter how many times you repeat it.

RisefromAshes

#24

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus

PS4 is the MAIN REASON behind Tearaway's poor sales.

Also, you keep going on about Vita having a small install base of gamers. Let's think for a minute about WHY that is the case? Wanna know why? It's because Sony hasn't supported the Vita.

You ask the average gamer, "Why don't you want to buy a PS Vita?". They'll reply (99% of the time with), "It has NO GAMES".

How can you sit there and say, "Tearaway isn't selling well because PS Vita has a small install base", when the platform itself isn't even being supported as it should be.

This is why the first 12 months of a platform's life are so important. In those 12 months, you can persuade the wider community of gamers that this console is going to be supported because we've got "x amount of games" coming out for it and so on.

Sony did nothing in the first 12 months. They only have themselves to blame for finding themselves in this predicament with the Vita. It's a shame because the Vita absolutely trounces the 3DS in terms of potential. Unfortunately, Sony have other things on their mind. PS4 being their main priority for the foreseeable future.

rastamadeus

#25

rastamadeus said:

@RisefromAshes I said exactly the same in my original post and have been a staunch criticiser of Sony's bizarre attitude towards Vita. I don't agree it trounces 3DS potential wise though, Nintendo know what will work on a handheld and put it in while Sony try to be Jack of all trades, master of none.

RisefromAshes

#26

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus

Sony are masters of making great games. The problem is that there aren't ENOUGH OF THEM.

Vita trounces 3DS. Again. More power, better ram, better screen, better social apps, better d-pad and thumbsticks etc.

Vita average weekly sales are the highest they've ever been. It isn't a dead platform by any means.

But, 3DS is just selling like crazy. The first week of December it sold nearly 900,000 worldwide. PS Vita could only manage 110,000.

Sony aren't competing with Nintendo. They're attempting to get the same gamers on their consoles to dip into the Vita. Remote play is proof of that.

We'll have to see what the future holds. The Vita is doing ok. It'll definitely get to 30-40 million lifetime sales. That's good.

rastamadeus

#27

rastamadeus said:

@RisefromAshes GameGear trounced the Gamebou specs wise but was decimated in sales, like every competitor to Nintendo's handheld crown has done. Why? As the people making them try to make a powerhouse machine but that isn't what the handheld gamers want. It's not a coincidence Nintendo's lesser powerful machines own the market, it's because Nintendo understands the market.
I'd be delighted if Vita makes 30 million but I don't think it will sadly. Anyway, toodlepip. A few nights away awaits me and no offence, but talking games or a night alone with my girlfriend? No brainer. Have a cool one (to quote Him and Her).

RisefromAshes

#30

RisefromAshes said:

@rastamadeus

Sure. Specs are meaningless when the weaker console is more popular. Still, Vita has more potential.

Vita will get to 30 million lifetime sales. More and more people will become aware of Vita's remote play as we move more and more into next gen.

Customer buys PS4 game. Looks at the back of the box. It says "Vita Remote Play". Customer thinks, "Looks interesting." Customer enquiries about Vita Remote Play and finds out he/she can play games without the need for the T.V. to be switched on in the living room (or wherever in the house). Customer spreads the word to family. Family like the idea of it and want a Vita. Customer buys Vita.

Vita's remote play will become more and more infectious next gen. But, it won't make the Vita a big seller like the 3DS.

Farmboy74

#32

Farmboy74 said:

I think PS+ & PS4 are both helping the Vita. I brought my Vita after buying a PS4. My PS+ subscription covers both machines which is very good value for money.
I think the Vita has plenty of games to invest in, plus if you had PSP digital games they work on the Vita as well as PS one.
The main issue for the Vita from day one has been the price of the machine and the memory cards. If your serious about buying a Vita now is the time at least here in the UK, as the prices for Vita bundles are bargin basement!!. I brought the Tearaway bundle which includes LBP and a 16GB memory card for £150. The prices of the memory cards is also now coming down a 32GB card is now around £40 which while still not cheap better than the original £60.
If Sony can now start getting their teams to develop more games for it, it will survive. I don't think it will sell 3DS numbers but for the price your paying at the minute your getting a great machine.

AeroZeppelin

#33

AeroZeppelin said:

I do think PS4 is Part of the Problem but so is Sony they never market there games tell me how many tearaway ads in the US have you've seen? because I haven't seen one ad for it Poor marketing is also the problem for Poor PS3 sells and Poor PS3 game sells and it's one of the reasons why Xbox360 and it's games have outsold PS3 and PS3 games for Much of the PS3s lifetime

Punished_Boss_84

#34

Punished_Boss_84 said:

Both in relation to title question.

On one hand people will be playing games and maybe buying them if they don't plan to resubscribe. It opens up a variety of gaming and a whole load of benefits for example one has to value the trick of placing predecessors up on IGC before their sequel arrives.

On the other hand you have lots of "Game X or Y looks great, i'll wait for it in IGC is X Period."

Its a tricky business.

Factors which is problematic at the moment:
SCEA: No marketing, no localisation of SCEE games (PS Vita pets and Invizimals), no bundles, no mega packs, their teams use the third party line "no plans" in reference to PS Vita and other factors. I don't even live in the region and these are problems i'm publicly aware of right now. http://www.vg247.com/2013/11/04/naughty-dog-comments-on-savage-starlight-game-has-no-plans-for-ps-vita-at-present/

Remote play: I do not like the notion that PS Vita was developed as a "companion app" "accessory" and call me cynical but this could be the reason PS Vita could lose more software support.

No localisation of SCEJ/Japanese games: Gravity Rush 2 confirmed, SS Delta: Hinted at? Freedom Wars: "I hope so", Over My Dead Body 2: Ditto, SEGA games: Um wait?... This applies to all games on all platforms so i can't fault them specifically. NBGI: DBZ sure, others not yet. Sure there are some.

No big hits: self explanatory.

Although its not all doom and gloom, PS Vita is still being used.

Cyrso

#35

Cyrso said:

Edit: I read the article now.

But I think PS+ for PSVita wasn't a good idea (from Sony's standpoint), for gamers it's absolutely fantastic and they should be grateful about that.

Even if it might lure in PS3 PS+ subscribers in buying a PSVita it will still not be viable for Sony, since the PSVita is sellling either with very little profit or with loss and the PS3 PS+ gamers are probably only buying a PSVita to get the PSVita PS+ games.

The PSVita's games library is simply (and that would count for any handheld's library) not big enough for a service as PS+. Not enough 3rd party support for PS+.

I think they'll have to announce they'll discontinue PS+ on PSVita soon. Maybe they could let some players keep some PS+ games as a compensation or something.

It really sucks because the PSVita is simply fantastic. And it's a lot of bang for your buck too. It costs only like €199 + 8GB card + a game now in my country. In comparison the 3DS XL costs €199 bare-bones (but with a 4GB memory card too) and it doesn't even come with a charger. Not to bash the 3DS or something; I think that's a great handheld too with fantastic games, but on the side of the hardware and design, the PSVita is simply better and seems like a better deal. Games library are both very good now, PSVita's library is just underrated and many people forget 3DS had a 1-year headstart to build up its games library.

Despite its low marketshare, I hope PSVita still stays a viable platform for mid-tier games and indie games and finds some boost with the Remote Play functionality.

Very sad to see PSVita and its gems like Tearaway not selling well, despite being top-tier quality stuff. Tough industry. Creative games like Tearaway and new IP's should be rewarded and not punished.. No wonder most big companies prefer to stick in their comfort zone with all those tedious sequels etc.

I think it's obvious Sony won't develop/publish any more AAA or A PSVita games and - I might be too empathic or something but whatever - it's hard to blame then when you see Tearaway only selling 14K...

Sony needed the support of the big publishers, but they have sadly moved on to mobile/tablet games. Imagine if they could have secured a GTA V-spin-off or prologue launching on PSVita before the main GTA V. Nintendo has the benefit of having the holy trinity of video games' most iconic franchises with Mario, Zelda and Pokémon and can always maintain confidence in its system-selling power.

get2sammybAdmin

#36

get2sammyb said:

@BornOfEvil I agree that there's really not a whole lot announced for Vita now that Tearaway's out and it's a little bit worrying, to be honest. I'm hoping that it's because it's holding its announcement back at the moment. It's doing the same thing with PS4, so hopefully we'll see a flood of new announcements next year. From what I've heard, though, all of the first-party teams are working on PS4. :

@Faustek I agree that the "Vita has no games" argument doesn't hold water anymore. Like you say, there are more than enough titles across all genres to hold the interest of most gamers. I can still understand, however, why someone might say, "There's not enough for me" or "I'm worried that there's not enough on the horizon."

@KALofKRYPTON Any way of bloating the lineup should be taken, in my opinion. It's why I'm quite keen on the idea of the God of War Collection. I also think it was smart of them to bring Flow and Flower over. I think that they need to port all of those HD re-masters, though. ICO, Shadow of the Colossus, Sly Cooper, etc. I get that they're not "original", but it least it fills out the release schedule with actual good games.

@Legendaryboss Invizimals hasn't come out in the UK either yet. I'm not sure what's going on with that really. I know it's out in parts of Europe, but the franchise is surprisingly MASSIVE in Spain, so I guess that makes sense.

Ginkgo

#37

Ginkgo said:

Tearaway's biggest issue was the timing of its release. Releasing at the same time as Next Gen was always going to see it get lost amongst the shiny new things. Just a silly marketing decision.

As for PS+ hurting Vita, I don't think so. All consoles need to break into a virtuous cycle where the hardware is selling, which creates demand, therefore developers are excited and create games, which in turn sell more hardware.

The difficulty for new hardware is to break into that cycle as hardware numbers are initially low. Lots of support is needed (advertising, promotions, and 1st party games etc) in the first few years, until enough hardware has sold enough that the cycle is self sustaining.

The Vita hasn't reached that point yet. Therefore, although PS+ probably reduces the amount of some games sold, which could turn off the developers. Sony's biggest challenge at the moment is to sell more Vitas, and PS+ being such a good deal will help achieve that. Nothing will entice developers more than a high install base of hardware, which willl in turn sell more games. So I believe PS+ is doing more to help, than it hinders at this point in Vita's life cycle.

Faustek

#38

Faustek said:

@get2sammyb yes, the future. I can understand other people perhaps worrying about that.

I'm lucky, all these "niche" and indie games are generally my favourite games. Was many years back as I got tired of conventional AAA games. Don't get me wrong many are still good, its just that the majority feels like something I already played.

moomoo

#39

moomoo said:

Tearaway didn't sell because people tend to want a solid wealth of content when they pay $40 for something. 6 hours with little to no replay value isn't enough for most people. If Tearaway wasn't so expensive, I would have gotten it with my brand new Vita, regardless of whether I thought it would come to PS Plus or not.

If PS Plus was not a part of the picture, I would not have gotten a Vita recently. I need a justification for those memory card prices, and that service counters what was pretty much Sony's dumbest move in using proprietary memory.

Yes, PS Plus is a lot of value. But people who buy games also tend to recognize good value either way. I just got Ys: Memories of Celceta for $60 (collector's edition) the other day. That's more than a years worth of Playstation Plus. And you know what? I don't regret it at all, since the game is:
1) Very high quality
2) Has a wealth of content

When games are 6 hours long and have no reason to come back, you don't just have a problem with initial sales numbers: you also have a problem with the formation of an early used game market, which won't help Tearway either.

ReigningSemtex

#40

ReigningSemtex said:

For me personally if I want a game that bad I will buy it I wouldn't wait, I only got ps+ a month ago (because I knew ps4 would need it) and it's been great. I have got some awesome games for ps3 and resogun for ps4 and I am now considering buying a vita for uncharted golden abyss and for remote play but although the games ps+ offers are great I am just not that into digital downloads and would rather buy physical copies of games I really want.

Bad-MuthaAdebisi

#41

Bad-MuthaAdebisi said:

I've not seen any vita games that I want to buy right away. Sony needs to do more. More games. More originality, not just second rate versions of ps3 games. PS vita needs pokemon. Not ever going to happen.

Epic

#42

Epic said:

PS+ may bring out a completly new audience, the one that only plays PS+ games but I still don't see it affecting overall sales of the Vita it justs adds a different consumer approach.
Its still pretty sad the Tearaway even though it was a GOTY contender has been extremely weak on sales T_T
I'm even considering buy my friend the game just to play it on his Vita.

-CraZed-

#43

-CraZed- said:

I take excerption to the notion that the Vita's library is "small." The Vita's library is rather large actually at well over 200 available titles.
The Vita is plagued by numerous issues none of which have to with the size of it's games library.

divinelite

#44

divinelite said:

Well for me it's kinda true
I don't really wait for icg, but I wait for discounts
I don't have that much money to buy any game in day one, so I buy them mostly in deep discount

Just like me and steam

JaxonH

#45

JaxonH said:

It's hard to say. I don't use PS+ and never have. I just buy everything I want. But my brother- he's an avid PS+ fan and I know for a fact he's held off on purchases before in order to wait for the game on PS+

jeccross

#46

jeccross said:

What people are ignoring is that the systems now sell each other. On PS+ with a ps3, eventually youll have racked up enough games you won't be able to say no to a vita. I have a vita and a ps3, will get a ps4 next year and will already have a nice catalogue. As plus is almost compulsory for ps4 there's bound to be vita sales off the back of its success

Gamer83

#47

Gamer83 said:

I've got a great idea. Lets release a niche looking game on a system not many people own with no advertising the same day The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Super Mario 3D World and Xbox One all release and watch the sales numbers roll in.

Slapshot

#48

Slapshot said:

Very good and well thought out piece @get2sammyb.

I have Tearaway and it's still stitting on my gaming desk in the wrapper, sitting right on top of Sly Cooper (Vita), which is still in its wrapper as well.

Not only has Sony so overloaded us with games, but for us that prefer held gaming consoles, Nintendo's 3DS just keeps growing its library with amazing first party titles.

Lionhart

#49

Lionhart said:

I really enjoy my PS Vita and I do love PlayStation Plus. I don't think that PS Plus is a threat to the software sales for PS Vita. I purchase games that I want to own physically because I enjoy collecting video game cases. However, I also purchase lots of content from the PSN store. The notion that PS+ is danger to the PS Vita is totally null and void in my humble opinion.

I'm not saying that some people don't hold off on buying big titles in the hope of PS+ freebies however because sadly there are those who do. I bought Rainbow Moon and Persona 3 Portable earlier this month and later today I plan on buying Little Big Planet PS Vita and Killzone Mercenary if I can make it by GameStop.

jgrangervikings1

#50

jgrangervikings1 said:

Well, I personally bought a Vita because I saw all the cool games I was missing out with my PS+ subscription and only owning a PS3.

Most Vita games are $19.99 or less, so paying $34.99 seems steep. Have I held off on buying games because of PS+? Sure. But if I really want a game, I buy it.

Has PS4 kept me from buying Tearaway? Probably, yes. I just spent $430 (tax included) for a PS4 last week, and now I want new games for my new system.

Ultimately, Sony should have waited until March 2014 to release Tearaway, and it should've been priced at $19.99 for about 4 hours of content with $9.99 DLC to get 2-2.5 more hours of content. And, Tearaway should have been directly related to Sackboy/Little Big Planet with LBP playable characters so that Media Molecule could profit from name & franchise recognition.

naruball

#51

naruball said:

For anyone assuming we're getting Tearaway for free in a couple of months, I have three words for you: Little Big Planet. It's been over a year since it's release and it still hasn't been part of the free game ps+ service.

rjejr

#52

rjejr said:

Since nobody else mentioned them, Puppeteer and W101 also sold poorly. And I really enjoyed both of them. But they were quirky, and very cartoon like, but I think most importantly they were new IP. Even if the PS4 didnt come out until 2014 -see Japan - and even if PS+ wasnt available on Vita, this was never going to sell well. Did anybody really think it would?

Gamer83

#53

Gamer83 said:

@rjejr

I think you're right. Even if Vita was a huge seller I'm not sure this particular game would've sold that well. From everything I've heard it's great but it's really niche and Sony didn't help things by not advertising the game and releasing it the same day as a new entry in an iconic franchise on the competition's handheld system.

Bliquid

#54

Bliquid said:

For the past 2 weeks, i've seen a PS4 "for the gamers" conmercial almost every break.
When there wasn't that, there was the Wonderbook one, almost as invasive as the first one ( but not nearly as much as the XBone ones)
Also, Invizimals and Disney Pack, both for Vita,every corner.
If the amazing Tearaway had received the same treatment, i think sales would have been different.
On the Plus subject, i'll admit that i bought only 3 games retail and a handful digital, because i'm pretty ok waiting for the freebies.

artemisthemp

#58

artemisthemp said:

I personally is happy to see Soul Sacrifice go on PS+, since it grant people, who is on the fence about it, a chance to try it out and possible increase the sale on Soul Sacrifice Delta.

I am also happy to get Blazblue CSE for free :)

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