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unt1tled

Vita TV: Bringing new life to the living room

by unt1tled

posted September 12, 2013 @ 10:53PM
blog posts

filed under News

 

Vita tv logo

If you thought the PlayStation 4 announcements were over or that the Vita was a dead system, think again. On September 9th, 2013, Sony held a press conference in Japan detailing not only the company's plans for the PlayStation 4 in Japan but also shed light on a surprising amount of information on the PlayStation Vita.

The biggest shock came with the reveal of the PlayStation 4 release date in Japan: February 22nd, 2014. This late release is due to Sony giving the United States and Europe priority at launch, an unprecedented move we never would have seen in the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 era. Due to the three month delay, all launch day PS4 consoles in Japan will receive a copy of Knack at no additional cost.

While much of Sony's PS4 portion of the conference focused on games we already know a great deal about, such as Watch Dogs and Final Fantasy XIV, they did reveal a few new games for the system: Yakuza Restoration, Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends and Lily Bergamo, a new game from Grasshopper Manufacture, known for games such as Lollipop Chainsaw and No More Heroes.

We finally received some news about Capcom's Deep Down, a game that has been shrouded in mystery since first revealing itself during the PlayStation 4's initial unveiling. In a surprising twist, it was said the game takes place in the future, even though the game decidedly looks medieval. The game will have a very large online component and will play similar to games such as Capcom's own Dragon's Dogma or competitor Dark Souls. Capcom made sure to stress the game is, and will remain, a PlayStation 4 exclusive, and promised more information, including a playable demo, at the Tokyo Game Show in September.

Not wanting to be outshown by its big brother, PlayStation Vita news came fast and furious throughout the conference. A new PlayStation Vita model was announced, sporting some impressive specifications: an additional hour of battery life, 1GB of onboard storage for downloaded games and game saves, and a design that is both slimmer and more lightweight. In addition, the new Vita model will use a standard USB cable, replacing the proprietary design of the past.

While the new Vita model is cheaper than the old one, clocking in at 199 yen (roughly $200), it does have one drawback: the beautiful OLED screen of the original Vita will not be present on the new model. Instead, Sony will be using the tried but true LED screen, similar to what the PSP used. It's too early to say whether going back to the LED screen will be a detriment to the Vita or if gamers will not even be able to tell the difference.

newvita200

To go with this new Vita model, Sony unveiled some new games coming for the Vita in Japan, including Phantasy Star Nova, a game taking place in the same universe as the Phantasy Star Online series, and Soul Sacrifice Delta, an updated version of Soul Sacrifice with plenty of new bosses, weapons and story content.

However, a smaller Vita wasn't the only new model on display at the conference, as Sony also unveiled the Vita TV. This model, clocking in at 99 yen or around $100, has only one purpose: connecting to your television to play PSP, PlayStation 1 and Vita games. The Vita TV, a box smaller than even the DualShock 3, connects to your television and from there, you plug a DualShock 3 or 4 into it to access your Vita compatible PlayStation Network library. It is also said the Vita TV will let you stream PlayStation 4 games via remote play, providing endless possibilities for the device. It's unclear whether other services such as Netflix or Hulu will be available on the Vita TV; if so, the device could be a strong contender to the Roku. The Vita TV includes HDMI, USB and Ethernet support as well.

 

Sony has been on a roll the last couple of months with their PlayStation 4 reveals and now it seems like the Vita is on the same track. While none of the new products shown, such as the new Vita model or the newly announced games, have been confirmed for the United States, it's only a matter of time before they make their way over. With the PlayStation 4 launching in the United States on November 15th, 2013, Sony is setting themselves up in a big way to be the undisputed leader of the next generation in both consoles and handhelds.

 

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