Let’s face it, Most of us have owned a hand held video game system in our lifetime. In the millenial or “90s kid” era like I and most of us would fall under we all remember the first gameboys and it was all fun battling your friends in pokemon battles and playing Legend of Zelda but then we transferred into a new era in 2005 when the PSP and Nintendo DS both came out and they were both smash hits with video games exclusive to the device and graphics improved over their predecessors (the PSP was all new for Sony.) Things were going great but slowly things began to fall and sales dropped. Both Nintendo and Sony tried reviving their respective brands by launching the 3DS which was the first console you could play in 3D to the all new PS Vita which had graphics on par with the PS4. but they flopped. Interest faded. What happened?
You kind of have to look at it like this. Sony and Nintendo both shot themselves in the foot here. Both of their first handheld consoles were big hits. I remember owning both a Nintendo DS and PSP when I was a kid and what was there not to love? It was literally a PS2/Nintendo that you could take anywhere and play at any time. God of war, Super Mario, FIFA and all of our other favorites could be played any time, anywhere. But then 2006 happened. Sony and Nintendo both dropped the PS3 and Nintendo Wii. Both were just FAR better than their hand held predecessors. Let’s be real. The Wii was a new, hip and fun concept that got people up and moving so it debunked the “lazy video gamer” stereotype” and the PS3 just had far better graphics than the PSP. They stole the thunder of their handhelds and no one really much cared for the convenience anymore. These two devices really went from being ahead of their time to lagging far behind. Both brands realized this and to infuse new life into those products. Sony came out with the PS Vita and Nintendo continued to pump out variants of the DS such as the DSi, DSi XL and 3DS. Those were awesome devices. I played them all. I never owned them but I played them. That seemed like the problem though. While they were great products the damage was done. Interest lacked. Despite being just as good as the large console version it would pretty much be the end of the road for the DS as Nintendo continues to discontinue it in markets around the world to this day. The nail in the coffin has to be the increase in phone tech, with you now being able to play top games on iPad and mobile phone why buy a handheld console?
The PS Vita seems to linger on here and there, It is still available to purchase although the amount of games Sony is putting out for it continues to get limited by the year and it just seems like Sony pays less and less attention to it especially since their in the process of developing their next console. Nintendo is trying to bring some new life into the handheld game by coming out with the Switch which is essentially the best of both worlds. Maybe that could turn people on again but that depends on the success of the Switch itself. Some of my favorite childhood memories were playing my PSP and all of the kids in my neighborhood thinking I was the coolest because I was the only one in the neighborhood with one. To be quite honest I would love to see a comeback but the handheld video game concept is outdated at this point especially with the rise of smartphones and games on those but I still play my PSP to this day. (When it decides to work.) What do you think happened? Would you like to see these consoles make a comeback? Let me know everything you think down below.
Guest post by Apollogames