PlayStation Vita or Nintendo 3DS? Everything you need to know!
This week sees the arrival of the PlayStation Vita in the UK. The new Sony handheld console combines home console-quality graphics, new innovations, and a killer launch game line-up. If you’ve read our PlayStation Vita review you will already know how much we love it. It’s a great bit of kit. But then there’s the Nintendo 3DS – the first ever glasses-free console, which we also love. Which one to buy? To help you decide, we’ve compared the two, right here…
For different reasons we love both the PlayStation Vita and Nintendo 3DS. Both however, are very different bits of kit, each with their own flaws and strengths. Before heading out to buy either, here are a few things to consider:
Great games make for a great console. The PlayStation Vita has one of the best launch line-ups seen on a new handheld. Uncharted: Golden Abyss, Motorstorm RC, WipEout 2048 and Marvel Vs Capcom 3 are just a handful of launch games available from day one. Expect more ports of familiar franchises including Call of Duty, the new Street Fighter X Tekken game, and new PlayStation Vita titles on the way in future. Sony’s vision is to deliver powerful handheld gaming. It’s like having a PS3 you can take with you.
The Nintendo 3DS doesn’t quite match the raw power of the PlayStation Vita, but but there are plenty of great titles, that still look fantastic on the Nintendo 3DS. Highlights include the quite awesome Super Mario 3D Land, Star Fox 64 3D, Mario Kart 7, Resident Evil: Revelations. Upcoming titles will include Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D and Luigi’s Mansion 2. Past criticisms of Nintendo has been that it doesn’t supply enough ‘hardcore’ games. That has now been remedied. If there is a criticism of both consoles, it’s that many of the big games are sequels offering little new. But there’s no denying that both offer a fabulous selection of games to play.
Portability The Nintendo 3DS is by far the more portable of the two. You could fit a Nintendo 3DS in the middle of the PlayStation Vita, and still have room to spare. However, PlayStation Vita fans can point to its larger 5-inch OLED screen. It comes down to what you believe is the most important. Bigger screen gaming, or portability? And perhaps, how much of a Nintendo fan you are.
The price to pay for such power (PlayStation Vita) and the ability to play games in 3D (Nintendo 3DS) is battery life that fails to amaze. Expect to enjoy a maximum five-hour (give or take up to an hour depending on your settings) charge from either device. Be sure to take a charger on long journeys.
The PlayStation Vita’s most unique feature is its rear touchpad that changes the way we’ll play handheld games, enhancing ports such as LittleBigPlanet by encouraging players to think up new ways to play. PlayStation Vita owners will also be able to play games against those on a PS3 console using its unique Cross Play feature. So if you’re sitting in a coffee shop and using Wi-Fi, you’ll be able to play against friends on a PS3, while sipping a hot one in Starbucks.
The Nintendo 3DS is of course for its glasses-free 3D display. Despite the skeptics it really does work. To amazing effect in some cases. Although it has to be said that the 3D effect isn’t for everybody, and offers little, if anything to gameplay. A neat feature found on both handhelds is augmented reality gaming. Owners of both can snap photos of themselves and their friends to star in games.
Controls have been a bone of contention on 3DS. The lack of two analogue sticks has upset many, forcing Nintendo to release a Circle Pad Pro attachment that docks onto the console, costing Nintendo 3DS owners extra cash for the privilege. But it’s the best way to enjoy games such as Resident Evil: Revelations. A couple of hours of play on the Nintendo 3DS can also be uncomfortable on the wrists, so breaks are advised. By contrast, the PlayStation Vita does have dual analogue sticks, and feels much more ergonomically designed, but it comes at a cost of portability.
PlayStation Vita comes in two versions. A Wi-Fi model costs £229.99. A 3G/Wi-Fi model costs £279.99. But look around and you’ll find the PlayStation Vita starting from £210 with a free 8GB memory card from Amazon. New games for both cost around £30, but memory cards for the PlayStation Vita are considerably pricy. An 8GB memory card costs just as much as a game. The Nintendo 3DS costs considerably less – you’ll find it for around £134 and uses cheaper SD memory cards.
PlayStation Vita arrives in stores on 22 February. Have you pre-ordered one? Will you be queuing up at midnight to get one? Let us know in the comments section below.