Friday, May 16, 2014

Vita sales die in America due to OLED to LCD swapover,

The Vita suffered frankly embarrassing sales of less than 5,000 units in the States (down from the dire 10K in March), according to NPD. That's as Sony wound up stock of the old 1000 OLED model and pushed the arrival of the Borderlands 2-bundled slim 2000 model, which went onsale on 6 May.

Anecdotal evidences suggests stock of the old model was very low, therefore the poor number - and Sony Japan has had to increase production to keep up with local demand. But Sony really needs to get a press release out saying "yay, xxxx sales of the new bundle in May," to lighten the mood and encourage further buyers.

Of course, after the slim sales bump, however small that might be, we can expect the numbers to fall again with no big new games that will pique the interest of most gamers. Is a PC gamer really going to pick up a Vita just because their favourite indies are appearing on the machine? Will a console gamer get a new machine without the lure of a major brand title? Will a PS4 buyer get one to play on the loo?

On the plus side, Sony's continued domination of the Xbox with PlayStation 4 will give it momentum and movement to continue supporting the Vita in its new reduced role, but with the expect poor E3 showing, continues to dig its own grave for the handheld.

Borderlands fighting the good fight

Looking for other positives, Borderlands 2 (just the game) managed to sneak in Amazon.com's Top 100 for video games (just) while currently No. 34 in the UK equivalent, proving there is a market for the big name game. That gets me thinking what else could Sony 'realistically' get over in short order to support the Vita?

Any thoughts? Sony has pretty much exhausted the first-party staples (except for Uncharted Remastered, perhaps?) and Gran Turismo would have been announced if it was ever happening.


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