Ever since the PlayStation Vita was announced, there have been plenty of opinions that the PlayStation Vita will be challenged by the huge and rapidly growing smartphone market. Unfortunately, most of those opinions appear to have been put forward by people who are tech guys first and gamers second, who do not appear to see the difference between casual and hardcore gaming.
Do smartphone games deserve the hype they are currently getting? Absdolutely, because tilt controls and a touchscreen allow for much more innovation than a boring old thumbstick controller. But what these games have in terms of innovation, they lack in terms of depth. Once the novelty wears off, the games lose a lot of their appeal. No matter what gimmicky burger McDonald’s comes up with, they will never be on the same level as a 5-star restaurant.
Where smartphone games and the 3DS (to some extent) succeed is simplicity, which allows them to turn non-gamers into casual gamers. Once you have a casual gamer, you have a potential hardcore gamer. All they need is somebody, say Sony, to introduce them to a deeper, more immersive experience in a package they are familiar with. After all, it would be much much easier to get your mother to give Resident Evil 5 a chance after a few hours of Angry Birds.
Even though the Japanese launch was a little dubious, the PS Vita exceeded expectations in the West by selling well over a million units in the first week. Hopefully, this is a sign that the PlayStation Vita can co-exist with all the iPhones and Androids out there. The PS Vita is a gaming device, unlike the PlayStation phone
Speaking of the Xperia PlayStation phone, what if Sony released it within a year of their portable Playstation console ? Would certainly be a nice way to say “This is a gaming smartphone, and this is a dedicated gaming device”.