Playstation Vita Impression via CrazyGamers
Check out what my pal Dak had to say about his experience with the new PS Vita!
Day One Impressions of the Playstation Vita
February 22nd, 2012 — crazygamers
After a non eventful launch at Target (I was the only one there when the store opened this morning), I hurry home and opened up my new toy. The first thing I find odd is how small and light it is. I’m sure you are thinking “Small?!?! I’ve seen it. That thing is huge!!” I was expecting something a lot larger than the original PSP, but it’s not, at least, not initially. I’m going to need to see if I can find an original PSP to compare it too. It is definitely light on the hands. Damn, that UMD drive must have weighed a ton. It’s sleek and definitely looks and feels like a PSP2 device. Maybe the Vita part is in the software?
So excited to have this thing in my hands, I don’t even plug it in the charger for that first full charge. That’s a mobile device no-no. Oh well, I hit the power button and I am greeted by the standard initial setup screens. You know, time, date, and PSN account info rundown. After that I am thrown to the screen we are going to see a lot of. You’ve seen it before. The one with about 10 circle icons on it. This is the Vita UI. I’m not really crazy about it. Looks kind of like something pulled from a leapfrog game, but it works and it does still have a cool aesthetic too it. I’m urged to go to the Welcome Park app first. This is nothing more than a tutorial on how to get around on your new Vita. Touch screen gestures and getting familiar with your typical accept and back buttons. This is all shown to you through a series of mini games showing off the touch screen capabilities. I really didn’t want to do it, but I did find myself repeating a couple of the games. After each game they give you a record to break, like a time trial. Ah, the old carrot on a stick routine. There has to be pay off for this, right? Yes, trophies are included in this mini game. Neat!
Jumped into the Near app. This app lets you know how many PSN users are in your general area. It’s cool but navigating it is kind of cumbersome. I guess I didn’t play enough of the test games in Welcome Park. I have to admit, this kind of feels very creepy though. It’s something about it that just doesn’t feel right. I get the same feeling when I’m Facebook stalking. You know, checking out random pics and comments of friends of friends. Don’t look at me like I’m the only one that does it.
Next stop is the PS Store. I’m not going too much into this. I didn’t check out all of the PSP games available for download. I did see that NBA 2K12 was available! Mini win for me!! Besides the obvious PSP and Vita sections there are demos, crossplay, and minis section. Demo’s are self explanatory. I hopped in there and queued up a couple while I was browsing. The crossplay section has only 2 titles in there, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Hustle Kings. I don’t own either on the PS3, so couldn’t check that out. I’m going to go out on a limb and say this is the same Mini’s section that we didn’t use on the PS3, well at least I didn’t. I guess I’ll keep it moving, nothing more to see here.
Alright, let’s stop with the distractions, let’s play some games!! I’m not going to judge the games too much here. I’m just going to talk about how the hardware performed while playing the games.
When you pop a game in you are greeted with an initial splash screen before going into the game. The options on this screen are really cool and truly unique to this device. You have 3 buttons across the top. The first being a Google web search of the title you are about to play (what, no Bing?). The second is the electronic version of the game manual, a necessity since the games for this system do not come with physical manuals. Last, there’s a refresh button which I cannot quite figure out the purpose of yet. In the middle is a button to launch the game and across the bottom is a button that shows you all of the trophies your friends recently achieved in the title. Really cool. Kudos.
First up, Uncharted. The visuals are stellar, for a handheld unit. The graphical fidelity looks to be on par with a game that could be made on the PS3. Moving Drake a round, whether you use the analog stick or touch screen works remarkably well. I had a slight issue with the rear touch pad. Just didn’t feel as responsive. Maybe I was doing it wrong though. Because of the size of the touchpad I found myself holding it a little odd at times, just fearful of bumping it. So after about 10 minutes in, I arrived at my gun fight, this where it all went horribly wrong. Aiming with that second analog stick just doesn’t feel great. Funny, we all wanted it and just having it should be perfect. There is something about it that still just isn’t right though. Could be the positioning on the sticks, the sensitivity, or it could be just bad gunplay on behalf of the game. I don’t know. I got used to it, still doesn’t feel as right as I had hoped.
Next up Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 2. If you played the console version, you know what to expect here. Capcom is going to take you on a ride! I have to say first that the game is beautiful. This is one of those titles you want to put in to show off what this thing can really do. Tell your gamer buddy that thinks mobile gaming is the only way to game on the go to pull up that copy of Street Fighter IV on the iPhone and just compare. That would be what I like to call an instant KO, now on to the next challenger.
I’m going to say something that you will probably not expect now. Super Stardust Delta is a must own game for the console!! This twin stick shooter plays very well to the strengths of Vita. It’s an eye-gasm!! This is the game is perfect for mobile and can only been done properly on the Vita. The controls work great except for one caveat, that damn rear touch pad. They have a black hole power up mapped to it and I keep accidentally using them. Small gripe, something I may just have to get used to over time.
I have Hot Shots Golf World Invitational too. Not much to say about it. That’s not a bad thing either. It is the same tried and true formula and it works well here. No gripes at all.
That’s it. My first 5 hours!! Lookie here, the thing hasn’t even been plugged in for 15 minutes and it is still rocking. I really hope Sony does the things they need to do to make this thing competitive with all of gaming, because the only thing that can really go wrong for Vita at this point is Sony.