Written by Erik Kubik, kube00 Sunday, 27 May 2012 06:00
Sony recently announced Vita sales numbers: 1.8 million as of March 2012. The 3DS has sold over 20 million. What does Sony need to do to reach its goal of 11 million sold by the end of the year? Well there are a few things Sony could do that would help meet this ambiguous goal.
I think Sony should simplify the choice for the consumer and offer one Vita system. Phase out the 3G, for most gamers it's not worth the extra cost and the monthly fees. Furthermore the Vita could use more games, especially exclusives. The rest of the year looks okay with Resistance: Burning Skies, Gravity Rush, LittleBigPlanet, Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, and LEGO Batman 2. Games that don’t have for sure release dates include Assassin’s Creed, Bioshock, LBP, FFX, and Street Fighter X Tekken and who knows if some of these games are going to come out at all. It would be nice if at E3 several developers showcased new and unique games they are planning to bring to the Vita within the next 2 years.
The Vita also needs a killer, a must have, AAA game. Monster Hunter would sell systems in Japan like hotcakes. Does the Vita need new and exclusive IPs? Should Sony bring another one of their franchises to the Vita? These are all good ideas. But I think what the Vita needs is something that everyone wants, a game that will force most of the market to run out and buy it on day one. And for those who don’t have the system, this game would make them buy one. The guys on the CAGcast mentioned Call of Duty. Granted the game isn't a new IP but there is some potential.
Would an FPS of this magnitude work on this system? I think it could. Imagine if there was cross platform play with the PS3 version. People would go out and buy it. Start a match on the console and move to the PS Vita. Gamers can take the single player or co-op game with them. I can dream. Even if there isn't cross platform play, a Call of Duty game could do well on the Vita, if there were decent sized multiple player matches with little to no wait time and if there was an easy way to hop in and out of games on the fly. I don't expect the game to look as good as what the PC can do. But for a portable FPS experience I’m willing to settle.
It would also help sales if Sony dropped the price. Bring the Wifi model down to $200, and create a package with a 16gb memory card, a game or two , and sell that for $250. At $200 or less, I am confident more people will go and purchase a Vita. Sony just needs to get the ball rolling. I don’t doubt like the PSP, which sold over 71 million, the Vita will sell if it has the right games. It will be interesting to see what the next year brings for the Vita.