As it turns out, the rumor mill was correct once again. Sony confirmed the NGP name change to PlayStation Vita, just this evening, at their E3 press conference. The unit is set to release in two different versions, this holiday season in all regions, with a reasonable pricing structure. The base (wi-fi only) model will set you back $249.99, while the 3G-enabled souped up model will remove an extra fifty greenbacks from your wallet with its $299.99 retailer suggested price point.
That is the North American pricing structure, however. European consumers can expect to pay 249 Euros for the base model and 299 Euros for the 3G version. Unfortunately, those prices are higher, though no official reason was given. Hopefully they’ll be adjusted before launch.
The device’s specs are seemingly still the same as they were when the device was announced, though news has surfaced regarding its Party system. It allows us gamers to chat with our friends across any game channel, with the use of a built-in microphone or a headset accessory, similar to XBOX Live. Sony also affirmed that its Near system (which is like friends on XBOX Live) is still a part of the device. The only difference on its outside is the name plate change.
However, American consumers may be disappointed in their options when it comes to purchasing a plan for the 3G network. AT&T have been given an exclusive monopoly over the device’s services, so you’ll only be able to deal through them. Canada’s provider has yet to be announced.
With eighty games in development from almost all of the industry’s publishers, there’s a lot to look forward to. We have titles like LittleBigPlanet, ModNation Racers Vita, Street Fighter X Tekken and Uncharted to salivate over as we anticipate getting our hands on one of these sleek black devices. Some games will even have connectivity with PlayStation 3 counterparts, allowing you to take your save file on the go, then immediately start where you left off when you get home. A lot of these games will utilize its accurate-looking touchscreen and tilt sensor controls, which should be awesome.
Pretty impressive stuff, especially with prices that are similar to and competitive with that of the Nintendo 3DS.