After a very strong start in both Japan and North America, PlayStation Vita sales have tailed off, and Nintendo boss Shigeru Miyamoto thinks he knows why.
In speaking to Edge , the industry legend was diplomatic in his assessment of the competition, saying Sony's new portable is certainly impressive from a technical viewpoint, but still lacks the necessary games.
"It's obviously a very hi-spec machine, and you can do lots of things with it. But I don't really see the combination of software and hardware that really makes a very strong product."
The 3DS is currently the best-selling piece of hardware in Japan, and has been every week since Nintendo slashed the price of the new handheld last August. But Miyamoto also admits that the 3DS suffered from a lack of software right out of the gate as well:
"When we launched the 3DS hardware we didn't have Super Mario 3D Land, we didn't have Mario Kart 7, we didn't have Kid Icarus: Uprising. We were striving to have all of these ready for the launch, but we weren't able to deliver them at that time.
We were kind of hoping that people would, nevertheless, buy into the product, find 3DS hardware promising, but looking back we have to say we realise the key software was missing when we launched the hardware."
I have nothing but the highest respect for this guy, but I feel that what he says concerning the availability of Vita software is only partially true. While I think Sony should've had a continual stream of games slated to arrive each and every week for at least a month or two after the Vita launch (maybe impossible, but still), the launch lineup was the biggest and most diverse in PlayStation history. There were several elite games in there, too.
But he's absolutely correct that software drives the sales of any game-oriented hardware, and that's precisely what the Vita is. Well, Resistance: Burning Skies and Gravity Rush are on the way, so…