Miyamoto says PS Vita needs games

Mario creator acknowledges abilities of Sony's latest handheld, but says it doesn't have the software-hardware combination that makes for a strong product.


The PlayStation Vita has struggled in the sales charts, and Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto thinks he knows why. Speaking to Edge, Miyamoto suggested the Sony system's software isn't matching the abilities of the hardware.

Shigeru Miyamoto has some recent experience launching hardware without the right software.
Shigeru Miyamoto has some recent experience launching hardware without the right software.

"It's obviously a very hi-spec machine, and you can do lots of things with it," Miyamoto said, "But I don't really see the combination of software and hardware that really makes a very strong product."

Miyamoto expressed a similar sentiment about the 3DS's initial struggles after launch.

"When we launched the 3DS hardware we didn't have Super Mario 3D Land, we didn't have Mario Kart 7, we didn't have Kid Icarus: Uprising," he told Edge. "We were striving to have all of these ready for the launch, but we weren't able to deliver them at that time. We were kind of hoping that people would, nevertheless, buy into the product, find 3DS hardware promising, but looking back we have to say we realize the key software was missing when we launched the hardware."

Nintendo spurred the system's retail success with a substantial price cut mere months after launch, and a holiday lineup of games included Mario Kart 7 and Super Mario 3D Land. Though the cut has Nintendo selling the 3DS at a loss and contributed to the company's first-ever annual shortfall, the company has said it expects to rebound for the current fiscal year.

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Avatar image for raphaelcoelho15

He's right but, for me, there are only 5 must-buy games on the 3DS (MK7, SM3D Land, Luigi's Mansion, OoF 3D and Kid Icarus) and Vita, for me again, only 5 too (Assassins' Creed III: Liberation, Rayman Origins, Escape Plan, PS All Stars Battle Royale and Sound Shapes). I prefer Rayman on PS Vita because it has better graphics and i can download it on PSN and play it on both PS3 and PS Vita. But I have neither I'm waiting for a price drop on Vita and the 3DS XL price.

Avatar image for foxfacer2d2

vita vita vita vita.. if only it had games

Avatar image for Darkflare_EX

Looks to me that Miyamoto has thought up a game he would do if he was working with Sony instead.

Expect this idea to show up on the 3DS sometime.

Avatar image for BlackLense

For me, every gaming console needs games.

Avatar image for theKSMM

That's a pretty candid assessment from a high-ranking official about his competitor. Sony typically makes good hardware and then mucks it up with the software that runs on it. The Vita is no exception.

I guess I'll save a list of the various flaws as I see them for a blog post, but suffice it to say that more games wouldn't hurt, even if they were games [i]from other PlayStation systems[/i].

Avatar image for fillup0

Just think, the PS2 and PS1 had over a thousand games each, now on this generation people are complaining about a lack of games on Sony systems. What happened?

Avatar image for Auronvolgar

@fillup0 what happend???!?!?! looooool. the same thing that happens every time that a console released :S. PS1 and PS2 are on the market for years, its common logic to have thousands of games. You realy believe that from the day one PS1 was having enormous ammount of games? Ofc not. Take your brain and make it think first, then post :S. Miyamoto says that the PSvita does have a lot of strong titles, like god of war, tekken, final fantasy, e.t.c. and that's a fact.

Avatar image for wd40z


What this guy said. *likes* It's a Playtation console, of course it's gonna have alot of games sooner or later.

Avatar image for IMDLEGEND

I would agree that the PS Vita is a powerhouse with many features, waiting for an original game to naturally take advantage of it. I feel like the games released so far are obliged to add touch screen, tilt, and rear touch features when they are not needed. $249, while not too bad, is still a bit too pricey, given the competition.

Avatar image for Serious

Everyone knows that the first year launch is a difficult one. I have both systems and I still not satisfied with the 3DS. Battery life being my main issue. I play with it and in 3-4 hours I'm seeing a blink red light telling me that I need a charge. Keep a game centered to maintain the 3D can be a chore. Most of the games have a childish feel. Mario, mario,mario. enough with the mario. Time nintendo created a new franchise character. I'm sure that by years end we will see remarkable improvement.

Avatar image for wyan_

Didn't anyone tell him that the same could be said for the Wii?

Avatar image for Emoboii93

@wyan_ win

Avatar image for synthetiksin

A nice hack would solve game "quality" problems. SNES, PS1, maybe PS2 all on the go.

Avatar image for MOwens9512

I guess he speaks from bitter experience. I think the problem is the pricing point more than the software. Not defending the Vita, but the start up games and the games that have dropped recently don't look as thin as the 3DS. I just think that the cost and the "allure" of cross platform gaming isn't enough right now to draw people into getting a handheld, especially when you consider how much gaming people do on their phones now. I honestly don't expect any more handhelds to sell like they used to. The handheld gaming landscape has unfortunately shifted.

Avatar image for Sigil-otaku

@MOwens9512 Well the 3DS is selling remarkably well, it's now outpaced the sales of the original DS and is close to 17 million early on in it's life before even pumping out many true system sellers (there's some great games, just saying every system has more down the line) so handheld sales aren't as bad as they seem. I believe it's just that a lot of people aren't willing to pay as much for handhelds so when the 3DS dropped it's price it hit the sweet spot, the Vita has a lot more dropping to hit that sweet spot but most systems sell more with a price cut and after better games come out.

The Vita has some decent titles it doesn't have as big titles as Reisdent Evil, Mario or Zelda though and mostly just Uncharted and LBP which are successes in there own right but they are not long running and massively successful franchises. When the Vita gets more good unique titles (like Kid Icarus) or more really highly iconic ones (like mario) is when it will pull in big crowds or when it simply drops price.

Avatar image for vaibhavp

@MOwens9512 I feel handheld landscape depends on games offered on a system. What if half life 3 is a vita exclusive? I am not saying its going to happen at all but if good games are on system, no way can I resist long enough. At beginning of any generation, I am a fanboy. But since every platform has enough games to warrant, purchase, I end up buying them all. Same for vita.

Avatar image for SomePlayaDude

When i saw the title, it's like the Commies would say to the Americans they need nukes. Don't judge me :P

And i think with the spur on console/PC gaming, handheld gaming is now a shadow of what it was. There's also the tablet PCs/iPads to potentially take over handheld gaming due to all what it can do outside games, but it's not what we all want.

I respect Mivamoto for showing his opponents what's to improve. I do plan to get something on my hands that is portable and play games, but i'll decide soon.

Avatar image for vaibhavp

He's right. Many people buy wii & ds to play mario and I can see why, though am not one of them. Vita does need a metal gear solid or a final fantasy ( a new ip that becomes household names like these two and emminently associated with vita though may be on other platforms) . Without such strong titles I don't see vita getting mass adapted.

Avatar image for yaba

This coming from a man whose last five gaming machines survived on only a handful of games and franchises.

Avatar image for Bad-School-Girl

Look at Miyamoto in the picture he's like "I invented gaming effers!"

ahhh classic geru

Avatar image for wd40z


Lmao it's like "The man" has spoken.

Avatar image for metalkitten

i think he worded it fine by comparing how nintendo also failed at the start cause of iti mean he could have brought up the fact that the 3ds had the whole ds library to play while vita dont play psp - but he didnt - therefor i think he said it very nicelyor the price and memorycard needed etc - but no instead he said its a great high tech console but lacks the software for the time being

Avatar image for SnuffDaddyNZ

Interesting that Miyamoto apparently doesn't consider backward compatability to be a strength of the 3DS.

Avatar image for aussiemuscle

Nah, Sony can sell anything, ice to eskimos, vitas with no games, lol

Avatar image for Dante200X

@aussiemuscle That's nintendo...

Avatar image for SnuffDaddyNZ

@Dante200X @aussiemuscle

Animal Crossing and Portrait of Ruin were pretty good games I think....

Avatar image for ForsakenWicked

I think it's great that he comments on this and also notes that Nintendo did the same mistake with their handheld. Very honest. Good.

Avatar image for Dante200X

@ForsakenWicked Yes I'd agree. I sorta wished he had worded it a bit better. Because from the way I read it, it seemed like he criticized the vita but then didn't say like "but we made the same mistakes too"

Whatever :\

Avatar image for Bad-School-Girl

Okay then give us Earthbound on the virtual console and a four player Yoshi's island on the Wii

Avatar image for hitechgraphs

Well Mr Miyamoto is right for the statement but is a question of time.Vita Isn't all miss- stepped at the moment.Nintendo 3ds didn't have a Mortal Kombat type at lauch, the best Mortal portable released yet.Just a Monster hunter freedom release an rpg exclusive from square enix and vita will be set for popularity.

Avatar image for Illidan311

Let the sales numbers speak for themselves. I'm sick of seeing people type about "Vita is doomed". They obviously haven't tried one out, and wish they had one.

Avatar image for Philly1UPer

One thing Sony has that Nintendo hasn't for over 9 years? Decent 3rd party support.

Avatar image for SnuffDaddyNZ


Phoenix Wright, and Castlevania Portrait of Ruin were Capcom (3rd Party) titles, like em or not.

Avatar image for Kingofbluelions

Economically speaking, we're still not ready for the next gen-consoles. They look innovative, yet a good percentage of people are still buying DSlites & PSPs. Along with the library it took so long to make. Who wants to start over, play the wait game, and spend $50 on a new game? I can stick to playing Pokemon & Dissidia until the library expands with some hit titles. Just Sayin'.

Avatar image for Martyr77

The same could be said for the 3DS though too.

Avatar image for Fresnokila

@Martyr77 Which is what he said too...read the article first =_=

Avatar image for Justinps2hero

The man speaks sense. A honest assessment of a rival, very fair.

Avatar image for hasancakir

Well, duhh :)

Avatar image for Wild_man_22

Give me a bundle of a 4g and vita for $200, and I'd probably invest in one. I can't say I'm a fan of sonys franchises, but I think the vita could be an interesting gateway device to see if I could enjoy them or not.

Avatar image for SnuffDaddyNZ


Oh, the franchises they lost to places like XBox are all fantastic, and if it wasn't for Forza Motorsport I really don't think XBox would be where it is today - that was my system seller. The PS3 being 1yr behind, was a bigger factor tbh.

Avatar image for Oozyrat

The PS Vita might be really good (I've never been a Sony fan but I'll admit that the screen is pretty nice looking and 2 sticks helps a lot lol) but I have to say, the 3DS is also a very beautiful piece of technology. The 3D is awesome and the games look amazing in 3D and 2D. I think the PS Vita would be doing very well if the hand held market wasn't so loyal to the DS systems. It seems like Nintendo has the handheld market won over and for many reasons. I think Sony should take a step back and see how they can innovate the market and get it's own customers instead of trying to get people to switch from DS to Vita. They did something similar with the Move; they took Nintendo's idea (much more directly with the Move) and tried to get people to switch. They didn't have any games to use it and they also were trying to get customers that already had practically the same thing already in their hands for over a year.

Avatar image for TruthTellers

Yeah PS Vita is struggling. It has no backward compatability cause its got no UMD drive, requires one to buy its overpriced proprietary memory card, had low quality launch titles, doesn't have that many games, and costs $250-300 not including the overpriced proprietary memory card and a game or two. Miyamoto's right on about Vita being a high tech machine, but it lacks that must have killer app. And I think with the iphone and ipad having good games, people won't put the money out for a dedicated portable gaming system today.

Avatar image for xxunforgottenxx

who remembers the game boy? :D remember having to carry around that cable and go to your friends houses to play pokemon or yu gi oh together? those were the good ol' days :D

Avatar image for jhpeter

At least Vita didnt released a half finished game like super street fighter 4 for 3ds.

Avatar image for Sgthombre

@jhpeter Huh? Have you even played it? Street Fighter was the first game I got for my 3DS, and it's great. It's its half finished, how does it have an 85 on metacritic?

Avatar image for jhpeter

@Sgthombre Well I have the game too and I dint liked the fact the scenario is freezed, no movement, its a half finished game. It lost many points in reviews, maybe Capcom paid Gamespot to gave such score for a half finished game.

Avatar image for dstv

LOL lets face it miyamoto, the wii died 4 years ago due to the painful lack of third party support and oh not to mention the heaps of shovvelware....oh and the wiiu is already having doors closed on it by developers....Before its release XD

Avatar image for SnuffDaddyNZ


There's plenty of 3rd party support once you mod the system.

And Wii U, I released last night, that it's major feature....is already been done by iPad's since version 2. Doesn't matter though, because Wii only needs 1st party support to succeed.

Avatar image for DrKill09

@Ladiesman17 No, but Nintendo is. They're the new Sega... except Sega made GOOD games.

Avatar image for Wormkid_64

I generally don't like to spout doom and gloom for a console before giving it it's chance,but even the 3DS didn't struggle as bad as the Vita is. I Sony doesn't do something fast,it may not make it.