Sony’s big announcement. Indeed, the PSVita. Featuring 2 analog sticks, a multi-touch screen, front and rear touch pads, front and rear cameras, and even Six Axis functionality… Well, I was expecting to need a mortgage for this device. Sony, however, seems to have actually developed this little monster in a competitive price point. Merging a PSP with, well, an iPad actually turns out to be a great idea. I’m not sure how well the games will ultimately benefit from the touch support, but much like the 3DS it isn’t the only control option.
Sony is stepping up their social networking game with the Vita. Not only can you voice chat wherever you are – No matter what game you are playing, or whom with – But the Vita will seamlessly integrate with your Playstation 3. This means you could be in the middle of an intense level (while in the intensity of your bathroom) and a few minutes later simply stroll into your living area and have the PSVita switch to PS3 mode without any interruptions. You’re now playing on your HDTV instead of the Vita’s screen.
I can foresee many online portable MMO’s popping up for this device in the not-so-distant future.
That brings up an important point. This device boasts more than wifi – It also comes as a 3g enabled version for a small premium, furthering the iPad (and portable online gaming) comparisons. So how much for all this?
299.99 w/3g & Wifi
Considering the price of the 3DS, Sony really is pressing hard to compete with both Nintendo and Apple in the handheld market, and it’s proposition is nothing less than impressive. I can genuinely say it is the first handheld device in recent years that has actually piqued my interest. Announced along with the PSVita is an action RPG by the name of Ruin, and a version of Uncharted 3. Later on we were also surprised to hear that Street Fighter X Tekken would also be making an appearance on the Vita.
For those curious about the controversy, yes, the 3G support on the Vita is exclusive to AT&T, much to the chagrin of the audience attending this year’s conference.
Backwards compatibility with PSP titles is still unknown at this time. We’re hoping to hear more soon.