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EA forfeits PS Vita potential for cash cow

on 2 July 2014

We’ve seen little support for PS Vita from Electronic Arts since Sony launched its handheld in 2012. Ports of Need For Speed Most Wanted, FIFA and Madden go to prove that one of the world’s biggest developers just didn’t have faith in Vita right from the outset.

That trend is set to continue after EA chief operating officer Peter Moore told GamesIndustry.biz that the California-based developer will be focusing on mobiles and tablets rather than Vita and 3DS over the next few years, choosing to speak in the past tense about both gaming machines.

"We were supportive of both of those platforms," Moore said. "But then you've got finite resources and you've got teams that say, 'We really think that two or three years from now, these are the platforms that people are going to be consuming games on.' And you look at the quality of what you can do on phones and tablets.

"Sometimes strategy is not about what you do but what you don't do, and you have to make some hard calls when you've got only so many people. To my point, we've got to be planning for FY 17 and 18. Do you think the Vita and 3DS are going to be around in some shape or fashion by then on a scale level?"

It's another nail in the coffin for Vita's potential as a device that could have been host to many triple-A titles, and it was sad to see it receive little stage time at Sony’s E3 2014 press briefing, with Sony Computer Entertainment U.K. chief Jim Ryan suggesting that it just wasn’t a priority.

"You get an hour and half on the stage, and you've got to work out what's really important to talk about. And obviously PS4, and we also wanted to talk about the innovation stories of PlayStation Now, PlayStation TV and Morpheus. So that stuff was all top of the list,” said Ryan.

Support for Vita from third-party developers has been fairly poor since launch and Sony recently explained that it would be decreasing first-party support and putting more of an emphasis on bringing Indies to its handheld, while touting its strengths as a Remote Play device for PS4.