One of the complaints from gamers about PlayStation at E3 was the lack of time spent on the PlayStation Vita during their press conference, and the lack of big releases coming to the handheld, despite over 100 games currently in development for the system.
In an interview with CVG at E3, PlayStation Software Product Development Head for Sony Worldwide Studios America Scott Rohde addressed people’s issues, beginning with the lack of AAA titles after he was asked if the indie surge has steered them away from bigger titles:
It’s both to me. I mean there are still games that are developed that are large. You’ve got Freedom Wars, you’ve got [Oreshika: Tainted Bloodlines]; these are very interesting, what you’re calling ‘big style’ platform games. But we’re also seeing that the audience is really hungry for an endless stream of these smaller games.
If you rewind back before the Vita days, games like Hohokum or Hell Divers would come out and they’d only be on the home platforms, they wouldn’t go to the PSP, for example. Now we’re making a serious effort for all of those types of game to be on Vita as well and people appreciate it. That’s why we introduced the cross-buy program a couple of years ago, because we also didn’t want gamers to feel like, ‘I wanna play it at home, I wanna play it on my Vita, but I don’t really wanna pay for it two times’. We just thought that was the fairest thing. Is it necessarily the best thing for us financially? Who knows? But we know that that’s what makes the most gamers happy. So bringing the games to Vita that way and then, through the team in Europe – those guys are signing so many of the great indie games that you’re talking about. And I’m one of those people – I can’t get enough of that style of game on my Vita.
After Rohde was asked whether it’s been a conscious decision on Sony’s part to shift their attention more to the PS4, seeing as how the PS Vita seems to be getting less focus from them, he replied:
I wouldn’t call it a conscious decision. I think that the Vita is still a part of the family. That’s why we spent time talking about it at the conference. That’s why I think there’s 100-ish games in development right now for the platform. And it’s fully integrated into all these other hardware announcements that we had. That’s something that I think is a big advantage for PlayStation in general. It’s that you saw a lot of hardware innovation talked about at the show, and the Vita plays a key role in this middle of all that hardware innovation.
Essentially, PlayStation TV is a little Vita in itself that has all this functionality. And you’ve got PS Now that will ultimately work on the Vita. You’ve got remote play with the PS4. We’re really trying hard to make sure all these things are integrated across the whole PlayStation family.
As for the fact that the PS Vita only received a couple minutes attention during the E3 press conference, Rohde said, “Maybe we just had a lot of thing to say about the PS4, right? We had a lot of things to talk about.”