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Sony: Current Mobile Gamers Will Come Over To PS Vita
Sony: Current Mobile Gamers Will Come Over To PS Vita
August 19, 2011 | By Mike Rose

August 19, 2011 | By Mike Rose
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    10 comments
More: Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet, Business/Marketing



Sony believes that, with the release of its PlayStation Vita handheld console, many gamers who currently play mobile and tablet games will move over to the Vita for their gaming fix.

In an interview with news site Gamespot, Sony's director of marketing John Koller told of how the company feels that the Vita will provide "richer, deeper experiences" compared to cell phone titles.

"We view [mobile and handheld gaming] as two separate demographics, and we've done a lot of quantitative and qualitative research to back this up," he explained.

"When you look at the type of consumer that's playing cell phone games currently, it's someone that enjoys smaller 'kill time' gaming and has not gravitated to the larger, richer, deeper experiences that true handheld gaming provides."

He continued, "We've certainly seen that on the PSP, and I know Nintendo has probably commented on it for their products, but as we go toward the PlayStation Vita, I can tell you that as we started looking at that product and the market opportunity several years ago, we saw a real strong demographic for those deeper, richer, console-type experiences. We had them on PSP, but we've taken them to a new level on PS Vita with the entirety of new ways to play."

This, he said, is what will distinguish Vita games from more casual iPhone, Android et al gaming. "That 'new ways to play' idea, particularly for Vita, really differentiates from what's available on mobile phones or tablets and, frankly, what will be available on those platforms over the next three to five years," he noted.

"You're going to see PS Vita expand what a lot of people believe to be true about handheld gaming, and you're going to see a lot of those current mobile phone and tablet gamers come over to Vita. We're very convinced of that."


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Comments


Eric Kwan
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What would help this effort is if PS Vita could also play casual phone/tablet games, like Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja.

Samuel Batista
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Already done.



http://www.qj.net/qjnet/news/angry-birds-now-a-ps-mini.html



I'm pretty psyched that the PSP will allow for easy porting of the best IOS games due to its capacitive multi-touchscreen, but at the same time, it will support great, deep gaming experiences created by Sony's several first party studios.

Mike Griffin
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It's always been this way. Take my mom, for example. She might be a pro at Angry Birds and simple hidden object games on iOS, but if I gave her Castlevania on the original Gameboy, or Electrocop on the Atari Lynx, she wouldn't have the foggiest notion how to play a "real" game on a focused portable gaming console. When I hear folks decrying the PS Vita, claiming they can get all their mobile gaming needs from their iOS or Android phone/tablet, I know right away that these people didn't grow up knowing/owning pure mobile gaming systems and deep portable games. Or perhaps not even consoles. There's a clear separation here; dedicated gaming portables evoke a purity of purpose and interface that brings the best out of developers.

Lyon Medina
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If I could clap over the internet I would at that statement.

Ron Dippold
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'dedicated gaming portables evoke a purity of purpose and interface that brings the best out of developers.'



I would argue that Tiny Wings on iOS has both purity of purpose and interface that are far superior to any game that ever appeared on the PSP. I can't think of any games on the DS that can compete either, but the catalog there is much larger, so I could be forgetting one.



And Tiny Wings is not the only such game. It seems like you're arguing the opposite here - that dedicated gaming portables allow for a much deeper experience (at least in theory). Less pure, less focused, allowing for more complexity. And the theory that the user is willing to invest more time mastering the richer vocabulary for a more rewarding experience.

Steven Stadnicki
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Curious; I've owned everything from Lynx to GBA to Game Gear to Turbo Express to Neo Geo Pocket to DS to PSP and my feeling is exactly the opposite. When I hear people decrying the 'simplicity' of the iOS market and how it's not for 'real' gamers, I know that they simply have no knowledge of the sheer variety of experiences available on the platform these days and are just dismissing it out of hand. Is Cave, to choose the most convenient example, not a 'pure' or 'deep' game developer? They've chosen iOS over the other portable platforms to bring their shooters to. I suppose Jeff Minter doesn't qualify as a Pure Game Developer either? All the new Llamasoft titles seem to be aimed at iOS. Yes, there are plenty of casual experiences on the platform too - which is something that can also be said for the DS, for instance - but there's absolutely no shortage of hardcore gaming either. I can't fault gamers for dismissing the iDevices out of hand, but to hear companies like Sony and Nintendo doing it just leaves me with the impression that they Don't Get It - and it's hard for me not to feel that that abject dismissal is what's gotten them into the trouble they're already in.

Mike Griffin
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It's not really abject dismissal, and I acknowledge that a lot of respectable "core" developers like Cave and Mr. Minter have dipped their toes into the profitable iOS pool. And yet what they have in common is that they're having to fit their style of game design into the iOS format and its inherent gaming options. Yes, they can still execute an expression of their game design using overlayed touchscreen d-pads and intelligent touch controls, and it's often workable or outright wonderful in original titles, and but that's not necessarily the shoe-horning that a hardcore gamer desires for traditional console genres.



Someone below stated: "But 'Hardcore' consumers are going to look at this; do I want a game system in my hand when I already have a game system at home?"



I think that's exactly what we're dealing with, and what Sony is somewhat arrogantly over-stating: Yes, I really do want a game system in my hands that behaves very similarly and plays similar games to the game console I have at home. Because there it is, my console, at home, and here I am, on the road looking for a real home console-like experience.



I can try thousands of different game design efforts on my iPad or Android phone, but I understand the inherent capacity of those platforms and what's required to execute (or mimic) home console-like, traditional genre experiences.



And I find myself wanting the Vita's twin analog sticks. I want the big overkill quad core CPU, 5-inch capacitive multi-touch, rear touchpad (for L2/R2), etc. I want that home console, traditional genre experience in a portable. I have room for that in my gaming appetite, and I know it's a hunger that cannot be satiated on my iOS and Android devices due to inherent constraints.



I think the Vita will find its place and moderate success. I know I'll pack it up alongside my iPad for traveling, because I won't have stunning, properly-controllable Uncharted, Wipeout, and Metal Gear games on that iPad. Some really cool iOS efforts, even in genres I like? Yeah. Just not at a level that correctly mirrors the contemporary home console, traditional genre experience that I desire.



It's OK to have multiple portable gaming options.

Lyon Medina
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These comments that Sony makes mean nothing to me and most of the gaming community, cause guess what Sony? You lost the last couple handheld races. (I don't own any handhelds. Only a very expensive cell phone, last Handheld was a Game Boy Advaced.)



This to me is a marketing issue; you need to know what you’re broadcasting to the audience. Which in this case Sony is broadcasting this for the "Hardcore" which if someone bought a PSP before they are "Definitely" buying another PSP again because this one is better than everything else. But "Hardcore" consumers are going to look at this; do I want a game system in my hand when I already have a game system at home?



This to me as a marketing guy is hard to look at and see a positive. Yes you’re giving the consumer a lot but your launching into a market that already has a steady stream of entertainment without knowing what your consumer really needed. Just adding tons and tons of features that most people won't use is not smart business planning.



People do not buy an IPhone to play Angry Birds. They bought Angry Birds because they have an IPhone. Sony needs to stop this mentality of their best in the business. Their not anymore, they were on top, they need to start thinking competitive and innovating their business plans to go with their new and wild ideas. This is just bragging when they are not actually winning. They can do way better than that.





(Currently reading all the GamesCon stuff so I might change this statement)

Duong Nguyen
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The Vita is already starting at a good price point, unlike the Mobiles which iterate every year with a new model, and are partially price subsided by the carriers, Sony just iterates over the same platform by reducing price. The Vita is going to be competitive with the mobiles for at least 3 years or more.



If Sony sticks to their strategy of aggressive price reduction through hardware improvements, it will take shares from the mobiles. In 3 years when the Vita is around 100-150 the closest mobile is still gonna be 300 with long term contract, its clear the Vita will be quite attractive (also factor in the 3 years worth of AAA game developments)



For those who think mobiles and handheld don't compete in the same space? Why is Skype coming to Vita? Because those spaces are colliding, handhelds will become communication devices as mobiles have become game devices..

Hillwins Lee
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Market penetration, price, and purpose.



iOS and tablet gaming has rooted, it will be extremely hard for the SONY Vita to get a large share of this pie unless the SONY vita can do much more than gaming, like a tablet. It all comes down to 'we can't carry everything with us when moving' and sadly, having Iphone and Ipad pretty much met all or most of the needs of most people.


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