Vita's Focus Will Be Indie Titles and Remote Play, Sony Says

The portable system will be getting more indie titles and less first-party support in the future.

by

Sony is decreasing first-party support for the PlayStation Vita and focusing on indies and Remote Play to provide content, president of Sony Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida has revealed.

In an interview with Polygon, Yoshida explained that Sony's philosophy for both the PS Vita and the PlayStation Portable has always been to recreate a console-quality experience in a handheld. But while this worked on the PSP, Sony ran into difficulties with the PS Vita: "When we launched the Vita with Uncharted, it was amazing; PS3-like quality in your palm, but as time moved on, you are seeing PS4 quality and people's expectations for the graphic fidelity has gone up."

With the dramatic increase in graphical quality on consoles, the focus on handheld visuals and, consequently, the demand for games like Uncharted have gone down. Fortunately for Sony, Yoshida explained, indies have picked up the slack: "It's very fortunate that the indie boom happened and they are providing lots of great content to Vita. I think [indies are] actually the biggest star to help provide great content to Vita going forward."

When asked if this means that Sony will be making fewer first-party Vita titles, Yoshida responded, "I would say, yes, that's correct."

However, Yoshida also reiterated the importance of Remote Play in providing content to the Vita. The system, which streams games from a PlayStation 4 to a Vita, is one of Sony's main selling points for the handheld. The upcoming release of streaming service PlayStation Now will also bring games to the Vita, Yoshida said: "We are super excited about how people are using it. We will continue to provide more utility to Vita as a PS4 companion device as well as PS Now terminal."

Although Sony did not say much about the Vita at this year's E3, this month's sales numbers indicated that the Vita is selling better than in previous months. Recently, Sony also said that there is still a chance that a PS Vita/PS4 bundle will be made available.

Alex Newhouse is an editorial intern at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @alexbnewhouse
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Discussion

606 comments
ichigo62
ichigo62

people can get indies almost from anywhere, and they can be "free" too. So why would anyone wants to spend non-excusive in your handheld ? not to mention "expensive"


i dont know what are they thingking but fakkkkk i just re-bought vita 3 weeks ago lol (not putting trust on them tho, bought just for few Jrpgs i want to play and gonna sell it back or it goes back to box for future-treasure)


Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

The PSvita has to reach the $169.99 price point. The PSvita 2000 at least has 1GB memory built in. So if Sony just added at download code for an indie game of your choice with each PSvita. Continued promotion of the indies seems like a good idea for the vita. The PSvita should become the go to system for RPG and JRPG games which helped the PSP find success.

The PSvita didn't quite become the portable PS3 as hoped. But Playstation now and the indies can keep the PSvita 2000 going. IF third parties can bring original games to the PSvita then the System will thrive.

ivo_ree
ivo_ree

They should start by reducing prices then maybe it will sell as much as the psp.

Silverline62
Silverline62

I was really thinking about buying one for Akiba's Trip but it's already coming for PS3 so...yeah, I guess it's PS3 then.

sedrikp39
sedrikp39

still using my 7 year old psp2000... and i still dont have the urge to replace it with the new psVita slim.... (ps3 & ps4 owner also)

leeko_link
leeko_link

Damn Sony, why won't you give me a reason to buy your PS Vita.


- Expensive memory card = check

- Less first party support = check

- Too many ports and remakes = check

- Main purpose is to be a Wii U GamePad clone = check

- Rely too much on indie and stream = check


Why all the checks? Well I am against buying a 32gb memory card for $60 - $80 when SDHC of the same size cost just under $20. Less 1st party support means Sony is not giving a damn about their own product which means I have nothing to look forward to. Too many ports and remakes on the system are too much too many, Tales of Hearts R is a good game but I play that one on the DS already, Persona 4 Golden is awesome but I own that game on PS2 and the Call of Duty game on that thing just doesn't blown me away. Remote play is also great but if I got the games on the console, why would I want to play them on a tiny screen when my big 50 inch HDTV is just close by? Don't get me wrong I love indie games and I love games on demand via the cloud but here's a few pointers, I already got a lot of indie game focus machines, it's called the PS3 and if not that, then the Wii U, my smartphone, the 3DS, and the Ouya. Unless a lot of those indie games are super exclusive then bring them on but the ports aren't helping. Also my internet speed sucks (as evidence by Hulu and Netflix), if videogame streaming is the future of the Vita, then I'm not getting that thing anytime soon.

Proftally
Proftally

if the handheld is a dying market why would someone step in late like the steamboy and the shield.? someone please explain

Wesleypipes77
Wesleypipes77

As somebody who has recently purchased a PSVita...... this is a big steaming pile of shit!! Friends off Sony !!!

80sgamerftw
80sgamerftw

Buy a 400 dollar machine so your 300 machine can remotely play, after you get playstation plus and playstation now. Wow talk about a major cop out. Ha, and people give Microsoft crap. Sony is practically fisting their customers with this one.

nefphlegm
nefphlegm

I wonder how Japan is doing with their Vita?

Laihendi
Laihendi

Lol so people aren't buying vitas because the ps4 is just so advanced and incredible? From gameplay videos I've seen, the jump from ps3 to ps4 has been relatively unimpressive. I also don't remember the ps3 causing people to lose interest in the psp. This sounds like BS.

kokakee
kokakee

Is PES and NBA 2K15 coming to Vita?..come on sony.. u could at least gives us a batman game base on arkham city instead of that side scrolling origin. Even android has that rip off arkham game, the dark knight which is actually quite good for a phone game. Please release a game base on The last of us for vita and u could be forgiven 

Sevenizz
Sevenizz

It'd probably be wiser to scrap the entire thing. Next time, focus in quality games and the gamers. Overpriced memory cards, a bizarre software line up, and degrading the hardware to save a buck were mistakes that should've been seen long before release.

OhWell4992
OhWell4992

I bought it on the release day and this is what I got! Wow, way to slap a customer in the face!!! I bought the Vita for freaking console-quality games on the go, not some stupid indies (I'm not talking about quality by "stupid", just an expression) or remote-play or even playstation now! This is just unacceptable! Go eff yourself, Sony!

monson21502
monson21502

sony takes a dump on its loyal fans who bought it early at full price.. like i said so many times before... i wouldnt trust sony as far as i could through them!

Mommas_b_o_y
Mommas_b_o_y

this is exactly what sony said regarding 3d games. Now, no more AAA 3d games. sad news

quickshooterMk2
quickshooterMk2

3DS with region lock 

and vita with no big games 


i'm disappointed at the handheld market, soon it will crash and smartphones will take their places 

shame on you sony and nintendo, must every company screw their customers so hard everytime? 

i mean why? for what? money? lazy devs? poor decisions? 


this just baffles me, i loved the PSP, the enitre backwards compatable region-free DS was awesome 

until they ruined it... 


and no, i will not turn to emulation, that's piracy, and i'm not gonna support it 


sadly nintendo gives us no altarnative, you get the GBA Wii U emulation but with limited selection of titles 

it's just astonishing how crappy can they even get 


PC gaming is still here, but with every single game dev half assing their games, copy pasting, ripping off from others (ubisoft with their rainbow siege) 


i feel like i should quit gaming. maybe i should really, they'll end up just like movies soon. 

deathblow3
deathblow3

wow you suck sony no more handhelds for me from you guys the psp wasnt ps3 quality it was ps2 and when the ps3 came out no one cared. f you sony

masludicren
masludicren

I think SONY now sells a "Limited Edition" IndieStation 4 bundle with Veeta.... The best system for your "Indie" experience (no AAA titles Indies only)

Kjranu
Kjranu

I want my refund, Sony. 

battlefront1943
battlefront1943

So, Nintendo and Xbox boys are here trying to spin this article into the death of Vita and ultimately Sony.  I'm sorry but this is ridiculous.  Let's look at the facts:

1)  Shahid Ahmad interview at Playstation Lifestyle around E3:

"To help clear some things up, SCEE Senior Business Development Manager Shahid Ahmad (a.k.a. the man who signed No Man’s Sky on PS4, OlliOlli, and tons of other games for PlayStation) said “My team is working on over 70 games for Vita. The rest of the company is working on many more.”

2)  Many are reading the above article as Sony saying they aren't going to support Vita with any AAA titles at all.  That's not what Sony said.  Sony simply said that acquiring indies will be the main thrust of their Vita strategy and first-party AAA titles will be fewer.

3)  Sony is still actively looking to acquire 3rd party AAA vita titles, but 3rd party AAA titles won't start falling into line en mass until Vita grows a larger install base (a la WiiU).

4)  Sony has seen that indie games get more play more often on Vita than AAA games.  In essence, the idea that handheld gamers want an exact duplicate of the console experience in their hands hasn't turned out to be true.  Finding this out took awhile for Sony -- the fact that smaller Vita titles and indies were getting more play.  At the same time Sony's investment in indies -- even when Sony assists with development -- is much less than internal first-party development.

5)  Many people keep saying that a console will die if it doesn't have a lot of great first-party games.  I don't agree with this at all.  Case in point:  PS2.  PS2 had some good first-party games, but the console's strength became the vast number of 3rd party games.  Currently indies are filling this 3rd party slot.

What I'm finding here is that so many people are flooding in here trying to fan the flames of "Sony's dying" that there's no objectivity whatsoever.  People are still trying to sell the idea that there are no games on Vita.  That's a joke.

MIGHTY NO. 9 (2015), RAYMAN LEGENDS, SLY COOPER, OLLIOLLI, PAVILION, HOTLINE MIAMI(2), GOW(2), KILLZONE MERCENARY, TEARAWAY, MLB 13, NINJA GAIDEN SIGMA 2 PLUS, TOUKIDEN...  just for a very few...           

ixmardukxi
ixmardukxi

The vita needs RPG'S, preferably JRPG's like disgaea, i loved the PSP, but i honestly regret buying the vita, interesting games are just way too few and far between

Silverline62
Silverline62

I have, love and don't regret buying a PSP, for people who don't have it I would recommend going for it instead of a Vita as it stands right now, for those of you who have it, stick with it and carry on.

jrcast84
jrcast84

I am looking forward to BigFest on the Vita.

Proftally
Proftally

I use my vita for classic FF games, Fifa, fighting games, sly cooper, escape plan, LBP and several classic or low graphics games 


I don't think I will used it for fps titles, car racing, or AC titles and the like, it is definitely engaging but once you start treating it like a proper console you will be disappointed.

YukoAsho
YukoAsho

@Silverline62 Yeah.  That's the main problem with the PSV.  Most of the games are either ported from home systems/PC, or would be better on PS3 than they are on that damned device.

Sony needs to put a bullet in the Vita, already, and never return to the handheld market.  It's not going to turn around.

YukoAsho
YukoAsho

@Proftally Because the handheld market ISN'T dying.  The 3DS is as strong as ever, and is keeping Nintendo afloat in the face of the failed Wii U.  The fact is that no company has ever been able to best Nintendo at handheld games.  Sega, SNK, Atari, and now Sony and NVidia have all tried and failed to take down Nintendo's dominance in the dedicated handheld market.  We're only hearing the talk about handheld gaming dying because people don't want to admit Nintendo is doing something well.


And if I'm bitter, it's because I got a Vita at launch, and it's failed.  Miserably.

sedrikp39
sedrikp39

@80sgamerftw its still an option if you want to get a vita... owning ps3 and ps4 is good enough for me right now... 

sdinh225
sdinh225

@nefphlegm It's doing very well over there since Sony America pretty much only focuses on the PS4 with the 1080p this and 60fps that over here.

Dunno what region you're in though but that's probably the case too.

80sgamerftw
80sgamerftw

Sony is practically saying "we won't make anymore vita games because we're too busy shitting on your chest" and you're still defending them.

Blind fan boys should go on a cruise with a leaky boat.

nefphlegm
nefphlegm

@battlefront1943 Finally some logic! Just to toss another game I've been looking forward to... Soul Sacrifice Delta!!!

deathblow3
deathblow3

@battlefront1943 thats because there are no triple aaa games getting released. other than rpg's & borderlands which is doing great from what i hear. release good games and you want have sells issues lets be real they dont care if you play it only if you buy it.  

joke_man
joke_man

@ixmardukxi


That is what made the PSP awesome...It had many good and several great RPG's.  


There just isn't the quality and quantify of games to bring in consumers, and now it's snowballing because Sony never fully committed to providing gamers with what they wanted in the Vita.  

jasongm
jasongm

@Silverline62 seriously most of us did buy a psp just to play monster hunter, Vita now lacks the software we want for it.

joke_man
joke_man

@Silverline62


The PSP wasn't perfect, but at least it had better titles and quality JRPG's.  Few and far between for the Vita. 

fatalscorpion
fatalscorpion

@Proftally I use my phone with roms and emulators for those games. So it appears I really have no nead to buy a Vita. I'll just stick with the 3DS.

deathblow3
deathblow3

@joke_man i'm mad about it for sure i got the vita 3g model for the free game and memory on release and i feel screwed big time.

deathblow3
deathblow3

@joke_man @ixmardukxi the vita has a lot of rpg's persona 4, tales of hearts, Ys, hyperdimension neptuna, mind zero, akiba's trip, conception II, final fantasy x-x2, ragnarok odyssey, disgaea 3, disgaea 4, valhalla knights 3, demon gaze, sorcery saga plus more. the issue with the vita is game at all are hard to find you can find psp games easier than vita games and they dont evemake those any more.

joke_man
joke_man

@deathblow3 @joke_man


I feel like it's a middle finger to consumers, to be honest.  If Nintendo treated 3DS owners the same way, I'd be equally upset as a consumer.  

joke_man
joke_man

@deathblow3 @joke_man @ixmardukxi


Tales of Hearts hasn't released in NA, and it's not exclusive. 


Akiba's Trip hasn't released yet in NA, either, and it's gonna be on the PS3 as well. 


FF X and XII, while great, also released on PS3 and they're remakes.  


Conception is on 3DS as well, so also not exclusive.  


Rangnorak Odyssey, Disgaea, Valhalla Knights (which sucked), available on PS3 too.  


Mind Zero was bad to average at best...Etc., etc. 


Basically all that to say: 1) it doesn't have the system sellers it needed, and 2) of those RPG's it released, most of there were subpar or non-exclusives (on 3DS and/or PS3, etc.).  


Just my 2 cents...

deathblow3
deathblow3

@joke_man @deathblow3 @ixmardukxi the too you mention as not being in N.A. i got off the gamestop website for purchase comes out in august. i'm not an rpg fan that much what i miss is action games