Editorial: What about the Playstation Vita?

No source link or news, just my thoughts and a chance to share yours. Today’s subject is the Playstation Vita.

Now looking purely at design and specs the Playstation Vita looks really good. $250 for the WiFi model doesn’t seem bad and launch games top out at $40 so they seem well priced. Grahpically what they have shown looks really damn good and they have a lot of neat ideas for control interfaces so on that front it all looks solid. The store manager of my local Gamestop went to E3 and from talking with him it sounds like the Vita works very well and it controls great so that isn’t anything to worry about. Just looking at this stuff makes it sound like Sony learned from the PSP’s MANY problems. So why do I absolutely not want to buy one?

Well Sony’s usual stupidity has popped up and ruined the whole thing. One user account per system (I let my brother borrow my systems or he buys them from me when I’m done with them so only one account hurts), but the REAL problem is memory cards. Instead of just going with MSD2 again or god forbid a normal bloody SD card we’re going back six years in time to requiring proprietary memory cards. At first I was annoyed with the idea, but whatever it didn’t seem too bad. Now that I see prices, no chance. Gamestop is listing the 4GB Vita card for $30. If that isn’t insane enough the 32GB one is $120! 4GB won’t be remotely enough for the system. So at minimum you would need the 8GB card (the 16 would be more reasonable, but 8GB should be enough to get by) and we’re looking at a minimum of $250 for the system and $45 for the card. After taxes you’re spending $300 on the Vita and that is BEFORE you buy games for it.

What I’m trying to say is Sony once against totally burned what could have been a great system. They do not and will probably never understand that intrusive DRM of any form is bad for the customer and bad for them. Piracy hurt the PSP very badly there is no doubting that, but what hurt it more was really a lack of quality games and the horrid analog nub. I don’t think Sony realizes that they aren’t competing with only Nintendo in the mobile gaming market anymore. They’re competing with Apple and Google and with the Vita right now I simply don’t see it being anything more than another PSP. A system with a ton of promise, ruined by bad decisions.