Today’s handheld blog was brought to you in part by the number 2 and by the letter F. As in, “Fuck this second generation handheld device of a video gaming system!”
Now back to today’s blog. I’m writing today about the PlayStation Vita. A handheld device which couldn’t hit the center of a bullseye if the bullseye was indeed the entire target.
Handheld consoles and I have had an estrange relationship. Firstly, the Sega Gamegear killed it for me with it’s six AA battery requirements punctuated by it’s ten minutes of actual life. However, other handhelds have crossed my path and I’ve tangoed the nights with each and every one of them. Then the PSP came into my life and I was in heaven. It was a handheld which pushed the billet with Movies, Video Games and Music. Meanwhile a handheld with a vast grouping of video games to actually feel like Sony really gave a shit about it’s first handheld excursion. The point is, while it was nice to have an adorable lap dog of a handheld, years later and I knew this samba was going to end. Eventually a new handheld would be released, like a PSP2 or something. Well, this is when I realized my personal downfall is always setting myself up for too high of expectations.
If you looked up the word Gimmick in the dictionary, Playstation’s PS Vita would be a clear description. Now, I’m in the mood for a handheld and realizing the whirling sound from the PSP is now becoming an ambient countdown to self explosion. However, where Playstation did everything right by the PSP, the Vita did everything wrong.
Let’s take a look at the very basics. Firstly, games are no longer in CD format. Now, we’re on the Nintendo DS/2/3 format with memory chips. Which still have to be downloaded into the Vita system. Secondly, external memory for saving games can’t be utilized by any old microSD card. Nope, Sony has their own and if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it. Third and finally, the amount of Japan-ime games is ridiculous. There’s really a hand full of PS Vita launched games which can be considered ‘okay.’ Otherwise we’re stuck in a time loop of just reminiscing PS/PS2/PS3 games with the hopes and dreams of this machine NOT becoming a paperweight.
The front of the handheld is easy to hold on to. Which is seriously an issue sometimes for me. There are consoles which I’ve seriously had to figure out if my hands are just not meant for gaming. Minus the obvious physical aspects, your pretty much playing on a PS3 controller with a big screen in the middle. Kinda like that one console Nintendo pushed out before the Switch rolled around. Which by the way, the brilliance here is you can actually synch your Vita to a PS3/4 and utilize it as a controller and as well as a console synch. That being said, you can play a game on your console, use the Vita as your TV while the rest of your family watches Netflix on the big screen. The only issue here is the latency. Do not under any circumstances try playing this thing on live shoot-em-up games. It wont roll your way and in frustration of this lag you’ll probably chuck the Vita out the window. I’d bet money on it.
Gimmicks kick in with obviously pushing a makeshift Nintendo Wii U. Next comes the front and back touch screens. Seriously, out of the five games I have two games which actually utilizes the back touch screen. It was for all of ten seconds too… Talk about a swing and a miss.
Now for games…. Thanks to America for not going balls deep into a handheld gone wrong. Thankfully the company jumped on the bandwagon of Virtual Reality. Now, with that said the amount of ‘games’ comes to us in seriously the far and few between. A majority of games you’ll see on the shelves are going to be (as I said before) Anime to Game. Persona4, One Piece, and many more jot into my head immediately along with plenty of Final Fantasy knock offs. In the meantime here’s what we had to work with for SOMETHING as a cornerstone to the Vita:
Batman Arkham Blackgate Origins, Silent Hill: Book of Memories, Jak and Daxter Trilogy, The Walking Dead…. Far and few between video games which seriously could only be so demanding for instant replay. Out of the few I’ve listed, Jak and Daxter is a re-release. Eventually I made my way to the Playstation store and realized all my hopes and dreams for games which are supposed to be exclusive ‘hopefully’ never came. Just a bunch of Japan-ime games and the ‘classics.’ “Classics” as in, here’s how backward compatible we are. We’re still reaching for the bottom of the barrel Resident Evil 2 and Tomb Raider were Leon Kennedy has brown hair, and Laura Croft looks like geographic fuzzy felt.
Battery life is great! A single charge lasts for days, which at this point is a write off for something I expect. Meanwhile the actual charger cord is a little less than conventional. The first model was released with a very particular charging chord which I seriously upon first glance knew would be lost in a hot minute. Sure enough an Amazon $4 purchase later and I lost the original and still have a backup for the backup. Apparently the second ‘slimmer’ model released and the first of many fixes Sony unfucked was the charger chord. Now we’re all blessed with the universal DC charger for a typical mobile phone.
What also changed with the Playstation Vita Slim was aside a noticeable ‘slim’ build. The hilarity is the fact it’s only by a couple of centimeters. We’re talking about that one fatty who has before and after photos and there’s still quadruple under-chin. Same machine as before…. Same under-chin issues. Memory cards are still Playstation exclusive and the screens were downgraded from the original release. So tick for tack on that one boys and girls.
All the hopes and dreams were placed on the PSP to become more than it wanted to be. Then came along the Vita and all I could think of after a couple years from release and buying Resident Evil 2 is, “Fuck this second generation handheld device of a video gaming system!” Thank you Sesame Street.