Since the rise of smartphone gaming, smaller developers have finally had a profitable mobile platform to sell their games on, with little development costs. On the other hand, if developers wanted to work on the PSP, they’d have to pay €15,000 up front for a dev kit, which meant that indie development on the PSP was extremely rare. Luckily, Sony doesn’t plan on making the same mistake twice, and will be selling Vita dev kits for far less.
Speaking at GDC Europe, SCEE’s George Bain said:
The PS Vita development kit is going to be very affordable. And when I say affordable I mean €1,900 plus VAT.
There is no cost to join the PS Vita Develop Program. There’s just that cost of the dev kit. If you’re a small developer, we happy to talk to you about this. It will help if you have a games portfolio. There’s no reason we won’t speak with smaller studios about joining up.
The price is far less than the cost of PSP dev kits, or that of the €20,000 PS3 dev kits. Unlike normal Vitas, the dev kits will feature HDMI out.
Bain also revealed that the SCEA PubFund, which helps cover development costs in return for exclusivity, is currently seeing up to 15 pitches a week. Bain confirmed that the Vita will eventually see non-gaming apps created by Sony partners, but they are currently only accepting game proposals.
This once again shows Sony’s commitment to indie development on the Vita, which even included giving out the dev kits to a developer for free.