PS Vita Slim: Sony's last chance of handheld success?

Ultimately, it will be the software that determines the handheld’s success, and this is what is such a major concern. Already, PS Vita has seen a number of high-profile games released - Tearaway, Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation, Call of Duty Black Ops: Declassified, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Persona 4 etc - but these have still failed to significantly alter the system’s performance. If that wasn’t enough to entice crowds to pick up a PS Vita before, then one has to question the impact that the Slim model will have, regardless of the improvements it has over its predecessor. Sony needs some killer games announced this year, or Vita is going to be dead in the water come 2015.

A major problem is that PS Vita is competing in a market that is constantly evolving away from the days of dedicated gaming platforms. Smartphones, tablets and other devices have made a significant puncture in PS Vita’s market share, something which wasn’t a problem back with the PSP. In fact, Sony only this week admitted that it didn’t foresee PS Vita selling as much as PSP, unless something remarkable happens with sales.

Factoring all this, I feel that Sony knows that PS Vita is probably on its last legs as a major contributor in the handheld gaming landscape. If PS Vita Slim doesn’t give the system the shot in the arm it needs, then it will have to settle for the next best thing: a companion device for PS4, with Remote Play being the obvious pull. It’s clear though, that PS Vita Slim is probably the last ditch attempt at mainstream success for the flagging handheld, and I can’t see Sony releasing a true successor to the device if things keep going the way they are.

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