Let’s face it, Sony’s next portable gaming platform will have just about everything people were asking for, and then some. It is getting dual analog sticks, touch screen, trophy support, cameras, GPS, 3G, Wi-fi, and more. What I don’t get is why so many people are concerned about the price. Everybody is already speculating the thing is going to be overpriced and will fall short of expectation. What is it about the tech, the new unit will have, drive people to believe Sony will once again release hardware at a premium price? Everyone complained about the price of Nintendo’s 3DS, then it seemed to fade as more and more people accepted that their new handheld will feature glasses-less 3D technology. Is it safe to assume that if the NGP featured 3D tech, that people would accept pretty much any price thrown at them? I wouldn’t think so, but Nintendo has already proven the fact that gimmicks sell.
I’ll be the first to believe that Sony may have more tricks up their sleeve, and are looking to regain control of the gaming market. They have already found the PS3’s sweet spot, and are well on their way to winning gamers’ hearts the world over. Why wouldn’t they release the new portable system at a subsidized price and show the world that they still have what it takes to be a dominate company in gaming? Whose to say they don’t release more information and completely wipe most other portable platforms off the map? It is so easy to talk down on Sony and say they’ll make the same mistake, yet again. I strongly believe that they would do no such thing. They learned their lesson with the PSP Go, and wouldn’t want to do that again.
Sony has everything going for them this year, and know that while other platforms are focusing on being the controller, they have a strong exclusive lineup of PS3 games and can blowout the year with the release of their portable hardware during the holiday season. Add to that a bunch of AAA titles that can automatically do well and look fantastic on the smaller platform, and you have got a serious contender for number one in gaming. Nintendo’s Wii sales are dropping off, Microsoft spent way too much money launching their new peripheral, and Sony is obviously waiting and ready to dominate. By waiting, I’m saying that Sony can watch as the others slowly lose their place in line, and wonder why their one-hit wonders simply aren’t catching on. While all this is happening, Sony blew our minds with the NGP announcements and swiftly stole any thunder those on the fence about getting a 3DS may have had. Microsoft has their Windows Phone 7, but that is lukewarm at the moment.
Before I get ahead of myself, I also wanted to say that I think the codename works just fine for the hardware at the moment. They call it the NGP, and people are all up in arms about it. They don’t like it, they think it’s the worst codename ever, and they stomp all over the ‘Next Generation Portable’ name. It seems someone has finally done it right. Other companies give their future hardware better codenames than their actual launch name, and people complain, but the moment something gets a codename that people don’t like, all of a sudden people want whoever thought of it fired.
For the Playstation faithful, I really don’t think you have anything to worry about. Sony has their head on straight, and know that this may be their shot and reclaiming their gaming title. They will not let us down. Look for more details on the NGP later in the year, with a great name, and a price that everyone will think Sony decided on because of the their complaints. Everyone else who believes Sony will treat their fans right, will know deep inside that this was coming all along.