Now if only they would actually release games for the damn thing…
In the west, the PS Vita may be a dismal flop, but in Japan, it is… well, it’s still underperformed, but it’s done reasonably well for itself. And so, Sony is doubling down on its commitment to the platform in the one territory where it has done well- that same territory which also happens to be the hotbed of portable gaming.
Atsushi Morita, the head of Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Asia, has reiterated how important the PS Vita is to the territory, noting especially its popularity with the younger audience. In an interview with Trendy Nikkei, Morita talked about Sony’s future plans for the system. “As for the Vita, since Minecraft came out in October 2014, we’ve been able to actively bring on board kids—that is, younger gamers,” Morita said. That success, he added, felt very significant to Sony. During the years that followed, Sony directed more Vita marketing at kids in Japan.
“From henceforth as well, we’re going to continuing concentrating on the PS Vita and increase the number of younger [PS Vita] users,” Morita continued. “This year, we also plan on developing an IP that’s aimed at children.”
There are multiple takeaways here- for starters, there is unending irony in the fact that what ultimately saved Sony’s portable from irrelevance was Minecraft, a Microsoft game. Then, his remark that new IP aimed at children would be developed for the Vita gives me hope- does it mean that Sony may be restarting development for the system? Finally, does Sony’s sudden renewed interest in the Vita have anything to do with the launch of the Switch, and its success?
Whatever it is, I am glad that the Vita is not entirely dead yet- I love mine, and I would love to see Sony actually take it seriously for once in its life.