Close
Report Comment to a Moderator Our Moderators review all comments for abusive and offensive language, and ensure comments are from Verified Users only.
Please report a comment only if you feel it requires our urgent attention.
I understand, report it. Cancel

Retail

Sony: NGP faces same game pricing problems as 3DS

Thu 02 Jun 2011 4:00pm GMT / 12:00pm EDT / 9:00am PDT
Retail

In a portable market dominated by cheap smartphone games, both need to convince software is worth a luxury price

Sony Computer Entertainment

Sony Computer Entertainment is a Japanese videogame company specialising in a variety of areas in the...

playstation.com

Sony's worldwide studios head Shuhei Yoshida has said he's well aware that the successor to the PSP, currently codenamed NGP, will face the same preconceptions over games pricing that has dogged Nintendo's 3DS.

In a market where smartphones dominate portable gaming with titles at the low price of 59p, full-price handheld console games must convince customers they are worth more than the comparatively astronomical 30-plus price tags.

"The problem is the same. We are dealing with the same issue that Nintendo is," stated Yoshida.

Nintendo's 3DS has suffered from lacklustre sales, with software titles thin on the ground after an initial launch of games failed to have a long-term impact on the charts.

There's no one clear competitor in terms of what NGP offers

Shuhei Yoshida, Sony

"It's up to content publishers, including ourselves, to show people that this is worth 25 or 30 as opposed to 59p. You cannot release the same content that you put on the iPhone for a dollar on to NGP or some other consoles and expect people to pay 20 times that."

But that's where the comparisons end for Yoshida, who believes there is no competitor that compares to the NGP on the mobile and handheld market. The console is purely for high-end gaming, with few additional features to distract from the PlayStation brand.

"There's no one clear competitor in terms of what NGP offers. NGP's going to establish itself as the unique thing that people want to have. NGP cannot be placed against smartphones. You can't make phone calls on it and it's too big to fit into your pocket."

Discussing Nintendo's latest handheld, Yoshida said he believes the 3DS is just an update of previous DS hardware, despite the glasses-free 3D selling point.

"When we were designing the NGP we had no idea what Nintendo was going to do. Aside from the 3D stereoscopic display, they seem to be keeping the same theme that they had with the DS it feels like an update of the DS to me.

"So what we're trying to do, lots of choices that we made were so different from their choices. It's kind of hard to compare the two, aside from the fact that both of them are dedicated gaming platforms," he added.

The NGP, which comes in two different models, will take centre stage at Sony's E3 press conference next week, where the company is expected to announce the name of PS Vita, pricing and possible release dates.

11 Comments

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,135 1,171 1.0
The iPhone offers social networks, all types of communication from written to voice, entertainment from podcasts to radio streams, from TV stations and movie streams. The device also manages to enable even the dumbest of its users to spend money on the Apple store. And then it does some games.

The NGP might do games like no other, but for playing on the go that might be way too much and Sony has yet to reveal how much of a competition they can be in all the other fields. What good is the 3G functionality if only part of the consumer base is using it?

Posted:3 years ago

#1

Gary Lucero QA Analyst, Advanced

27 6 0.2
So if the NGP's competition isn't the Nintendo 3DS or the iPhone, is it the PS3 and the Xbox 360? And if it's those platforms then it's also Nintendo's new console. Either way Sony has to compete against some tough players and it's unlikely they will make a whole lot of progress.

Posted:3 years ago

#2
This is exactly the reason why the Xperia Play is going to do much better then the NGP. Smartphones have taken over.

Posted:3 years ago

#3

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,135 1,171 1.0
Smartphones haven't taken over. Apple's way of delivering content and potential Internet based interactions has taken over. The alternate operating systems and attached sales platforms are Apple's competition, not the alternate hardware. You could clone an iPhone 1:1, with neither iOs nor Android on it, it would not be worth anything.

Handheld devices will end up the same way the PC did. Mass produced Chinese throw away hardware with only the software as a means to distinguish yourself.

Posted:3 years ago

#4

Hal Helms Studying Computational Media, Georgia Institute of Technology

7 0 0.0
The 3DS isn't struggling because the games are too expensive, it's because the whole device itself costs way too much and the 3D isn't worth anything to the consumers. Also, I think it's stupid to make the comparison between a handheld gaming device and a smartphone, they're apples and oranges as far as the types of games types of markets are concerned.

Posted:3 years ago

#5

Adam Campbell Studying Games Technology, City University London

101 0 0.0
They'll have to work hard then..

Smart-phone games are doing incredibly in terms of quality and price.

Posted:3 years ago

#6

Jake Clayton

54 0 0.0
They might be struggling because you can generally pre-order an xbox360 for the same price as a 3ds game pre-order via sites like amazon.

Which is kind of a pricing problem.

When you can choose between playing a game on a 20-60 inch tv screen, with all the advantages of a not-so-portable console, or buying a game for a few inch screen for the same price, (yes the portable has a couple of advantages but no-where near as many, and definitely not enough to warrant the same price tag).

Posted:3 years ago

#7

Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game

1,254 421 0.3

Posted:3 years ago

#8

Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor

400 196 0.5
I have been playing games on the iPad that have comparable graphics to the 3DS. They have a multiplayer online experience which is integrated with Games Center and VOIP, something that I wonder if Nintendo will ever fully support.

Posted:3 years ago

#9

Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 942 0.7
Id pay more for the console if the prices for games were cheaper. I truly do think prices for portable consoles should be $17.99 to $19.99. I only say this because as a consumer, Im more likely to pick up games at this price then a higher price, and if most prices are going to come down anyway, why not sell games at this price right out the door. I picked up metal gear solid peace walker last week for $19.99. However when it came out it was $39.99. I think the lower price can be offset by selling more copies. but this is just my opinion. Its not based on statistics or anything of the sort.

Posted:3 years ago

#10

Andrew Ihegbu Studying Bsc Commercial Music, University of Westminster

462 172 0.4

Posted:3 years ago

#11

Login or register to post

Take part in the GamesIndustry community

Register now