I have recently realised that I desperately need a handheld. I’m away form home a lot and don’t have much time to play on my PS3. So I decided to look into handheld gaming, obviously smart phones and tablets provide a lot of games but they can’t match the standard of gaming that a proper handheld console can provide so I dismissed them fairly quickly and was left with the two big ones that are available: the 3DS and the PS Vita.
The PS Vita comes out here in February and Sony has made it clear that their aim is to bring console quality gaming to a handheld. This is why games such as Uncharted: Golden Abyss have such impressive graphics and is also why the controls of the Vita mirror those of a Dualshock controller. Whilst this goal is an admirable one it has ultimately led to what is, in my opinion, a missed opportunity. If they intend to bring a console quality of gaming to a handheld then they should have used console games and not spin offs of consoles games. Instead of playing Golden Abyss on my handheld I’d rather continue on from where I last was in Uncharted 3. The idea of a handheld is, after all, to provide you with games whilst away from your main console, wouldn’t it be great if there were a handheld that allowed you to continue with your favourite console games whilst you were away from home?
The Vita could have done this, with its graphical power and its controller layout it could have provided a true console-like experience. It was this realization (along with the fact that the Vita and it’s games and accessories are hugely overpriced, but that’s another matter entirely) that made me decide that there was no way I would want to buy a Vita, the games would be similar to that of their console based companions and this would make me wish that I was just playing on the console games that they are based on.
This is ultimately what led me to choose to go for a 3DS instead. Nintendo’s handheld doesn’t suffer from this same problem as it is an entirely different console than the Wii. By making a handheld that is different from any console on the market Nintendo has side stepped the problem that Sony are faced with because you simply can’t compare playing Zelda on the 3DS to playing Zelda on the Wii because on the Wii you would be using motion controllers and would only have one screen, the two experiences are entirely different. This, for me, is why Nintendo’s handheld deserves great success and is why Sony need to realise their mistake and give me the handheld console I truly want and the one that only they could provide.