The PS Vita. Depending on your view you either love the console and think it’s the best portable one out there, or you think it’s overrated and is a failed console overall. Neither view is really wrong in themselves. It’s a great console that has some great power and abilities, whether on its own or when streaming with the PS4, or even with the PS Now service. But it hasn’t lived up to the competition, namely the 3DS, in offering a ton of major triple A games and being treated as a major console. The Vita should not be selling as few consoles as it is, Sony has really dropped the ball on marketing and pricing, especially the memory cards. So it wasn’t much of a surprise when I read recently that Shuhei Yoshida, the president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios, stated that the climate isn’t healthy for any sort of the Vita Sequel. To be specific he said: “So I hope, like many of you, that this culture of playing portable games continues but the climate is not healthy for now because of the huge dominance of mobile gaming.”
I normally try to avoid direct quotes but in this case I think it works. It shows that a non small member of Sony Brass doesn’t think, at least for now, that there will be a sequel to the Vita because of how strong the mobile market is right now. That’s a shame to me overall. The PSP was an absolutely incredible console and the first major Sony portable console. The Vita came in hoping to tear up millions upon millions of sales and records as well but that just never happened. It makes sense for some of the reasons I’ve listed above. But even still, it’s sad to see that Sony is essentially throwing in the towel on the future so smartphones can take over. Nintendo is also competing against the smartphones and yet that hasn’t stopped them from having major sales for their 3DS and looking to do more in the future. I’m not saying Sony needs to be forced to release something they don’t want to, and I do happen to love the smartphone gaming world, but I certainly think there’s enough room for Sony in the portable gaming world and could do a better job with a better thought up console with better marketing and things like that.
So what does that mean for the Vita? Is it being supported still? If you love Indie games then yes, the Vita is in great living shape, same if you love RPG’s. Third parties are doing a great job on the Vita, but Sony isn’t making any effort to do any work on the Vita as the are officially not making any effort for first party games anymore on the console. Frankly that doesn’t bother me since the third party support on the Vita is incredible. But it’s still a sign of things to come. But the good news is that there is plenty of games out for it now and it has a great life with the PS Now and PS4 streaming, so the Vita has a good few years coming, but I wouldn’t bank on anything more major than that. If that’s the best that can be expected now, and based on the quote above, you can bet that Sony won’t be doing much or anything with portable gaming after the Vita. So enjoy the Vita as much as you can and hold out hope that they do something in the future! It seems incredible unlikely at this point but you never know what the future holds.