A Reminder of Just How Cool the PS Vita Can Be

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So PS Vita sales are nosediving. And Sony must be worried, because these are dark times for the Vita. Dark times.

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But just as everyone is forgetting what an impressive piece of hardware the Vita is, Sony released the PlayStation Developer Suite to allow developers to create apps for the Vita and other PlayStation certified devices.

Here is a Suite-created physics demo, and wow, it looks quite nice.

PlayStation Suite SDKで三次元剛体シミュレーションもどきで遊ぶ [終わコン]

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DISCUSSION

First, this is really not impressive. I mean, in terms of techniques or things we have seen a PC do with physics and graphics. For the Vita, I haven't gotten to mess around with developing anything for it just yet, so I am not familiar with how much further you can push the system's hardware and still get smooth frame rates. I have experience with the iPad2 and "3?" and can say that, while they are not fantastic at handling shadow and normal mapping (though perfectly capable of handling hundreds of Bullet Physics rigid bodies though), they can certainly handle a scene with a sphere (or torus) and six walls of a room without flinching. I would really need (and like) to see this thing handle a much high polygon count before making any judgements about how powerful or impressive the hardware is.

Second, I would say that worrying about the Vita right now may be a little premature. I mean, I still worry about it because I like it, and I don't want it to fail. In comparison to the iPad, I am excited about putting games on it simply because it has buttons in addition to all the other stuff an iPad possesses. Its sales are poor, but the 3DS had pretty poor sales at first too (though, really doubtful that Sony is likely to drop the price like Nintendo did). The point is, both companies jumped the gun a little bit with releasing new handhelds. They miscalculated when they figured that a large portion of owners of their current (now old) handhelds would jump on the new systems just because it was pretty, or had a silly gimmick, or available... Nintendo was especially foolish given that a substantial percentage of DS sales went to new-found and "casual" gamers. These people are definitely not going to behave like hardcore gamers when a new system comes out. Even the hardcore demographic haven't been behaving as such due to tight purse strings; not to mention that the experienced and tempered consumer will wait for a second hardware iteration before purchasing. Both systems are suffering (or were) due to a lack of hardware-selling software. The 3DS is past this. The Vita will get there one day too. Hopefully it won't be too late. I figure that Sony is having a particularly rough time of it given the speculative nature of their own handheld market. Loyal customers are too afraid to dive in just yet.