US gamers will be more interested in PS Vita launch - Yoshida

Sony president of worldwide studios says handheld will perform better in West due to action focus of opening software.

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The PlayStation Vita hasn't proven to be a breakout success in Japan, but Sony expects to see a different result when the device goes on sale in the US next week. Speaking to Venture Beat, Sony president of worldwide studios Shuhei Yoshida said that the device's launch lineup is more in line with US gamers' tastes than those in Japan.

Turns out, Nathan Drake is not big in Japan.

"Uncharted, it's a great title, one of the big franchises, but it doesn't really work in Japan," Yoshida said. "SCE Japan marketing is making an effort, so the awareness is going up, but still, Uncharted 3 sold about 200,000 units. It's very small sales compared to Call of Duty...did like 300,000 or 400,000? And that's the biggest-selling game made outside Japan. That's a hard market, when you see something like Monster Hunter selling like 4 million units, just in Japan."

By contrast, he said, US gamers are more interested in action adventures and shooters, two types of games that work especially well on the PS Vita. He believes that Uncharted: Golden Abyss, FIFA Soccer, and the upcoming Call of Duty game will bring in US audiences who are looking for a consolelike experience on the go.

Yoshida also addressed the PS Vita's launch in Japan, reiterating statements made by Sony's John Koller that the system was selling to forecast. "The sales numbers are within the range that we've been expecting, but they didn't hit the highest, the kind that would have made us ecstatic," he said.

In addition to the aforementioned difficulties with software lineup, Yoshida said that sales of the device have been hampered by the continued popularity of the PSP. As such, he said that Sony is expecting a slower transition away from the PSP and to the PS Vita in Japan.

He also said that 3G models of the PS Vita initially heavily outpaced those of the Wi-Fi version "because the core gamers tend to opt for the highest model." This reaction led Sony to "sweeten the deal" for the device's US and European launch, adding in an 8GB memory card, a 30-day, 250MB AT&T DataConnect Pass, and a PlayStation Network game.

Discussion

84 comments
ZoTrAcK
ZoTrAcK

We are too poor to afford a 1st gen portable device at 300$ And memory cards twice the price of the most costly on the market. How to shoot yourself in the foot!

foxfacer2d2
foxfacer2d2

if it was ps3 portable where you can play all the ps3 games, that would be awesome. however, it is not. the psp vita is just as plain as a ps3 where the game library starts from scratch.

Wormkid_64
Wormkid_64

@david1230 Oh I know it's unreal. The article on this site talking about the guy who spent one month with the Vita has been getting a lot of hate,but he raises some good points. I mean,that memory card thing is a sham built to suck money out of gamers. And the fact that the 3DS handles a suspended game and internet browsing at the same time while the Vita requires you to close the game to browse is astonishing. It's a handheld with the horsepower of a small car for crying out loud! But anyway,I'm keeping my eye on it,and I may buy it after a price drop or if I can find some really good bundle or something.I'll have to see if more than 4 or 5 games are up my alley.

sjawz3288
sjawz3288

I'll be honest. I'm in love with this handheld. Picked up my pre-order this morning. Little Deviants blows hard, but Rayman Origins and Uncharted showcase the piece of hardware. They're both loads of fun. Just a shame the AR capabilities aren't available just yet, but that's what you get when you get a console early. Still a ton of fun.

theKSMM
theKSMM

Interesting. I was recently looking at PSP games and thinking that there were too many generic boy-and-his-friends-save-world RPGs. I know a lot of people complain about having the same franchises on the PSP as were on the PS2, but that's exactly what I want--to be able to have a console-like experience on the go. I'm glad to see Sony and their developers focusing more on action games. If they have some success in North America and Europe, they may decide to give more focus to those games in their portable future.

LunchSackSal
LunchSackSal

I will DEFINITELY get a PSvita ... AFTER sony comes out with their next bullcrap handheld and the Vita can be bought for $75 at a used game store. Ska-Doosh!!!

Spacerac
Spacerac

Yoshida is (almost) completely right though. The Vita might not do that large of a jump better in the US than in Japan, but he's totally right where Japan and Uncharted is concerned. Let's face it, Japan likes RPGs, not shooters, and Uncharted is an action adventure with lots of shooting in it. Not trying to sound like an anti-Microsoft fanboy (), but that is why the 360 doesn't do the numbers that Nintendo and Sony's consoles do over there because it is mostly shooting games.

rarson
rarson

@Hvac0120 You could always use a different form of security, or none at all. But I do feel your pain. I was burned by the original PSP due to a lack of fun. All load screens and very little substance (I actually ended up buying a DS, a handheld that I thought was just a gimmick, and realized that it was a lot more fun).

rarson
rarson

"Sony president of worldwide studios says handheld will perform better in West due to action focus of opening software." So it begs the question then of why they continue to release platforms in Japan first. Isn't the US a larger market for video games now?

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

I would get one to help support dedicated handheld gaming devices for the future. But I was kinda screwed over with the original PSP. I can't even connect my PSP to my home network because the 1000 doesn't support WPA 2 security. So instead I download stuff on my PS3 and computer and transfer it over to the PSP. Then there's also the issue of battery life, size of the device, and the screen (while still purdy, it's not as good as the 2000 or 3000). So I'm waiting until they drop the price and fine-tune the hardware. I'm hoping there are enough people with wallets deep enough to support the device to keep it around and relevant.

krazken
krazken

@atopp399 I've been back and forth about buying the Vita, but I think your comments just swayed me over to the "wait for a price drop" position.It really is ridiculous that they push their proprietary cards on us AND don't allow us to save on a game cartridge (like Nintendo allows).

dawnofhero
dawnofhero

Not getting one for a really long time.

krazken
krazken

Seems strange that Japan neglected its own audience for the launch. I wonder if they should have waited a few months and done a worldwide launch, giving more time to the Japanese developers. Or maybe they were just trying to get some last-minute sales revenue onto their income statement for 2011.

ydnarrewop
ydnarrewop

@Gen007 Seriously? You've run into gamers that have no idea about the Vita? I don't know man I don't think we can call these people gamers. As for the rest of what you say, yep I agree. I do think that the Vita will come into its own. It just won't be instantaneous.

SpotonRisotto
SpotonRisotto

I will get it for $99 from a discount bin when it hits the fan.

Gen007
Gen007

I'm still running into people and even people that are gamers who have no idea what it is or that is coming out next week. From what Ive observed there is like 0% hype for thing. Maybe that's because im college student and were just all too broke to care. IDK im just not seeing the excitement that was around when major hardware like this drops. I think its awful timing too. They just missed the holiday season so people really aren't looking to drop that much money on a game system now. It's gonna be interesting to see how this plays out for sure.

moviequest14
moviequest14

@Sgthombre : I don't see why not..if Sony is going to spend the $50million anyways they should just take it to lower the price of the vita instead of excessive advertising..many of the small group of people that do know about it are resisting because of the price.If you sell the Vita with it's excellent hardware and pretty good library you won't need advertising..word of mouth alone will skyrocket sales.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

Exactly what I was thinking.. This might be the first Sony console to actually do better outside of Japan. I think the games on offer are a lot more of interest to western gamers. I'll sure as hell be buying one in the summer anyway, I want the thing for when I have to go overseas with work. FIFA & Drake on the plane? Awesome :)

david1230
david1230

@wormkid_64 Trust me you'll enjoy it but their is to much else to consider. how big are the games going to be for the memory card? i've been hearing between 500mb and 1gig for game data to be saved so if you get a 4gb memory card what will that be worth? 4 games and then you need a new memory card? the 32gb memory card is $99.99 so that's about 110 with tax, is all that hassle sony has done to us by putting their "new memory format" for us to play games? especially with how good sd and mirco sd was going your forcing us to spend another 100 just for memory? come on thats not right.

Wormkid_64
Wormkid_64

Well I certainly hope it picks up steam. I mean,at least there were a few good weeks for the 3DS before it slipped,but the Vita got one good week and BAM! I don't want it to be DOA when it comes to the US because it's the first Sony product I'm considering buying brand new. Vita,I've got my eye on you. Keep it together man.

david1230
david1230

@firehawk998 That is why i plan to wait and allow for the price to drop and not to give in to the greed that comes with fu*king over your consumer base over and over, when like you said hacks come out and maybe, the "slim" version. I have proof of them doing it look at the read from the engineer team saying they were asked to make the thing smaller but they couldn't in the time the dev's were asking. so common logic would say they will also fix any or all bugs with waiting for the "slim" and better possible deals on whatnot.

firehawk998
firehawk998

@david1230 :- Spot on mate. Also to further your point. When this thing will reach the US I will guarantee you that some programmers will hack the thing to allow games to be saved on the cartridge or even somehow find a way to support other memory devices.

Triton
Triton

He is right, I'm interested in it...but won't be buying one, unless the price comes down.

FlamingFury
FlamingFury

@nate1222 Get the HD remake for PS3. It's better and comes with Ico.

nanorazor
nanorazor

Yoshida right and is pretty obvious and the predicted sales of ps vita would still slow until triple A title, some free downloadable games or a price drop occur or even by decreasing the price of propitiatory memory which is probably have the larger cut of profit.

david1230
david1230

@firehawkk998 I tell all my friends to just wait and let the price drop. Yes the propitiatory memory is a real deal breaker for many normal US people like me. no way in hell i'll spend the $99,00 on a 32gig memory card and yes when you see sd and mirco sd you could have just brought that and used it to play your games in peace but no sony, we don't allow that do we? Well as long as we as the community wait for the price to go down, we can effect how sony and all bullsh*t corps do their business with us for now on guys lets buy stuff at fair market value not allow them to create new memory and then tell us oh thats how we do what we do (greed and corruption) shouldn't be allowed to succeed in our society anymore.

firehawk998
firehawk998

Sony really shot itself in the foot here with the expensive propitiatory memory cards. Those arent worth the price regarding how much memory it has. They could have gone for the SD or Micro SD card option but no. I predict that the Vita will be sales flop for a few months until Sony slashes it price and the memory cards price.

dxdevilex0
dxdevilex0

Thanks for telling me that,Captain Obvious.

X-RS
X-RS

Locking them memory for this device wsa the STUPIDIST thing possible, Duo's were enough of a pain. Honestly, that's just ASKING people to crack this thing.

Vodoo
Vodoo

I haven't messed with a handheld since the Atari Lynx back in the day. I remember it had a cool surfing game lol.

Sgthombre
Sgthombre

@moviequest14 You mean have a price drop and then go on to out pace sales of the DS? Pretty sure that that outcome is Sony's greatest hope at this point.

kca89
kca89

I stopped playing handhelds after the Game Boy.

nate1222
nate1222

You know...I really do miss the days of PS1 and PS2. When it was about what gamers want, instead of what Sony wants to dump on us and over-charge us for. I think I'll break out my old PS2 and rock Shadow of the Colossus.

atopp399
atopp399

It's all about price for me. When it was hyped that the cost would be $250 and everyone assumed games would simply save to the game cartridge, since it is basically a flash memory card, I was a day one sale for sure. Then Sony ruined it (like they pretty much do with every launch product in some way) and it will now cost about $300 to get one and a small memory card. That puts it out of my budget and a lot of other people. What makes it an even harder sell for the average person is their main competition, the 3DS, is $170 and includes an SD card.... I have no doubt it will be an amazing gaming device but the price is killing me.

It is an absolute asinine decision not to allow every single game to save it's data to the game cart simply to rip off the consumer of more money when every game cart has the ability to save the tiny amount of data it would take to save. I can understand needing a memory card for the rip off DLC that is coming but it should not be needed for saves. It is so obvious of a money grab when you see the best games needing the memory card.

I'll have to wait for a $50 price drop or a wifi bundle that includes a free memory card for $250 before Sony gets my money. I know sales are going to stink and they are doing it to themselves.

Marky360
Marky360

I'd love to have a Vita at launch but I can't afford one right now but if I get enough money back after doing my taxes then I'll definitely buy one as there really is nothing else I would want to spend the money on

warrner11
warrner11

capcom shouda had monster hunter rdy for launch in jpn. That alone woulda had PSV flyin off the shelves.

moviequest14
moviequest14

@zeldisco2009 : No reason for the hate. 7.5 is far from bombing...3ds has had its fair share of low-rated titles also.While I don't think Vita will be the top selling system this gen I don't think death is an accurate description.

Flint247
Flint247

I think I will wait a little on the Vita.

Leir_Bag
Leir_Bag

I bought a 3DS pretty early and the first 8 months really sucked. If the 3DS rised after such a bad beginning, I still believe that the Vita will be able to turn the game on it's favour. The PS3 launch was pretty sucky as well, and I never regretted buying one. In the end, if in a couple of months the Vita gets great, superb titles, people will ignore it's flaws untill the time sony corrects them. And it will still be a better begining then the 3DS had (not trying to start fanboy wars, I love both handhelds and that's why I have one and am about to buy the other. I will wait untill this fall to buy the Vita, and I will buy it with Street Fighter vs Tekken, Gravity Rush, Rayman Origins and other unique titles I find interesting. And 7, 7.5 reviews are far from mediocre. 5 is mediocre, 7 is acually good. I believe gamespot wrote an article for people to realise that a while ago, but it seems to not have worked.

sonicare
sonicare

He thinks FIFA soccer will bring in the US audience? Maybe he doesnt know the difference between Europe and the US.

Tsuchikage
Tsuchikage

I've said it before and I'll say it again (as in, right now); that Call of Duty game should have been available for the Western Vita launch. Yoshida-san does have a point--the Vita's launch lineup is heavily geared towards Western markets. I'm still not convinced the system is going to be able to sell well against the 3DS and i-devices, though.

sortajan
sortajan

Man is this Yoshida guy out of touch.

theshonen8899
theshonen8899

@PixelAddict Bah, names don't matter. I still love my Wii even if the name is dumb :P

Sepewrath
Sepewrath

Of course, western gamers are more into the application of graphics tech than Japanese gamers. And when the crown jewel in the launch lineup is western made game, made for a western audience, I don't like your chances in Japan.

CaptainHerlock
CaptainHerlock

The addendum to this headline should read "US gamers will be more interested in PS Vita launch - Yoshida... but not if GameSpot and it's users have anything to say about it!". GameSpot; Fair and Balanced.

dre256x
dre256x

If i could reach 80% of US gamer i would tell them not to buy the thing.. That would force Sony to price cut the thing $50 maybe even $100 dollars, then i would say buy it, LOL. Can't ppl see that they are paying too much for so so Tech. With Smartphones/Tablets pushing tech (being upgrade every 6months) so fast a dedicated handheld will become combersome. Only thing Stopping Smartphones/Tablets from total dominance is Battery life and more big name dev support... But its coming..

PixelAddict
PixelAddict

@theshonen8899 Man, I really hope they adopt the PSV name. In all advertising, the box, everything. You're right, the Wii or Wii-U are games gone wrong... Um.. and yet the Wii did okay. So.. what do I know?! LOL

wiidsduelpack
wiidsduelpack

Looked at vgchartz, and software are pretty good for the cost of the vita. Nancobandai is really supporting the vita for the Japanese. Vita just needs more oriented Japanese games