Sony’s messaging at Gamescom has been about the breadth of PlayStation content, not just the PS3. Sony Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida said this was a conscious move, after the reception to their E3 presentation.
“Our focus was to feature PS Vita. One big criticism we got from E3 was where’s the PS Vita, where are the PS Vita games We spent too little time talking about it, so that was a big focus going into Gamescom,” said Yoshida. “We were very happy to announce five new titles from Worldwide Studios, as well as the new Ratchet & Clank game – so that’s six new titles. PS Vita, PS3, Move, PSN, they all got new titles, so we were able to cover all of the initiatives that we have.”
Speaking on the sensitive issue of Vita sales, “In terms of the reactions of the people who have already bought the Vita, we’re very happy,” noted Yoshida. “They are happy with the hardware. In terms of the sales, we’d definitely like to see more. There are millions of people we’re sure will enjoy playing PS Vita games. Our job now is to decipher what’s preventing these people from making the jump. Our priority right now is definitely to bring more content.”
When asked the reason why sales weren’t as good as Sony would like, Yoshida thought of ways the device could be improved. “The good thing is that the one thing we can’t change is the hardware features, but they are very well regarded by people,” said Yoshida. “But in terms of new content and new system and service features, we can add that, and we can work with third-parties to get more. We’re getting a very good feeling when we talk with third-parties companies, and of course we’re developing our own titles. And for the people who are hoping that the PS Vita becomes more affordable, we are creating new bundles and adding new value to the package. We’re hoping that this Christmas more people will jump over to the Vita.”
In terms of reservations about free-to-play games on a closed system like the PS3, Yoshida said, “There are free-to-play games already available on console, and the reaction has been pretty good. But when people think of free-to-play they think of social games… and there are certain mechanics in social games that are a bit concerning, personally – they kind of play psychological tricks on people. That’s something that we will be watching carefully, because it’s not like there are an infinite number of consumers that we can take from. We always consider the long-term trust relationship with our consumers. But in general, I still think free-to-play can offer a new kind of content and services to consumers that the traditional model can’t duplicate. I think it’s additive to our offering.”
Source: GamesIndustry International