According to GameCube Europe, DS will topple 20 million manufactured units this fiscal year. In contrast, Sony has cut PSP manufacturing by 33% (6 million units) given its lagging sales. While this is great news for Ninny, is anyone else besides me perplexed by the PSP’s lackluster performance? Looks like Sony’s overall market dominance can be countered through great gaming.
I’m not surprised at all. Right now I own both a DS and a PSP and my DS gets way, way more love then my PSP because of the games that have come out (in fact my PSP is up on ebay right now). Theres nothing on the PSP that interests me a whole lot right now, plus i don’t use any of the other things like the mp3/video functionality. By the end of summer/fall the DS is going to have an incredibly strong lineup thats only going to push sales further.
I think Sony made two mistakes…
First the PSP is way too expensive. I know they can’t just lower the price, but they should have made a cheaper console than maybe not with PS2 GFX.
Second Europe is the only growing gaming market in the world and the PSP is not out over here yet. The PSPs release is just before the release of the X-Box 360 and MS is already using everything PR offers to bash the PSP.
More and more good games for the DS come over here (getting Another Code this month).
If the PSP was released the same day as the DS over here….I think the PSP would have won..
Hey, I’m to new this whole posting comments thing. I found a whole bulletin board that was discussing this topic, and ended up writing an extensive article on this new rivalry. Check it out, the address is http://www.jackphelps.net/archives/2004/12/nintendo_ds_v_s.shtml. Through a few links starting with that site is how I found this one. Anyway I think you guys will find it interesting, I spent a few days researching first, and my conclusion is that the DS will ultimately win. To find my post you’ll have to go through about 100 others ones, mine is at the bottom and is a whole lot larger than any other post, and its under “Chris”. Let me know what you guys think.
Screw it, I’m just going to put this article on this very site, just realize it was posted on the above address firt.Alright to start, kudos to everyone for having an online bulletin board on this topic, I’ve been searchin for days. However, that being said, Ten points deducted from all the people who didn’t take the time to write real words in their posts, or any hint of grammar. Now then, my name’s Chris and I’m new. I love to discuss this sort of stuff. I don’t consider myself a hard-core gamer, but it is a hobby of mine. And I, like many of you, have been hesitant in choosing a console, being as that my financial status will only allow me one system.
After that last comment, you can probably tell that I went with the DS. However, I did extensive research into both systems. Before I really go into my explanation, can we all just take a minute to appreciate the fact that we actually have 3-D portables. This was a distant dream not long ago, and thanks to this rivalry, no one has taken any time to smell the roses.
I’ll start by letting everyone know that I hate, the X-box. Sorry if I put anyone out, but I can’t stand its controllers and its constant crappy war-based titles. This system really proves that graphics don’t make games, a serious point in the PSP DS debate. I also don’t care for Sony. Like Microsoft, this company already dominates several other markets, they need to leave games to truly dedicated companies. Many of you really hit the nail on the head by pointing out Sony’s constant trap of accesories. You start off with a $300 system, and by the time your done you have $1000 dollars in games and accesories, and it would appear that sony has gone off the deep-end with this technique on the PSP. And lets not forget the fact that these things go to hell after maybe a year. I refused to buy a PS2, and it appears I really dodged a bullet. All my friends have one, and it takes half and hour to get the system to do anything. The X-box has proven worse if anything. My cousins own two, one of them they bought just 6-months ago. Both of the systems work about 75% of the time, unacceptable for a system thats still holding such a high price. anyway…back on topic.
I have been a loyal fan to Nintendo my whole life, I love the classics. Thus, I naturally gravitated to the DS. However I do own a PS one, so I’m not totally bias here. But for convience, I’m going to put my article into three different parts: Market, Consoles, and Games.
Market: I was very interested to hear the talk on how the two will do in the market. Not to mention with the next-gen consoles on their way, the market is preparing for corporate armmegedon. First off let this be said: The companies, all of them, have sealed their fate by launching all their new systems at the same time. While we had a few years between the release of the PS2, Gamecube, and X-box, all the new ones are heading out in one big wave, the portables included. The problem with this is that unless kids are very rich, they rely on parents to buy them the systems. With two or three years between system release kids can at least justify buying two or three systems. However with all systems heading out at once, companies are forcing kids to choose, and thus the profit of all the companies will suffer. Not to mention they’re really stealing focus off the portable systems, escpecially Sony. Sony must be near tears over in Japan, with low sales due to the fact that all anyone wants to hear about is the new PS3. Nintendo has also played this “Chase my own tale” game with new new GBA models. GBA SP sales were low due to the fact that everyone had already spent $100 on a new GBA, and now they’re releasing the Gameboy Micro. Sadly the oboxious Microsoft is the only one who’s really put focus into one console, thus thats all people have to worry about. However, Mr. Phelps made a great point when he said that today, the market may be large enough for two portables to survive, and same may go for the next-gen consoles. “Hardcore” gamers will own more than one system. But then companies are left to compete over the “Casual” gamers, who really will only purchase one console, if that. In that way, I think Sony is at a major disadvantage. The PSP simply doesn’t appeal to low profile gamers. No high profile titles, and price tag that absolutely murders. Not to mention all the titles they have slated for release are rereleases of PS2 or PS1 games. So why pay another $300 or so for new system to play games you already have on your PS2? Sadly I have no doubt that X-box will dominate in US. Mainly because microsoft has proven to be a real expert at taking the easy route of cheap war games targeted at lazy american teenage males. I think the real battle front will be in Japan with Nintendo and Sony. Although my sword is drawn, my bets are on the DS. Put simply, it targets the younger crowds and casual gamers with its price and titles.
Consoles: Well the real diversity between the two systems really has created a rift in the gaming world, not to mention a real decision between the two. Initially, I assumed that the DS would be the survivor. Simply based on Nintedo’s track record in the portable gaming world,I almost felt sorry for any company that was going to put up the money to rival this. However I wasn’t going to pass up the PSP without really looking at it.
The first point I want to make in this category, is that both of these consoles should’ve waited for release. Someone pointed this out, and they were spot on, but I would like to ellaborate. The DS should’ve waited till all their online junk was sorted. Rumors of the DS’s online capabilites are true, and yes, Nintedo’s president has announced that their online services are going to be free. This is a big deal where online gaming previously has been a pricy commitment, with cables, and then montly bills. Had Nintendo waited till they could really flaunt this strength, and then had some titles to use this feature, I think sales would’ve been off the charts! And the another reason both should’ve waited is the real lack of good games. I’ll talk about that a little later though. Lets talk graphics. I’ve played both, and yes, the PSP has superior graphics, its what the system asked in return that I’m not ok with. While the graphics are stunning, the loading time is not. I waited 30 seconds for a new level to load on the race game I played at a “Circuit City”. I really hate “Loading times”, which is one reason I love the Gamecube and N64. I’ve also read in reviews some newer PSP titles can take up to a minute to load. To me, thats unacceptable. The DS did indeed spare me that horrible fate. And then’s there the little topic of battery life. Now I haven’t had the pleasure to experince the short battery life of the PSP, as I don’t actually own one, however the tales send shivers down my spine. Lets point this out, this could destroy the PSP. Another reason the PSP should’ve waited. This is a deadly flaw that has killed portables before. I still do appreciate the fact that both consoles have a recharable battery, my DS is already paying for itself off AA battery’s I used on my GBA. And another excellent point someone else made, the PSP lacks innovation. There’s nothing new to see here, escepecially when most of their titles are remakes. Some don’t like the DS for its new style, and I admit it made me nervous. But after and hour(tops) of gameplay you really enjoy the use of the stylus, and it’s optional in a lot of games. That being said, I must admit that the PSP has a nicer control pad. The analog stick really helps, but I don’t think the traditional D-pad hinders the DS. As for the two screens, again a feature some people like and others don’t. After a minute of getting use to it, I really think its going to work. And the Metroid Prime demo disk proved this. Onto the medium, I hate CD style game disks. I hate CD’s for the fact that they scratch and the whole thing is ruined, not surprisingly the same thing happens with game disks. For this purpose I feel the DS’s cartridges are better protected, a big plus for me. In fact the design of the DS really does a better job of protecting the screens. Another huge deal is the new sleep mode the DS has. If I’m fighting a boss in Mario and the phone rings, I simply shut the system’s top screen, the system goes into sleep mode. The battery is saved and when I open it up again, the game starts right where I left it. No losing data due to the inabiltiy to save. This feature is sheer geniues! And considering how RPG heavy the PSP plans to be, this would’ve really helped out. “But OOOOOOOHHHH, the PSP can play DVDs and music, and hold photos,”, Lets make one thing clear, I hate Sony and Microsoft due to the fact they are incapable of making a system that focus’ on the game, its all about all the extra features that the system has. That is not the reason one buys a game console. The reason is to play games! Just as I wouldn’t buy the DS for Pictochat, I wouldn’t dream of purchasing a PSP for all its spiffy features. But heres the real differnce in both consoles extra features, money. The PSP takes accesory after accesory to get your music. You have to buy special movie disks to watch movies. And you have to run through complex systems on your PC to get it all to download onto the PSP. If anyone has gone to all the trouble and spent all the money it takes to turn your PSP into a portable media station, please speak up, ’cause I don’t see how any of it is worth it. Yet another reason the PSP should’ve waited a year or two. At least the Pictochat on the DS is built in, easy, and free. As for the wireless gaming both sytems have. I have no idea how the PSP runs with this, or what games are good for this. The DS systems are awsome in this category. With most titles, all you need is one game disk, and all the other DS systems can dowload it, and play multiplayer games. Some people don’t find this to appealing, yet they would if they were at home and everyone was on the TV. IN the case of 3-D gaming,its the same. You can run around and shoot your friends, while playing outside, or at a bus stop, and you all get your own full screen. I love this feature personally. And I guess my final reason why both consoles should’ve held off, is once again a market matter. Had sony held off a year or two, they could’ve presented a more capable model, and with the DS being old news, really basked in the spotlight with their impressive graphics. With all this competition, neither system really gets a chance to shine or show off.
Games: I’ve seen no titles that really sound interesting on the PSP, and the DS leaves something to be desired. Super Mario 64 DS, appears to be the most versatile title out of both consoles. The DS has some real heavy weights on the way, however the PSP is really relying heavily on the Final Fantasy remakes. This is a big mistake, mainly because I think a new system needs to show what it can do on its own, and not what an old system did 5 years ago. The DS is quickly rolling out with what has really been the video game success story of the year, “Nintendogs”. This game has been a cultural phenomenon in Japan, and I anticipate it will be here as well. We also see a brand new “Metroid” coming out, as well as a new “Mario”. Both are tested and proved franchises, as well as brand new games and not just make overs. Both “Mario Kart DS” and “Animal Crossing DS” are successful franchise, that while being remakes, will be featuring the DS’s online capabilites. I would love to hear what titles the PSP has ready to go online. This category easily goes to Nintendo, they have the titles that will appeal to the “Casual gamer” as well as the younger kids. I also think that the innovations of the system will really help. Both consoles have really different gameplay, but while the DS can replicate the PSP’s gamestyle (not graphics)the PSP would have a hard time replicating a stylus and double screen.
Well I guess you all can see how I got my DS, and I’ve been loving it. I don’t regret my decision, and to PSP fans, I’d love to hear your input, because I feel that getting a balance of both perspectives is really interesting. Please keep it intelligent, and give me reasons, not just “PSP rocks!!!”. That doesn’t tell anyone anything. Well thanks to everyone who took the time to read all this, and those of you who haven’t sided with a team yet, I hope I helped a little. I’ll let you know this. The PSP’s sales are slowly falling in Japan, and US. In Japan the DS has really started to take off. Because trends in Japan tend to reflect the future trends of American electronics, I’m betting that unless the PSP shapes up, it’s going to be starting its death walk next year. Sales reflect that. And if history repeats itself, Nintendo will be the victor. We’ve seen countless systems with far better graphics wither and die in the portable world due to poor game titles, high prices, and pathetic battery life, all symptoms that the PSP seems to show in an extreme way.
Thanks again. Hope to hear from everyone soon.
Thanks for the thoughtful post Chris. Welcome…