PlayStation Vita Impresses at Tokyo Game Show

Earlier today during the Sony Press Conference at the Tokyo Game Show, the latest portable baby in the PlayStation family took the center stage. New features were boasted and the impressive line up of launch titles and games currently under-development for the PlayStation Vita were announced.

Features include a responsive touch screen for playing both video and music and viewing photos (which can be accessed whilst listening to music simultaneously). The Vita is prepackaged with mini-games that serve as tutorials for learning how to manipulate the touch screens, which is probably not a bad idea considering the Vita implements touch features on both the front screen and on the rear pad of the console. Providing these tutorials should eliminate any confusion surrounding the appropriate and separate functions of each.Vita also has a web browser that can be accessed at the same time as playing games, which will undoubtedly come in handy for those of us who like to gain a little extra knowledge from a certain FAQ website. Not only that, but the portable system embraces social gaming and networking: for the first time, Sony’s portable will enable owners to log onto PlayStation Network and communicate with PS3 friends, unlock trophies, and access Facebook, Twitter, and Skype, all reportedly in a fashion that will not require the player to quit the game to the “XMB.”

Overall, these features appear to be the highlight of the console in a day and age where “social gaming” is more relevant than ever. Gamers enjoy being able to instantly share their thoughts and opinions on what they are currently playing with their fellow gamer friends. This concept of having access to instantly exchange dialogue on “who’s playing what and is it worth your time and money” as one is actually playing the game via a system like the Vita really takes this notion to a new level. Think about it, you start up a game, discover something super cool and amazing, pause, pull up your Twitter or Facebook account and share the find with your friends with minimal interference. In a sense, the player becomes an ambassador of Sony’s product if the player plans to take advantage of these features in such a manner, and that’s just one small example of how the social media tools can be implemented to endorse one’s gaming hobbies. If you are into this sort of thing already, chances are these features will only sweeten the deal for prospective Vita owners.

The new launch title announcement that everyone is buzzing about is Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, which will share all of the same features with the PS3 version. Also in the works are the Metal Gear Solid HD and Zone of the Enders HD collections, which were previously announced for the PS3 but will be available for Vita as well. Most surprisingly was, perhaps, the announcement of the Final Fantasy 10 remake for both Vita and PS3. Final Fantasy 7 fanboys across the world are probably mourning over such a revelation, but as a casual fan of Final Fantasy myself, I am personally quite excited! Although, I can’t help but wonder why they would have chosen FFX over the immensely popular FFVII (the demand for a remake has been surfacing on the web for years). I can only speculate that perhaps Square Enix is awaiting an ever grander launch for the PS4.

As you may recall, Vita save game data will be transferable to PS3 and vice versa, allowing for the ultimate portable gaming experience, so it’s no surprise that many of the games found on PS3 will be available on Vita as well. As long as you don’t mind paying for the same game essentially twice (one copy for PS3, another on the Vita), then the idea of being able to take the game from one’s living room to the morning commute to work via public transportation is flawless in concept. Only time will tell if the execution will match.

The Vita will launch in Japan on December 17th.

Launch titles announced:
BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend
Project N.O.E.L.S.
Fish On
Dynasty Warriors Next
WipEout 2048
Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Lord of Apocalypse (Square Enix)
F1 2011
Ninja Gaiden Sigma
Army Corpse of Hell (Square Enix)
Michael Jackson: The Experience (Ubisoft)
Shinobido 2: Tales of a Ninja (Acquire)
Virtua Tennis 4 (Sega)
Uncharted: Golden Abyss (SCE)
Hot Shots Golf 6 (SCE)
Gyokugen Dasshutsu Adv: Zennin Shiboudesu (Chunsoft)
Dream Club Zero Portable (D3 Publisher)
Disgaea 3: Return (NIS)
Dark Quest: Alliance (Ubisoft)
Ridge Racer (Namco Bandai)
Tales of Innocence
Gravity Daze
Metal Gear Solid HD (Konami)
FIFA 12 (EA)

Source: Destructoid, CAV

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