So as the title suggests for this week I have had hold of a Sony PlayStation Vita. It’s rather good.
On Boxing Day I headed to the GAME website and ordered a Vita bundle, with the Vita, Tearaway, LittleBigPlanet Vita (which unfortunately has disappointed me greatly, besides giving me back a slightly shittier version of the LBP2 create mode, which I am enjoying), and a 16 GB PlayStation Vita memory card. I received the Vita last Monday, the 30th, and unboxed it on camera. I still have to get round to editing the video. I quickly found that, true to their word, the games were digital, and so had to be downloaded, so I only got hold of a good game by 6 PM. However, I amused myself with some smaller games that came with the AR cards. When Tearaway finally downloaded, I started it. I’ll keep my opinion of that to the review, but I’d finished it in two sessions, the first being five hours, and the second being about one. Then on Saturday at 11:46 PM I got the platinum trophy. I am very proud of that. Never got a platinum before. But the Vita.
The PlayStation Vita has impressed me. It’s not as good as I thought it would be, in terms of experience and ease of use, but it is still brilliant. The screen was slightly disappointing, I could see pixels, and there was obviously no anti aliasing, but if I was properly immersed I could ignore it. The features of the console are a little bit strange, the rear touch pad is far too large, it is obviously supposed to be the same size as the screen, and Tearaway wouldn’t work if it was smaller, but when you make a rear touch pad you need to think about where people are going to grip it. The number of times I’ve brushed it with my palm, trying desperately to cling to the tiny grips (which is excruciating by the way, cramp like never before) and made an unintentional move, probably screwing me over massively is too high. You simply cannot hold a Vita in a comfortable way. It’s always going to need to be put down, unless you want to bandage your fingers, which would, thinking about it, stop it accidentally triggering things.
The front touch is rather atrocious as well. I have made countless typos with the keyboard, and navigating it with buttons takes far longer than on the PSP. You don’t have to touch the screen at all, it will work from half a centimeter away, and that’s a very poor feature. Even when I touch the screen, and in the right place, sometimes it simply doesn’t register. And that sucks. It’s certainly more than I expected of this. Games still don’t know how to use touch, so I think you’d be safe to keep touch controls in the mobile market, Sony.
So where it fails, it fails massively. So what of the good things?
Well, it’s a portable console, and so when you’re
pooping on the go, it will be your friend. Also anywhere you can’t take a TV. It has a PSP emulator, so you can now sell your old PSP and physical games, or you could keep it as a media player. It has a right analog stick (and yes, they are not nubs any more, woo!), so you can move the camera (in Vita games) finally. You can watch YouTube, go on Omegle, there is even a shitty Facebook app. Also I’ve heard it’s a good platform to look for indie games on. Media Molecule understand what it is, and they use its every feature almost perfectly. It runs at around 2 GHz, which is faster than my laptop (or would be if my laptop wasn’t currently a little overclocked), and games run better on it than my laptop. It is the only console that can play Minis well, as it has good processing power like the PS3, and flash storage like the PSP. You can take screenshots.
I could go on and on, but I won’t, what I will say, is if you have £150 lying around (sure someone will), head to game.co.uk and pick up that bundle whilst you still can.
Oh, and Uncharted: Golden Abyss is shit.