PS Vita Review thread


#1

Yes there are many reviews on the internet for the PS Vita, but none are Tech Talk Reviews.

As of Next Wednesday the PS Vita system will be out for 2 weeks, 3 weeks if you preorder the Firs Edition bundle.

How is the PS Vita?

Physical construction.
Just by the physical construction of the handheld the PS Vita is impressive.
The system is a bit larger than the 3000 series PSP (Pics later) and feels solid.
More sturdy than all the PSP and DS models out there. Like I can use this thing to hammer a iPhone onto dust with or bludgeon an adult male to death. Although the system it self isn’t that heavy, and although it is wider than the PSP it is still very mobile. Some people’s pants pockets will not be able to hold the Vita, but a side pouch of a book bag, shoulder bag or cargo pocket is more than enough to carry this thing. Also for refrance the DSi XL is bigger than the Vita in terms of size.

System capabilities
I swear when Sony went to the drawing board for this thing, they first list everything a at home console needs to do, and ignore conventional handheld design. Then they design a handheld around console requirements. I Honestly feel this system can do the mass majority of what the PS3 can do.
In a numeric scale , placing the DS at a 4, PSP and 3DS at a 5, and the Xbox 360 at 7, and PS3 at a 9, the Vita comes in at comfortable 8 for performance. The PS Vita posses a 4 core 2Ghz ARM processor, twice the system ram of the PS3 (512 MB), 128 MB VRAM, and a 5 Inch OLED touch screen.
Only times I see the PS Vita ranks under the PS3 is in Uncharted: The Golden Abyss where the shadows and textures where lacking compared to the PS3.

Controls
First off I do not mean that Joystick hack"Joystick for Vita working youtube video".
I am talking about the stock controls on the Vita it self. The Vita has a touch screen, a rear touch pad, Six Axis motion controls, a front and rear digital camera, a D-pad, 4 face buttons, 3 system buttons (Start, Select and PS) , 2 shoulder buttons and 2 actual analog sticks (not nubs like the PSP or 3DS). The controls are as tight and responsive as Sony’s other controllers. The Vita d-pad is just as responsive as the [S]PSP’s or[/S] Dual Shock 3 d-pad, better than the PSP’s d-pad. The 4 face buttons are kind of small but still reliable.
Don’t ask how does the Vita works on fighters yet as I haven’t tried a fighting game yet.

The familiar Cross Media Bar (XMB) interface is gone replaced by a smart phone inspired touch interface. Touch screen navigation is easy and intuitive, and for those who have difficulty Welcome Park is a excellent, fun combination of Mini games and tutorial on the functions of the PS Vita.

Wireless
The Vita comes with B,G,N Wireless and Bluetooth, the 3G models are also equipped with 3G capabilities (right now only being serviced by AT&T). I have the Wifi version so I can’t comment on the 3G functions on the Vita. Online Multiplayer with Wipeout 2048 is spectacular, best I seen in a handheld device, and that includes iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, and Android phones.

Memory
This is the biggest con of against the Vita. The Vita uses priority memory cards.
They are not micro SD cards, and not even micro Memory Stick Duo, Vita uses its own format and pin out for memory. Also unfortunately they have memory card pricing of 2 years ago. Enjoy paying $30 for an 8 GB memory card. I almost forgot there is no internal memory.

The Vita uses built in memory management that the Vita is in charge of file transfer not the host system. PS3 consoles are compatible by means of firmware update, while Windows PC’s need a content manager program installed via the Vita it self or from Sony’s website. I understood but didn’t test out that Mac OS also have a reliable plug-n-play connection to the Vita. And that the content manager auto installs on the Mac.

Backwards compatibility
Since at least the 22nd of February the PS Vita has a growing list of a back log of PSP and Minis games. The system runs PSP titles faithfully compared to the original PSP, although the screen is brighter and clearer so minor distortion is to be haved. PS1 playability is not yet available as Sony is first prioritizing PSP library capability first. PS1 games will be included in yet to be announced firmware update.

Charging
Vita uses a priority charge cable unique to the Vita, similar in how the iPod and iPhone charge cable is like. It can charged (while OFF) plugged into a free USB port of a Windows or Mac PC, PS3 or plugged into the provided USB charger that came with the Vita. The Vita has the same charging requirements as most Android phones, and can not charge from some cheaper USB chargers.
Chargers built for Android will work fine, as well as charger mods that allows Android phones to charge on cheaper USB chargers. Which is connecting the GD- and D+ wires on the device side of a USB cable.

Pros
Most Powerful Handheld yet with reliable online connection and gaming. Practically a portable PS3.
Sturdy physical construction that not break easily. You hear that Apple!!!
Stunning 5" OLED Touch Screen.
Easy to use.

Cons
Propitiatory memory formats
No Internal memory
Can’t charge and data synch at the same time
AT&T are the only current 3G provider for the Vita

I post some comparison pics later and perhaps more info


#2

I played with one of these at Target for a while the other day. I diddled the thumb sticks a lot, and they were my favorite part of the experience in terms of tactile feel. They’re like tiny little spinning nipples.

I did play a game but I don’t remember what it was.


#3

Overall do you guys think the price is good enough to purchase one of these? I am thinking of buying one but I have a feeling there will be a price drop just like the 3DS.


#4

Current price is $249.99 for the Wfi Only Model, $349.99 for the Wifi + 3G, and 399.99 for the First Edition Bundle, which includes a 4GB memory card, the Little Deviants game and a limited edition Vita system case. Pricing for future bundles have yet to be seen.
Sony is also known to hold out on system price drops for a long time. The 3DS dropped as quick as it did because of poor sales (and there nothing special about the 3DS that set it self apart from past DS models other than gimmicky 3D). We have to see how the Vita market does [globally] before Sony considers a price drop.

I also want to point out that the release price of the 3DS and the 1000 series PSP was $250.


#5

actually it’s $249.99 for wifi. $300 for the 3G and $350 for the first edition bundle.


#6

Here’s my quick review…

UMVC3 AND BLAZBLUE ANYWHERE OMMMMGGGGGGGGGGG


#7

If you want to be technical about it…
It is $249.99 for Wifi, $299.99 for Wifi+ 3G and $349.99 for the First Edition Bundle
My mistake the first time, copy pasta the wrong price for the wifi+3G and went with that price for the 1st edition bundle.

Dose not matter any ways as you be spending About $40 for a Retail PS Vita game, $19.99 to 99.99 for a memory card. $19.99 and up for a carry case. Another $6 to 9 for screen filter/ screen protection. $4.99 to $40 for a PSP SEN (formerly PSN) download title per PSP title you want to still use.


#8

can we get a review specific to fighting games? this is SRK after all. the d-pad etc…


#9

As nice as the system hardware is, I absolutely HATED a few things on it.

First up, why are there two touchscreens on this thing? Almost the entire back is a touch screen that’s waiting for misfires and inputs that players don’t intend! Granted, you can grasp the system by the corners (itty-bitty corners for people with Hulk hands) but it’s not as ergonomic as being able to hold onto more of the back without an unintended controller input.

Second, this system has a horrible user interface. I was trying to play a demo of Mod Nation racers but I had a devil of a time just getting to the Start menu of the game!!! I’m not a tech retard and talked to at least one other fellow who was interested in the system. We’re both familiar with iOS, iPhones, iPads, etc., but we both agreed the Sony PS Vita interface was designed by a dyslexic chimp! Why did they change so much from what worked on the PSP and PS3???

I should have an option to choose between touch interface or using the actual game control buttons and D-pad to make selections. There are times you want to use something other than a touch-screen to make choices.

There are legitimate reasons to not throw away traditional interfaces. I worked in an electronics store this past holiday season where we sold a lot of keyboards for people who bought iPads. Gee, I wonder why??? Touchscreens are not always the most comfortable, reliable interface.

Thirdly, with so much more screen area, this system looks like it’s going to attract scratches on BOTH sides. Will the touch screen work as well AFTER you put a screen protector on it? There was no question about this with the PSP since it didn’t have the added touchscreen factor. A legitimate concern since I’ve had problems with using flywheels on iPods after I had put the iPods in protective silicone jackets. Covers can mess with the sensitivity of the very hardware they’re trying to protect.

The buttons are traditional PS layout which means they’re not good for a lot of pre-1997 fighters. Once people figure this system out, it will take over as the portable emulation king. Of that, I have almost no doubt! The additional memory should make emu-program ports easier.

What I did like –
Beautiful screen. By far the best I’ve seen on any portable system or portable media players. Not a single dead pixel on either demo PS Vita that I tried.
The Vita demo of Wipeout that I saw was the best-looking version of Wipeout I’ve seen on any system, period. Definitely has some graphics power behind it. People that liked the PSP should be amazed by the Vita.

Can’t comment on the sound. Besides, portable systems sound best with headphones on.

Sony FINALLY incorporated a second analog nub and thankfully the “nubs” are actually small sticks this time!

Can’t comment on the D-pad on this system until I actually play a finished game on it for more than 5 minutes. I do knew the D-pads were a huge quality control issue on the original PSP’s. I traded systems back and forth TWICE with Sony through the mail until they finally sent me a PSP that didn’t have a loose or broken D-pad! The build of what I saw looked better than the original PSP’s.

I still wouldn’t buy a PS Vita now. Lovely hardware but what is it going to be used for?

There’s a question of the software library and how Sony intends to sell the system. Is it a portable console system, or a portable game player/media player? That kind of screwed up the PSP. The business with the movies (which were a huge failure in the US) took away a bit from the games and the game library never took off to the extent that I wanted to keep buying games for my PSP. In the end, I ended up using the system more as a media/video player than I did a game system. The games were not there in huge abundance and what was available were mostly PS2 also-rans. It took too long IMHO for the PSP to develop its own groove, its own niche games, and by that time it was fairly comatose in the US at least. I was gone from the PSP scene a bit before it hit the bottom in the US. Like a lot of people, I gave up after the UMD drive broke (2007 – I’d had a system since release date in 2005), and cashed in on it to help pay for a PS3.


#10

Did you read the following on my first post. I already covered the D-pad as responsive.

Yea, I am waiting on my next pay check before I grab any fighting game titles. I still debating between U MvC 3 or BlazBlue Continuum Shift for the Vita
And I want to grab Dark Stalkers Choas Tower as a PSP SEN (formerly PSN) download. I already own Dark Stalkers as an UMD, but I am putting it to the side to sell to a friend who’s interested in my PSP.

I imagine the experience is similar to playing a fighter on the PSP or 3DS but with sharper better graphics


#11

Got the Vita last week, and UMvC3 and Virtua Tennis; I also have SFA3 as a PSP download

Overall, I do like the system. The main OS is a little cumbersome; I’m surprised they moved away from the Cross Media Bar.
But the games play very well, and run very smoothly.

The controls are very responsive, but my main gripe is that the analog sticks are a little too close to the D-pad and the buttons; pressing Down or X for me tends to nudge the analog sticks very slightly.

Either way, I’m just glad to be able to play UMvC3 on the go now. When I bought my 3DS on day 1, the only game I had for 5-6 months was SSF4, and that was totally worth it for me. My main intention of buying a Vita is for a portable UMvC3, and MK9 shortly, and SFxT later on.


#12

wish $ony would have kept the XMB. The OLED screen is gorgeous. UMvC3 looks $ick.


#13

Here are the comparison photos of the PSP and the PS Vita

Here are the 2 systems side by side. Yes I know about the finger prints. And yes both systems are charging

Here are Both systems running the same PSP game Metal Slug Anthology Collection, set to OG Metal Slug.

Here Both systems are bring up the game game, I delayed the Vita to load up the PSP first as the PSP load times are slower due to the UMD disk, and the Vita Memory card is faster than the PSP’s Memory Stick Duo.

*More 2D gaming goodness. *

As you see the PS Vita does PSP gaming near faithfully. The PS Vita’s screen (lower unit in both photos) colors appear more vibrant and there are less screen artifacts and distortion. The 2 systems timing is off by moments as the Vita loaded the game faster than the PSP, even when UMD read speeds are taken out of the equation.

No I don’t have Video of the 2 in action.

Here is Also iFixit’s page on the Vita

iFixit’s Vita Tear down (do not attempt at home)


#14

Those buttons are really small :eek:


#15

the memory card thing is really disappointing since games like uncharted are so large, but overall this thing looks like a mobile console which is amazing.


#16

Yes Uncharted is like 3.5 GB in size. The Game cards can hold alot of data. For full on Retail games you are better of buying the retail package.
For most Network exclusive, Ported PSP and Mini titles, that is where the memory card shines. Most PSP titles are in the 100 mb to 700mb range. With a few hitting 1GB.

The new Vita card time have faster read/ writes than older standards such as Memory stick or SD. Or at least how it appears when I loaded games on memory on both systems. Also as badly hacked the PSP was, Sony is not going to let Custom Firmware or jail break on the Vita without a fight.
The PSP was the easiest mobile device to load custom firmware.


#17

I had one of these on day 1 and so far I’ve been extremely impressed. I have Blazblue for the vita and I also bought SFA3 off of the Sony store and both play amazingly well. As somebody else said, the Dpad is good but if you have big thumbs like I do you may nudge the analog stick from time to time but you get used to it quick. Also, I actually prefer using the analog stick for the fighters anyway. I still go back and forth to figure out which is more responsive but both seem to be pretty acceptable. The small buttons on the right really work well even though at first I thought they would be too small. And the OS is actually quite well done once you get used to it. Everything flows nicely and works when you get the hang of what they are trying to do. The screen is simply AMAZING. You simply just have to see it to believe how good it is.

The few things I don’t like is the camera appears to take fairly low quality pictures and video. That may be resolved with future updates or perhaps the default value for picture quality is low and I haven’t found where to turn it up at yet. But this is a game system and I won’t be taking many pictures with it so who cares :slight_smile: As I stated above the Dpad is a bit close to the analog stick but most people probably won’t have the same issue I had since I have rather large hands. The touch screen on the front can be somewhat annoying too with PSP games due to accidentally holding down on it bringing up a configuration menu.

Overall I think it’s worth the price of admission. Uncharted is great, Wipeout is great, Blazblue is great, UMVC3 is great and there are quite a few titles on the horizon that look amazing. Not to mention a big store full of still nice looking and amazing playing PSP games that are, for the most part, cheap. FFIV HD Collection has already sucked away many many hours from my life and I’ve enjoyed every second of them. The older Final Fantasy games really were better IMO.


#18

I’ve had the PSVITA for a while the only thing that urks me when it comes to the fighting games(UMVC3) is the position of the play station button when things get more heated my thumb hits the ps button all the time…

https://p.twimg.com/AmxM1zyCEAEdDTU.jpg


#19

I’ve had several days to play with umvc3 vita. The d-pad is good, not like the original psp debacle. qcf/hcf/TK/dp come out nicely.

Others have mentioned the unintentional inputs resulting in the close proximity of the d-pad to the analog stick which would benefit from an option to disable.

Coming from a marvel perspective the game can be played almost as well in comparison to a regular pad such as ps3/xbox, however there are still issues with the controls in that game as capcom decided not to allow binding of buttons to the front/rear touch panel which I think is an oversight as one is limited to 6 buttons, and actions such as 1 button dashing or extra buttons to charge zero’s buster aren’t available without sacrificing another action.

Yes I can see that using the rear touch panel might be prone to inadvertent inputs as it doesn’t leave much room for actually holding the vita, however the option should still be available and with the right implementation it could still work. Perhaps have buttons bound to different quadrants of the rear touch, or to prevent accidental inputs, adjustable dead zones on the touch pad like on the right/left edge of the touch panel.

overall I see the vita being quite viable for fighting games and having access to gameplay perfect mobile versions of these games is worth the price of admission.


#20

Nice to see Sony finally figured out how to make d-pads that don’t break after a week on the initial production units of a portable! Like I mentioned before, I went through 2 PSP’s before I got one that had a good d-pad. (Darkstalkers: Chaos Tower “broke” my first unit’s d-pad. The second PSP unit arrived with a d-pad that was too lose to begin with.) What ultimately did my (third) system in was the UMD drive. Those things break after a short period of time. I have 20+ year-old CD drives that still work! What’s Sony’s excuse for the UMD drive breaking after only 2 years???

Good on you PS Vita owners that they switched to a mini-cart format. Gee, I wonder where they got that idea from??? :wink:


I’m no Sony fanboy by any stretch of the imagination even if I prefer the PS3 to the MS 360. I’ve had, to say the least, mixed experiences with their gaming systems. I’ve had two that had issues with overheating (first-day release PS1 that’s been dead over a decade now – long since exchanged to get credit towards my first Dreamcast – and a 60GB PS3 unit I swear is still only working because I bought an external cooling fan unit for it), the portable PSP with a mixed media library, and the slimline PS2 that I think is their best-built system to date. At least reliability-wise the PS2 hasn’t given me headaches like the others did/have.

I’m amazed by the leaps and bounds both the PS2 and PS3 have achieved over the PS1 which I thought was highly overrated. On the other hand, it seems like Sony’s made the later systems overly complicated development-wise and that has come back to bite them as least as far as the PS3 is concerned…

Crossing my fingers that they don’t mess up the PS4 launch like they did the PS3!