The 3DS and Vita Comparison
I am a huge Nintendo fan through and through. I am however not too excited about Wii U just yet. Games are what ultimately makes me want a console and only a few games look cool to me but none i’d shell out major cash for to play. I am a really big fan of handheld gaming so I just had to get the Vita. Having the best of both worlds is just awesome. The Vita might be struggling in sales but there’s some major pros to the device that are major cons on the 3DS. Here’s i’m going to weigh them and i’ll just tell you right off the bat. For me, I don’t prefer one over the other. The Vita is my new device so i’ll obviously be playing it alot for a month or so. Having gotten extensive time with both handhelds has finally gave me the opportunity to compare them.
When it comes to a gaming device it’s obviously all about video games. It’s something Nintendo just “gets”. The 3DS did however start out with a huge drought of games just like the Vita did. I will un-biasedly admit the 3DS likely originally sold decently well by brand name alone. Nintendo was very smart to keep the “DS” moniker in the system’s name where as SONY completely re-branded their next generation handheld as Vita instead of going with the obvious PSP 2 or PSP Next. When it comes down to it though Nintendo is just excellent at making great portable experiences where as SONY is still young in the department. The PSP, let’s face it, wasn’t a great handheld. It had some good games, but it ultimately suffered big time from very long load times, market confusion, a single analog stick that was never utilized properly. MANY games that only worked well with duel sticks released onto it.
It was though, a very gorgeous handheld for it’s time much like the Vita is now. With cellphone technology always progressing though the graphics of a gaming handheld will be outdated in a year or two. 3rd party support for game handhelds is also shifting towards cell phones which in all honesty is very sad. I completely refuse to EVER exclusively play on a cell phone for handheld games that are touch based only.
Back on topic, the games. In my personal opinion the 3DS just kills the Vita in this department which is why the Vita is selling badly. When I look at the 3DS I see games perfectly suited for it. Super Mario 3D Land, Kid Icarus Uprising, Star Fox 64 3D, Resident Evil Revelations, and Mario Kart 7. All games that can be played in short bursts, take advantage in some way of the systems features in a nifty way and for the most part don’t feel gimmicky at all.
The Vita has alot of “good” games, but none are so great. They mostly feel like quick cash ins with some touch based gimmicks thrown in. Oh and the load times for some games are just outrageous. The Vita may have a slight advantage with it’s battery but if load times in games continue like this for it you’ll spend more time gaming on a 3DS than you will a Vita. It’s just inexcusable for a handheld device and the PSP suffered the same problem. It’s not near as bad on the Vita however.
The one HUGE advantage a Vita has over a 3DS is it’s multimedia functions and it’s network capabilities. It leads me to believe that if this system lasts it has a ton more potential than the 3DS. Trophies, listening to music while playing almost any game, party chat like on Xbox 360, downloading things off the Playstation Store while doing basically anything else, text messaging between PS3 and Vita, and even listening to music while using the web browser. All these things are just incredible for a handheld gaming device. The problem is this is a gaming device. While all these features are too awesome for words it means nothing if there is nothing to play. Luckily there are a few must have titles for the handheld like Little Big Planet Vita, Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 (Just gorgeous), and Gravity Rush is a unique game that couldn’t be experienced on any handheld except Vita.
In the end it comes down to what you want. The Vita will satisfy any tech geek who gets excited about potential and multimedia functions. If you just want games to play the 3DS is the way too go for now. I must give props to SONY though, the Vita is a fantastic device and it’s truly a shame it’s not selling well at the moment. If you have spare cash I say support the thing. Competition in the handheld market is much needed to compete with this virus that is cheap cell phone games. Handheld gamers unite all the way!