Meet the PSVita
Technically, we've already seen what it looks like. What Sony announced that was actually important was the price. Considering the trend set by the PS3, the price for the PSVita is a rather reasonable $249, while the 3G version will be $299. I find this price reasonable because the PSVita is essentially a portable PS3. Like seriously, gameplay vids look exactly like a PS3. You may be wondering how this is possible, but the PS3 was released almost 6 years ago. Technology moves fast and in reality, current technology would probably allow for a much more powerful handheld, but not at a decent consumer price.
The specs for the system include an OLED screen (which are amazing by the way, I have one on my phone and it gives me 1080p HD resolution), GPS, two cameras (I assume for some 3D purpose), sixaxis control, and two touchpads (the nub like control sticks). The thing that sets this system apart from the PSP is not just the screen quality, it's the dual sticks that make the difference. With two sticks, playing an FPS in the standard console way is now possible. It's rather disappointing that it took Sony this long to put two sticks on a handheld. Nintendo never needed to because no one buys Nintendo systems to play FPS, but that's a pretty large market on Sony's side.
Sony also released a playstation branded TV that will allow a 3D display through the use of Stereoscopic glasses.
Now to the games; Sony's major announcements include:
Assassin's Creed Revelations (absolutely beautiful trailer):
HD rerelease of the PSP god of war game
Sly Cooper: Thieves in time
One thing you might notice is that nothing was really announced on the game side for the PSVita. While Street Fighter X Tekken is confirmed (with Cole from Infamous joining the fray), so far the PSVita, dare I say, has no games. There was mention of a bioshock title, which is pretty intriguing, but it's only rumor at this point. The major problem here is that no matter how good the console, if there are no games to play with it, no one will want to buy it. The 3DS is suffering that problem right now (although I expect it to get better with the opening of the eShop and Ocarina of time 3d coming out soon). The PSP AND PS3 suffered from that problem as well. Hopefully Sony has learned their lesson by now and will release the PSVita with a strong lineup, otherwise it will be doomed to mediocrity in the shadow of its Nintendo counterpart.
Overall, my impressions for this conference are pretty good. The PSVita wasn't much a surprise, but the pricing is. I might actually consider picking one up, I mean I already dropped that amount for a 3DS. However, once again, I'll wait to see the starting lineup of games before I make a purchase, it'll also be good if the system can play PSP games, because then I'll finally get to play Birth by Sleep. I'm looking forward to AC:Revelations, although I really hope they'll be done with Ezio's story after this, because I really want to see what setting they go to next. The announcement of Uncharted 3 makes me want to get Uncharted 2. The first game in the series was bunded with the PS3 so I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was a pretty awesome game, but I never worked up the money/ the urge to buy the second. Maybe that'll change. The most surprising thing announced is the new Sly Cooper, while I haven't actually played the games myself (i've seen them played) I always love when older series from my childhood get rebooted. It's the old series that tend to have the best gameplay and tight controls. They also have a definite aesthetic that is generally extremely charming over the muddy realism that has forced its way into the gaming spotlight for some reason.