Reviewer Rodeo: The Whole World in our Hands

Welcome to the ZTGD Reviewer Rodeo. Each week, we’ll grab on to the hottest issue, hold on for dear life, and wrassle it to the ground.

Now that we know for certain that the Vita isn’t scheduled for launch until early 2012 in the West, what is your take on the handheld market between now and mid-2012?

John “Dubya” Whitehouse
With everything that has gone on with the 3DS of late, it is hard to see anything happening big in the way of handhelds until the PS Vita is launched.

With the DS, Nintendo could do no wrong. In fact, I see that machine being the dominant force in handhelds for at least another 12-18 months. Although the 3DS has had a relatively slow start (well, you may think it has, but it has sold millions), I think it very strange that developers and publishers are starting to back away from it. First, it was Capcom cancelling titles, then came Konami’s delay with MGS 3D (there are even rumours that it may be cancelled) and now with this massive price cut, only 5 months after launch; it seems that the 3DS just can’t seem to catch a break.

But how much of it is Nintendo’s fault? The big feature of the console is the one that is used the least, the game selection, even 5 months in, is unbelievably lackluster and the forthcoming big titles are just remakes/revamps of existing games. It has to be said that Nintendo seemed to create a console for an audience that doesn’t exist!

Still, they at least have the DS to tide them over. It’s still selling by the bucket load and will no doubt continue to be supported by the 3rd party developers, that have made millions from pushing out shovelware, for years to come.

As for the PS Vita? Well, Sony have shown us some impressive stuff so far; but will it do what the PSP failed at and shed the image of just being a handheld that just does home console game ports, only time will tell.

Or has the handheld market just become a field of war for mobile phone companies? With the tech becoming more and more impressive each time a handset is upgraded and the fact that most games fall under the $5 price tag, it certainly seems like the masses are turning to their mobiles to get their handheld gaming fix.

Drew “Frustrated Fury” Leachman
Well, the PSP is pretty much dead in the water. It seems like there are hardly any games releasing on the Sony handheld every week. I doubt we’ll see anything out of the PSP for the rest of its life. That saddens me, but I think it’s time to move on to bigger and better things.

Nintendo has the market for the rest of 2011. This could be huge for them or a complete failure. It’s all up to what they release from now until the end of the year. If they can get out some “must have” titles in 2011 and early 2012, they very well could make it out alive, but as it stands right now, the 3DS is a major let down for most of the public. Granted, the PSVita could easily pull a 3DS if they don’t release some big titles that consumers want.

I think going into early 2012, when the PSVita does finally release in all areas, it will be an even match between Sony and Nintendo. It all comes down to the software. If both companies can deliver, who knows? The one thing I do know, it can only mean great things for the consumers.

Derek “Punchfister” Deebag
Real men play consoles. Handhelds are for little girls playing the Pokemons.

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