SCE Studio Boss Shuhei Yoshida today had an interview with EuroGamer about various matters, including the PlayStation Vita. Here are the highlights:
Eurogamer: What impact do you hope Vita will have on the current landscape of consoles?
Shuhei Yoshida: Our goal is to recreate the excitement around portable gaming. It’s been six years since the launch of PSP. We cannot deny the lack of new content compared to the early days of the PSP. With the advancement of technologies, we’re able to put in a lot of new features and technologies into PS Vita. So hopefully we’re able to show to consumers with PS Vita they will be able to enjoy something they have never tried before. That’s our goal with bringing PS Vita to the market.
Our goal from worldwide studios is to show through the games on PS Vita are games that, when you try them, you agree that, wow, I’ve never tried something like this. That’s what we’re trying to do.
Eurogamer: How do you respond to those who say in this smartphone heavy market there isn’t a desire for a high-end portable gaming device? What do you say to those who are worried about Vita?
Shuhei Yoshida: I’m not sure who is worrying. If our publishing partners or our developer partners are worrying, I understand. If their business is in the console space, they are in the same venue as us, so we should create a market with them so we can continue our business. So I totally understand that.
But when consumers are saying it, I really don’t understand. It really depends on the types of consumers. If you are a very, very casual person who might just want to kill time as you’re waiting for your train or something, you might not need a dedicated, big game experience. But if you like games, if you really love games, you would want to play the kind of games you like, even on the portable.
I totally believe there are millions and millions of people like that. As long as there are great portable gaming experiences you cannot get on smartphones, there will be a market.
Eurogamer: When the price was announced it surprised many because it was a bit lower than we were expecting. Now Nintendo has announced a price cut for the 3DS, does that put pressure on Sony to reduce the price of Vita?
Shuhei Yoshida: We are totally happy with the price we put out. Personally, I was expecting Nintendo might move their price, but I wasn’t expecting them to move at this time. We didn’t price Vita relative to 3DS or those other devices. We plan the value we want to put in to the Vita and the price people would perceive the value would be. Nothing changed since the announcement. We are totally happy.
Eurogamer: From Sony’s point of view is there any desire to launch a new home console?
Shuhei Yoshida: As far as we are concerned, we have no desire now to do that. Looking at the platform cycle, when the platform becomes something game developers are not able to improve their creations with, that’s the time we have to really seriously consider shifting to the next generation. Gamers always need something new and more exciting. If they’re seeing just similar types of games coming year after year, they will quickly lose their interest.
Yoshida reiterated that the Vita will be now be the main focus for Sony, rather than an imminent release for PlayStation 4 and hopes that others will now embrace the system. He also notes the problem with the PlayStation Portable’s launch window, which he states will not be repeated. Sony learning from their mistakes is always a good thing for both consumers and publishers. The interview also touches on other factors such as the price drop for the PlayStation 3 and the price drop of the Nintendo 3DS making for a very interesting read.
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