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Sony struggling to get third-party support for PS Vita

By: Muhammad Qasim Hassan

  |   August 13th, 2012   |  
Sony unveils new PlayStation

Sony’s latest portable device PlayStation Vita (PS Vita) is struggling to gain the support of third-party publishers and developers.

During an interview with PlayStation: The Official Magazine, Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) worldwide studio president Shuhei Yoshida admitted that the publisher had not expected to have such a difficult time attracting third-party support for its handheld device.

“We’re having a more difficult time than we had anticipated in terms of getting support from third-party publishers, but that’s our job,” conceded Yoshida.

He further went on to say that despite the hurdles, the publisher will continue its efforts to get third-party developers and publishers to work with PS Vita.

The SCE worldwide studio boss pinned hope on Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation which releases next month for PS Vita, expecting it to show other developers and publishers just what the device’s hardware and software has to offer and how it can be used to come up with games of such calibre.

“We will continue to talk to development communities and publishing partners, and tell them why Vita can provide a great experience for the IPs they have, and I hope the Assassin’s Creed game will prove that,” Yoshida reportedly stated during the interview with the magazine.

Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford has already expressed his eagerness to bring out Borderlands 2 for PS Vita and a few more are definitely expected to follow suit.

Ever since its launch in Japan about eight months ago followed by the arrival in the North American and European market in February this year, PS Vita has been struggling to get a move on. The sales figures were excellent during the first week, but the numbers fell by 78% in the very next week. The subsequent weeks continued to show a decline in the portable device’s sales, reporting an all-time low of 12,309 sales in Japan on February 13 earlier this year.

While this lacklustre performance of Sony’s latest handheld device came off as a real surprise, especially after Kotaku described it as “the most powerful and physically capable gaming handheld ever made,” Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto was quick to point out during an interview with Edge earlier this year that the device was suffering because of the incompatibility between the abilities of the software and the hardware. He acknowledged that PS Vita is indeed powerful and can probably do a lot of things, but the overall product ends up falling short of the expectations because of the software-hardware conflict.

Miyamoto had gone on to compare the problem being faced by PS Vita to the problem that Nintendo had to face following the launch of its portable gaming device 3DS. The latter dealt with the problem by cutting down the prices merely a few months after launch in order to keep the sales figures from dropping too much.

Sony had been under similar pressure at the times of PS Vita’s launch North America in order to attract consumers despite the limited launch titles.